* China's Jan-Feb industrial output slips, investment picks
* Profit taking may be likely in near term - Singapore
By Rashmi Ashok
March 14 (Reuters) - Southeast Asian stock markets remained
subdued on Thursday in thin trade, as investors chose to wait
and watch, after a mixed set of economic data from the region's
largest trading partner China kept them on edge.
China's January-February industrial output slipped to a
17-year low, but investment picked up pace during the period as
the government boosted road and rail projects in a bid to avert
However, retail sales were marginally better-than-expected,
with the headline figure rising 8.2 percent in January-February
from a year earlier, in line with December.
Singapore's index slipped for a second straight day
amid thinly traded volumes, after posting the sole loss in the
region in the previous session.
"Investors seem to be taking a wait and see approach,
reflected by the lower trading volumes. Fundamental data is
really weakening," said Joel Ng, analyst at KGI Securities,
referring to China's industrial output data.
He added that profit taking was likely in the near term as a
result of China's downcast data, as investors looked closely for
signs of a slowing in Singapore's largest trading partner's
Lender Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Ltd edged
lower, while index heavyweight Jardine Matheson Holdings Ltd
fell about 2.6 percent to weigh on the index.
Philippine's index also slipped, as financial and
consumer stocks both weighed on the index. Metropolitan Bank &
Trust Company fell 1 percent while food and beverage
manufacturer Universal Robina Corp lost 1.2 percent.
Meanwhile, investors in Indonesia and Thailand appeared
non-committal, with shares trading little changed. Malaysian
stocks edged slightly lower.
Vietnamese stocks slipped, with consumer stocks
weighing on the country's benchmark. Dairy processor Vietnam
Dairy Products JSC was down nearly 1 percent.
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS at 0318 GMT
Change on the day
Market Current Previous close Pct Move
Singapore 3191.71 3195.59 -0.12
Bangkok 1641.05 1639.67 0.08
Manila 7749.18 7766.15 -0.22
Jakarta 6381.403 6377.575 0.06
Kuala Lumpur 1675.62 1678.24 -0.16
Ho Chi Minh 1002.35 1005.41 -0.30
Change so far in 2019
Market Current End 2018 Pct Move
Singapore 3191.71 3068.76 4.01
Bangkok 1641.05 1563.88 4.93
Manila 7749.18 7,466.02 3.79
Jakarta 6381.403 6,194.50 3.02
Kuala Lumpur 1675.62 1690.58 -0.88
Ho Chi Minh 1002.35 892.54 12.30
(Reporting by Rashmi Ashok in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi