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Southeast Asia Stocks Tumble on Wall Street after Tech Selloff



BANGKOK – Thai shares gain momentarily after the Monetary Policy Committee raised its GDP forecasts for the year, but eventually finished 0.98% lower on Wednesday.

Most Southeast Asian stock markets, including the Stock Exchange of Thailand, ended lower on Wednesday, after a tech selloff on Wall Street over tighter regulation dimmed hopes of a recovery in global equities that have been bruised of late by fears of a US-China trade war.

US tech stocks have been stressed lately over tighter regulatory concerns, stemming from data privacy-related issues surrounding Facebook, with three major US indexes posting their fourth decline in five sessions.

Privacy concerns over the social media giant aggravated on Tuesday when a whistleblower said Canadian company AggregateIQ had developed software to target Republican voters in the 2016 US election.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan snapped its two-day gaining streak to fall 1.7%.

The SET main index plunged 17.59 points or almost 1% to close at 1,784.99, in trade worth 77.66 billion baht.

Thai shares gained momentarily after the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of Thailan draised its GDP forecasts for the year.

It upgraded its 2018 economic growth forecast, taking it to 4.1% from 3.9% seen in December, but left its benchmark interest rate unchanged as expected. However, the vote was split for the first time in nearly three years.

Singapore’s benchmark index was the poorest performer amongst its peers, ending over 1.6% lower and posting its fifth loss in six sessions.

While all sectors fell, financials weighed on the benchmark the most, with bellwethers Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp and DBS Group Holdings, falling over 2% each.

Indonesian shares followed suit to end over 1% lower, falling for a fourth session in six. Financial stocks were the biggest losers, with Bank Negara Indonesia (Persero) posting its steepest drop in over a year.

Philippine shares finished 0.8% lower, dragged by industrials, with SM Investments Corp slumping 3.3%.

The Vietnam index was the sole gainer, edging up a slight 0.04%, aided by real estate stocks.

Source: Reuters, Bangkok Post

Southeast Asian stock markets
Current Previous % change
Thailand 1,784.99 1,802.58 -0.98
Indonesia                 6,140.83 6,209.35 -1.10
Malaysia                 1,857.87 1,862.45 -0.25
Philippines                  7,979.83 8,047.03 -0.84
Singapore                  3,382.78 3,439.35 -1.64
Vietnam        1,172.24 1,171.73 +0.04

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