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Hot Stock: Keppel gains on hopes of upturn in property, offshore cycle

SHARES of Keppel Corporation extended their climb on Monday, with one brokerage expecting the worst to be over for the offshore and marine player.

As at 10.40am, Keppel was up at S$7.19, adding 12 Singapore cents or 1.7 per cent. It eventually closed at S$7. 13 - up 6 Singapore cents - with some 8.3 million shares changing hands.

CIMB this month upgraded Keppel to an "add" rating, and raised the target price to S$8.58, expecting Keppel to ride the bottoming offshore and marine cycle, and the upturn of Singapore's residential market with its early landbank inventory.

"We think Keppel is at an inflection point where the worst could be over," the brokerage said in its report dated Oct 12.

It said Keppel Land could ride the property upcycle competitively, being one of Singapore's largest landbank owners.

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By benchmarking against Sembcorp Marine's latest rigs sale to Borr Drilling, Keppel could also fetch US$1.3 billion from divesting its seven jack-up rigs under construction at a 30 per cent discount, CIMB said.

"Still, we believe Keppel is likely to adopt a wait-and-see stance to sell at higher prices as the rig market bottoms or press on to defer deliveries."

Keppel will announce its third-quarter results this Thursday.

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