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Singapore Stock Market May Snap Losing Streak

The Singapore stock market has finished lower in back-to-back trading days, sliding more than 20 points or 0.7 percent along the way. The Straits Times Index remains just beneath the 3,090-point plateau although it's expected to rebound on Friday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat on optimism for a trade deal between the United States and China. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian bourses are expected to open in similar fashion.

The STI finished barely lower on Thursday as losses from the properties were mitigated by support from the financial sector.

For the day, the index eased 0.42 points or 0.01 percent to finish at 3,089.48 after trading between 3,073.56 and 3,096.38. Volume was 975.42 million shares worth 802.55 Singapore dollars. There were 177 decliners and 174 gainers.

Among the actives, CapitaLand Mall Trust plummeted 1.51 percent, Yangzijiang Shipbuilding surged 1.08 percent, Singapore Technologies Engineering soared 1.01 percent, Ascendas REIT spiked 0.96 percent, Singapore Exchange tumbled 0.90 percent, Comfort DelGro jumped 0.83 percent, Genting Singapore climbed 0.56 percent, United Overseas Bank collected 0.51 percent, CapitaLand Commercial Trust skidded 0.48 percent, DBS Group advanced 0.45 percent, Mapletree Commercial Trust dropped 0.42 percent, Oversea-Chinese Commercial Bank added 0.38 percent, SingTel gained 0.32 percent, CapitaLand rose 0.29 percent and Wilmar International, Keppel Corp, SembCorp Industries, Thai Beverage and Golden Agri-Resources were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as traders intensely focused on the latest developments surrounding the highly anticipated U.S.-China trade talks, sending markets significantly higher.

The Dow added 150.66 points or 0.57 percent to 26,496.67, while the NASDAQ gained 47.04 points or 0.60 percent to 7,950.78 and the S&P 500 rose 18.73 points or 0.64 percent to 2,938.13.

Buying interest emerged on Wall Street after President Donald Trump revealed he plans to meet with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He as part of high-level U.S.-China trade talks. Traders will remain focused on the highly anticipated negotiations and any signs of progress or lack thereof.

In economic news, the Labor Department said U.S. consumer prices were essentially flat in September and that there was a modest decrease in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits last week.

Crude oil prices moved higher Thursday as OPEC said that it has all options in place to balance oil markets and that it would make a decision in December about supply. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for November ended up $0.96 or 1.8 percent at $53.55 a barrel, the highest settlement since October 1.

Closer to home, Singapore will see August data for retail sales later today; in July, sales were up 2.6 percent on month and down 1.8 percent on year.

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