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Singapore: Market weakens despite STI's rise


A QUIET session at Singapore Exchange on Thursday ended with the Straits Times Index (STI) 6.51 points firmer at 3,502.75 but with a weak broad market that recorded 195 rises versus 277 falls, excluding warrants.

The STI's gain was severely cut in the late afternoon after Europe opened in the red, possibly because of worries surrounding Greece's finances.

Perhaps just as important was that turnover amounted to 1.6 billion units worth S$1.2 billion for an average of S$0.75 per unit, suggesting that interest in penny stocks, which started to show signs of waning late last week, has continued to fade. Unit turnover has been falling gradually from 3.4 billion on Monday last week. Average value per unit traded that day was S$0.37 but has been rising since.

Brokers described the session as being much quieter than any last week, but this was not overly surprising given the daily reversals seen in Hong Kong. On Thursday, the Hang Seng shot up in morning trades but ended its session in the red.

Here, although the actives list was dominated by low-priced issues such as IHC, Sino Construction and Jaya Holdings, four STI component stocks - Noble Group, Singtel, Genting Singapore and NOL - also featured.

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