Singapore shares open higher on Wednesday; STI up 0.2% to 3,214.32

The Singapore Exchange Centre in Shenton Way.
The Singapore Exchange Centre in Shenton Way. ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

SINGAPORE - Singapore stocks opened higher on Wednesday (June 12), with the Straits Times Index advancing 0.15 per cent, or 4.74 points to 3,214.32 as at 9.02am.

This comes despite US stocks ending marginally lower overnight, as investors took a step back following lingering anxiety over the US-China trade dispute. The S&P 500 was down 0.03 per cent, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 0.1 per cent, and the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index ended flat.

CMC market analyst Margaret Yang noted that Wall Street's rally since early June is probably taking a pause to allow for profit-taking, as market participants re-access the trade risk, and the likelihood of a Fed rate cut in July.

On the Singapore bourse, advancers outnumbered decliners 54 to 39, after about 22.3 million shares worth $44.3 million exchanged hands.

Among the most heavily traded by volume, YZJ Shipbuilding gained 0.7 per cent, or one cent to $1.45 with 6.8 million shares traded, while Singtel was up 0.3 per cent, or one cent to $3.30 on a cum dividend basis, with 1.6 million shares traded.

Banking stocks traded mixed, with UOB advancing 0.3 per cent, or eight cents to $24.61, DBS up 0.3 per cent, or seven cents to $24.75, and OCBC inching down 0.1 per cent, or one cent to S$10.80.

Other active stocks included Venture Corp which rose 2.3 per cent, or 37 cents to $16.48, and ComfortDelGro which was up 1.2 per cent, or three cents to $2.58.

Elsewhere, Asian equities opened mixed on Wednesday after Wall Street snapped a week-long winning streak as political uncertainty rose surrounding the US-China trade deal.

Ahead of the G-20 meeting to be held later this month, US President Donald Trump said he's personally holding up a trade deal with China, and that the agreement won't be completed, unless Beijing returns to terms negotiated earlier this year, Bloomberg reported. "And we're going to either do a great deal with China or we're not going to do a deal at all," Mr Trump said.

Japan's Topix slid 0.3 per cent as at 9.03am in Tokyo, while South Korea's Kospi gained 0.2 per cent, and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 0.3 per cent.

In a research note on Wednesday morning, UOB also noted that the G-7 data docket will again be focused on US prices. The headline CPI inflation will likely ease to 1.9 per cent year on year in May (from 2 per cent in April), while May core inflation could stay unchanged at 2.1 per cent, UOB said.

Separately, data released in Asia on Wednesday includes China's CPI (consumer price index) and PPI (producer price index) for May, with some slight uptick in CPI, while PPI is likely to stay pressured, UOB noted. Singapore's April retail sales will also be out at 1pm.