Singapore shares inch up ahead of keenly-watched US jobless data

SINGAPORE shares edged upwards on Friday, as investors awaited monthly jobless data from the United States that would likely determine if US monetary stimulus would soon slow down.

The Straits Times Index rose 8.9 points or 0.29 per cent to 3,048.35. That took the index to a gain of 19.41 points or 0.64 per cent for the week.

There has been concern over the slowing down of money printing from the US Federal Reserve - which could happen as soon as this month - and a US military strike on Syria which is looking increasingly likely.

Still, shares here have managed to inch upwards this week, probably due to bargain hunting as some investors swooped in after last month's falls.

The rigbuilders were higher on Friday, with Keppel Corp ahead by 22 cents or 2.17 per cent to $10.36 and Sembcorp Marine gaining 12 cents or 2.84 per cent to $4.34.

Across the market gainers outnumbered losers by 228 to 169.