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Rebound Expected For Singapore Stock Market

The Singapore stock market on Friday wrote a finish to the two-day winning streak in which it had advanced more than 50 points or 1.6 percent. The Straits Times Index now rests just beneath the 3,240-point plateau although it figures to bounce higher again on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is firm thanks to surging oil prices and optimism for the outlook on global trade. The European and U.S. markets finished in the green and the Asian bourses are expected to open in similar fashion.

The STI finished modestly lower on Friday following losses from the financials and industrials, while the properties came in mixed.

For the day, the index fell 13.42 points or 0.41 percent to finish at 3,239.74 after trading between 3,229.85 and 3,259.79. Volume was 1.42 billion shares worth 1.12 billion Singapore dollars. There were 249 decliners and 165 gainers.

Among the actives, Thai Beverage skyrocketed 13.19 percent, while Golden Agri-Resources surged 1.96 percent, Genting Singapore plummeted 1.82 percent, SembCorp Industries plunged 1.53 percent, Yangzijiang Shipbuilding tumbled 1.41 percent, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation skidded 1.37 percent, SingTel dropped 1.32 percent, Comfort DelGro retreated 1.23 percent, CapitaLand declined 1.18 percent, DBS Group contracted0.72 percent, United Overseas Bank fell 0.66 percent, CapitaLand Commercial Trust advanced 0.54 percent, Keppel Corp slid 0.49 percent, CapitaLand Mall Trust added 0.42 percent, Ascendas REIT gained 0.36 percent and Hutchison Port Holdings and Wilmar International were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as stocks moved mostly higher on Friday as the major averages ended at multi-month closing highs.

The Dow jumped 443.86 points or 1.74 percent to 25,883.25, the NASDAQ added 45.46 points or 0.61 percent to 7,472.41 and the S&P 500 gained 29.87 points or 1.09 percent to 2,775.60. For the week, the Dow spiked 3.1 percent, the NASDAQ climbed 2.4 percent and the S&P rose 2.5 percent.

The strength on Wall Street came amid continued optimism about trade talks between the U.S. and China. A statement from the White House said high level U.S.-China trade talks this week led to progress between the two parties.

In economic news, the University of Michigan noted a bigger than expected rebound in consumer sentiment in February. Also, the Federal Reserve reported an unexpected decrease in industrial production in January.

Crude oil futures ended sharply higher on Friday, lifted by data showing declines in crude output from OPEC. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for March ended up $1.18 or 2.2 percent at $55.59 a barrel, a three-month high.

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