Singapore Stock Market May Run Out Of Steam On Thursday

The Singapore stock market has finished higher in three straight sessions, gathering almost 30 points or 0.9 percent along the way. The Straits Times Index now rests just above the 3,385-point plateau although it's likely to run out of steam on Thursday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed to lower on concerns over the outlook for interest rates. The European markets were mixed and the U.S. bourses were down and the Asian markets figure to split the difference.

The STI finished slightly higher on Wednesday following gains from the financials and mixed performances from the properties and industrials.

For the day, the index rose 7.68 points or 0.23 percent to finish at 3,388.52 after trading between 3,372.62 and 3,393.33.

Among the actives, Ascendas REIT lost 0.34 percent, while CapitaLand Integrated Commercial Trust slumped 0.85 percent, CapitaLand Investment tumbled 1.26 percent, City Developments retreated 1.08 percent, DBS Group gained 0.56 percent, Emperador soared 2.00 percent, Genting Singapore and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation both rallied 1.00 percent, Hongkong Land added 0.62 percent, Keppel Corp shed 0.42 percent, Mapletree Pan Asia Commercial Trust dropped 0.56 percent, Mapletree Logistics Trust declined 1.16 percent, SATS sank 0.65 percent, SembCorp Industries surged 2.72 percent, Singapore Technologies Engineering fell 0.27 percent, SingTel advanced 0.79 percent, Thai Beverage improved 0.73 percent, United Overseas Bank collected 0.98 percent, Wilmar International jumped 1.01 percent, Yangzijiang Financial plummeted 3.95 percent, Yangzijiang Shipbuilding skidded 0.77 percent and Comfort DelGro and Mapletree Industrial Trust were unchanged.

The lead from Wall Street is negative as the major averages opened lower on Wednesday and remained in the red throughout the session.

The Dow tumbled 207.68 points or 0.61 percent to finish at 33,949.01, while the NASDAQ plunged 203.27 points or 1.68 percent to close at 11,910.52 and the S&P 500 sank 46.14 points or 1.11 percent to end at 4,117.86.

The pullback on Wall Street came as some traders looked to cash in Tuesday's gains, which came amid a positive reaction to comments by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell.

Powell acknowledged recent indications of easing inflation but noted that the disinflationary process has a long way to go and cautioned further interest rate hikes could be needed.

The positive sentiment generated in reaction to Powell's comments was partly offset by remarks by New York Fed President John Williams, who said interest rates may need to be kept at an elevated level for a few years to bring down inflation.

Crude oil futures settled higher on Wednesday, extending gains to a third straight session amid hopes of higher demand from China. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for March ended higher by $1.33 or 1.7 percent at $78.47 a barrel.

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