STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-Index up; telecom; consumer stocks lead
Singapore shares firmed after a two-day losing streak, in tandem with regional stock markets, underpinned by strength in telecommunication and consumer goods plays including Thai Beverage Pcl and Singapore Telecommunications Ltd .
The benchmark Straits Times Index rose more than 1 percent to 3,048.12, ahead of the 0.7 percent gain in MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan . On the year-to-date chart, however, Singapore shares were down 3.8 percent, lagging behind the regional market's 3.3 percent gain.
The telecommunication sector index rose more than 2 percent, followed by a 1.9 percent gain in consumer goods stocks. ThaiBev led the index with a 5.4 percent gain.
In other stocks, offshore support vessel builder Vard Holdings Ltd climbed 2.9 percent to S$0.885, as brokerage Maybank Kim Eng upgraded its call on the stock to "buy" and raised the target price to S$1.12 from S$0.95.
"Vard's 2013 order wins have reached our initial expectations and we believe that further order wins would set the stage for a positive re-rating," said Maybank analyst Yeak Chee Keong in a note.