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Singapore stocks: STI resumes Friday afternoon at 3,077.65, down 0.3%

SINGAPORE shares erased slight gains from morning, with the Straits Times Index retreating 0.3 per cent, or 10.32 points to 3,077.65 as at 1pm on Friday, following the mid-day break. 

Decliners outnumbered advancers 160 to 104 after 471.6 million shares worth S$323.3 million changed hands. 

Among the most heavily traded by volume, Golden Agri-Resources was flat at 21.5 Singapore cents with 20.9 million shares traded, while SingTel dipped 1.3 per cent, or four cents to S$3.09 with 8.9 million shares traded. 

Financials were in the red by the afternoon: DBS slid 0.5 per cent, or 12 cents to S$24.45, OCBC Bank was down 0.9 per cent, or 10 cents to S$10.61, and United Overseas Bank fell 0.8 per cent, or 20 cents to S$25.13. 

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Other active index stocks included tech player Venture which slipped 1.3 per cent or 20 cents to S$15.17, while Jardine Strategic Holdings added 1.4 per cent or 40 US cents to US$29.95, and Thai Beverage was up 1.2 per cent or one cent to 87.5 cents.

Elsewhere, Asian stocks also traded mixed despite a positive lead from Wall Street overnight, as investors looked ahead to the US payrolls data, which is expected to provide further insight into the health of the US economy.

Jeffrey Halley, Oanda's senior analyst for Asia Pacific said: "Asia is likely to take a more hard-nosed approach to the reasons behind the rally on Wall Street, and not get sucked into a follow the leader situation. While we expect Asia shares to take heart from Wall Street's comeback, regionally rallies will be more modest with China away and ahead of resuming trade talks next week."

Japan's Topix index retreated 0.3 per cent, and Hong Kong's Hang Seng was down 0.7 per cent. Australian stocks added 0.2 per cent, while South Korea's Kospi was flat.