* Philippines on track for 2nd session of gains
* Singapore set to snap two straight days of falls
By Shriya Ramakrishnan
March 7 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stocks edged higher in
thin trading on Thursday as investors remained on the sidelines
with the return of global growth concerns.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation & Development
(OECD) cut its forecasts for the global economy in 2019 and
2020, following on from previous downgrades in November, as it
warned that trade disputes and economic uncertainty over Brexit
would hit world commerce and businesses.
Philippine stocks were poised to rise for a second
session with all sectors except real estate stocks in the
Vietnam index added 0.5 percent, boosted by financial
and energy sectors.
Vingroup JSC, the country's largest-listed firm by
market value, rose 3.2 percent, while oil and gas refiner
Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock Corp advanced 0.4 percent.
Meanwhile, data released in early hours showed that U.S.
goods trade deficit surged to a record high in 2018 as strong
demand fueled by lower taxes pulled in imports, despite the
Trump administration's "America First" policies, including
tariffs aimed at shrinking the trade gap.
This comes at a time when China's exports probably
contracted in February after a surprise bounce in January, while
imports fell for a third straight month, a Reuters poll showed,
highlighting deepening concerns of a long-drawn trade spat
between the world's largest economies.
Chinese trade data is due on Friday.
Singapore stocks were on track to snap two straight
sessions of losses, supported by consumer and financial stocks,
with United Overseas Bank Ltd and Jardine Cycle &
Carriage Ltd firming 0.5 percent and 0.9 percent,
Thai index and Malaysian stocks were
The Indonesian market is closed on account of a
For Asian Companies click;
SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS AS AT 0341 GMT
Market Current Previous close Pct Move
Singapore 3229.46 3222.84 0.21
Bangkok 1628.61 1625.51 0.19
Manila 7859.96 7821.34 0.49
Kuala Lumpur 1688.63 1686.82 0.11
Ho Chi Minh 999.23 994.49 0.48
Change so far in 2019
Market Current End 2018 Pct Move
Singapore 3229.46 3068.76 5.24
Bangkok 1628.61 1563.88 4.14
Manila 7859.96 7,466.02 5.28
Jakarta 6457.956 6,194.50 4.25
Kuala Lumpur 1688.63 1690.58 -0.12
Ho Chi Minh 999.23 892.54 11.95
(Reporting by Shriya Ramakrishnan in Bengaluru; Editing by