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Singapore stocks end higher ahead of Fed chief's testimony

Singapore shares closed higher on Thursday, following a positive lead from Wall Street and before the congressional testimony of US Federal Reserve head Janet Yellen.

SINGAPORE: Singapore shares closed higher on Thursday, following a positive lead from Wall Street and before the congressional testimony of US Federal Reserve head Janet Yellen.

The ST Index edged up 8.49 points, or 0.27 per cent, to 3,096.74.

Volume totalled 2.67 billion shares worth S$891.7 million, as gainers beat losers 214 to 207.

In the absence of fresh catalysts to drive business, investors are waiting to find out Yellen's views on the US economy when she sits before the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday.

Analysts said Yellen is unlikely to deviate from her comments to the House of Representatives' committee two weeks ago, but investors will be interested to hear whether the bank expects the severe weather that paralysed parts of the country to have affected growth prospects.

A recent spate of downbeat data out of the United States over the past two months, including jobs growth, have been blamed on the cold snap.

Yellen's comments could give an idea of her plans for the Fed's stimulus programme, which has been reduced in each of the bank's past two policy meetings. 

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