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STI ends lower ahead of key US payrolls data on Friday

SINGAPORE shares ended lower on Friday ahead of key US economic data scheduled for release later.

The Straits Times Index (STI) ended at 3,545.38, down 0.85 per cent, or 30.3 points, from Thursday's close. More than two billion shares, worth S$1.2 billion, changed hands. There were 158 gainers to 258 losers.

Investors' focus was on US payrolls data, with the April report likely to underscore labour market strength. Non-farm payrolls were expected to rise by about 192,000 last month, according to a Reuters survey of economists, after rising only 103,000 in March.

Besides the jobs report, investors were also keeping a close watch on US-China trade talks.

Ezion, which resumed trading last month after its stock was suspended in August 2017, ended at S$0.109 a share, down 1.1 Singapore cent, or 9 per cent. It was among the actively traded shares, with more than 137 million shares changing hands.

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