May 31, 2016

    Cautious mood as investors await US data

    SINGAPORE shares ended a tad lower yesterday as investors held off ahead of key United States data this week and an absence of leads from Wall Street, which was closed for Monday's Memorial Day holiday.

    The Straits Times Index lost 5.76 points or 0.21 per cent to 2,796.75, dragged down by Singtel, which dipped 0.8 per cent or three cents to $3.90.

    Traders aren't expected to take major positions ahead of the Opec (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) meeting on Thursday and the release of US payroll and unemployment data on Friday.

    Sentiment turned cautious after Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen suggested that an interest-rate hike may be around the corner.

    Noble group was among the most actively traded stocks. It lost 8.2 per cent or 2.5 cents to 28 cents on news of the resignation of chief executive Yusuf Alireza. About 131.6 million shares changed hands.

    Genting Singapore rebounded after being sold down in recent weeks, closing up 3.4 per cent or 2.5 cents to 76 cents, with 23.6 million shares traded.

    Genting's first-quarter total gross gaming revenue market share of 46 per cent was its highest since fourth quarter 2014.

    UOB KayHian, which has a buy call on the casino operator, noted: "We share management's confidence in how provisions would fall significantly in the second half of the year. Genting is eyeing better capital management... Genting has tightened its credit term from 90 days to 30 days since March."

    Other hotly traded stocks include Ipco International, which jumped 25 per cent or 0.1 cent to 0.5 cent, with 37.1 million shares traded.

    Cedar Strategic fell 25 per cent or 0.1 cent to 0.3 cent, on trade of 32.6 million shares traded, while Terratech soared 13 per cent or 0.6 cent to 5.2 cents with 30.4 million shares traded.

    Cityneon jumped five cents or 6.8 per cent to a six-year high at 79 cents after a spate of upgrades by analysts.

    Meanwhile, CapitaLand, CapitaLand Mall Trust and CapitaLand Commercial Trust have been included in the SGX Sustainability Leaders Index, which comprises 24 SGX-listed companies considered to be front runners in environmental, social and governance standards.