Asia, Singapore markets rebound, STI closes 19 points up

SINGAPORE - The Singapore market rebounded Thursday in line with most other markets in the region.

The benchmark Straits Times Index (STI) climbed 19.49 points, or 0.7 per cent, to S$2,813.48. Turnover came up to 1.42 billion shares worth S$1.22 billion.

Still, CMC Markets Singapore market analyst Margaret Yang noted that trading on the STI has been "range bound" since United States president-elect Donald Trump's unexpected victory last week. "There's been a slight pick-up in volumes since last week but they are still quite low," she said.

"I would say there is more certainty in the markets now, with the US election over and traders looking forward to a very likely December rate hike - but that still hasn't been enough to move local stocks in a significant way. Investors here seem to be looking overseas instead."

That said, Ms Yang added that the valuation of the local stock market is now among the lowest in Asia, which makes it attractive to value investors as well as overseas buyers.

Much of the STI's rise was thanks to the three local banks, helped by higher local interest rates.

DBS Group Holdings led the pack with a 23 cent or 1.4 per cent gain to S$16.43. United Overseas Bank added 27 cents or 1.4 per cent to S$19.43 and OCBC Bank put on six cents or 0.7 per cent to S$8.83.

A number of Reits (real estate investment trusts) also bounced back after being pummelled in recent sessions as traders swooped in for bargains. Ascendas Reit rose six cents or 2.7 per cent to S$2.31, while CapitaLand Commercial Trust was up three cents or 2 per cent to S$1.51.

Property giant CapitaLand shed one cent or 0.3 per cent to S$2.98, despite announcing that it will open eight malls in Asia in 2017 with almost one million square metres of gross floor area. Outside of the index, BreadTalk Group eased half a cent or 0.5 per cent to S$1.085.

Commodity trader Noble Group was again the day's most heavily traded, inching up 0.1 cent or 0.6 per cent to 18.1 cents on 168.9 shares done.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo rose 0.4 per cent, Shanghai added 0.11 per cent and Hong Kong dipped 0.08 per cent. Wall Street pared 0.29 per cent overnight as the post-Trump rally began to falter.

tsjwoo@sph.com.sg