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Hot Stocks: Singapore tech stocks up after Micron Q3 profit guidance beat forecasts

SINGAPORE-LISTED technology stocks, which have been facing headwinds from a global manufacturing slowdown, staged a rebound during Thursday's early session.

At the mid-day break, Venture Corporation shares climbed S$0.36 or 2.3 per cent up at S$16.38; Hi-P International was up S$0.04 or 3 per cent at S$1.38, UMS Holdings added S$0.005 or 0.8 per cent to S$0.63 and AEM Holdings was S$0.02 or 2.0 per cent higher at S$1.02.

Observers pointed out that stock prices of companies in the sector may have been given a lift by Nasdaq-listed chipmaker Micron Technology posting stronger-than-expected earnings' guidance for the third quarter of US$4.79 billion after Tuesday's market close on Wall Street.

The chipmaker's chief executive also revealed that the company resumed some of its shipments to Chinese tech giant Huawei Technologies and added that it still expects chip demand to recover in latter half of the year.

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"Punters may be riding on the hope that Micron's better-than-expected results estimate could mean that we might see other firms beating expectations too," one trader said.

"It's probably sentiment-driven based on Micron's better-than-expected guidance, which has come at a time where the outlook of the broader semiconductor market has been lowered already over the past year," KGI Securities head of research Joel Ng noted.

On Wednesday, Micron shares gained 13.3 per cent or US$4.36 to close at US$37.04. Micron's closing price was close to levels it was trading at in early May, before US President Donald Trump signalled his intention - via Twitter - to raise tariffs on US$200 million of Chinese imports to the US.

Singapore-listed tech plays closed out the previous week strongly on the back of the US Federal Reserve's accomodative stance and the US and China agreeing to meet over trade issues at the G-20 summit in Osaka.

This week, Venture saw its shares sold off after analysts lowered their outlook for the electronics manufacturing services firm due to sector headwinds and the US-China trade war. As at the mid-day close, it has recovered most of Tuesday's slide.

Equity markets remain volatile, driven by the slightest twitch in sentiment over trade issues and concerns over the global economic slowdown.

With that in mind, KGI's Mr Ng acknowledged that sentiment can change quickly over the outlook of the cyclically-sensitive manufacturing and semiconductor markets.