Roundup: Singapore stocks end down 1.03 pct amid fear of early U.S. stimulus reduction
SINGAPORE, Dec. 10 (Xinhua) -- Singapore shares closed 1.03 percent lower on Tuesday, as the latest job report released last Friday raised fear that U.S. Federal Reserve may taper its monetary stimulus later this month.
The Friday's report showed U.S. employers hired more workers than expected in November, driving the jobless rate to a five-year low of 7.0 percent. Federal Reserve officials on Monday also lent credence to the idea that a U.S. stimulus reduction was on the near-term horizon. Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher said tapering should start next week. Richmond Federal Reserve President Jeffrey Lacker also said further stimulus is unlikely to do much to help the U.S. economy.
CIMB Research said once 3,108 points fail to hold, the index will test the gap between 3,048 points and 3,072 points set in September.
The benchmark Straits Times Index fell 31.92 points to close at 3,181.72 points. Trading volume was 1.82 billion shares worth 1.38 billion Singapore dollars. Decliners outnumbered advancers 255 to 139, while 558 stocks closed unchanged.
Among top actives, Thai Beverage shed 4.2 percent to 45.5 Singapore cents. Standard and Poor's Ratings Services has cut Thai Beverage's credit rating to below investment grade to reflect the weaker combined profile of its corporate group.
Raffles Education dropped 1.8 percent to 28 Singapore cents. It is in a deal to sell the land use rights and property in China's Hebei province to through a joint-venture firm and a put option agreement. Raffles Education has an irrevocable put option to sell its 70 percent share in the joint venture to its partner at an exercise price of 700 million Chinese Yuan.
Lum Chang fell 1.5 percent to 33.5 Singapore cents. It has entered into an agreement to acquire the freehold property located at 52 to 57 Price's Square, London for 26 million British Pounds plus tax of about 5.2 million British Pounds. The property is currently operating as a hotel.
Among the top gainers, Jardine Matheson rose 0.1 percent to 51. 86 U.S. dollars, while UOB became one of the top losers by falling 1.2 percent to 20.58 Singapore dollars. (1 U.S. dollar equals to 0. 609 British pounds, 6.072 Chinese yuan and 1.25 Singapore dollars)