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Singapore shares close 0.35% lower on lack of market cues

THE lack of market catalysts on Wednesday meant that Singapore's Straits Times Index (STI) was, for the most part, static, before some profit-taking activity in the last half-hour of the session sent the benchmark index slipping to close at 3,222.84, down 11.23 points or 0.35 per cent. 

Trading on the Singapore bourse clocked in at a muted 1.14 billion securities worth S$977.13 million or an average of S$0.86 per security. Gainers and losers were more or less evenly matched at 175 to 180. 

With 45.1 million shares traded on Wednesday, Nico Steel was the bourse's most traded. Its shares finished 0.1 Singapore cent or 20 per cent up at 0.6 Singapore cent with the total value of the trades at roughly S$270,000.

The Mainboard-listed firm revealed on Wednesday that it has registered a trademark for a period of 10 years on one of its key proprietary aluminium alloy materials, NICO AL50, with the National Intellectual Property Administration in China. The trademark is effective from November 2018.

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Among STI constituents, casino operator Genting Singapore was the blue-chip index's most traded. It ended the session one Singapore cent or 1 per cent down at S$1.01 with 37.3 million shares changing hands.

Tech counters largely slipped on Tuesday but rebounded on Wednesday, with Venture Corp finishing S$0.51 or 2.7 per cent up at S$19.23. Meanwhile, AEM Holdings gained five Singapore cents or 4.3 per cent to close at S$1.21, while Hi-P International added four Singapore cents or 2.7 per cent to S$1.54.

Financials were mixed. DBS Group Holdings closed seven Singapore cents or 0.3 per cent lower to S$25.36 and United Overseas Bank ended five Singapore cents or 0.2 per cent down at S$25.10. OCBC Bank added two Singapore cents or 0.2 per cent to S$11.22.