SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - Local shares shrugged off a surprise tightening of Singapore monetary policy on Thursday and followed most regional markets into positive territory.
The benchmark Straits Times Index (STI) climbed 0.3 per cent or 8.44 points to close at 3,164.86 on trade of 1.1 billion shares worth $1.1 billion with gainers outnumbering losers 265 to 155.
Jardine Cycle and Carriage ended the day as the STI's top gainer, surging 7.9 per cent to $23.65. It was also one of the most actively traded counters by value, with nearly two million shares worth $45.5 million changing hands.
SGX market strategist Geoff Howie noted that the stock has gained 24.3 per cent since Sept 28, in line with similar gains of its Indonesian-listed subsidiary, Astra International, over the same period.
"While energy stocks continued to outpace, technology stocks were also among the stronger segments in the local market today, with the agri-businesses more mixed," Mr Howie said, adding that OCBC shares have continued to outpace DBS.
OCBC shares rose 0.3 per cent to close at $11.88 on Thursday while DBS was one of the four STI counters that ended the day in the red, falling 0.3 per cent to $30.42.
Geo Energy Resources was among the top actives by volume. The counter climbed 9.1 per cent to close at 42 cents after 46.2 million shares changed hands.
The Indonesian coal producer said on Wednesday that it no longer has any outstanding United States-dollar bonds, having fully redeemed and cancelled its 8 per cent, due-2022 senior notes.
Elsewhere in Asia, markets mostly advanced, with major indices in Japan, Australia, Indonesia and South Korea rising between 0.5 and 1.5 per cent.