STOCKS NEWS SINGAPORE-Index slightly down; Mirach Energy, Rowsley outperform

Last Updated: Mon, Aug 19, 2013 05:40 hrs

Singapore shares were slightly down on Monday, with investors waiting for the minutes of the Federal Reserve's policy meeting, but Rowsley Ltd rose for the second day after a broker highlighted the potential upside for the stock.

The Straits Times Index was down 0.2 percent at 3,192.25, while MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.5 percent lower.

Shares of Golden Agri-Resources Ltd outperformed the market, rising as much as 2.9 percent. The stock had wallowed at three-year lows after the company reported a 58 percent fall in second-quarter net profit, hurt by lower palm oil prices.

Shares of Rowsley, Singapore billionaire Peter Lim's investment firm, rose as much as 4.4 percent to S$0.475. More than 27 million shares were traded, 1.4 times the average full-day volume over the past 30 days.

Rowsley said last week it had received an in-principle approval from the Singapore Exchange for its deals valued at S$545 million ($428 million), including the proposed acquisition of vacant land in Malaysia's Iskandar Development Region.

OCBC Investment Research said if the proposed deal succeeds, it estimated a value of S$0.67 to S$0.85 for each existing Rowsley share. If the deal fails, it valued each Rowsley share at around S$0.034 - the book value per share as of end-June.

Energy exploration and production firm Mirach Energy Ltd was the second-highest traded stock by value on Monday. The shares rose as much as 10 percent to S$0.385, the highest since July 22, with nearly 70 million shares traded.

Mirach, which operates assets in Cambodia and South Sumatra in Indonesia, reported last week net profit of $43,000 for its second quarter versus a loss of $1.4 million a year earlier.

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