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Singapore shares rise at open after Wall Street climbs; STI up 0.3%

SINGAPORE stocks opened higher on Thursday following gains on Wall Street overnight. Singapore's benchmark Straits Times Index rose 0.3 per cent or 6.69 points to 2,569.89 as at 9.03am.

Gainers outnumbered losers 110 to 45, after 102.8 million securities worth S$74.5 million changed hands.

One of the most active counters by volume was healthcare products and hospital services provider Medtecs International, which moved up by 3.6 per cent or S$0.05 to S$1.46 with 7.6 million shares changing hands as at 9.04am. The stock extended its rally from the previous day, when the shares had soared 44.6 per cent after Medtecs posted strong half-year results.

Other heavily traded securities included Sembcorp Marine, which sank 30 per cent or 10.5 Singapore cents to 24.5 cents with 5.1 million shares traded, as well as Genting Singapore, which advanced 2.1 per cent or 1.5 Singapore cents to 72 cents on four million shares traded.

Banking stocks were in the green during the early morning session. DBS was trading up 0.9 per cent or S$0.18 at S$21.19 as at 9.04am, United Overseas Bank was up 0.1 per cent or S$0.01 to S$19.90, while OCBC gained 0.3 per cent or S$0.03 to S$8.89.

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Other active index counters included ComfortDelGro Corp, which fell 0.7 per cent or S$0.01 to S$1.40, as well as Venture Corp, which declined 0.2 per cent or S$0.03 to S$20.12. 

US stocks rallied on Wednesday with tech shares in the lead as investors shrugged off a deadlock in federal stimulus talks while expressing relief at Kamala Harris' selection as the Democratic vice-presidential nominee.

The Nasdaq was up 2.1 per cent at 11,012.24, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.1 per cent to 27,976.84, while the S&P 500 jumped 1.4 per cent to 3,380.35.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo shares opened higher on Thursday following overnight surges in major markets amid increasing hopes for economic recovery. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index jumped 1.2 per cent to 23,120.61 in early trade, while the broader Topix index rose 0.8 per cent to 1,619.09.

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