December 31, 2018 / 3:09 AM / in 22 days

SE Asia Stocks-Singapore, Malaysia rise after Trump-Xi trade phone call

    Dec 31 (Reuters) - Singaporean and Malaysian stocks rose on
Monday in thin year-end trading as a phone call between U.S. and
Chinese leaders spurred hopes that the two economic heavyweights
would reach a deal that could ease their damaging trade
standoff.
    While other markets in the region were shut, Singapore and
Malaysia gained modestly, in line with their Asian peers, as
investors appeared to take heart from a possible Sino-U.S. deal
at the end of a tumultuous year.
    U.S. President Donald Trump said on Twitter that he had a
"long and very good call" with Chinese President Xi Jinping and
that a possible trade deal between the two sides was progressing
well.
    In late November, the two countries had agreed to halt
additional tariffs, hold fresh talks and reach an agreement
within 90 days.
    China is Southeast Asia's biggest trading partner and its
trade war with the United States, which has cost both sides
billions of dollars in losses, also hit Southeast Asian stock
indexes, all of which ended 2018 in the red.
    Singapore's index rose 0.3 percent on Monday, with
top gainer Thai Beverage PCL advancing 3.4 percent.
Lender DBS Group Holdings Ltd firmed 1.1 percent.
    Malaysia's benchmark was boosted by industrial
conglomerate Sime Darby Berhad, which rose 3.4
percent, and tourist resort operator Genting Malaysia Berhad
, which added 1.3 percent.
    Singapore's index has shed over 10 percent this year, while
Malaysian stocks were among the region's better performers with
a 5 percent decline.
    Singapore's market will trade for shorter hours on account
of New Year's Eve, while Malaysian markets have regular trading
hours.
    
For Asian Companies click:  

SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS AS AT 0227 GMT
 Market          Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Singapore       3063.88   3053.43         0.34
 Kuala Lumpur    1694.88   1692.07         0.17
                                           
 Change on year                            
 Market          Current   End 2017        Pct Move
 Singapore       3063.88   3402.92         -9.96
 Bangkok         1563.88   1753.71         -10.82
 Manila          7466.02   8558.42         -12.76
 Jakarta         6194.498  6355.654        -2.54
 Kuala Lumpur    1694.88   1796.81         -5.67
 Ho Chi Minh     892.54    984.24          -9.32
 
 (Reporting by Rashmi Ashok in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin
Ravikumar)
  
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