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Singapore shares close 0.2% higher

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SHARE prices in the Singapore bourse shrugged off last Friday's steep losses in Wall Street with the key Straits Times Index gaining 7.5 points or 0.2 per cent to finish at 3,449.96 on Monday.

SHARE prices in the Singapore bourse shrugged off last Friday's steep losses in Wall Street with the key Straits Times Index gaining 7.5 points or 0.2 per cent to finish at 3,449.96 on Monday.

Turnover came in at 1.95 billion shares worth S$1.2 billion versus last Friday's 2.2 billion shares worth S$1.4 billion. Gainers trounced losers with 249 counters up and 165 counters down.

The over 2 per cent drop in the three key US stock indices last Friday was led by concerns over US-China tug-of-(trade)-war and misses in March payrolls data out of the US.

The discordant note between the world's largest economies - the US and China - over trade tariffs still persist with investors expected to remain on the edge.

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Market voices on:

"With President Xi Jinping due to speak Tuesday morning at the Boao forum, the attention will be on the Chinese leader for his views towards the latest trade skirmish," said IG Markets' Jingyi Pan.

"Even if he should remain championing free trade as his rhetoric had been in the recent Davos forum, investors are bracing for a retaliation towards the latest US$100 billion tariff directive in the early part of the week that could keep markets on edge," she added.

A key event to watch out for over this week include the release of the meeting minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee on Wednesday while Fed appearances are pencilled in from Tuesday to Friday.

On this front, watch for further Fed rhetoric with respect to the potential deleterious effects of a global trade war, with the attendant tempering of rate hike projections, said OCBC Research.