March 18, 2020 / 4:35 AM / 14 days ago

SE Asia Stocks-Most rise as stimulus measures boost sentiment; Singapore leads gains

    * Singapore set for best day since Christmas 2015
    * Malaysia set to snap four consecutive sessions of losses
    * Philippine stock exchange set to resume trading on March
19

    By Arpit Nayak
    March 18 (Reuters) - Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose
on Wednesday, with Singapore leading the pack, as risk sentiment
improved on global stimulus efforts to soften the economic
impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
    Shares in Singapore jumped as much 3.2% and were
headed for their best session in more than four years after Wall
Street ended higher overnight on the U.S. Federal Reserve's move
to boost liquidity and as the Trump administration unveiled a $1
trillion stimulus package.
    "These are precisely the kind of numbers the market was
looking for" said Stephen Innes, global chief markets strategist
at AxiCorp, referring to Washington's massive stimulus package. 
    "Even if the details are sketchy, dropping a colossal amount
of cash in the market's lap was necessary," he added.
    The city-state's benchmark, supported by gains in
financials, was on course to end a five-session losing streak, a
period during which it lost 13.4% of its value.
    Conglomerate Jardine Matheson jumped 9.5%, while
Southeast Asia's biggest lender DBS Group Holdings
rose 2.7%.
    The Thai bourse rose 2.5% after the central bank
said it bought short and long-term government bonds worth 35
billion baht ($1.08 billion) to increase liquidity and reduce
market volatility.
    Malaysian equities firmed 1.5%, on course to snap
four straight sessions of losses, with the consumer and
healthcare stocks accounting for most of the gains.
    However, Indonesian stocks traded 0.5% lower, having
fallen as much 3.7% earlier.
    The country warned on Tuesday of a significant increase in
the number of people infected with the virus and restricted
entry and transit of visitors from seven European countries and
Iran from March 20.
    Trading in the Philippines, meanwhile, remained suspended.
The Philippine stock exchange said on Tuesday trading
would resume on March 19 after a two-day suspension as the
country's main island remained under strict quarantine
procedures.
    

    
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS as at 0322 GMT
  Change on the                                    
 day                                       
  Market          Current      Previous    Pct Move
                               close       
  Singapore       2525.21      2454.53     2.88
  Bangkok         1062.47      1035.17     2.64
  Jakarta         4433.092     4456.749    -0.53
  Kuala Lumpur    1266.98      1256.58     0.83
  Ho Chi Minh     748.77       745.78      0.40
                                           
  Change so far                            
 in 2020                                   
  Market          Current      End 2019    Pct Move
  Singapore       2525.21      3222.83     -21.65
  Bangkok         1062.47      1579.84     -32.75
  Manila          5335.37      7,815.26    -31.73
  Jakarta         4433.092     6,299.54    -29.63
  Kuala Lumpur    1266.98      1588.76     -20.25
  Ho Chi Minh     748.77       960.99      -22.08
                                                   
 


 (Editing by Aditya Soni)
  
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