Regional markets were up at midday Wednesday following news that raw material prices climbed to a seven-month high after the falling of US stockpiles and dollar.
Bloomberg reported that crude oil rose towards US$71 a barrel as the American Petroleum Institute said oil supplies fell 5.96 million barrels to 357.9 million last week, the lowest level since March.
Support for crude prices came on expectations the dollar may extend its decline against the euro on speculation the global recession is ending.
At 12.30pm, the benchmark KLCI rose 4.29 points or 0.40% to 1,076.08 while Singapore’s Straits Times Index gained 0.85% to 2,369.92.
Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 climbed 1.74% to 9,957.45 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index advanced 2.13% to 18,442.85.
Shanghai’s A share index added 0.45% to 2,800.38 and Seoul’s Kospi Index gained 2.33% to 1,403.77.
At Bursa Malaysia, 431 counters were up, 164 were down while 212 others were traded unchanged. There were 1.24 billion shares done at total value of RM775.94 million.
Among gainers, Measat advanced 43 sen to RM2.17, Transmile added 24 sen to RM1.56, Kumpulan Perangsang Selangor rose 23 sen to RM2.01, Asia File and Maybank gained 15 sen each at RM5.20 and RM5.60 while Berjaya Land was 14 sen higher at RM3.92.
Oil and gas stocks, KNM gained 2 sen to RM1.05, Scomi added 0.5 sen to 76 sen, SAAG and Oilcorp were unchanged at RM3.65 and 54 sen.
Plantation counters Batu Kawan dropped 10 sen to RM8.90, Kulim rose 10 sen to RM6.55, United Plantations and Sime were unchanged at RM12.80 and RM7.00.
BAT fell 25 sen to RM43.75, Genting lost 5 sen to RM5.95, Telekom gained 1 sen to RM2.72 and TNB was unchanged at RM7.90
Nymex crude oil added 65 cents to US$70.66 per barrel.
Crude palm oil 3-month futures were up RM5 to RM2,470 per tonne.
The ringgit was quoted at 3.513 to the US dollar.