Singapore stocks end Wednesday higher, STI climbs 0.78 per cent to 2,505.15

Wed, Sep 16, 2020 – 6:09 PM

SINGAPORE stocks ended higher on Wednesday, ahead of the US Fed policy meeting and amid optimistic rhetoric about coronavirus vaccines.

The Straits Times Index (STI) finished 19.32 points or 0.78 per cent higher at 2,505.15. This was close to its intra-day high of 2,508.16.

The best performing index component by a long way was Sembcorp Industries (SCI), which has been steadily edging higher over the last few days, after separating itself from its offshore and marine unit. On Wednesday, SCI broke into a full gallop, rising 8.9 per cent to close at S$1.34.

Other STI stocks that had a good day were the Jardine stable as well as analysts’ favourites Wilmar International and ComfortDelgro. Helping ComfortDelgro along were reports that the Land Transport Authority has extended rental relief for taxi and private hire car drivers until March 2021.

Shares in ComfortDelGro ended Wednesday 2.69 per cent higher at S$1.53. Wilmar rose 3.12 per cent to close at S$4.30.

At the other end of the spectrum, the three local banks – DBS, OCBC and UOB – ended the day weaker. In fact, UOB was the weakest of all the STI component stocks on Wednesday, falling 0.62 per cent to close at S$19.30.

Among the smaller cap stocks, Shinvest Holding (originally known as Eastgate Technology) ended Wednesday 21.38 per cent higher at S$3.35.

This came after the company made a further announcement related to its proposed disposal of its 6 per cent stake in Espressif Systems (Shanghai), a company listed in China that currently has a market capitalisation of 13.4 billion yuan (S$2.7 billion). Shinvest’s own market capitalisation is about S$100 million.

On the coronavirus front, US President Donald Trump said that the US might have a vaccine ready in four weeks. Drug giant Pfizer is reportedly seeing promising results in a current test. Separately, a Chinese scientist was quoted saying that China may have coronavirus vaccines ready for public use as early as November.