Last night, major US stock market indices recorded handsome gains. The S&P 500 Index grew by 1.2% while the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.9%. Today, our local stock market followed suit as the Straits Times Index (SGX: ^STI) inched up by 0.5% to 3,309. Even though Singapore’s stock market might have risen in aggregate, there are stocks that failed to keep up.
Shares of telecommunications provider SingTel (SGX: Z74) dropped by 1.1% to $3.60. Last month, the company announced that the Chairman of subsidiary Bharti Airtel Ltd, Mr. Sunil Mittal, had been summoned to Indian courts to face criminal charges. The charges were related to telecom bandwidth allocation irregularities in 2002. SingTel has expressed ‘full faith in Bharti Airtel’s corporate governance standards’. In other matters, SingTel’s still mulling over a possible sale of its satellite business in Australia that fetched A$319m in sales last year.
IndoAgri (SGX: 5JS) also slipped today – by 1.3% to $1.18. The agriculture company, with primary interests in palm oil, saw its net profit drop by 31% to Rp1,819b last year even as its top line grew 10% to Rp13,845b. Despite the profit decrease, shareholders should find some respite as IndoAgri has increased its dividends by more than 180% to S$0.085 per share. Its shares currently trade at 12 times earnings and have a dividend yield of 0.7%.
Rounding up the list today is BreadTalk (SGX: 5DA) which fell by 2% to $1.00. The F&B retail outlet operator’s shares have been on a wild roller coaster ride these past few weeks. Investors have been stirred into action over BreadTalk after it was revealed that Thai retail and leisure company, Minor International had become a substantial shareholder with a 10% stake. That has led to talk of a possible takeover among analysts. Shares in BreadTalk might have become a lot more volatile lately, but remember – in investing, the focus should be on what’s happening to a company’s business, not its share price.
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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore contributor Chong Ser Jing doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.