Singapore shares rise as Wall Street shifts sentiment to brighter US jobs data

The STI rose 0.37 per cent, following the tone set by Wall Street on the back of brighter US jobs data. PHOTO: AFP

SINGAPORE - Local shares drifted higher on Thursday (Aug 31), following the tone set by Wall Street where the focus shifted away from tensions in the Korean peninsula and towards brighter US jobs data.

The Straits Times Index gained 0.37 per cent to finish at 3,277.26 as reports came in towards the end of the trading day that the US had flown some of its most advanced warplanes to South Korea for bombing drills in a show of force against North Korea.

In the broader Singapore market, turnover climbed to S$1.5 billion with 2.2 million shares changing hands. Gainers outnumbered losers 217 to 181.

Earlier, the Nasdaq had led gains in US equity benchmarks, rising 1.05 per cent after the latest data from provider ADP showed better-than-expected private job creation in August.

Yangzijiang Shipbuilding was the top active counter, tumbling 13 cents or 8 per cent to S$1.495 on volume of 217 million. It said overnight that it had entered into a placement agreement with JP Morgan for 137 million new shares, or 3.6 per cent of its existing share capital, at S$1.53 per share.

CIMB analyst Lim Siew Khee said in a note on Thursday: "This is a surprise as the company had a strong balance sheet with net cash of 304 million yuan as of the first half of the year.

"We believe proceeds will be used to acquire the other 20 per cent stake in Xinfu shipyard, LNG technology M&As and participate in private capital investment in China."

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