The Singapore stock market has finished higher now in back-to-back sessions, climbing more than 50 points or 1.8 percent en route to a one-month closing high. The Straits Times Index finished just below the 2,825-point plateau, although now investors are bracing for a lower open on Tuesday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed with a touch of downside, after sharp gains in Monday's relief rally following the Greek elections. The yield on a 10-year Spanish government bond rose back over 7 percent, while the yield on an Italian 10-year government bond increased to 6 percent. In addition, traders may be reluctant to make any significant moves ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy meeting additional stimulus measures may be forthcoming. The European and U.S. markets were mixed but little changed, and the Asian markets figure to follow suit.
The STI finished modestly higher on Monday following support from the property stocks and plantation shares.
For the day, the index collected 13.22 points or 0.47 percent to finish at 2,824.22 after trading between 2,821.26 and 2,850.63 on volume of 1.07 billion shares. There were 216 gainers and 137 decliners.
Among the gainers, Olam International surged 3 percent, while Golden Agri-Resources climbed 1.6 percent, Noble Group added 0.4 percent, CapitaLand jumped 1.9 percent, City Developments collected 1.8 percent and CapitaMalls Asia spiked 1.4 percent.
Moving lower, Singapore Airlines shed 0.68 percent, while Genting Singapore lost 0.3 percent and DBS Group Holdings fell 0.07 percent.
The lead from Wall Street provides little guidance as stocks turned mixed over the course of the trading day on Monday after moving to the downside at the start of trading. The relatively lackluster performance came as traders shrugged off the results of the Greek elections ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy meeting.
The weakness seen at the open came as traders cashed in on the strong gains posted in the two previous sessions, which lifted the Dow to its best closing level in over a month.
A negative reaction to the latest developments in Europe also contributed to the initial downward move, although selling pressure remained subdued. While the closely watched Greek elections resulted in a victory for the pro-bailout New Democracy party, worries about the ongoing financial crisis drove Spanish and Italian bond yields notably higher.
Nonetheless, traders seemed reluctant to make any significant moves ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy meeting. Many traders expect the Fed to announce additional stimulus measures when it releases its post-meeting statement on Wednesday.
The markets rallied after an upbeat housing report as the National Association of Home Builders showed that homebuilder confidence hit a five-year high in June. The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index crept up to 29 in June from a downwardly revised 28 in May. Economists had expected the index to come in unchanged from the 29 originally reported for the previous month.
The major averages ended the day on opposite sides of the unchanged line as the Dow edged down 25.35 points or 0.2 percent to finish at 12,741.82, while the NASDAQ rose 22.53 points or 0.8 percent to end at 2,895.33 and the S&P 500 crept up 1.94 points or 0.1 percent to 1,344.78.
by RTT Staff Writer
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