Singapore stocks slide, tracking Wall Street declines; STI down 1%

The Straits Times Index is still up 0.6 per cent for the week. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Regional shares slipped on Friday, following a mixed session on Wall Street overnight amid renewed recession concerns and worrying economic data.

Manufacturing activity in the United States contracted in November, while October’s core inflation rate of 5 per cent remains above the Federal Reserve’s 2 per cent target.

These make the near-term economic outlook challenging for risk assets, said Bank of Singapore chief economist Mansoor Mohi-uddin.

Investors are keenly watching for the upcoming job figures for clues to the Fed’s interest rate decision in December, as it has said its move will be data-dependent.

Wall Street looked a little shaky ahead of the numbers, with the S&P 500 down 0.1 per cent on the back of weaker financial shares. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.6 per cent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq added 0.1 per cent.

The uncertainty left the Straits Times Index (STI) off 1 per cent, or 33.59 points, to 3,259.14 but still up 0.6 per cent for the week.

Gainers beat losers 254 to 241, with a turnover of 1.2 billion shares worth $1.11 billion.

Shares of ground handler and in-flight caterer Sats fell 2.9 per cent to $2.67, a day after it unveiled its funding structure to acquire air cargo handler Worldwide Flight Services. Sats said it would raise up to $800 million via a renounceable underwritten rights issue to partially fund the deal.

Conspicuously absent is an undertaking by majority shareholder Temasek to underwrite the fund raising. Sats had said that if Temasek were to underwrite it, this would trigger a mandatory general offer, or Temasek would have to ask other shareholders for a waiver to not make such an offer.

Digital Core Reit, a data centre real estate investment trust, slumped 5.7 per cent to 57.5 US cents, a day after announcing it intended to proceed with an all-debt-funded acquisition of a 25 per cent interest in a Frankfurt facility for US$140 million (S$189 million), aborting an earlier plan for equity fund raising. THE BUSINESS TIMES

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