Singapore shares crawl higher as small, mid-caps stocks top trading

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore shares edged up on Monday, buoyed by the market regulator's decision to lift trading restrictions in three small and mid-cap stocks.

Shares of Asiasons Capital more than doubled in value, while Blumont Group and LionGold Corp jumped about 90 per cent in heavy trading, after SGX lifted trading restrictions on these stocks and restored their full access to the equity market.

The benchmark Straits Times Index inched up 0.2 per cent to 3,197.50, in line with a 0.2 per cent gain in MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan.

The FT ST Small Cap Index has risen more than 3 per cent so far this year, while the FT ST Fledgling Index, which covers companies with smaller market capitalisations, jumped nearly 20 per cent. Both have outrun the benchmark index's 0.9 per cent rise year-to-date.

"We believe that small (and) mid caps will continue to attract investors interest with its superior growth," DBS said in a research report.

DBS's picks include Nam Cheong, Goodpack, Centurion Corp and Yoma Strategic Holdings.

DBS also recommended Ezion Holdings, Kreuz Holdings and Rex International Holding in the oil and gas space, as well as palm oil stocks Bumitama Agri and Indofood Agri Resources.