Singtel and 3 banks drag STI down
LOCAL shares sank further into negative territory yesterday after the International Monetary Fund said Singapore's central bank should adjust its monetary policy further if deflation takes root.
Remisier Alvin Yong noted: "That added to the dour mood for the stock market yesterday afternoon."
The Straits Times Index slipped 0.9 per cent or 24.91 points to 2,741.15, weighed down by Singtel and the three banks.
The telco fell 1.5 per cent or six cents to $3.83 while DBS Group dipped 0.7 per cent or 11 cents to $14.80. OCBC lost 1.5 per cent or 13 cents to $8.30 and UOB dropped 0.8 per cent or 15 cents to $17.73.
Meanwhile, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) firm Eu Yan Sang called for a trading halt yesterday after it got hit with a trading query by the Singapore Exchange on unusual price movement in its stock.
Eu Yan Sang shares have gained nearly 22 per cent since last Thursday, and were up more than 10 per cent or six cents to 64.5 cents yesterday before it halted trading.
Traders cite rumours that the TCM specialist may be delisted and taken private.
Toll-road operator China Merchants Holdings (Pacific) is moving to delist from SGX. Its shares jumped 18.2 per cent or 15.5 cents to $1.005 following its announcement of a privatisation bid at $1.02 per share.
Sino Grandness Food Industry Group jumped 5.9 per cent or 3.5 cents to 62.5 cents on rumours that Swiss food giant Nestle may take a stake in the proposed Hong Kong initial public offering of its fruit and vegetable juice producing unit, Garden Fresh Holding, according to NetResearch Asia.
Last month, Sino Grandness submitted an application for Garden Fresh to be listed in Hong Kong.
Best World shares gained 8.4 per cent or seven cents to 90 cents after it said it is in talks over a potential property acquisition.
The most actively traded counters included Noble Group, which gained 2.9 per cent or one cent to 36 cents, with 80.1 million shares traded.