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Southeast Asia stocks: Indonesia leads regional gains on reassuring growth forecast

04/30/2020 | 06:19am EST
An SGX sign is pictured at Singapore Stock Exchange

By Nikhil Subba

Indonesia's benchmark closed over 3% higher on Thursday, posting its first monthly gain this year, after the country signalled a positive end to the financial year with economic growth set to recover.

Bank Indonesia (BI) said on Thursday it expects a stronger recovery for GDP growth in the final quarter of the year and maintained its full-year 2020 forecast at 2.3%.

The Indonesia benchmark rose 3.3% to close at a over two-week high, while marking its best day since April 17. The index ended the month nearly 4% higher, after three straight months of losses.

Bank Central Asia climbed 6.6%, while Bank Tabungan Pensiunan Nasional Syariah jumped 20.4% at close.

Meanwhile, markets were lifted by positive early results from a U.S government clinical trial showing that Gilead Sciences Inc experimental drug remdesivir helped certain COVID-19 patients recover more quickly from the illness.

"The vaccine is incredibly positive news for the oil market as it suggests a quicker recovery in global demand as oil downstream sectors would be expected to fire up," Stephen Innes, chief market strategist at AxiCorp, said in a note.

Oil prices rose on Thursday on signs that gasoline demand is starting to pick up as COVID-19 restrictions begin easing in parts of the world. [O/R]]

Singapore's Straits Times Index climbed about 2% to settle at a peak of over two weeks, boosted by financials. The benchmark rose 5.8% in April, its biggest monthly gain since end-June 2019.

DBS Group closed at seven-week peak, while logging its best session since March 25, after the lender retained its quarterly dividend and flagged a stable annual outlook.

Malaysia stocks ended the session nearly 2% up, while closing the month more than 4% higher - its best monthly performance since July 2018.

Petronas Chemicals Group finished nearly 9% up, while Press Metal Aluminium Holdings ended 4.2% higher.

Thai stocks firmed 1.5% to close at its highest since March 6. In April, the index advanced about 15.3%, its biggest monthly gain since December 2003.

Mobile phones supplier TWZ Corp jumped 20% at close, while Thai Oil closed 3.2% higher.

(Reporting by Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

© Reuters 2020
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AT HOME GROUP INC. 1.54% 19.14 Delayed Quote.248.00%
BEST INC. -1.33% 2.96 Delayed Quote.-46.76%
DBS GROUP HOLDINGS LTD -0.70% 25.5 End-of-day quote.-1.47%
GILEAD SCIENCES, INC. 0.89% 60.03 Delayed Quote.-7.62%
JUST GROUP PLC 0.79% 57.65 Delayed Quote.-27.03%
LETS HOLDINGS GROUP CO., LTD. 1.30% 9.36 End-of-day quote.54.97%
LINE CORPORATION 0.19% 5380 End-of-day quote.0.56%
LONDON BRENT OIL 1.13% 48.24 Delayed Quote.-27.73%
LOOK HOLDINGS INCORPORATED 2.71% 1063 End-of-day quote.-15.10%
PETRONAS CHEMICALS GROUP 1.32% 6.9 End-of-day quote.-6.12%
PRESS METAL ALUMINIUM HOLDINGS 4.69% 6.7 End-of-day quote.44.09%
PT BANK CENTRAL ASIA TBK 1.09% 32400 End-of-day quote.-3.07%
THAI OIL 0.99% 51.25 End-of-day quote.-26.52%
THE GLOBAL LTD. 12.81% 273 End-of-day quote.-42.04%
TWZ CORPORATION PUBLIC COMPANY LIMITED 12.50% 0.09 End-of-day quote.12.50%
WILL GROUP, INC. 0.91% 999 End-of-day quote.-20.21%
WORLD CO., LTD. -0.97% 1324 End-of-day quote.-50.80%
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