Singapore shares dipped slightly, with Keppel Corp Ltd
falling to a 3-month low after the world's largest offshore oil
rig builder posted a drop in first-quarter net profit.
The Straits Times Index was down 0.1 percent at
3293.40 points, while MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific
shares outside Japan gained 0.6 percent.
Shares of Keppel fell as much as 2 percent to S$11.03, their
lowest since Jan. 16. It is one of the top traded stocks by
value in the Singapore market on Friday, with about 4.3 million
shares changing hands.
Keppel Corp reported a 56 percent drop in quarterly net
profit from a year earlier to S$331 million ($267.8 million), in
the absence of one-time gains from sales of its Reflections at
Keppel Bay units.
Brokers are bullish on Keppel Corp and maintained their
OCBC Investment Research said it expects the scope for
productivity and efficiency gains to drive better-than-expected
margins for the company. The broker has a fair value estimate of
S$12.68 on the stock.
Even though the stock has been under pressure due to
competitive concerns, Keppel's strong position as a premium
rigbuilder brings confidence, Maybank Kim Eng said, raising its
target price to S$12.85 from S$12.80.
To read Keppel statement, click
1200 (0400 GMT)