The local bourse continues to be spooked by uncertainty following Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s resignation as prime minister and Bersatu chairman, marking his possible exit from politics.
When the market resumed after lunch, the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) declined 42.78 points, or 2.79%, to 1,488.22.
This marks the lowest level reached by the local bourse since December 2011.
The index opened at 1,501.47, hovering between 1,486.71 and 1,510.42 throughout the morning session.
Meanwhile, the ringgit traded at 4.2210/2280 against the greenback at 3pm.
Across the board, all indexes are negative, with the construction counter continuing its downtrend, shedding 6.56%, followed by the energy counter, which declined 4.16%.
Blue-chip stocks that took the heaviest hit were Maybank, declining 19 sen to RM8.22, Tenaga Nasional Bhd (56 sen to RM12.22), Public Bank (64 sen to RM17.50), Petronas Chemical (22 sen to RM6.23) and IHH (13 sen to RM5.61).
The construction index, which took the biggest hit, saw Ecovest sliding five sen to 68.5 sen, Sunway Construction (six sen to RM1.89), Muhibbah Engineering (nine sen to RM1.74) and AME Elite (11 sen to RM1.79).
An analyst said the FBM KLCI is expected to keep to its downtrend and test the 1,480 benchmark if the uncertainty persists till the end of the day.
“A continuous withdrawal will take place until a decision is made by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, maybe later today.
“Until then, investors remain on high alert as the current ruling government is in ‘trouble’.”
On the scoreboard, losers outpaced gainers 1,005 to 111, with 170 unchanged, 713 untraded and 21 suspended.
Total volume stood at 2.87 billion with a value of RM2.57 billion.
On the index board, the FBM Emas Index slipped 328.25 points to 10,637.36, FBMT 100 Index (318.14 points to 10,428.97) and FBM Ace (135.43 points to 5,611.49).
The FBM Emas Shariah Index slid 344.47 points to 11,312.79 and FBM 70 (484.08 points to 13,397.71).
Sector-wise, the Industrial Products and Services Index eased 3.83 points to 141.96, Financial Services Index (385.56 points to 14,310.36) and Plantation Index (24.56 to 6,910.06).