Nov 27, 2013

    STI sheds 7 points amid year-end blues

    The Straits Times

    THE local market dipped on thin volumes yesterday, with the year-end lull having kicked in with investors.

    The anaemic level of trading - only 1.64 billion shares worth $907 million changed hands - left the Straits Times Index (STI) 7.14 points or 0.22 per cent lower at 3,173.51.

    Wall Street has been at stratospheric levels and touched another all-time high on Monday. Despite this, trading on the local bourse has been lethargic.

    The STI has moved by more than 10 points on only six out of 18 sessions this month, while on the other days - two thirds of the trading days - the moves have been fewer than 10 points.

    It is even less impressive over the course of the month, with the STI's movements restricted within a very narrow 40-point band, or about 1.3 per cent.

    There were not many significant movers yesterday, apart from StarHub, which fell 10 cents or 2.3 per cent to $4.21.

    Other decliners included Jardine Matheson Holdings, down US$1.04 or 2 per cent to US$51.02, and Jardine Strategic Holdings, off by 38 US cents or 1.2 per cent to US$31.82.

    Singapore Technologies Engineering (ST Engineering) dropped five cents or 1.2 per cent to $3.98.

    The company said yesterday morning that its United States yard has won a US$350-million (S$438-million) shipbuilding contract from Crowley Maritime

    Corp to build two container roll-on/roll-off vessels.

    OCBC Investment Research said: "While there is no material impact to near-term earnings, we still see the contract as a testament to ST Engineering's shipbuilding capabilities.

    "We maintain our fair value of $4.32 and 'hold' rating on ST Engineering."

    Outside the STI, engineering and construction group Yongnam Holdings surged 1.5 cents or 6.25 per cent to 25.5 cents.

    The company said after Monday's market close that it has secured a structural-steel sub-contract worth $168 million for works at Marina One, a mixed-use development at Marina South.

    The Marina One project is being developed by M+S, a company co-owned by Khazanah Nasional of Malaysia and Singapore's Temasek Holdings.

    Other gainers included Albedo, which closed at 4.1 cents, up 0.6 cent or 17.1 per cent from Monday's close.

    About 187.99 million Albedo shares were traded, making it the day's most active stock by number of shares.