S'pore bourse flat in spite of Wall Street falls
THE Singapore market was little changed yesterday but at least it did better than regional markets which mainly dipped after overnight falls on Wall Street.
The benchmark Straits Times Index (STI) inched up 2.97 points or 0.09 per cent to 3,293.01.
Major Wall Street indexes had dropped on Wednesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 0.6 per cent and the S&P 500 behind by 0.35 per cent.
With the negative lead, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index lost 0.35 per cent and the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo fell 0.64 per cent.
The slight gain in the STI meant it outperformed the region, though it was hardly a triumph.
NetResearch Asia said in a note that investors are likely to take profit where possible, given the continued uncertainty over economic growth.
Another feature of recent trading has been the muted movements in share prices.
Of the 29 trading sessions here since the start of last month, the STI has moved by less than 10 points on 18 occasions, including yesterday.
A movement of 10 points is considered small for a day's trading.
Interest of late has tended to focus on penny stocks.
About 2.45 billion shares changed hands yesterday but these were worth only $927 million, showing that most of the interest was in low-cost trades.
The FTSE ST Catalist Index yesterday rose 1.12 per cent and the FTSE ST Fledgling Index climbed 0.4 per cent. Both these indexes track penny stocks.
The most active counter was Charisma Energy Services, up 0.3 cent or 5.9 per cent to 5.4 cents on 319 million shares.
The company was queried by the Singapore Exchange (SGX) about its trading activity, and had not responded by 7pm yesterday.
Mirach Energy rose half a cent or 2.4 per cent to 21.5 cents on 73.2 million shares traded.
Queried by the SGX about its trading, it said it had recently signed a non-binding term sheet with a technical service consultant.
This was to explore the possibilities of project management and the arrangement of financing for new drilling and exploration work, within unexplored areas of Mirach's concessions in Indonesia.
"However, the terms... are still under negotiation and subject to changes. The company had taken the view that such agreements being discussed are conducted in the ordinary course of business," said Mirach.
It said it will make an announcement if such an engagement, if finalised, will affect its drilling activities.