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STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-Index around 1-year high; CapitaLand falls

Source : REUTERS
Last Updated: Tue, Aug 07, 2012 05:40 hrs

Singapore shares extended gains from the previous day, hovering near a year-high, but property developer CapitaLand Ltd underperformed the market after its chief executive sold one million shares at S$3.08 each.

Shares of Singapore's CapitaLand, Southeast Asia's largest developer, fell as much as 2.6 percent to S$3.05 on Tuesday. The stock has risen around 38 percent so far this year, versus the 16 percent gain in the broader Straits Times Index.

CapitaLand's CEO Liew Mun Leong, who announced in June that he will retire in one year's time, now holds 2.55 million CapitaLand shares or around 0.06 percent of the issued capital, according to a stock market filing on Monday.

The Straits Times Index was up 0.2 percent at 3,078.44 points, the highest since early August last year. Year-to-date, the Singapore bourse has outperformed the 8 percent gain in MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan.

Shares of transport operator ComfortDelGro Corp Ltd fell more than 2 percent. Citigroup downgraded the stock to 'sell' from 'buy', citing potential earnings pressure in Singapore as well as slowing business in the United Kingdom and China.

Shares of IPC Corp Ltd surged as much as 18 percent after Singapore tycoon Oei Hong Leong, who has a reputation as a value investor, raised his stake in the property developer to 25.39 percent from 23.10 percent.

IPC was the top traded stock by value and volume in the Singapore market.

1331 (0531 GMT)

(Reporting by Eveline Danubrata in Singapore; eveline.danubrata@thomsonreuters.com)

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12:14 STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-IPC Corp jumps after tycoon raises stake

Shares of IPC Corp Ltd surged as much as 18 percent after Singapore tycoon Oei Hong Leong, who has a reputation as a value investor, raised his stake in the property developer to 25.39 percent from 23.10 percent.

"People saw the announcement so they might be jumping in, as they think he sees some potential in the company. Oei himself might be buying further," said a trader.

Oei bought 19.5 million IPC shares in the open market and now holds 216.5 million shares, IPC said in a stock market filing on Monday. IPC derives the majority of its revenue from Japan.

IPC was the top traded stock by value and volume in the Singapore market. The company's shares jumped as high as S$0.165, the strongest level since April 13, on volume of more than 171 million shares, 30 times the average full-day volume over the past 30 days.

Shares of Singapore materials trading company Intraco Ltd had also jumped in June after Oei bought a large stake in the firm.

IPC stock has surged 77 percent so far this year versus the 16 percent gain in the FT ST Small Cap Index. On Monday, IPC reported that its second-quarter net loss narrowed to S$1.2 million ($999,600) from nearly S$3 million a year ago.

For a related story, click:

1159 (0359 GMT)

(Reporting by Eveline Danubrata in Singapore; eveline.danubrata@thomsonreuters.com)

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11:23 STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-Maybank cuts Sarin target price

Maybank Kim Eng cut its target price for Sarin Technologies Ltd, which sells diamond scanners, to S$1.66 from S$1.82 but kept its 'buy' rating, citing headwinds in India that could dampen third-quarter earnings.

By 0314 GMT, shares of Sarin were 3 percent lower at S$1.12, and have surged 84 percent since the start of the year.

Maybank cut its 2012 net profit forecast by about 9 percent, as tough industry conditions for Indian diamond manufacturers could put off capital equipment spending, hurting Sarin in the short term.

"However, industry players are expected to restock soon in preparation for the coming holiday season given that their inventory levels are low, which would alleviate the current situation," said Maybank in a report.

The brokerage also remains optimistic on the long term growth prospects of Sarin, given the positive developments of its new products.

For related statement, click

1116 (0316 GMT)

(Reporting by Charmian Kok in Singapore; charmian.kok@thomsonreuters.com)

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10:22 STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-Citi downgrades ComfortDelGro to sell

Citigroup downgraded Singapore transport operator ComfortDelGro Corp Ltd to 'sell' from 'buy' and lowered its target price to S$1.63 from S$1.64, citing potential earnings pressure in Singapore and slowing business in the United Kingdom and China.

Citi also advised investors to take profit ahead of ComfortDelGro's second-quarter results, slated to be released on Aug 13.

ComfortDelGro shares were down 0.9 percent at S$1.685 on Tuesday. The stock has risen 19 percent so far this year versus the nearly 17 percent gain in the broader Straits Times Index .

Out of 19 analysts covering the stock, 13 have 'buy' or 'strong buy' ratings, four have 'hold' calls, and two have 'sell' or 'strong sell' recommendations, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Singapore's land transport masterplan is under review, including reviewing fare setting, Citi noted. "Rising capex to meet quality standards and to upgrade aging bus fleets and grow the taxi fleet, in our view put heavy burdens on cash flow."

Citi forecast ComfortDelGro to report second-quarter net profit of S$66 million ($53.1 million), up 23 percent from the previous three months on an expected seasonal lift, a growing Singapore taxi fleet and continued strength from Australian earnings.

1013 (0213 GMT)

(Reporting by Eveline Danubrata in Singapore; eveline.danubrata@thomsonreuters.com)

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09:55 STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-OCBC upgrades Marco Polo to buy; target S$0.53

OCBC Investment Research upgraded Singapore's Marco Polo Marine Ltd to 'buy' from 'hold' and raised its target price to S$0.53 from S$0.43 after the marine logistics company reported better-than-expected results for its third quarter.

Marco Polo shares rose as much as 4.5 percent to S$0.35 on Tuesday, the highest in nearly three months. The stock has gained 6 percent so far this year versus the 16 percent gain in the FT ST Small Cap Index.

The company saw higher gross margin of 32.0 percent in the nine months of its 2012 fiscal year versus 25.2 percent a year earlier, mainly as it generated bigger ship repair and outfitting revenues at higher yields, OCBC noted.

Marco Polo had seen an increase in enquiries for ship repair, outfitting and conversion services, OCBC said, adding that the company expects charter rates for offshore vessels as well as tugs and barges to remain stable.

OCBC said after changing to a new functional currency, Marco's Indonesian associate BBR reversed its earlier losses arising from the movements in the U.S. dollar against the Indonesian rupiah.

0940 (0140 GMT)

(Reporting by Eveline Danubrata in Singapore; eveline.danubrata@thomsonreuters.com) ($1 = 1.2405 Singapore dollars)




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