Singapore shares edge down; CityDev hits 3-1/2 week low

SINGAPORE Fri May 16, 2014 1:23am EDT

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SINGAPORE May 16 (Reuters) - Singapore shares edged down on Friday, though the index was slightly higher on the week, as investors took profits and refrained from taking further positions ahead of the weekend.

The benchmark Straits Time Index was down 0.3 percent at 3,258.12, though it was still 0.3 percent higher on the week. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan eased 0.04 percent.

The Singapore index was weighed down by heavy losses in shares of real estate developer City Development Ltd, which stretched declines into a second day to hit a 3-1/2 week low after posting a 13 percent fall in quarterly profit on Wednesday.

CityDev shares were down 3 percent, on course for their biggest daily loss in almost a year.

Bucking the trend, commodities trader Noble Group Ltd surged as much as 4.5 percent to an intra-day high of S$1.28. The company said on Thursday quarterly net profit had more than tripled, with a strong performance in the metals and energy segments more than offsetting the loss in its agriculture business.

Brokerage OCBC maintained its "hold" rating on the stock, though it upgraded the target price to S$1.31 from S$1.26.

Stats Chippac Ltd, which packages semiconductors, saw its shares leap 18 percent to S$0.46, after a 15 percent jump on Thursday.

The company received a takeover bid from a third party, Stats Chippac said on Friday in response to queries from the Singapore exchange, though it added that there was no assurance it would result in any definitive agreement or a transaction. (Reporting by Andrew Toh; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee)

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