Singapore shares finish higher, albeit in lower volume ahead of FOMC meeting

ALTHOUGH the Straits Times Index managed an 8.93 points rebound to 3,130.44 on Tuesday, most likely in tandem with a rise in the Dow futures and in the Hang Seng Index, perhaps the more important feature of trading was that volume amounted to only 2.5 billion units worth S$1.12 billion, a sharp drop from last week's S$1.5 billion daily average. Excluding warrants, there were 255 rises versus 198 falls.

Brokers suggested that traders had suddenly turned cautious ahead of next week's US Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting, at which an interest-rate hike is virtually certain.

In the federal funds futures market, the implied probability of a 25 basis points rise in interest rates is now 96 per cent.

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