THE Straits Times Index (STI) was pushed up by about 11 points in the final seconds of trading last Thursday, April 30, so it came as no surprise that on Monday, the first trading day of May, the index spent most of the day in the red and eventually ended a nett 4.69 points weaker at 3,482.7.
It also came as no surprise to see penny stock interest continue to dwindle - turnover done was a weak 1.5 billion units worth S$1.02 billion for an average of S$0.68 per unit traded, more than twice the value a month ago. The dollar value done in the STI's 30 components was S$279 million, about 27 per cent of overall business.
As for the broad market's performance, weakness in the index usually means softness all round - and this was borne out by an advance-decline score of 178-287 excluding warrants.
Brokers were not surprised at what was in truth a lethargic session with few redeeming features. The banks for example, enjoyed divergent fortunes - DBS and OCBC fell while UOB rose.