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SPH, SGX and FTSE Russell celebrate 12 years of STI

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Striking a gong to declare the SGX Securities market open are (from second left): Jessie Pak, managing director, Asia, of FTSE Russell; Ng Yat Chung, CEO of SPH; Loh Boon Chye, CEO of SGX; and See Lin Fen, senior manager, EMTM Special Projects and SPH Data Services, SPH. With them are Chris Woods, managing director for governance and policy, FTSE Russell and Ng Kin Yee, SGX head of data, connectivity and indices.

Singapore

SINGAPORE'S securities market opened on Thursday with Singapore Exchange's (SGX) symbolic gong-striking ceremony to celebrate 12 years of Straits Times Index (STI) - constructed by Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), SGX and FTSE Russell at the SGX Centre.

It also marks SGX's 20th anniversary and SPH's 35th anniversary. SPH publishes The Business Times.

The STI tracks the performance of top 30 stocks listed on SGX and is regarded as the benchmark index for the local stock market. Today, it is made up of some of the largest and most liquid stocks listed on the bourse.

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At the ceremony were Ng Yat Chung, chief executive officer of SPH; Jessie Pak, managing director, Asia, of FTSE Russell; and Loh Boon Chye, chief executive officer of SGX. They were joined by representatives from the three organisations.

Addressing guests in a speech, SGX's head of data, connectivity and indices Ng Kin Yee said: "As part of SGX's 20th anniversary celebration, we are striking the gong to celebrate and affirm the many great partnerships and friendships we have forged over the years."

The STI has since become a basis for investment products that allows investors to get access to the broad market easily, said Chris Woods, managing director for governance and policy at FTSE Russell.

"We work in conjunction with our advisory committee, representatives, partners and we look for methodology changes to take the index from what it used to be, which is a barometer of the stock market used for journalistic purposes, to one that now serves as a sound basis for investment products."

The indices have also evolved throughout the years, shifting to one that emphasises on data and methodology to reflect changes in the market.

Said Tim Batho, senior index policy strategist at FTSE Russell: "It's important that the methodology evolve through time. Within Singapore, the Reits (real estate investment trust) component has become a very important part of the market and the indices are developed to reflect those sort of changes."