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Most SE Asia markets end higher following Wall Street's rally

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Wall Street recovered from a severe equity rout that had battered most global markets.

Singapore

MOST Southeast Asian stock markets ended higher on Thursday as a rebound on Wall Street, coupled with a leeway in the Sino-US trade standoff, spurred a buying spree across Asia.

Wall Street recovered from a severe equity rout that had battered most global markets. Investors also took heart from news that China and the US had made plans for face-to-face consultation over trade in January.

Singapore led gains, ending 1.1 per cent higher with heavyweight industrial and financial stocks in the lead. The index rebounded from a 1 per cent loss on Wednesday, having lost more than 2 per cent so far in December.

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Industrial conglomerate Jardine Strategic ended 3.6 per cent higher, while lender DBS Group gained 0.7 per cent.

"Stocks are taking their cue from overnight gains on Wall Street. I think the rebound is due to the situation where much downside has already been priced in and the risk is to the upside with trade talks restarting in January," said Liu Jinshu, director of research at NRA Capital in Singapore.

Vietnam shares ended around 1 per cent higher, with financial and utility stocks leading broad-based gains.

Data showed that the country's economy grew at its quickest pace this year since 2011, with key growth in the processing and manufacturing industry.

Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam and Petrovietnam Gas Joint Stock Corp both ended about 4.2 per cent higher.

Indonesian stocks ended at their highest since late-April, with consumer staples and materials stocks in the lead. Cosmetics maker Unilever Indonesia rose 2.4 per cent, while cement maker Indocement Tunggal Prakarsa ended 2.5 per cent higher.

Bucking the trend, Thai stocks retreated from intraday highs in late trade to end the session 0.5 per cent lower following last-minute sell-offs in a number of sectors.

Bangkok Dusit Medical Services PCL ended 6.7 per cent lower, its worst session since May 2017. REUTERS