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Singapore shares open higher on Thursday after Fed rate cut; STI up 0.29% to 3,176.05

SINGAPORE shares started Thursday on higher ground after the US Federal Reserve cut interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point last night. The Straits Times Index gained 9.21 points or 0.29 per cent to 3,176.05 as at 9.04am.

About 50.5 million shares worth about S$51.6 million changed hands, which worked out to an average unit price of about S$1.02 per share.

Gainers outnumbered losers 70 to 46.

The most actively traded security was TEE International, which was up S$0.003 or 6.5 per cent to S$0.049 after 8.4 million shares changing hands.

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Keppel DC Reit continued to see heavy trading after announcing on Tuesday it had raised S$478.2 million to partially fund a proposed acquisition. It was up S$0.03 or 1.5 per cent to S$2.00 after 4.3 million units were traded.

Among financials, all three local banks gained ground with DBS advancing S$0.14 or 0.6 per cent to S$25.17, OCBC shares gaining S$0.04 or 0.4 per cent to S$10.99 and UOB up S$0.10 or 0.4 per cent to S$26.00.

Yangzijiang Shipbuilding was also active, up S$0.01 or 1 per cent to S$1.06 with 2.1 million shares traded.

America's benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average erased a 200-point drop on Wednesday, leading Wall Street to a split finish as the US Federal Reserve (Fed) delivered another interest rate cut.

As expected, the Fed cut interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point but cast some doubt on the need for future stimulus, highlighting recent signs of strength in the economy.

After spending most of the day in the red, the Dow posted a modest 0.1 per cent gain, closing at 27,147.12. The S&P 500 ended flat at 3,006.71 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq was 0.1 per cent lower at 8,177.39.

European shares ended flat on Wednesday, as gains for the defensive real estate and utilities sectors were countered by losses in luxury good makers, with caution prevailing before the Fed's interest rate decision was announced later in the day.

After flitting between small gains and losses during the session, the pan-European Stoxx 600 closed with a tiny 0.02 per cent gain.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo's benchmark Nikkei 225 index opened on Thursday up 0.85 per cent or 186.71 points at 22,147.42, while the broader Topix index was up 0.78 per cent or 12.59 points at 1,619.21.