KUALA LUMPUR: A warning from Apple Inc overnight that it would not meet its revenue target for the first quarter owing to slowed production and demand in China sent global equities lower as investors fretted over the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak.
Tech stocks on Bursa Malaysia were seen falling with the KL Technology Index slipping over 2%.
Semiconductor counters KESM and Pentamaster stood out among the biggest decliners, dropping 20 sen to RM10 and 13 sen to RM4.99 respectively.
At the morning close, the blue-chip FBM KLCI was down 2.25 points to 1,534.87. Trading volume was 1.65 billion shares valued at RM942.58mil. There were 564 decliners, 198 gainers and 320 counters unchanged.
Among the leading decliners, plantation stock KL Kepong slipped 60 sen to RM23.14 on the back of its earnings results yesterday.
Maxis dropped 10 sen to Rm5.38 and Petronas Chemicals was down five sen to RM6.50.
In financial counters, Public Bank gained six sen to RM17.68 while Hong Leong Bank added 10 sen to RM15.26 and CIMB added two sen to RM4.90. Maybank was unchanged at RM8.49 while RHB rose one sen to RM5.68.
The most actively traded counter of the day was Icon Offshore, which has been seeing volatile trading following yesterday's announcement that Bursa Malaysia had lifted its designated securities status.
In Monday trading, the stock hit limit-up before descending into the red as profit-taking ensued. The selling continued on Tuesday morning with the share losing six sen to 11.5 sen.
other top traded stocks included MyEG down seven sen to RM1.26 and DGB unchanged at 7.5 sen.
In oil markets, traders began to lose hope that Opec would deepen its production cuts in March to mitigate the lacklustre demand brought on by the Covid-19 outbreak.
WTI crude fell 37 cents to US$51.69 a barrel and Brent crude dropped 62 cents to US$57.05 a barrel.
On the forex market, the ringgit was 0.1% lower against the greenback at 4.1480. It was flat against the pound sterling at 5.3920 and the Singapore dollar at 2.9833.