Market Commentary and Intraday News
Win Streak May Continue For Singapore Bourse
249 days ago
(RTTNews) - The Singapore stock market added less than a point on Thursday, but that was enough to extend its winning streak to three sessions, rising more than 20 points or 0.6 percent in that span. The Straits Times Index closed just below the 3,030-point plateau, and now investors are looking for further upside when the market opens on Friday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is broadly positive, following the long-awaited announcement of further stimulus from the Federal Reserve. The Fed announced a plan to increase policy accommodation by purchasing additional agency mortgage-backed securities at a pace of $40 billion per month. The European markets were mixed ahead of the Fed's announcement and the U.S. bourses were sharply higher - and the Asian markets are expected to follow the latter lead.
The STI finished flat on Thursday, shrugging off weakness from the property stocks and industrials.
For the day, the index added 0.48 points or 0.02 percent to finish at 3,030.14 after trading between 3,013.34 and 3,033.60 on volume of 1.47 billion shares. There were 229 gainers and 170 decliners.
Among the actives, Keppel Corp shed 0.62 percent, while City Developments dropped 1.06 percent, Wilmar International lost 0.66 percent, SembCorp Industries fell 0.54 percent, Neptune Orient Lines jumped 2.71 percent, Noble Group added 0.39 percent and Fraser and Neave spiked 4.82 percent.
The lead from Wall Street is upbeat as stocks moved substantially higher on Thursday in a positive reaction to the Federal Reserve's highly anticipated monetary policy announcement - in which it said it plans to increase policy accommodation by purchasing additional agency mortgage-backed securities at a pace of $40 billion per month.
The Fed also announced the continuation of its "Operation Twist" program, saying that the actions taken together will increase the central bank's holdings of longer-term securities by about $85 billion each month through the end of the year.
Looking ahead, the Fed said it would continue its purchases of mortgage-backed securities until the outlook for the labor market improves substantially. The central bank also left interest rates at near-zero levels and said exceptionally low rates are likely to be warranted at least through mid-2015.
With the focus on the Fed, traders largely shrugged off a report from the Labor Department showing a bigger than expected increase in weekly jobless claims. A separate report from the Labor Department showed that a substantial rebound in energy prices contributed to a bigger than expected increase in producer prices in the month of August.
The major U.S. averages were sharply higher on Thursday as the Dow jumped 206.51 points or 1.6 percent to finish at 13,539.86, while the NASDAQ surged 41.52 points or 1.3 percent to end at 3,155.83 and the S&P 500 soared 23.43 points or 1.6 percent to close at 1,459.99. With the strong gains on the day, the Dow and the S&P 500 reached their best closing levels in well over four years, while the NASDAQ reached a nearly twelve-year closing high.
In economic news, Singapore will on Friday announce July figures for retail sales, which are expected to fall 1.1 percent on month and 5.0 percent on year. That follows the 0.4 percent monthly fall and the 0.9 percent annual contraction in June.
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