Singapore Pre-Market Thursday: Oil shares, ST Engineering, Lian Beng likely in focus

A Singapore 10-dollar note Photo by Leslie Shaffer

Singapore shares may open on the back foot on Thursday after geopolitics and the U.S. Federal Reserve both shook Wall Street on Wednesday.

U.S. President Trump took to a tweet storm on Wednesday to threaten military action in Syria. That sent oil sharply higher on concerns of disruptions in the Middle East; at the same time, safe haven plays such as U.S. Treasurys and gold climbed.

Separately, minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve for the March monetary policy meeting raised the possibility that interest rates could rise faster than expected.

On Wall Street, the three main indexes fell on Wednesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 0.9 percent, the S&P 500 down 0.55 percent and the Nasdaq off 0.36 percent. However, futures indicated Wall Street might open higher later in the global day.

  • Oil-related shares may be in focus after the oil prices hit a three-year high in overnight trade on the geopolitical concerns.
  • ST Engineering said in an SGX filing that its aerospace arm, ST Aerospace, secured new contracts worth about S$510 million in the first quarter of 2018 for services ranging from heavy maintenance to engine wash.
  • Construction company Lian Bing may be in focus after it said in an SGX filing late Tuesday that it planned to spin off SLB Development in a Catalist IPO, with 238 million new shares at S$0.23 each, or 26.07 percent of the post-invitation share capital; Lian Beng expected to hold the remainder of the company, it said. Gross proceeds were expected to be S$54.7 million and were earmarked for replenishing land bank, overseas expansion, funding existing pipeline developments and working capital. The invitation offer will include 8 million offer shares to the public and 230 million by placement, it said. The filing said SLB has had property developments in the residential, mixed-use and industrial and commercial segments, with sizes ranging from small to large scale. SLB has a portfolio including five residential and mixed-use developments and three industrial property developments, as well as pipeline projects.
  • Singapore Press Holdings said in an SGX filing late on Wednesday that its chief marketing officer, Chua Kok Leng Elsie has decided to retire after 20 years with the company; in a separate filing, the company said it appointed Low Ee Kheng Ignatius to the position.
  • M1 said that Singapore wealth fund Temasek’s deemed interest in the company has risen from 19.98 percent to 20 percent. The SGX filing said Temasek doesn’t have a direct interest in the company and the change was via its holding in DBS.
  • Kim Heng said it secured a one-year charter contract starting this month for two anchor handling tug/supply vessels from a leading Malaysia oil major which it didn’t name. The value of the contract wasn’t provided. Thomas Tan, executive chairman and CEO, said in the SGX filing that with oil’s recent rally above US$70 a barrel, the company expected to secure more regional contracts.
  • Silverlake Axis said in an SGX filing that it sold 341,000 Global Infotech shares on Tuesday via the Shenzhen Stock Exchange’s ChiNext market; it said the aggregate cash consideration was 3.82 million yuan, or around 2.33 million ringgit. It had previously said it wanted to progressively monetize its GIT investment and that GIT is no longer an associate. It said the estimated loss on the sale is around 680,000 yuan.