The benchmark FBM KLCI eased 5.30 points or 0.34% to 1,573.33 at closing today. (AFP pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia gave up early gains to close lower today, succumbing to selling pressure, and bucked the regional trend as investors turned cautious ahead of the Chinese New Year celebration at the end of this week.

At 5pm, the benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) eased 5.30 points or 0.34% to 1,573.33 from 1,578.63 on last Friday’s close.

The key index opened 1.81 points higher at 1,580.44 and moved between 1,572.77 and 1,586.06 throughout the day.

In contrast, most regional bourses saw upbeat trading sentiment with Japan’s Nikkei 225 surging 2.12% to 29,388.50, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng adding 0.11% to 29,319.47, while Singapore’s Straits Times Index gained 0.93% to 2,934.29.

The higher oil prices today also failed to boost Bursa Malaysia.

At the time of writing, global benchmark Brent Crude rose 1.20% to US$60.05 a barrel while the West Texas Intermediate gained 1.13% to US$57.49 per barrel.

On the broader market, losers outpaced gainers 620 to 569, while 434 counters were unchanged, 517 untraded and 11 others suspended.

Total volume, however, rose to 7.04 billion units worth RM4.50 billion from 6.09 billion units worth RM4.15 billion recorded on last Friday’s close.

Meanwhile, among the heavyweights, Maybank and Tenaga Nasional lost three sen each to RM7.83 and RM9.67, respectively, Public Bank declined four sen to RM4.08, Top Glove and Hartalega declined 34 sen each to RM6.27 and RM12.90, respectively.

Among top gainers, Tasco added 51 sen to RM5, SJC rose 41 sen to RM1.78, Sarawak Consolidated Industries Bhd improved 40 sen to RM2.50 and Hengyuan gained 36 sen to RM5.83.

BLD Plantation topped the losers list, erasing 49 sen to RM7.51, followed by Dutch Lady which dipped 46 sen to RM34.40, while UWC shed 34 sen to RM12.88.

On the index board, the FBM Emas Index fell 22.93 points to 11,479.39, the FBMT 100 Index went down 30.04 points to 11,199.52 and the FBM Emas Shariah Index was 48.93 points weaker at 13,013.93.

The FBM 70 inched down 10.48 points to 15,049.34 and FBM ACE decreased 89.53 points to 10,771.70.

Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index contracted 11.5 points to 14,565.40, the Plantation Index declined 17.98 points to 7,122.73, while the Industrial Products and Services Index was 1.51 points better at 178.06. - Free Malaysia Today