January 18, 2019 / 10:09 AM / 6 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Rise on trade optimism, Philippines hits 9-1/2-month closing high

    * Philippines leads gains with 1.5 pct jump
    * Indonesia posts 4th straight weekly gain

    By Shreya Mariam Job
    Jan 18 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets rose on
Friday, with Philippines hitting a nine-and-a-half-month closing
high, as a report of progress in Sino-U.S. trade talks raised
hopes of a deal to end a months-ling bitter tariff war between
the world's top two economies.
    Philippine shares led the gains in Southeast Asia
with a jump of 1.5 percent ahead of the release of fourth
quarter GDP data next week. 
    "Investors are anticipating positive results or at least
within expectations," said Miguel Ong, an analyst with AP
Securities, referring to the GDP data.
    Industrial and real estate stocks were the biggest
contributors with index heavyweights SM Prime Holdings Inc
 and Jollibee Foods rising further after
Wednesday's sharp fall. 
    SM Investments Corp climbed 2.4 percent, SM Prime
Holdings rose 2.9 percent and Jollibee Foods gained 3.8 percent.
    For the week, Philippine shares added 1.8 percent in their
third straight weekly gain. 
    Other Southeast Asian stock markets closed marginally
higher, in line with broader Asia following a renewed bout of
optimism rising from a Wall Street Journal report that stated
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed lifting some or
all tariffs imposed on Chinese imports and suggested offering a
tariff rollback during trade discussions scheduled for Jan. 30.

    However, a Treasury spokesman denied the report, saying the
process with China was "nowhere near completion."
    Despite the denial, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific
shares outside Japan rose 0.55 percent. 
    Malaysian shares rose 0.6 percent on Friday, boosted
by gains in material stocks, and 0.5 percent this week. 
    Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd rose 2.4 percent,
while Top Glove Corp Bhd climbed 2.8 percent. 
    Indonesian shares rose 0.4 percent, erasing earlier
losses following the release of December motorbike sales data. 
    Index heavyweight Astra International Tbk PT rose
2.4 percent following an 8.9 percent annual growth in December
motorcycle sales.
    Meanwhile, financials also gained with Bank Central Asia Tbk
PT hitting a record high.
    An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks
rose 0.6 percent 
    For the week, Indonesian shares rose 1.4 percent in their 
fourth straight weekly gain.
For Asian Companies click;  

 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore              3224.34   3214.44         0.31
 Bangkok                1583.77   1580.3          0.22
 Manila                 8047.12   7927.2          1.51
 Jakarta                6448.156  6423.78         0.38
 Kuala Lumpur           1692.22   1682.97         0.55
 Ho Chi Minh            902.3     901.89          0.05
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Singapore              3224.34   3068.76         5.07
 Bangkok                1583.77   1563.88         1.27
 Manila                 8047.12   7,466.02        7.78
 Jakarta                6448.156  6,194.50        4.09
 Kuala Lumpur           1692.22   1690.58         0.10
 Ho Chi Minh            902.3     892.54          1.09
 (Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
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