Singapore shares closed 0.47 percent higher on Wednesday, as investors took comfort from firm U. S. data underscoring an American recovery, and assurances from China's central bank to provide funds to institutions if needed.
Besides U.S. economic reports ranging from manufacturing and housing to consumer confidence buoyed optimism, the People's Bank of China said late on Tuesday it had provided cash to some institutions facing temporary shortages and would continue to do so if needed, seeking to tame investor jitters amid spiking money market rates that raised fears of a banking crisis and sent shares plummeting.
China's short-term cash rates soared to record peaks last week after allowed money market funding to tighten to curb credit for China's lightly regulated and speculative "shadow banking" sector, stoking worries of a cash squeeze derailing economic growth.
CIMB Research said the Straits Times index may have found its short term low at 3,065 points with expectation to retest 3,235 points.
SIAS Research said the Straits Times index will test 3,100 points level on the top side with support seen at 3,050 points.
Phillip Securities Research said the Straits Times Index made a valiant attempt to stay above 3,100 points level but could not last through the session. Looking ahead, the research house forecast downward bias will likely persist as long as the local bourse does not decisively clear above the 3,230 points resistance level.
Singapore's benchmark Straits Times Index rose 14.47 points to 3,104.40 points. Trading volume was 1.93 billion shares worth 1.35 billion Singapore dollars. Advancers outnumbered decliners 202 to 179, while 567 stocks did not move.
Among top actives, WE Holdings dropped 0.9 percent to 10.7 Singapore cents. It said it had signed a non-binding agreement with Myanmar businessman, Nay Win Tun, to explore business opportunities in petroleum, oil and gas and related resources in the country.
DBS Group rose 0.3 percent to 15.66 Singapore dollars. Barclay Capital upgrades the banking group to "Equal Weight" from " Underweight". The British financial house cited an earlier-than- expected interest rate rise as an upside risk for DBS, while the key downside risk is uncertainty over the pending Bank Danamon deal and asset quality deterioration
Overseas Union Enterprise gained 1.9 percent to 2.75 Singapore dollars. The Singapore-listed property firm said its shareholders had approved its proposed disposal of Mandarin Orchard Singapore and Mandarin Gallery into a hospitality real estate investment trust.
Among top gainers, Super Group jumped 8.6 percent to 4.18 Singapore dollars, while Jardine Cycle and Carriage became one of the top losers by falling 1.4 percent to 41.36 Singapore dollars. (1 U.S. dollar equals to 1.27 Singapore dollars)