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Singapore shares dip at Thursday's open; STI down 0.2%

SINGAPORE stocks opened weaker on Thursday, with the Straits Times Index (STI) down 0.2 per cent or 4.09 points to 2,515.39 as at 9.04am.

Gainers outnumbered losers 108 to 38, after 100.7 million securities worth S$135.7 million changed hands.

Singtel was one of the most active counters by volume, falling 4.2 per cent or S$0.11 to S$2.51 with 14.5 million shares traded. The telco on Thursday posted a 25.7 per cent drop in net profit to S$574.4 million for its fourth quarter ended March 31, 2020. 

Other heavily traded securities include healthcare stocks Medtecs International, which fell 2.1 per cent or 0.5 Singapore cent to 23 cents with seven million shares traded, and UG Healthcare Corporation, which rose 5.6 per cent or 2.5 Singapore cents to 47.5 cents with 5.7 million shares traded. 

Banking stocks were mixed in early morning trade. DBS advanced 0.7 per cent or S$0.13 to S$19.57, UOB gained 0.1 per cent or S$0.01 to S$19.71 on a cum-dividend basis, while OCBC was flat at S$8.59. 

Other active index counters include the Singapore Exchange, which fell 2.9 per cent or S$0.25 to S$8.50, and Singapore Airlines, which rose 1.3 per cent or S$0.05 to S$3.81.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo stocks opened higher on Thursday. The Nikkei 225 index was up 1 per cent to 21,629.86 in early trade, while the Topix index gained 0.8 per cent to 1,561.31.

In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 2.2 per cent to 25,548.27 on Wednesday amid continued optimism over the reopening of the US economy, even as a fresh Federal Reserve report pointed to anxiety among many businesses. The broad-based S&P 500 gained 1.5 per cent to 3,036.13, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index rose 0.8 per cent to 9,412.36.

Eurozone stocks also ended higher on Wednesday, supported by a 750-billion-euro (S$1.17 trillion) plan to prop up EU economies hammered by the novel coronavirus pandemic. However, falls in healthcare and technology stocks weighed on broader European markets. The eurozone equities index finished 1.1 per cent higher, while the pan-European Stoxx 600 closed up 0.2 per cent.

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