Vietnam stock scales new peak, Singapore extends gain

By Reuters   April 6, 2018 | 12:59 am PT
Vietnam stock scales new peak, Singapore extends gain
Traders gather for the IPO of Singapore-based Sea Limited on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., October 20, 2017. Photo by Reuters/Brendan McDermid
Other Southeast Asian markets slipped as investors awaited China's response for Trump's $100 billion additional tariffs proposal.

Singapore and Vietnam shares extended gains on Friday while other Southeast Asian markets slipped as investors awaited China's response after U.S. President Donald Trump proposed $100 billion in additional tariffs.

"The silver lining is that Trump did open a path for de-escalation, stating that the U.S. is prepared to have discussions," Mizuho Bank said in a note.   

"The ball is now in China's court to either play hardball or change to a more conciliatory tone. Markets are thinking that much is posturing for negotiations, but the risk is that tit-for-tat can spiral beyond a point where it becomes hard for both sides to walk back."

The S&P 500 E-mini futures were down 1.2 percent, pointing to a lower start for Wall Street later in the global day. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was slightly higher. 

Vietnam shares rose for a third straight session and hit a new high of 1,202.59. Vingroup JSC rose 1.2 percent, while Vietnam Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Industry and Trade jumped 2.3 percent.

The benchmark stock index has gained over 2 percent so far this week in what could be its eighth straight weekly rise. It has added nearly 22 percent this year after a 48 percent jump in 2017.

Singapore shares climbed for a second day in a row on the back of gains in financials. DBS Group Holdings Ltd, the city-state's biggest lender, and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Ltd both gained nearly 1 percent.

Philippine shares were slightly down, but were on track to post their second consecutive weekly gain. Ayala Corp rose as much as 2.5 percent and Bank of the Philippine Islands climbed 1.4 percent.   

If not for volatility in the global markets Philippine shares would have risen as the country is in the midst of a technical rally, said Jose L. Vistan, research head at Manila-based AB Capital Securities. 

Indonesian shares were marginally lower and were set to post their sixth straight weekly drop. Bank Central Asia Tbk PT declined up to 1.7 percent, while Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk PT skid nearly 2 percent to a three-month low. 

The Thai stock market was closed for a holiday.

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