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Singapore shares rise at Friday's open; STI up 0.1%

SINGAPORE stocks inched up on Friday, barely moving after a muted close on Thursday. 

The Straits Times Index (STI) rose 0.1 per cent or 2.25 points to 2,709.45 as at 9.03am.

Gainers outpaced losers 81 to 34, after 71.2 million securities worth S$93.7 million changed hands.

The most active counter by volume was mDR, which held steady at 0.1 Singapore cent with 18.2 million shares changing hands. The mainboard-listed firm on Thursday proposed to undertake a 100-for-one share consolidation, subject to shareholders' approval at an extraordinary general meeting.

Other heavily traded securities include Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), which publishes The Business Times. SPH fell 3.7 per cent or S$0.05 to S$1.32 with 5.3 million shares traded, following news that Mapletree Industrial Trust will replace the media and property group on the benchmark STI from June 22.

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Mapletree Industrial Trust, on the other hand, rose 3 per cent or S$0.08 to S$2.73, with 1.5 million shares traded. 

Singtel, which was also actively traded, was up 1.9 per cent or S$0.05 to S$2.63 on a cum-dividend basis with 4.1 million shares changing hands. 

Banking stocks were mixed in early trade. DBS was trading up 0.3 per cent or S$0.07 at S$22.06, UOB advanced 0.3 per cent or S$0.06 to S$21.69 on a cum-dividend basis, while OCBC dipped 0.1 per cent or S$0.01 to S$9.29.

Other active index counters include Singapore Airlines, which fell 2.1 per cent or S$0.09 to S$4.29, and Mapletree Commercial Trust, which rose 1 per cent or S$0.02 to S$2.10. 

Wall Street stocks closed mostly lower on Thursday, ending a rally after weekly labour data showed another spike in unemployment ahead of the official May jobs report. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.1 per cent to close at 26,281.82, the S&P 500 fell 0.3 per cent to 3,112.35, while the Nasdaq Composite Index shed 0.7 per cent to 9,615.81.

In Europe, the strong rally this week in European stocks stalled on Thursday as investors locked in profits, although eurozone banks surged after the European Central Bank ramped up its stimulus programme to prop up the coronavirus-hit economy. However, the pan-European Stoxx 600 fell 0.7 per cent, led by declines in automakers, utilities and healthcare stocks.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo stocks opened lower on Friday. The Nikkei 225 index slipped 0.3 per cent to 22,639.48 in early trade, while the Topix index lost 0.2 per cent to 1,601.32.

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