KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia opened slightly higher today but retreated thereafter, extending yesterday's losses on continued profit-taking in selected heavyweights amid mixed sentiment on the regional markets, dealers said.

At 9.10am, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) was 2.41 points weaker at 1,783.66 against Wednesday's close of 1,786.07.

Earlier, the benchmark index opened 0.07 of-a-point higher at 1,786.14.

However, on the broader market, gainers led losers by 158 to 95 with 213 counters unchanged, 1,367 untraded and 39 others were suspended.

Turnover stood at 157.34 million shares worth RM59.74 million.

Maybank Investment Bank Research expected the local bourse to trade between 1,780 and 1,790 today while support level was forecast at between 1,766 and 1,756.

In a research note today, it said, the local market was expected to be volatile ahead of key stats in China and US Federal Open Market Committee meeting.

“FBMKLCI slipped 3.79 points to 1,786.07 yesterday in spite of the stronger overnight US markets. Late sell-down in Genting Malaysia, CIMB and AXIATA weighed on the benchmark, halting a two-day streak of gains.

“Construction stocks could attract some interest on job wins while there could be spillover buying on technology stocks,” it said.

Among heavyweights, Maybank was flat at RM9.70, Public Bank rose two sen to RM20.60 while TNB fell six sen to RM14.52 and Sime Darby shed two sen to RM9.12.

Among the active counters, Land & General and Sino Hua-An added one sen each to 23 sen and 26.5 sen, respectively, while D.B.E. Gurney and NETX Holdings were flat at 3.5 sen and 5.5 sen, respectively.

The FBM Emas Index was 7.39 points lower at 12,701.06, FBM 70 added 14.73 points to 15,180.13, FBM Emas Shariah Index declined 19.35 points to 12,901, FBMT 100 Index decreased 9.64 points to 12,360.63 and the FBM Ace improved 12.86 points to 6,739.88.

Sector-wise, the Industrial Index shed 10.04 points to 3,229.46, the Plantation Index slipped 30.74 points to 7,953.83 but the Finance Index gained 3.63 points to 16,820.36. -- BERNAMA

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