September 4, 2018 / 3:37 AM / 8 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most markets slip on lingering trade worries

    * Indonesia braces for prolonged pressure as rupiah slides -
    * Malaysia extends declines, Philippines recovers from falls

    By Sumeet Gaikwad
    Sept 4 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets edged
lower on Tuesday, in line with broader Asia, amid tensions
around global trade and as emergency austerity measures in
Argentina highlighted turbulence in emerging markets.
    U.S. President Donald Trump gave fresh impetus to trade
worries when he said on Saturday there was no need to keep
Canada in the North American Free Trade Agreement and warned
Congress not to meddle with the trade talks or he would
terminate the trilateral trade pact altogether.
    Trump was also reported to have said he is ready to impose
tariffs on an additional $200 billion worth of imports from
China as soon as a public comment period on the plan ends on
    "Some investors were looking at the NAFTA renegotiation as a
bellwether for how far the U.S. is willing to take its trade
spat with China," Argonaut said in a note.
    Growing turbulence in Argentina once again focused global
attention on emerging markets. On Monday, Argentine President
Mauricio Macri announced new taxes on exports and steep cuts to
government spending in what he termed "emergency" measures to
balance next year's budget.
    MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
 was down 0.7 percent.
    In Southeast Asia, Indonesian shares slipped,
dragged by telecom and material stocks. Telekomunikasi Indonesia
 fell as much as 1.2 percent, while consumer products
maker Unilever Indonesia declined nearly 1 percent. 
    Meanwhile, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said the
country was bracing for prolonged pressure on the rupiah amid
souring emerging market sentiment.
    The rupiah hit 14,825 per dollar on Monday, the
weakest since the Asian Financial Crisis two decades ago, before
closing at 14,810. It has lost nearly 9 percent this year.
    An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks
was down 0.6 percent.
    Malaysian shares declined for a fourth straight
session with telecom stocks leading the fall. Axiata Group
 and Digi.Com fell nearly 2 percent and 1
percent, respectively. 
    Singapore shares were largely flat as losses in real
estate stocks were offset by gains in consumer stocks. Property
investor Hongkong Land Holdings fell 0.6 percent,
while Golden Agri-Resources Ltd rose 1.7 percent. 
    Philippines shares rose after four straight sessions
of declines, led by gains in consumer discretionary and
financial stocks. 
    Fast-food restaurant operator Jollibee Foods
climbed 1.1 percent, while Ayala Land added 0.8
    The archipelago is due to report August inflation data on
Wednesday. The central bank said on Friday annual inflation in
August was likely to hit around 5.9 percent, the highest in more
than nine years.    
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 Change on the day                           
 Market             Current  Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore          3205.15  3207.2          -0.06
 Bangkok            1718.08  1721.21         -0.18
 Manila             7858.46  7832.22         0.34
 Jakarta            5939.55  5967.579        -0.47
 Kuala Lumpur       1812.02  1813.58         -0.09
 Ho Chi Minh        989.59   989.54          0.01
 Change on year                              
 Market             Current  End 2017        Pct Move
 Singapore          3205.15  3402.92         -5.81
 Bangkok            1718.08  1753.71         -2.03
 Manila             7858.46  8558.42         -8.18
 Jakarta            5939.55  6355.654        -6.55
 Kuala Lumpur       1812.02  1796.81         0.85
 Ho Chi Minh        989.59   984.24          0.54
 (Reporting by Sumeet Gaikwad in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
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