Singapore shares open lower while Wall Street rally continues; STI down 0.2% 

SINGAPORE stocks opened lower on Tuesday (Aug 16) in contrast to largely positive trading sessions in the global markets. 

The Straits Times Index (STI) was down 0.2 per cent or 5.32 points to 3,251.50 as at 9.01 am.  Gainers were on par with losers 56 to 56 after 44.84 million securities worth S$56.04 million shares changed hands. Sembcorp Marine was the most actively traded counter in the morning with 12.1 million shares transacted. The counter dropped 0.9 per cent or S$0.001 to S$0.106.  Among index counters, Genting Sing declined 1.8 per cent or S$0.01 to S$0.795 with 2.1 million shares traded. The trio of local banks traded lower at Tuesday's open. DBS dipped S$0.16 or 0.5 per cent to S$32.64, OCBC declined S$0.04 or 0.3 per cent to S$12.16 and UOB pulled back S$0.06 or 0.2 per cent to S$27.14 in early trade.

Over in the US, stocks shrugged off early weakness Monday and pushed higher, extending a positive run for the main indexes that began last month.  

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished 0.5 per cent higher at 33,912.44, the broad-based S&P 500 climbed 0.4 per cent to close at 4,297.14, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.6 per cent to 13,128.05. European shares hovered near two-month highs on Monday as signs of a slowing Chinese economy prompted investors to turn to defensive sectors such as healthcare and consumer staples typically seen as immune to business cycles.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 rose 0.3 per cent. The Stoxx has climbed over 10 per cent since hitting a year low in June, but remains down 9.3 per cent for the year. 

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo shares opened lower on Tuesday as investors searched for fresh clues ahead of a key international meeting of central banks. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index gained 0.55 per cent, or 156.67 points, to 28,703.65 in early trade, while the broader Topix index rose 0.22 per cent, or 4.43 points, to 1,977.61. 

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