STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-Index down; Golden Agri falls after result

Mon Aug 5, 2013 12:45am EDT

Singapore shares fell on Monday, weighed by Southeast Asia's biggest telecom firm Singapore Telecommunications Ltd and port operator Hutchison Port Holdings Trust as both stocks went ex-dividend.

The Straits Times Index was down 0.6 percent at 3,234.20 points, while the MSCI Asia-Pacific ex-Japan index was flat.

SingTel shares declined as much as 3.3 percent, while Hutchison eased as much as 3.9 percent.

Shares in Golden Agri-Resources Ltd fell as much as 2.9 percent to S$0.51, the lowest since July 2010, after the company posted a 58 percent fall in second-quarter net profit. It was the second-highest traded stock by value in Singapore.

OCBC Investment Research sees a muted outlook for crude palm oil prices as global demand, especially out of China and India, remains weak and supply is expected to increase in the second half of the year.

OCBC slashed its core earnings estimate for Golden Agri's 2013 fiscal year by 19 percent to account for increased margin pressure. It downgraded the stock to "sell" from "hold" and cut its target price to S$0.465 from S$0.57.

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