Stocks to watch: SGX, Vard, Yangzijiang, Venture Corp, UOB Kay Hian

The Singapore Exchange (SGX) Centre at Shenton Way.
The Singapore Exchange (SGX) Centre at Shenton Way. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The following companies saw new developments that may affect trading of their shares on Thursday (March 1):

Singapore Exchange (SGX): SGX has emerged as one of the contenders for a controlling stake in the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, according to Israeli media reports. More than 10 foreign stock exchanges have expressed interest in buying into the exchange by signing non-disclosure agreements, Reuters reported late Tuesday. Israeli media said these included exchanges in London, Toronto, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia and Warsaw. The stake is valued at around US$147 million, and the deadline for suggesting an interested buyer is April, according to technology news site CTech. SGX shares fell 10 Singapore cents or 1.31 per cent to S$7.55 on Wednesday.

Vard Holdings: Vard's net loss for the fourth quarter deepened to 131 million Norwegian kronor (S$22.1 million) from 67 million kronor for the year-ago period. Loss per share worsened to 0.11 krona, from a loss per share of 0.06 krona in the previous year. For the three months ended Dec 31, revenue went up 25.3 per cent to 2.69 billion kronor from 2.15 billion kronor the previous year. Vard shares finished flat at S$0.25 on Wednesday.

Yangzijiang Shipbuilding (YZJ): YZJ saw its fourth-quarter net profit jump 12 per cent on higher turnover, other income and lower finance expenses. Net profit for the quarter ended Dec 31 was higher at 678 million yuan (S$142 million) compared to 608 million a year before. Revenue rose 15 per cent to 6.35 billion yuan on higher contributions for all three shipbuilding related segments. The group proposed a final dividend of 4.5 Singapore cents per share for FY17, up from 4 Singapore cents per share for FY16. YZJ shares closed at S$1.51 apiece on Wednesday.

Venture Corporation: Venture's net profit more than doubled in the fourth quarter, surging 164.5 per cent to S$143 million on higher research and development (R&D) revenue. Revenue for the three months ended Dec 31 was S$1.09 billion, up 27 per cent from the year-ago period. This is Venture's third straight quarter of revenue above S$1 billion. A final dividend of 60 Singapore cents was declared, up 20 per cent from 50 Singapore cents in the same period last year. Venture shares rose 46 Singapore cents or 1.7 per cent to S$27.56 on Wednesday, before results were released.

UOB Kay Hian: UOB Kay Hian posted an 85 per cent increase in fourth-quarter net profit to S$21.84 million as its commission income grew with higher market volumes. Earnings per share for Q4 were 2.75 Singapore cents, up from 1.51 Singapore cents for a year before. Total revenue was 16.2 per cent higher at S$105.31 million for the three months ended Dec 31,2017. UOB Kay Hian closed flat at S$1.41 on Wednesday.