Bulls And Bears

STI ends day down 1.75%

But it still chalks up strongest monthly price gain since 2009; Big Three local banks all slip into negative territory; MAS data shows bank lending in October also down

Singapore's benchmark Straits Times Index (STI) ended yesterday 1.75 per cent or 49.87 points lower to close at 2,805.95.

Nonetheless, it still generated its strongest monthly price gain for November since its 21.3 per cent rise in May 2009, said Singapore Exchange market strategist Geoff Howie.

Mapletree Logistics Trust was one of just two constituent stocks that rose, inching up 0.51 per cent or one cent to close at $1.97.

Of the STI constituents that fell, Jardine Cycle & Carriage was the biggest loser, slipping 7.57 per cent or $1.59 to close at $19.41.

The Big Three local banks' share prices also ended the day lower. OCBC Bank slipped 0.69 per cent to close at $10.08 and DBS lost 1.87 per cent to $25.20. UOB fell by a larger margin of 2.39 per cent to close at $22.51.

Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) data yesterday showed that bank lending in October fell for the eighth straight month on continued weakness in business loans. Loans via the domestic banking unit - which captures lending in all currencies, but reflects mainly Singapore-dollar loans - inched down 0.3 per cent to $675.64 billion in October, against $677.46 billion the month before.

Decliners outnumbered advancers 314 to 156 yesterday, with 2.9 billion securities worth $3.65 billion changing hands.

Across Asia, markets similarly ended lower yesterday.

The Nikkei 225 Index in Japan closed 0.79 per cent lower at 26,433.62, and the Shanghai Composite Index dipped 0.49 per cent to close at 3,391.76.

The benchmark Kospi slid 1.6 per cent to end at 2,591.34. For the month, however, the South Korean index was up 14.3 per cent - its sharpest monthly gain in 19 years, amid coronavirus vaccine-led recovery hopes.

Over in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index fell 2.06 per cent to 26,341.49, as a result of the latest move by the Trump administration amid escalating US-China tensions. Reuters yesterday reported that the Trump government was poised to add China's top chipmaker SMIC and national offshore oil-and-gas producer CNOOC to a blacklist of alleged Chinese military companies, according to a document and sources, thus curbing their access to US investors.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 01, 2020, with the headline 'STI ends day down 1.75%'. Print Edition | Subscribe