Singapore stocks down 1% at open as Leave leads Brexit poll

Singapore investors woke up to news that Britain's "Leave" camp had a strong lead.
Singapore investors woke up to news that Britain's "Leave" camp had a strong lead.PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - "No good" was the mood on trading floors on Friday (June 24) morning, as Singapore investors woke up to news that Britain's Leave camp had a strong lead by the time local stock markets opened for trade.

Mr Nizam Idris, head of fixed income and currency strategy at Macquarie Bank, said volatility was the name of the game all morning.

Singapore's benchmark Straits Times Index dropped 1 per cent right off the mark to 2,765, within minutes of trading.

"The mood has been no good, no good. It's been a confusing morning and increasingly people are thinking that Britain will leave the EU so the mood is negative. Trading has been quite frenzied and liquidity is thin so the markets have been moving in gaps."

Remisier Desmond Leong said it's not yet panic on his end, but "the sellers are definitely coming out".

"The Singapore market is starting to react to the vote count news. It also doesn't help that there are very few buyers now, naturally people will want to come in only after the voting results become clear.

"It's still early to call, but if the leave camp maintains its lead after half the votes are counted, we may see a bigger selloff - I won't be surprised if the STI drops 50 to 60 points."

Other regional markets are also being belted. Hong Kong's Hang Seng has shed 1.8 per cent, Tokyo's Nikkei was down 2 per cent, and Sydney's ASX went down 1.1 per cent.