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Singapore shares open higher on Thursday on firmer oil prices


THERE is some holiday cheer spreading around as Singapore shares - after a subdued first half of the week - opened firmer on Thursday amid news of recovering oil prices and a rebound in consumer spending in the US.

The Straits Times Index rose by 0.38 per cent, or 10.82 points, to 2,874.47 as at 9.01am.

A total of 34.4 million shares worth S$29.9 million changed hands. Gainers outnumbered losers 75 to 42.

Elsewhere in Asia, markets were also reporting gains. Equity gauges in Japan, Australia and South Korea rose and oil headed for its biggest weekly gain in two months after energy and raw-material stocks led the Standard & Poor's 500 Index to a third daily advance on Wednesday, Bloomberg reported.

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Japanese markets opened higher after a public holiday on Wednesday. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained 0.5 per cent as at 9.09am in Tokyo while the Topix index climbed 0.7 per cent. New Zealand's S&P/NZX 50 Index added 0.5 per cent and South Korea's Kospi Index advanced 0.4 per cent.