STI closes flat, while most Asian peers gain

The SGX Centre at Shenton Way. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - The local market was left out in the cold on Wednesday while most of its key Asian peers posted gains on the back of Wall Street closing at record highs overnight.

Inertia seemed to engulf proceedings with the Straits Times Index (STI) ending 0.13 points lower at 3,107.49 yet gainers well out-paced losers 300 to 176 on the broader market, with turnover of 1.47 billion shares worth $1.02 billion changing hands.

Much attention went to Union Gas, which jumped on Wednesday's announcement of its proposal to acquire its substantial shareholder's liquefied petroleum gas distribution, bottling and storage businesses for $75 million.

The counter closed 23.9 per cent higher at 98.5 cents.

The deal could double Union Gas's earnings per share to 12.64 cents from 6.06 cents if it goes through, the company stated.

Yangzijiang Shipbuilding was one of the most active, surging 3.13 per cent to $1.65 on trade of 113 million shares.

Asian markets generally closed in the black thanks to the impressive rally on Wall Street overnight.

The S&P 500 added 0.15 per cent to mark its 50th record close of 2021, the Dow put on 0.1 per cent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 0.5 per cent to close above 15,000 points for the first time.

Trading activity in the region was fairly muted ahead of the United States Federal Reserve symposium at Jackson Hole in Wyoming tomorrow.

Investors on Wall Street are likely to hold their fire for the next day or two until they get a handle on what the Fed is thinking, especially on its bond-buying programme.

The Shanghai Composite closed up 0.74 per cent and South Korea's Kospi was up 0.27 per cent but Japan's Nikkei 225 dipped 0.03 per cent while and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 0.13 per cent.

The ASX 200 in Australia finished higher for the third day straight, helped by stellar performances some fintechs and robust prices for commodities.

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