Most Southeast Asian stocks fell on Monday as risk appetite was curbed after poor economic data from China, while Singaporean shares shook off losses from the previous session as investors sought bargains.
Singaporean stocks climbed 1.4 percent, led by financial stocks, following a 1.1 slump that made them the region’s worst performer on Friday.
Investors appeared to look past data from Monday that showed a worse-than-expected fall in Singapore’s non-oil domestic exports in November, with shipments to most of its major trading partners declining.
“It looks like bargain-hunting, as valuations are at attractive levels,” said Joel Ng, an analyst at KGI Securities, pointing to a 20-30 percent fall in Singaporean stocks over the past six months.
As of Friday, Singapore’s benchmark has fallen 8 percent in the past six months.
Meanwhile, Chinese data released on Friday showing subdued retail sales and industrial output figures for November weighed on sentiment.
Indonesian stocks see-sawed in early trade and fell 0.7 percent, ahead of the release of data on the country’s trade deficit.
Indonesia is expected to post a smaller trade deficit in November compared with a month earlier, a Reuters poll showed on Friday, in a relief to the central bank which has been raising rates to defend the troubled rupiah.
Malaysian stocks traded slightly lower, with lender RHB Bank Bhd falling 2.4 percent.
Vietnamese shares fell 0.7 percent, with most major sectors in the red, as financials and consumer stocks underpinned losses.
Lender Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam was down 1 percent, while Vietnam Technological And Commercial Joint Stock Bank shed 0.9 percent.
The Thai index, which is heavily influenced by energy stocks, rose 0.2 percent as energy shares appeared to benefit from a rise in oil prices.
Philippine stocks traded nearly flat, with industrials in the red.