Singapore shares rebound amid gains in regional bourses

Singapore shares managed to snap a five-day losing streak with the key Straits Times Index (STI) gaining 28.18 points or 0.95 per cent to 2,988.27.

The rebound took place on a choppy trading day amidst gains in most other regional bourses and partly due to some selective bargain hunting as the STI has shed over 3 per cent over the five previous trading days.

Trading volumes remained modest with 2.2 billion shares worth $1.03 billion. Gainers led losers 269 to 136 while 378 counters were unchanged.

Amid the string of gloomy and patchy data, Singapore received some upbeat news on Wednesday - manufacturing activity in January rose, beating estimates.

Elsewhere, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.8 per cent while South Korea's Kospi added 0.9 per cent. Japan's Nikkei 225 bucked the trend, closing 0.2 per cent lower.

Dealers expect more volatility ahead.

Asian markets have lost considerable ground in recent weeks on jitters over the Fed's tapering, volatility in emerging markets and growth concerns over China.

Wall Street has also been skittish with the VIX index, a gauge of fear in the market, having risen 45 per cent in the past ten trading days.

Traders are keeping a hawk-eye on a crucial non-farm payrolls data out of the United States tomorrow for some indication on the direction of the world's largest economy.