(RTTNews.com) – The Singapore stock market has climbed higher in consecutive trading days, gathering almost 35 points or 1 percent in that span. The Straits Times Index now rests just above the 3,485-point plateau and it may see continued strength on Monday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is broadly positive thanks to solid U.S. employment data and a spike in crude oil prices. The European and U.S. markets were higher and the Asian markets figure to follow suit.
The STI finished slightly higher on Friday following mixed performances from the financials, properties and plantations.
For the day, the index added 5.13 points or 0.15 percent to finish at 3,485.57 after trading between 3,476.24 and 3,495.09. Volume was 1.7 billion shares worth 1.1 billion Singapore dollars. There were 247 gainers and 188 decliners.
Among the actives, Hongkong Land surged 3.85 percent, while Comfort DelGro tumbled 1.94 percent, CapitaLand Commercial Trust skidded 1.15 percent, Wilmar International advanced 0.94 percent, Genting Singapore dropped 0.88 percent, Thai Beverage shed 0.61 percent, CapitaLand climbed 0.56 percent, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation and Singapore Airlines both lost 0.45 percent, DBS Group fell 0.35 percent, SingTel added 0.30 percent, United Overseas Bank collected 0.14 percent and Hutchison Port Holdings, Golden Agri-Resources, CapitaLand Mall Trust and Yangzijiang Shipbuilding all were unchanged.
The lead from Wall Street is solid as stocks moved sharply higher on Friday, adding the gains in the previous session as the NASDAQ closed higher for the sixth straight session to a record closing high.
The Dow spiked 440.53 points or 1.77 percent to 25,335.74, while the NASDAQ jumped 132.86 points or 1,79 percent to 7,560.81 and the S&P climbed 47.60 points or 1.74 percent to 2,786.57. For the week, the NASDAQ soared 4.2 percent, the Dow jumped 3.3 percent and the S&P gained 3.5 percent.
The rally followed the Labor Department report showing stronger than expected job growth in February.
The markets also benefited from easing geopolitical concerns amid news President Donald Trump has agreed to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un.
Crude oil prices rallied Friday on data showing the U.S. rig count dropped for the first time in seven weeks. April WTI crude added $1.92 or 3.2 percent to $62.04 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices were up 1.3 percent for the week.
Closer to home, Singapore will see January figures for retail sales later today; in December, sales fell 0.5 percent on month and climbed 3.7 percent on year.
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