The Business Times

Singapore stocks extend losses at Wednesday's open; STI down 0.3%

Michelle Zhu
Published Wed, Mar 9, 2022 · 09:34 AM

SINGAPORE shares opened lower for the third straight day on Wednesday (Mar 9) after global stock markets sank overnight on news of the US and Britain moving to ban all imports of Russian oil.

The Straits Times Index (STI) declined 0.3 per cent or 8.31 points to 3,140.55 as at 9.01 am. Gainers matched losers at 63 apiece with some 56.4 million securities worth S$55.8 million changing hands.

Golden Agri-Resources (E5H) was the most heavily traded counter of the morning. The mainboard-listed palm oil company advanced S$0.005 or 1.7 per cent to S$0.305 with 8.1 million shares traded.

Shares of Sembcorp Marine also saw brisk trading, rising S$0.002 or 2.1 per cent to S$0.096 with 3.9 million securities changing hands.

Meanwhile, Singapore O&G rose S$0.045 or 18 per cent to trade at S$0.295 upon lifting its trading halt, which had been in place since Mar 4. 2.9 million of its shares had changed hands as at 9.01 am.

The counter's price movement follows Mar 7 news of the Catalist-listed healthcare service provider receiving a voluntary unconditional cash offer at S$0.295 a share.

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Among index counters, Thai Beverage was the most actively traded, with 2.9 million shares transacted. The beverage manufacturer lost S$0.005 or 0.8 per cent to trade at S$0.66 at the open.

Local banks were mixed in early trade, with DBS and OCBC both in the red at S$31.22 and S$11.24, respectively. DBS was down a marginal S$0.01 or 0.03 per cent, while OCBC shed S$0.08 or 0.7 per cent.

On the other hand, UOB rose S$0.07 or 0.3 per cent to S$28.34.

Over on Wall Street, US stocks lost more ground on Tuesday after President Joe Biden imposed a ban on imports of Russian petroleum, and more major firms announced they were shutting operations in Russia.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.6 per cent to finish the session at 32,632.64, the lowest in nearly a year. The broad-based S&P 500 dropped 0.7 per cent to end at 4,170.7, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite lost 0.3 per cent to 12,795.55.

The ban on Russian oil imports also spooked European shares, which slipped amid volatility and fears of global stagflation.

The regionwide Stoxx 600 index ended a choppy session on Tuesday down 0.5 per cent at 415.01, weighed by technology, healthcare and the materials sector.

London's FTSE and the German DAX were flat at 6,964.11 and 12,831.51, respectively, although the bank-heavy indices of Spain and Italy outperformed.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo stocks opened Wednesday higher in cautious trade, with investors closely watching a set of economic data due this week.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up 0.4 per cent or 101.80 points at 24,892.75 in early trade, while the broader Topix index was up 0.4 per cent or 6.65 points at 1,766.51.

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