Singapore shares rise ahead of U.S. jobs data

Singapore shares were headed for their second consecutive session of gains on Friday, regaining some stability after a strong rally on Wall Street.

Singapore shares rise ahead of U.S. jobs dataThe benchmark Straits Times Index was up 0.9 percent at 3,014.7 by 0517 GMT, but positive performance over the past two days failed to recoup the losses from earlier this week. The index is still down 0.4 percent from last Friday’s close.

The rise echoed gains in Asian shares on hopes that the upcoming U.S. payroll report could put some global growth concerns to rest. The MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.8 percent.

Commodity firms Noble Group Ltd and Wilmar International Ltd topped the index, heading for their first weekly gains on higher Malaysian palm oil futures, after five consecutive weeks of losses.

Noble and Wilmar shares posted weekly gains of 4.2 and 4.5 percent to S$0.99 and S$3.26 respectively, their biggest in more than two months.

Among other stocks, shares of Singapore Airlines Ltd fell 0.9 percent to an intra-day low of S$9.41, their lowest since September 2013. The airline carrier posted a 64.8 percent decline in its third-quarter net profit from a year earlier.

Maybank Kim Eng said the risk of over capacity looms large for the airline, especially in short haul routes, and the company’s performance may have to be supported by its engineering division.

“SIA’s valuation may look attractive but a meaningful re-rating in the near term may be challenging given the lingering headwinds,” the brokerage said in a research note.

Maybank maintained its “hold” rating on Singapore Airlines with a target price of S$10.00.

Source:http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/07/markets-singapore-idUSL3N0LC0Y420140207

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