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Singapore shares fall at Thursday's open despite global recovery; STI down 0.68% to 3,163.17

SINGAPORE stocks opened weaker on Thursday, bucking the positive trend in key global markets including the US.

The Straits Times Index fell 0.68 per cent or 21.52 points to 3,163.17 points as at 9.03am.

Losers outnumbered gainers 73 to 50, after 54.9 million securities worth S$108.7 million changed hands.

Among the most heavily traded by volume were Yangzijiang Shipbuilding which lost 1.54 per cent or two cents to S$1.28 with 10.8 million shares traded as at 9.01am, and Genting Singapore which fell 0.57 per cent or 0.5 Singapore cent to 87.5 cents with 1.7 million shares changing hands.

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Singtel tumbled 1.52 per cent or five cents to S$3.24 with 2.1 million shares traded as at 9.01am. The telecommunications group on Thursday morning posted a 35 per cent slump in its first-quarter net profit to S$541.1 million amid industry and economic headwinds.

Banking stocks were in negative territory during early morning trade. DBS was down 0.88 per cent or 22 cents to S$24.86, UOB slipped 0.23 per cent or six cents to S$25.87, while OCBC lost 0.63 per cent or seven cents to S$11.00 as at 9.01am.

Other active index securities included the Singapore Exchange (SGX) which gained 0.25 per cent or two cents to S$8.04, Keppel Corporation which dropped 1 per cent or six cents to S$5.93, and Ascendas Reit which rose 0.33 per cent or one cent to S$3.07 as at 9.01am.

The Singapore bourse’s losses on Thursday morning run counter to the mild gains seen in other markets around the world.

In the US, the S&P 500 recovered from steep early losses to end slightly higher on Wednesday, as investors snapped up oversold shares and bond yields rebounded from significant lows that raised fears about a recession.

European shares likewise rose on Wednesday, breaking a three-day losing streak on euphoria over a multibillion-dollar German chemical deal.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo’s key Nikkei index opened higher on Thursday, as investors hunted for bargains after four days of losses driven by concerns over trade tensions between the United States and China.