Singapore stocks extend rally on Fed-fuelled rate optimism; STI up 1%

SINGAPORE – The year-end cheer was evident across the region on Dec 27 with optimism fuelling stock markets after a testing 12 months.

It was no exception here as the Straits Times Index (STI) gained 1 per cent, or 30.78 points, to end the day at 3,170.76. Gainers outpaced losers 377 to 210 across the broader market on middling trade of 928.3 million shares worth $788 million.

It was a similar story elsewhere, with bourses firmly in the black after solid gains on Wall Street overnight put the benchmark S&P 500 within 0.5 per cent of its record high and set it up for its longest weekly winning streak since 2017.

The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo was up 1.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 1.7 per cent, the Bursa Malaysia advanced 0.2 per cent and Seoul’s Kospi put on 0.4 per cent.

Australian shares rose 0.79 per cent to hit a new 52-week high and within 80 points of its record close.

SPI Asset Management managing partner Stephen Innes said a moderation in headline and core inflation has created “a pathway for central banks to ease off on restrictive policies”.

“As inflation subsides, the Federal Reserve sees higher real rates becoming increasingly economically unfavourable, possibly reducing the necessity for policy rates to remain in prohibitive territory,” he added.

Nio was the top gainer on the Singapore bourse for the second consecutive day, adding 7.7 per cent to US$9.11.

The trio of local lenders were also among the top gainers in the session. DBS Bank rose 1.4 per cent to $32.34, UOB added 0.9 per cent to $27.90, while OCBC Bank climbed 1 per cent to $12.78.

Newly listed live-streaming platform 17Live was one of the biggest losers, falling 3.6 per cent to $1.61.

Singtel was the only STI stock to end the day in the red, declining 0.4 per cent to $2.42.

Seatrium, Medtecs and Singtel were the most heavily traded stocks by volume. THE BUSINESS TIMES

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