Singapore stocks end down 0.12 pct

2012-12-04 11:03:33 GMT2012-12-04 19:03:33(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

SINGAPORE, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- Singapore shares closed 0.12 percent lower on Tuesday, after U.S. manufacturing activity hit a three-year low in November.

The U.S. Institute for Supply Management said that its index of national factory activity fell to 49.5 in November, the weakest since July 2009, as companies worried about whether lawmakers in Washington could reach a budget deal.

The White House dismissed a proposal from congressional Republicans on Monday that included tax reforms and spending cuts, saying it did not meet President Barack Obama's pledge to raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans. The Republicans proposed overhauling the U.S. tax code to raise 800 billion U.S.dollars in new revenue over ten years.

In Europe, Greek bonds rallied on Monday after Athens announced better than expected terms for its planned debt buy-back, boosting chances it will succeed and lead to the release of fresh aid funds.

OCBC Investment Research said there are "few compelling reasons for investors to buy," adding that this week "could see the index sliding back toward 3,000 points."

Singapore's benchmark Straits Times Index dropped 3.62 points to 3,062.12 points. Trading volume was 2.21 billion shares worth 1. 28 billion Singapore dollars. Decliners outnumbered advancers 187 to 178, while 597 stocks did not move.

Among top actives, Olam International rose 1.6 percent to 1.60 Singapore dollars. Maybank Kim Eng Research downgraded the Singaporean commodities trader to "sell" from "hold" and cut its target price to 1.42 Singapore dollars from 1.75 Singapore dollars following the announcement of fund-raising plan.

Olam said it is issuing a nominal 750 million US dollars of 6. 75 percent five-year bonds at a price of 95 percent, raising 712.5 million U.S. dollars. The bonds have warrants attached that will allow holders to buy a total of 387 million shares at 1.291 dollars, which would raise 500 million dollars if they were all exercised.

Keppel Corporation inched up 0.1 percent to 10.67 Singapore dollars. The world's largest oil rig builder said it had signed a contract with Ukraine state energy firm Naftogaz to build two semi- submersible drilling rigs worth about 1.2 billion dollars.

Among top gainers, Jardine Strategic rose 0.5 percent to 35.11 dollars, while Jardine Cycle and Carriage became one of the top losers by falling 1.6 percent to 47.15 Singapore dollars. (1 U.S. dollar equals to 1.22 Singapore dollars)

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