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Singapore shares edge down at Thursday's open; STI down 0.02%

SINGAPORE stocks opened slightly weaker on Thursday following the Christmas break. The Straits Times Index headed down 0.02 per cent or 0.69 point to 3,220.98 as at 9.03am.

Gainers outnumbered losers 62 to 32, after 25.4 million securities worth S$17 million changed hands.

The most active counter was Broadway Industrial Group, which rose 1.6 per cent, or 0.2 Singapore cent to S$0.128 with 2.5 million shares changing hands. Other heavily traded securities included Dyna-Mac Holdings which rose 1.4 per cent or 0.2 Singapore cent to S$0.145 with 2.5 million shares traded, as well as Yangzijiang Shipbuilding which fell 1.7 per cent or two Singapore cents to S$1.13 with 2.5 million shares traded.

Sembcorp Marine was up 3.9 per cent or five Singapore cents to S$1.33, on news that it bagged two offshore platform projects worth over S$550 million on Thursday morning. Parent company Sembcorp Industries was also up 0.4 per cent or one Singapore cent to S$2.28.

Rex International was up 1.1 per cent or 0.2 Singapore cent to S$0.191. It had on Thursday announced that its indirect subsidiary Masirah Oil Ltd has entered into preference share subscription agreements to raise some US$17 million

Banking stocks were mixed in early morning trade. DBS was trading down 0.2 per cent or five Singapore cents at S$25.94, UOB was up 0.2 per cent or four Singapore cents to S$26.37, while OCBC fell 0.1 per cent or one Singapore cent to S$10.97.

Other active index counters included CapitaLand which rose 0.3 per cent or one Singapore cent to S$3.74.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo stocks also opened flat on Thursday, with the Nikkei 225 index easing 0.03 per cent to 23,776.46 in early trade. The Topix index fell 0.02 per cent to 1,721.01. Financial markets in Australia, Hong Kong and New Zealand are closed on Thursday for a public holiday.