(RTTNews) - The Singapore stock market picked up less than a point on Friday, but that was enough to snap the five-day losing streak in which it had stumbled almost 70 points or 2.6 percent. The Straits Times Index now rests just beneath the 2,530-point plateau and it's expected to see additional support on Monday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat on firm economic data from the United States. The European markets were down and the U.S. bourses were up and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.
The STI finished barely higher on Friday following gains from the industrials and properties, while the financials came in mixed.
For the day, the index gained 0.62 points or 0.02 percent to finish at 2,528.54 after trading between 2,526.27 and 2,547.83. Volume was 1.91 billion shares worth 1.23 billion Singapore dollars. There were 247 gainers and 163 decliners.
Among the actives, Hongkong Land Holdings surged 2.93 percent, while Wilmar International soared 2.06 percent, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation plummeted 1.81 percent, SingTel plunged 1.72 percent, Venture Corporation tanked 1.71 percent, Thai Beverage spiked 1.64 percent, Singapore Exchange accelerated 1.28 percent, CapitaLand and Yangzijiang Shipbuilding both rallied 1.09 percent, Mapletree Logistics Trust gathered 0.97 percent, Genting Singapore and Comfort DelGro both perked 0.72 percent, Ascendas REIT advanced 0.59 percent, CapitaLand Mall Trust dropped 0.54 percent, Mapletree Commercial Trust added 0.53 percent, Keppel Corp gained 0.43 percent, SATS rose 0.34 percent, Singapore Airlines increased 0.28 percent, United Overseas Bank collected 0.20 percent, DBS Group was up 0.05 percent and Dairy Farm International Holdings, Singapore Technologies Engineering, SembCorp Industries, CapitaLand Commercial Trust and Singapore Press Holdings all were unchanged.
The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks spent most of Friday in the green, picking up steam as the day progressed.
The Dow jumped 190.60 points or 0.69 percent to finish at 27,930.33, while the NASDAQ added 46.85 points or 0.42 percent to end at 11,311.80 and the S&P 500 rose 11.65 points or 0.34 percent to close at 3,397.16. For the week, the Dow was flat, the NASDAQ soared 2.7 percent and the S&P gained 0.7 percent.
The strength on Wall Street came after IHS Markit said U.S. business activity expanded at the fastest pace in over a year in August. Also, the National Association of Realtors said existing home sales in the U.S. continued to soar in July.
Significant strength was also visible among computer hardware stocks. Apple (AAPL) helped to lead the sector higher, with the tech giant surging 5.2 percent to a new record closing high.
Oil prices tumbled on Friday as the latest Euro zone flash purchasing managers' index for August dented hopes of a V-shaped recovery from the bloc's deepest economic downturn on record. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down 46 cents or 1.08 percent at $42.27.
Closer to home, Singapore will see July figures for consumer prices later today; in June, overall inflation was flat on month and down 0.5 percent on year, while core CPI eased an annual 0.2 percent.
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