SINGAPORE, May 12 (Reuters) - Singapore shares started the week down on Monday as investors stayed on the sidelines of the market ahead of a public holiday, while the broader Asian market fell on growing concerns over the ongoing Ukraine conflict.
The benchmark Straits Times Index fell 0.7 percent to 3,230.01 points by 0502 GMT, led by heavy losses in Jardine Strategic Holdings Ltd and Jardine Matheson Holdings , which slumped as much as 4 percent and 2.8 percent respectively.
Investors watched the crisis brewing in Ukraine with caution, and many preferred to lay low ahead of a public holiday in Singapore on Tuesday.
“We’re going into holiday break tomorrow so the market is not confident about holding shares over the break. The U.S. also did a bit of a see-saw, so investors aren’t convinced,” said Carey Wong, investment analyst at OCBC investment research.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.4 percent.
DBS Group Holdings Ltd fell as much as 2.6 percent to a near one-month low of S$16.64, as the stock hit its ex-dividend date.
ComfortDelgro Ltd led gains, on course for its biggest daily gain in nearly nine months, rising 3.9 percent to hit a 1-1/2 week high of S$2.12. (Reporting by Andrew Toh; Editing by Sunil Nair)