STI ends flat despite heightened investor optimism

Other Asian markets rise on the back of US President Donald Trump signing the Covid-19 pandemic relief bill.

Uma Devi
Published Mon, Dec 28, 2020 · 09:50 PM

LOCAL shares ended the first day of the week on a slightly dour note, even as other Asian markets rose on the back of US President Donald Trump signing the Covid-19 pandemic relief and spending bill.

The benchmark Straits Times Index (STI) dipped 0.1 per cent or 1.9 points to finish the day at 2,840.14. Across the broader market, decliners outnumbered advancers 231 to 207, after 1.46 billion securities worth some S$740.4 million changed hands.

Other regional markets mostly ended the day in the black amid heightened investor optimism. The KLCI gained 0.2 per cent; the Nikkei 225 added 0.7 per cent, while the Jakarta Composite Index rose 1.2 per cent. Only the Hang Seng Index bucked the trend, closing 0.3 per cent lower.

Said Oanda's senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley: "With liquidity lower than usual and a dearth of meaningful news over the weekend, the (US) presidential signing of the omnibus bill today has lifted sentiment in Asia."

However, he noted that the scale of gains in the regional markets is "modest", perhaps due to the "holiday-thinned participation".

Among the 30 constituent stocks, Yangzijiang Shipbuilding was the biggest advancer. The counter gained 2.7 per cent or 2.5 Singapore cents to close at 94.5 cents on Monday. With 44.9 million shares traded over the course of the day, it was also the most heavily traded STI stock.

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On the other end of the spectrum, Hongkong Land was the biggest constituent decliner. The counter shed 0.72 per cent or US$0.03 to close at US$4.16.

The trio of glove makers were among the decliners. Top Glove fell 3.7 per cent or S$0.08 to S$2.07 on an ex-dividend basis; Riverstone Holdings lost 5.1 per cent or S$0.06 to S$1.11, while UG Healthcare shed 4 per cent or 2.5 Singapore cents to finish the day at 59.5 cents.

For full listings of SGX prices, go to https://www2.sgx.com/

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