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Singapore stocks: STI resumes Thursday afternoon at 3,196.38, down 0.25% on day

SINGAPORE stocks erased their morning gains as trading resumed on Thursday afternoon, with the Straits Times Index down 0.25 per cent or 8.14 points on the day to 3,196.38 as at 1.03pm.

The drop follows news that Singapore retail sales had fallen for the sixth month in a row in July, when it declined 1.8 per cent.

Gainers outnumbered losers 157 to 143, after 453.1 million securities worth S$491.4 million changed hands.

Yangzijiang Shipbuilding Holdings was the most heavily traded by volume, up S$0.03 or 2.8 per cent to S$1.09 after 39.4 million shares changed hands.

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TEE International was up S$0.004 or 12.9 per cent to S$0.035 before it called for a trading haltĀ in the morning amid a probe into unauthorised transactions made under the instruction of its group chief executive and managing director.

ThaiBev shares were up S$0.01 or 1.1 per cent to S$0.91 after 24.3 million shares were traded.

Among financials, DBS was up S$0.09 or 0.4 per cent to S$25.34, UOB was up S$0.07 or 0.3 per cent to S$26.44, while OCBC was unchanged at S$11.00.

Sentiments were more positive in other parts of Asia, with Asian stocks hitting a six-week high on hopes for a thaw in US-China trade frictions and expectations that the European Central Bank would kick off another wave of monetary easing by global central banks.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.4 per cent and Japan's Nikkei stock index rose 0.88 per cent. Australian shares were up 0.56 per cent.

But Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index dipped 0.18 per cent, or 50.23 points, to 27,108.83.