February 27, 2020 / 5:28 AM / a month ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most markets fall as pandemic fears deepen; Indonesia dives 2.5%

    * Italy, Iran emerge as new epicenters of fast-spreading
    * Indonesian shares at nearly three-year low
    * Singapore set for worst week since last August

    Feb 27 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets fell
on Thursday as the virus' spread to shores beyond China made
investors swiftly reassess its potential economic impact, with
the Indonesian index slipping to a nearly three-year
    The number of new coronavirus infections inside China was
for the first time overtaken by fresh cases elsewhere on
Wednesday, with Italy and Iran emerging as new epicenters of the
rapidly spreading flu-like virus. 
    U.S. health authorities, having confirmed 59 cases so far,
warned that a pandemic is likely. 
    "Concerns surrounding the latest development of coronavirus
continue to dominate the market, which is expected to stay
choppy to any latest development of the outbreak," Mizuho Bank
said in a note to clients.
    Leading losses in the region, Indonesian shares fell up to
2.5% and were on track for a fifth session of losses.
    The index was dragged lower by losses in financial stocks,
with Bank Rakyat Indonesia slumping 6%, while Bank
Central Asia slipped nearly 2%.
    Singapore shares were headed for their worst week
since last August, with financials being the biggest laggards.
    Heavyweights Capitaland Ltd and DBS Group Holdings
 shed 1.63% and 0.53%, respectively.
    Thai shares flitted between positive and negative
territory for most of the session, while the Vietnamese index
 dropped to its lowest in more than a year.
    Bucking the sombre mood, the Malaysian bourse gained
0.3%, with Public Bank Bhd and Hong Leong Bank Bhd
 climbing 0.5% and 2.2% after both lenders reported
higher quarterly numbers on Wednesday.
    "The gain was aided by a potential resolution to the
political impasse and an economic stimulus expected to be
unveiled today," said Imran Yusof, a senior analyst with MIDF
    "The idea is that the stimulus will be enough to arrest the
economic happenings that Malaysia is facing at the moment,"
Yusof added.

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 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3093.4    3117.52         -0.77
 Bangkok                1365.89   1366.41         -0.04
 Manila                 6967.93   6909.84          0.84
 Jakarta                5548.744  5688.921        -2.46
 Kuala Lumpur           1498.86   1495.19          0.25
 Ho Chi Minh            892.38    895.97          -0.40
 Change so far in 2020                            
 Market                 Current   End 2019        Pct Move
 Singapore              3093.4    3222.83         -4.02
 Bangkok                1365.89   1579.84         -13.54
 Manila                 6967.93   7,815.26        -10.84
 Jakarta                5548.744  6,299.54        -11.92
 Kuala Lumpur           1498.86   1588.76         -5.66
 Ho Chi Minh            892.38    960.99          -7.14
 (Reporting by A K Pranav; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
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