Bulls And Bears

Singapore market up 0.7% amid upbeat macroeconomic data

• The three local banks were among the biggest STI gainers • Aviation-related stocks recover after booking losses on Monday • Asian markets generally end the day in the black

Singapore stocks advanced for the second day in a row yesterday as reports of upbeat macroeconomic data stoked investor optimism.

Singapore's first-quarter economic growth exceeded estimates by more than one percentage point, growing 1.3 per cent on a year-on-year basis. Non-oil domestic exports rose 9.7 per cent, reversing the dip of 0.5 per cent in the quarter before.

The benchmark Straits Times Index rose 0.7 per cent or 22.48 points to finish the day at 3,146.09. Advancers outnumbered decliners 305 to 173, with 1.95 billion securities worth $1.29 billion changing hands.

Oanda's senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley noted that data released in Asian markets such as Singapore, Thailand and South Korea is unlikely to move the needle much as "each of the countries mentioned - plus most of Asia ex-China - is struggling to deal with waves of Covid-19 infections".

The trio of Singapore lenders were among the biggest gainers here yesterday.

DBS added 0.7 per cent or $0.20 to $29.97, UOB rose 0.8 per cent or $0.20 to $25.89, and OCBC gained 1.5 per cent or $0.18 to close at $12.22.

Aviation-related stocks recovered after booking losses in Monday's trading session. Singapore Airlines advanced 2.5 per cent or $0.12 to $4.86, while Sats closed at $3.75, up 1.4 per cent or $0.05.

Malaysia-based iron ore producer Southern Alliance Mining was the biggest loser of the day. The counter fell 6.2 per cent or 6.5 cents to 98.5 cents.

Singapore Exchange was another decliner, shedding 0.6 per cent or $0.06 to $10.37.

Elsewhere in Asia, markets generally ended the day in the black.

The KLCI rose 0.4 per cent, the Kospi added 0.9 per cent and the Hang Seng Index advanced 1.8 per cent. The Nikkei 225 and Jakarta Composite Index rose 0.7 per cent and 0.9 per cent respectively.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 26, 2021, with the headline 'Singapore market up 0.7% amid upbeat macroeconomic data'. Subscribe