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Win Streak May Continue For Singapore Stock Market

The Singapore stock market has climbed higher in four straight sessions, advancing more than 145 points or 4.7 percent along the way. The Strait Times Index now rests just beneath the 3,160-point plateau and it may add to its winnings on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is firm on continued trade optimism and surging crude oil prices. The European and U.S. markets were higher and the Asian bourses are tipped to open in slimier fashion.

The STI finished sharply higher on Wednesday following gains from the financial shares, property stocks and industrial issues.

For the day, the index jumped 35.13 points or 1.12 percent to finish at 3,158.07 after trading between 3,139.03 and 3,159.31. Volume was 1.6 billion shares worth 1.12 billion Singapore dollars.

Among the actives, Thai Beverage surged 3.17 percent, while CapitaLand Mall Trust soared 2.16 percent, Hutchison Port Holdings spiked 2.00 percent, Genting Singapore jumped 1.98 percent, Yangzijiang Shipbuilding climbed 1.57 percent, United Overseas Bank advanced 1.51 percent, DBS Group gathered 1.38 percent, CapitaLand Commercial Trust perked 1.12 percent, SingTel added 1.02 percent, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation collected 0.96 percent, Wilmar International gained 0.95 percent, SembCorp Industries shed 0.38 percent, Keppel Corp rose 0.32 percent, CapitaLand was up 0.31 percent and Comfort DelGro, Golden Agri-Resources and Ascendas REIT were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is upbeat as stocks fluctuated on Wednesday but still finished higher, extending gains for a fourth consecutive session.

The Dow added 91.67 points or 0.39 percent to 23,879.12, while the NASDAQ gained 60.08 points or 0.87 percent to 6,957.08 and the S&P was up 10.55 points or 0.41 percent to 2,584.96.

The markets continued to benefit from optimism about a potential trade deal between the U.S. and China after talks between U.S. and Chinese officials were extended to a third day. Traders remain hopeful the U.S. and China will reach a long-term agreement before a March 1 deadline.

Stocks remained positive after the minutes of the latest Federal Reserve meeting confirmed Fed Chairman Jerome Powell's recent remarks suggesting the central bank will take a patient approach to further interest rate increases.

Crude oil prices rose sharply Wednesday, extending gains to an eighth straight session amid easing concerns about energy demand. Crude oil futures for February ended up $2.58 or 5.2 percent at $52.36 a barrel.

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