(RTTNews) - The Singapore stock market has moved higher in two of three trading days since the end of the four-day losing streak in which it had slumped almost 50 points or 1.6 percent. The Straits Times Index now sits just above the 3,090-point plateau and it may extend Friday's gains.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is positive on growing optimism over the outlook for interest rates. The European and U.S. markets were solidly higher and the Asian bourses are expected to open in similar fashion.
The STI finished modestly higher on Friday as gains from the financial shares and industrials were capped by weakness from the property sector.
For the day, the index gained 17.32 points or 0.56 percent to finish at 3,090.31 after trading between 3,077.41 and 3,094.15.
Among the actives, Ascendas REIT lost 0.35 percent, while CapitaLand Integrated Commercial Trust spiked 1.65 percent, CapitaLand Investment advanced 0.66 percent, City Developments retreated 1.28 percent, DBS Group rose 0.50 percent, Emperador slumped 0.96 percent, Genting Singapore added 0.55 percent, Hongkong Land dropped 0.93 percent, Keppel Corp soared 2.70 percent, Keppel DC REIT surged 4.35 percent, Mapletree Pan Asia Commercial Trust climbed 0.73 percent, Mapletree Industrial Trust shed 0.44 percent, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation rallied 0.80 percent, Seatrium Limited plunged 2.86 percent, SembCorp Industries jumped 1.17 percent, Singapore Technologies Engineering gained 0.54 percent, SingTel fell 0.43 percent, Wilmar International sank 0.55 percent, Yangzijiang Financial tumbled 1.56 percent and Yangzijiang Shipbuilding, Comfort DelGro, SATS, Thai Beverage and Mapletree Logistics Trust were unchanged.
The lead from Wall Street is upbeat as the major averages shook off early weakness on Friday, quickly moving firmly into the green and staying that way for the remainder of the session.
The Dow spiked 294.61 points or 0.82 percent to finish at 36,245.50, while the NASDAQ rallied 78.83 points or 0.55 percent to close at 14,305.03 and the S&P 500 added 26.83 points or 0.59 percent to end at 4,594.63.
For the week, the Dow surged 2.4 percent, the S&P 500 increased 0.8 percent and the NASDAQ rose 0.4 percent.
The strength on Wall Street reflected ongoing optimism about the outlook for interest rates following a report from the Institute for Supply Management showing continued contraction in U.S. manufacturing activity last month.
Some analysts suggested that the weaker-than-expected ISM survey may spur expectations that the Fed's next move is an interest rate cut.
Crude oil prices fell sharply on Friday, extending losses from the previous session amid mounting skepticism over OPEC output cuts. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for January ended lower by $1.89 or 2.5 percent at $74.07 a barrel. Oil prices have now fallen in six straight weeks.
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