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Singapore Bourse: Resistance Expected At 3,200 Points

The Singapore stock market has climbed higher in six straight sessions, advancing more than 185 points or 6 percent along the way. The Strait Times Index now rests just beneath the 3,200-point plateau although it's overdue for profit taking on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets suggests mild consolidation on profit taking and a drop in crude oil prices. The European and U.S. markets were down and the Asian bourses are expected to follow that lead.

The STI finished modestly higher on Friday following gains from the financial shares and a mixed picture from the property sector.

For the day, the index gained 15.14 points or 0.48 percent to finish at 3,198.65 after trading between 3,191.72 and 3,209.65. Volume was 1.56 billion shares worth 1.02 billion Singapore dollars. There were 249 gainers and 165 decliners.

Among the actives, City Developments surged 2.30 percent, while Hutchison Port Holdings soared 1.96 percent, SembCorp Industries spiked 1.86 percent, Comfort DelGro tumbled 1.82 percent, DBS Group jumped 1.39 percent, United Overseas Bank climbed 1.12 percent, Thai Beverage advanced 0.74 percent, CapitaLand Commercial Trust added 0.55 percent, Keppel Corp gained 0.48 percent, CapitaLand Mall Trust shed 0.43 percent, Ascendas REIT rose 0.37 percent, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation collected 0.34 percent, Sing Tel was up 0.33 percent, Wilmar International fell 0.31 percent and CapitaLand, Golden Agri-Resources, Genting Singapore and Yangzijiang Shipbuilding all were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is slightly soft as stocks opened lower on Friday, staged a recovery in the afternoon but still finished barely in the red.

The Dow shed 5.97 points or 0.02 percent to 23,995.95, while the NASDAQ lost 14.59 points or 0.21 percent to 6,971.48 and the S&P 500 fell 0.38 points or 0.01 percent to 2,596.26. For the week, the Dow added 2.4 percent, the NASDAQ added 3.5 percent and the S&P rose 2.5 percent.

The early weakness on Wall Street was due to profit taking, with traders cashing in on gains from the five-day winning streak. Concerns about the ongoing government shutdown and skepticism about a potential trade deal between the U.S. and China also weighed.

In economic news, the Labor Department noted a slight drop in consumer prices in December, while core consumer priced ticked slightly higher.

Crude oil futures ended lower Friday, snapping a nine-day winning streak as profit taking and worries about the slowing Chinese economy weighed on the commodity. Crude oil futures ended down $1.00 or 1.9 percent at $51.59 a barrel.

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