Keppel shares fall to 3-year low as Singapore market slumps on oil rout

Singapore blue chip constituent Keppel Corp sank to a three-year low on Monday morning following a plunge in oil prices to five and a half year lows on Friday. -- PHOTO: BLOOMBERG
Singapore blue chip constituent Keppel Corp sank to a three-year low on Monday morning following a plunge in oil prices to five and a half year lows on Friday. -- PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

Singapore blue chip constituent Keppel Corp sank to a three-year low on Monday morning following a plunge in oil prices to five and a half year lows on Friday.

Keppel, one of the world's largest offshore drilling rig builders, is the worst performer on the benchmark Straits Times Index, which shed 31.74 points, or nearly 1 per cent, to 3,292.39, after the oil price rout drove the Dow Jones Industrial Average on Friday to its biggest weekly loss since 2011.

Keppel fell nearly 1.9 per cent or 15 cents to $7.95, with 6.4 million shares traded this morning.

The FT ST Oil & Gas Index, which includes 16 Singapore-listed oil and gas stocks, is down 1.7 per cent to its lowest in more than three years.

Brent crude slumped 2.9 per cent to $61.85 a barrel in London on Dec. 12, for the lowest close since July 2009. Brent has tumbled 20 per cent since Nov. 26, the day before OPEC decided to maintain production and has nearly halved since June this year. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude dropped 3.6 per cent to $57.81 in New York, the least since May 2009.

Benchmark oil prices are tumbling as increasing U.S. production coincides with signs of slowing economic growth from Europe to China, and a recession in Japan. The United Arab Emirates said OPEC will resist output cuts even if prices slump as low as US$40, while the International Energy Agency cut its global demand forecast for the fourth time in five months last week.