Singapore shares closed 0.8 percent higher on Thursday after China announced new round of reform to spur economic growth.
China said Wednesday it would ease restrictions on private sector investment in 80 infrastructure projects in railway, telecommunications, clean energy and pipelines, currently dominated by state-owned firms. The move follows HSBC's preliminary China manufacturing purchasing managers' index data for April, which pointed to the fourth consecutive month of contraction.
Goldman Sachs Research said it will take several months before the impact of the China's measures shows up in economic indicators, adding that "a boost to aggregate demand growth is needed, and we expect more policies to be rolled out in the coming weeks until there are clear signs that the economy is on a stronger footing."
The outlook for the U.S. market was also brighter after technology heavyweights Apple and Facebook reported their earning results that outpaced Wall Street expectations.
The benchmark Straits Times Index rose 25.92 points to close at 3,283.93 points. Trading volume was 2.11 billion shares worth 1.34 billion Singapore dollars. Advancers outnumbered decliners 321 to 132, while 490 stocks closed unchanged
Phillip Securities Research said the next resistance for Straits Times Index is at 3,350 points, whereas the downside supports are at 3,225 points, 3,070 points, and 3,000 points.
Yangzijiang Shipbuilding rose 1.8 percent to 1.125 Singapore dollars. It has entered into an agreement with several strategic partners to subscribe for up to 150 million Chinese yuan equity interest in the capital of Jiangsu New Material Industrial Venture Capital Enterprise (JNMIV), thereby making JNMIV an associate of the Company. JNMIV is practically a private equity fund with expected operational term of seven years and paid up capital of approximately 500 million Chinese yuan. It aims to generate capital gains from investment in new materials in terms of its technologies, products, equipment and services.
Keppel Corporation fell 0.4 percent to 10.59 Singapore dollars. Together with the other two partners, the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic and Azerbaijian Investment Company, Keppel announces that its 10 percent-owned associate - Baku Shipyard has secured its first major contract worth 378 million U.S. dollars from BP Exploration (Shah Deniz), the operator of the Shah Deniz gas field development in Azerbaijan, to design and build a sub-sea construction Vessel
Among the top gainers, Jardine Cycle and Carriage rose 0.8 percent to 48.96 Singapore dollars, while Singapore Land became one of the top losers by falling 2.4 percent to 9.37 Singapore dollars. (1 U.S. dollar equals to 6.244 Chinese yuan and 1.26 Singapore dollars)