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Singapore: Weakness in bond markets drags STI lower


THE Straits Times Index (STI) on Thursday fell 4.84 points to end at 3,345 in overall weak trading that saw the whole market record 140 rises versus 298 falls, excluding warrants. Turnover was better than average at 1.7 billion units worth S$1.6 billion. The fall increased the index's loss for the year to 20 points or 0.6 per cent.

It was possible that Wall Street's overnight rise helped elevate the index early in the session, but a soft opening for Europe ensured a sell-off in the final hour that took the index into negative territory.

Most observers said pressure on stocks is originating from pressure on European and US bonds that has sent yields sharply upwards.

The index's largest contributor on Tuesday and Wednesday was again the main index play on Thursday - Singtel ended S$0.10 higher at S$4.17 on volume of 55 million, a rise which added 8.6 points to the STI. Other big index movers on the upside included DBS and UOB.

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On the downside, shares of commodities firm Noble continued their recent slide, dropping S$0.025 to S$0.695, while shares of the Singapore Exchange (SGX) dropped S$0.12 to S$8.11 on volume of 2.7 million done.

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