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STI up 1.27% as economic data show signs of recovery
SINGAPORE shares ended in positive territory on Monday as economic data provided a glimpse of recovery in 2021.
The Straits Times Index (STI) ended the day at 2,848.78 points, up 35.77 points or 1.27 per cent. Across the broader market, advancers outpaced decliners 331 to 149, as 5.20 billion shares worth S$1.63 billion changed hands.
The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) on Monday narrowed its 2020 growth forecast contraction to between 6 per cent and 6.5 per cent, from 5 per cent to 7 per cent before. But the gross domestic product (GDP) is projected to grow by 4 per cent to 6 per cent in 2021 as major economies recover.
Selena Ling, head of treasury research and treasury at OCBC, said that the narrowed forecast range, while surprising, signals a "fair measure of caution on the part of policymakers".
IG market strategist Pan Jingyi said: "Although the headline reading had disappointed slightly against consensus, the improvement noted amid the range of estimates coupled with the positive sentiment going into the fresh week had aided the Singapore dollar and the local STI in the climb."
The best performing on the blue chip index for the day was Jardine Cycle & Carriage gaining 4.6 per cent or S$0.95 to S$21.82.
At the bottom of the table were aviation-related counters including Sats, which dipped 2.2 per cent or S$0.09 to S$4.08, and Singapore Airlines which fell 0.5 per cent or S$0.02 to S$4.07.
The most active counter on the STI was Genting Singapore, which edged up 0.6 per cent or 0.5 Singapore cent to 84.5 cents after 40.3 million shares changed hands.
Outside the STI, active counters include Sembcorp Marine which climbed 12.8 per cent or 1.7 Singapore cents to 15 cents after 337.1 million shares changed hands; and medtech firm QT Vascular, which fell 22.2 per cent or 0.2 Singapore cent to 0.7 cent after 190 million shares changed hands.
Elsewhere in Asia, key benchmarks for Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur, Seoul and Jakarta ended Monday higher. Markets in Japan are closed for a holiday.