STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-Index edges up, REITs at record high

Last Updated: Wed, Apr 24, 2013 05:50 hrs

Singapore shares rose marginally, with First REIT and Mapletree Industrial Trust hitting record high after posting strong results on Wednesday.

The Straits Times index was up 0.3 percent at 3,295.03 points, while MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gained 1 percent.

Units of Mapletree Industrial Trust jumped as much as 1.6 percent to S$1.585, their highest level since the unit was listed in late 2010.

Mapletree Industrial Trust, which owns factories and other industrial assets, said its fourth-quarter distribution per unit rose 6.8 percent to 2.37 Singapore cents from a year earlier, boosted by higher rental rates and occupancies.

First REIT gained as much as 0.7 percent to S$1.41 after the healthcare real estate investment trust said its distribution per unit, excluding one-time gain, rose 9.4 percent compared to a year earlier.

About 2.5 million shares were traded, 3 times the full-day average volume traded over the past 30 days.

OCBC Investment Research said the valuations of First REIT are not compelling at current levels.

The market appears to have priced in the positives from the company's recent proposed acquisitions, it said.

In March, First REIT bought two hospitals in Indonesia for a total of S$190.4 million ($153.5 million).

The brokerage gave a fair value estimate of S$1.31 and maintained its 'hold' rating on First REIT.

1255 (0455 GMT)

(Reporting by Teo Jion Chun; Editing by Bijoy Koyitty ( Messaging:

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