Published: Thursday July 12, 2012 MYT 3:36:00 PM
European, key Asian markets fall on weaker outlook
By Joseph Chin
KUALA LUMPUR: Key European and Asian markets fell on Thursday, with South Korea's Kospi down 2.24%, on investors' worries about a weakening global growth outlook.
At Bursa Malaysia, the FBM KLCI was down 2.71 points to 1,626.74 at 3.25pm. Turnover was 889.91 million shares valued at RM940.56mil. The number of declining counters increased to 457 versus 270 gainers.
However, investors could take comfort from Moody's Investors Service's comments the outlook for Malaysia's banking system in the next 12 to 18 months was stable though it expected GDP growth to be slower at 4% compared with 5.1% last year.
Reuters reported a surprise rate cut in South Korea, a 50-basis point cut in Brazil to a record low and a lack of any clear policy action by the Bank of Japan added to the cautious mood, favouring the US dollar and safe-haven assets.
The dollar greenback measured against a basket of key currencies , rose to a two-year high of 83.61 in overnight trade before settling around 83.49 in early European activity, pushing the euro to near a two-year low of $1.2234.
South Korea's Kospi fell 2.24% to 1,785.39; Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 1.48% to 8,720.01 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index 1.99% lower at 19,032.66.
European markets were in the red, with the Euro Stoxx down 0.63% to 2,232.12, FTSE 100 fell 0.68% to 5,626.20.