Maybank expects election concerns to drag
KUALA LUMPUR, April 30 — Maybank Investment says the benchmark stock index will continue to price in political concerns ahead of the general elections that were widely expected to be called as soon as June.
Last Friday, the benchmark stock index dropped 0.8 per cent, the largest fall since 12 March, which Maybank attributed to jitters ahead of a weekend rally held by an electoral reform group called Bersih.
Malaysian police fired tear gas and water cannon in clashes on Saturday with thousands of protesters demanding electoral reforms, raising the risk of a political backlash that could delay national polls expected as early as June.
“Given the estimated larger size of the turnout... market cautiousness is likely to extend until such time the 13th general election is announced, in our view,” Maybank analyst Wong Chew Hann said in a research note to clients.
“Nonetheless, the rally has thrown up possibility of the 13th general election being pushed back to September, the earliest, according to the press. Earlier expectation was for a June timeline (meaning a dissolution of parliament by mid-May).” — Reuters