Bulls And Bears

Higher oil prices give S'pore shares a lift

Rebound in crude boosts oil and gas as well as commodity counters

Singapore shares rebounded on a combination of higher oil prices, a positive lead from Asia and strong futures on Wall Street.

The Straits Times Index rose 0.52 per cent or 16.8 points to close at 3,263.79, lifted by Jardine Matheson Holdings, United Overseas Bank, OCBC Bank, Wilmar International and Golden Agri-Resources.

Jardine Matheson rose 2.3 per cent or US$1.49 to US$67.15; UOB added 0.6 per cent or 14 cents to $23.59; and OCBC gained 0.5 per cent or five cents to $11.07.

Investors are awaiting the annual meeting at Jackson Hole, Wyoming, between Federal Reserve chairman Janet Yellen and global central bankers, which starts tomorrow. They are watching for hints on where monetary policy is headed.

A rebound in crude boosted oil and gas, as well as commodity counters.

Keppel Corp rose nearly 1 per cent or six cents to $6.30; Sembcorp Marine added 2.2 per cent or 3.5 cents to $1.61, while Sembcorp Industries climbed 1.7 per cent or five cents to $2.99.

Golden Agri-Resources was among the most actively traded stocks, jumping 4.2 per cent or 1.5 cents to 37.5 cents; Wilmar International gained 1.6 per cent or five cents to $3.15.

Local semiconductor-linked tech stocks rose on talk of institutional buying. Dealers say the interest in this sector stems from positive profit guidance and the outlook for the second half of the year.

According to UOB KayHian, most of the tech exporters under its coverage "enjoyed earnings upgrades".

Avi-Tech jumped 3.2 per cent or 1.5 cents to 48.5 cents; Hi-P International gained 1.8 per cent or 2.5 cents to $1.44; and Sunningdale Tech climbed 2.5 per cent or five cents to $2.07.

UMS Holdings rose 2.1 per cent or two cents to 96 cents; Valuetronics rose 2.1 per cent or two cents to 95.5 cents; and Venture Corp edged up 0.3 per cent or five cents to $15.81.

Meanwhile, shares of Ellipsiz jumped 11.3 per cent or 7.5 cents to 74 cents after the company proposed a special dividend of 4.5 cents plus a two-cent dividend for the full year ending June 30.

Shares of Tee International lost 4.8 per cent or one cent to 20 cents after the company announced that a proposed scheme of arrangement involving a buyout offer by its group chief executive and managing director at 21.5 Singapore cents cash apiece was not approved by the requisite majority.

Other hotly traded counters included OLS Enterprise, which jumped 33.3 per cent or 0.1 cent to 0.4 cent, with 61.7 million shares changing hands.

Moya Asia jumped 8.4 per cent or 0.9 cent to 11.6 cents on trade of 52.4 million shares.

Rowsley edged up 1 per cent or 0.1 cent to 10.4 cents, with 51.9 million shares traded, while Disa climbed 7.7 per cent or 0.1 cent to 1.4 cents on volume of 44.3 million shares.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 23, 2017, with the headline 'Higher oil prices give S'pore shares a lift'. Print Edition | Subscribe