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Singapore shares close mixed as pressure eases on O&M sector
WALL Street's avoidance of an eighth straight loss on Wednesday helped bring some stability here on Thursday via short-covering that lifted the Straits Times Index 4.38 points to 2,831.96. Bounces in Singtel, SGX and SPH contributed to this gain, on a day when the advance-decline score excluding warrants was 219-175, indicating a more mixed session than the index's reading would suggest.
There was little indication in the futures market as to how Wall Street would trade on Thursday, with the Dow futures edging slightly higher but the S&P 500 futures falling marginally. Europe's positive opening in the late afternoon shed little additional light as most of the markets there had also come under selling pressure in recent days.
Noble Group topped the actives list when it rebounded from several days of selling, gaining S$0.013 or almost 10 per cent at S$0.145 on volume of about 400 million.
Offshore and marine (O&M) stocks enjoyed some respite after oil inched higher in overnight trading, its price rising above S$40 per barrel after falling to S$39 a day earlier. SembCorp Marine rose S$0.01 to S$1.335 on volume of 3.4 million but parent SembCorp Industries (SCI) fell S$0.02 to S$2.72 with a heavy 13.9 million traded.