STI adds 0.7% on retail growth, dovish Fed expectations

Retail sales here also rose for the sixth straight month to come in ahead of forecasts, growing by 3.5 per cent in August.
Retail sales here also rose for the sixth straight month to come in ahead of forecasts, growing by 3.5 per cent in August.PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - Markets took heart on Thursday (Oct 12), as the expectation of low United States inflation data fuelled dovishness over possible Federal Reserve rate hikes.

Retail sales here also rose for the sixth straight month to come in ahead of forecasts, growing by 3.5 per cent in August.

The Straits Times Index gained 22.81 points, or 0.7 per cent, to end the day at 3,303.09 points - the first bright spot in a lacklustre week.

Singapore Press Holdings was the first index constituent to post results this earning season, with full-year net profit up by 32 per cent on the previous year.

The counter jumped by three cents, or 1.1 per cent, to S$2.72.

Hospitality group Banyan Tree Holdings, freshly tapped to run a Mandai eco-friendly hotel in a tie-up with the wildlife parks there, added half a cent, or 0.8 per cent, to 65 cents.

But Singapore Post, fresh from opening its new mall, was down by half a cent, or 0.4 per cent, at S$1.265.