THE Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange Composite Index rose 6.69 points to close at a record high of 805.51, driven by strong gains in several blue chips, including giant Telekom Malaysia. It marked the third straight day that the index had set a record close. ''Anticipation of a strong [gross domestic product] growth in the second quarter is contributing to the run-up in blue chips,'' said an analyst. Turnover was 341.2 million shares, against 413.8 million on Thursday. SINGAPORE SHARES soared on institutional buying, with the 30-share Straits Times Industrial Index ending at a record closing high of 1,972.27. The index, which compared with the previous closing high of 1,951.4 set on Wednesday, was up 23.49 points, 1.21 per cent, from Thursday's close. A bank-based broker said some fund managers had bought blue chips after the Government announced earlier this week it would float only six to eight per cent of Singapore Telecom's capital, well below expectations, in October. They had been holding back fresh stock market investments waiting for the issue, he said. WELLINGTON THE market took a breather from two days of soaring prices, closing down a touch but well supported. The NZSE-40 Capital Index closed just 0.66 points lower at 2,018.52. ''The market's just had a day of catching its breath,'' said broker Paul Nicolson at brokerage Buttle Wilson. Volume sagged from Thursday's $142 million to $85 million as the buyers of the previous two heady days took their foot off the accelerator. TOKYO STOCKS closed down for the fourth successive day in lacklustre trade, with investors exhausted by the jumpy currency market. Individual incentive-backed issues were sought after, but trading was mostly dominated by brokerage dealers. The 225-share Nikkei average closed down 80.21 points, 0.39 per cent, at 20,607.26, with about 230 million shares traded. MANILA PRICES closed higher on a rally led by Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co (PLDT), which posted gains in New York overnight. ''If the composite index hits new highs next week, it will be headed by PLDT,'' said Charles Ngan, of Abacus Securities. The Manila Composite Index ended at 1,775.76 points, from 1,760.84. Makati surged 18.09 points to 1,826.09, nearly breaking its 1,829 record set in August 3. Combined turnover fell to 1.36 billion shares worth 549.72 million pesos, from the previous 2.17 billion valued at 413.04 million. TAIPEI STOCKS extended early losses to close lower across the board and brokers say the market has entered a downward consolidation. The weighted index was only slightly weaker in early trade but closed 47.8 points down at 4,045.61. Turnover was a moderate NT$15.95 billion, against Thursday's $12.74 billion. Brokers attributed late selling to rumours that major market player Lei Po-lung, charged last year with involvement in huge payment defaults, would be sentenced soon. Court officials were unavailable for comment. ''Anything at this time makes investors really nervous,'' said Harris Liao, of Harvest Securities. SYDNEY SHARES took a breather after Thursday's surge, closing only marginally higher. ''There was still a fair bit of foreign money in the market and this helped it up,'' said Pat Trotter, of ANZ McCaughan. The market's key indicator tumbled at the open as investors took profits, but recovered in later trade. The All Ordinaries Index closed up 0.8 points at 1927.1. The index had powered through 1,900 points on Thursday to reach another post-1987 crash high. ''Overseas markets are consolidating after bullish runs and we are following these trends,'' said another broker. SEOUL STOCKS ended lower after profit-taking eroded an early seven-point gain, indicating confidence remains shaky in the wake of last week's sudden ban on false-name trading. The index ended 8.11 points lower at 729.86. ''The market is stabilising. But investors are still not very confident yet,'' Ko Kyung-bae at Hyundai Securities said. But some brokers said the market was well-positioned for a rally next week, with some forecasting the index could go as high as the 800 level. JAKARTA PRICES ended higher in an upbeat mood and moderate trade in yesterday's single session. ''Positive local sentiment on newcomers drew in fresh funds, which kept up the market's upbeat mood,'' a local brokerage dealer said. The official index closed at this year's record high of 387.91, up from Thursday's 384.82. BANGKOK STOCKS closed marginally higher as speculative sentiment again dominated the market, precluding any really big gains. The market was up 3.33 points, at 958.68, with turnover active at just under eight billion baht. ''Speculative sentiment still covers the market, especially with small finance stocks. Big-cap stocks just aren't performing,'' said Sathid Sathitakorn, marketing manager at Ekachart Finance and Securities. ''We can say the market is still moving sideways.'' The Chinese share prices are provided by Telerate. All other prices are provided by Reuter.