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Singapore Stock Market Expected To Remain Rangebound

The Singapore stock market has tracked higher in two of three trading days since the end of the two-day slide in which it had fallen almost 25 points or 0.8 percent. The Straits Times Index now rests just above the 3,265-point plateau, although it's likely to move lower again on Wednesday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is negative ahead of the FOMC's rate decision later today. The European and U.S. markets finished firmly in the red and the Asian bourses are expected to open in similar fashion.

The STI finished slightly higher on Tuesday as gains from the financials and properties were capped by weakness from the industrials.

For the day, the index rose 10.63 points or 0.33 percent to finish at 3,266.94 after trading between 3,261.63 and 3,275.51. Volume was 875.1 million shares worth 670 million Singapore dollars. There were 240 gainers and 223 decliners.

Among the actives, Ascendas REIT lost 0.35 percent, while CapitaLand Integrated Commercial Trust shed 0.48 percent, CapitaLand Investment and Singapore Technologies Engineering both gained 0.27 percent, City Developments climbed 0.73 percent, DBS Group jumped 0.78 percent, Genting Singapore advanced 0.62 percent, Hongkong Land added 0.42 percent, Keppel Corp dipped 0.28 percent, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation improved 0.55 percent, SembCorp Industries fell 0.31 percent, Emperador slumped 0.98 percent, United Overseas Bank collected 0.55 percent, Wilmar International eased 0.25 percent and Yangzijiang Financial, Yangzijiang Shipbuilding, Mapletree Commercial Trust, Mapletree Industrial Trust, Mapletree Logistics Trust, SingTel, Thai Beverage, SATS, Comfort DelGro and Frasers Logistics all were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is soft as the major averages opened in the red on Tuesday and held their negative bias throughout the session.

The Dow plunged 313.45 points or 1.01 percent to finish at 30,706.23, while the NASDAQ sank 109.97 points or 0.95 percent to end at 11,425.05 and the S&P 500 tumbled 43.96 points or 1.13 percent to close at 3,855.93.

The weakness on Wall Street came as traders were jittery ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy decision later today. The Fed is widely expected to raise interest rates by another 75 basis points, although some see an outside chance for a 100-point rate hike.

Treasury yields saw further upside ahead of the Fed announcement, with the yield on the benchmark ten-year note jumping to a new 11-year high.

In economic news, the Commerce Department reported an unexpected spike in new residential construction in the U.S. in August, although the report also showed a steeper than expected slump in building permits.

Crude oil prices fell sharply on Tuesday amid concerns about interest rate hikes and worries about the outlook for energy demand. West Texas Intermediate Crude futures for October ended lower by $1.28 or 1.5 percent at $84.45 a barrel on expiration day.

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