Singapore stocks hit 1.5-year low as Southeast Asian markets fall

Singapore stocks hit 1.5-year low as Southeast Asian markets fall

FILE PHOTO: An SGX sign is pictured at Singapore Stock Exchange
FILE PHOTO: An SGX sign is pictured at Singapore Stock Exchange July 19, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su/File Photo

SINGAPORE: Most Southeast Asian stock markets ended lower on Tuesday, with Singapore hitting a one-and-a-half year low and Philippines extending losses to a fifth session amid fears of further escalation in the US-Sino trade war. 

Singapore stocks fell 0.4 per cent, marking their lowest close since late February 2017, with industrial conglomerate Jardine Matheson Holdings Ltd and lender DBS Group Holdings shedding about 0.3 per cent each. The Straits Times Index closed at 3,109.91.

The Philippine stock index fell 1 per cent to 7,492.4, its lowest close since Aug 20 after data showed the country's trade deficit widened in July. JG Summit closed 4.8 per cent lower while Ayala Corp slipped more than 2 per cent. 

"These are the after effects of higher-than-expected inflation and some concerns of contagion from emerging markets on the currency," said Fio De Jesus, an analyst at Manila-based RCBC Securities. 

The index has lost nearly 5 per cent in the last five sessions after data released on Wednesday showed the country's annual inflation rate for August was the highest in nearly a decade. 

Meanwhile, escalating US-Sino trade tensions also weighed on investor sentiment, with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan extending its decline to an eighth session. 

Thai shares ended 1.1 per cent lower with gas supplier PTT Public Co and Airports of Thailand falling about 3 per cent each. 

The Vietnamese index rose for a third straight session and ended 1.5 per cent higher. Insurance provider Baoviet Holdings jumped 6.9 per cent. 

Indonesia and Malaysia were closed for local holidays. 

Source: Reuters/hm

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