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Singapore stocks edge higher after US jobs report

Singapore stocks edged higher on Monday, tracking gains on Wall Street as investors took a positive view of a below-forecast US employment report.

SINGAPORE: Singapore stocks edged higher on Monday, tracking gains on Wall Street as investors took a positive view of a below-forecast US employment report.

The ST Index gained 4.06 points, or 0.13 percent, to 3,017.20.

At the close of trading, total volume stood at 1.53 billion shares valued at S$884.8 million.

Losers overwhelmed gainers by a four to three margin, with 244 counters declining while 189 stocks finished higher.

Oil rig manufacturer Keppel Corp eased 0.39 percent to S$10.33, while DBS bank gained 0.18 percent to S$16.38.

Data on Friday showed the US economy added 113,000 jobs last month, well below expectations of 175,000 although the unemployment rate slipped to 6.6 percent from 6.7 percent.

The weaker-than-expected figures sparked concerns of a slump in the economy, coming after dismal numbers in December, and raised speculation that the Federal Reserve could take its foot off the pedal in winding down its bond-buying scheme.

Eyes will now be on Janet Yellen's first official appearance as Federal Reserve chief in the US Congress on Tuesday.

This week, investors will be looking to US retail sales as well as data on factory output and consumer confidence while in Europe the focus will be on fourth-quarter eurozone economic growth.

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