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Keppel Corporation Limited Leads the Market Lower This Week

The Straits Times Index (SGX: ^STI), Singapore’s share market barometer, has given up all the gains it has made in the year to date – and more.

On the first trading day of January, the index closed at 3,175 points. It then hit a peak of 3,374 points for the year on 31 July 2014. On Friday, it ended the week at 3,168 points, down 1.7% since last Friday.

25 out of the index’s 30 components finished the week in the red, with Keppel Corporation Limited (SGX: BN4) faring the worst. The conglomerate, which has interests in marine engineering and real estate development amongst others,  fell 6% to S$9.46. It announced last week that its offshore and marine business division had secured contracts from repeat customers worth a total of S$153 million.

CapitaMall Trust (SGX: C38U) was the only blue chip which finished the week flat when it closed at S$1.915 on Friday. In its latest third quarter earnings release, the retail mall real estate investment trust (REIT) saw its distributions per unit grow by 6.2% year-on-year to 2.72 Singapore cents.

Meanwhile, Ascendas Real Estate Investment Trust (SGX: A17U) was the one leading the pack amongst the blue chips this week with a 1.36% gain. The industrial REIT is pencilled in to deliver its second quarter results on 23 October 2014.

Outside the index, Vard Holdings Ltd (SGX: MS7) slumped by 21% to S$0.66. The firm, which is involved in the shipbuilding industry, said this week that it expects to report a marginally negative Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (EBITDA) result for the third quarter of its fiscal year. Vard Holdings would be announcing its third quarter results on 11 November 2014, so investors can find out more then.

On a happier note, Courts Asia Ltd (SGX: RE2) had officially opened its ‘Big-Box’ Megastore in Bekasi, Indonesia yesterday (18 October 2014). It will be the furniture, electronics, and IT retailer’s first Megastore in the country. Shares at Courts Asia closed at S$0.455, up 2.3% for the week.

Mr. Terence O’Connor, Executive Director and Group Chief Executive Officer of Courts Asia, was optimistic about Courts’ chances of success in Indonesia. He commented:

“We are very excited to mark our entry into Indonesia, our third market, with the opening of Courts Megastore in Bekasi, Indonesia’s most populous suburb. Plans are on track for three stores to be opened in Jakarta in calendar year 2015, so that we can bring our unique Big-Box and category concepts to more residents in Indonesia. In addition, the rollout of our multi-channel capabilities to expand our online presence into Indonesia is also currently in the pipeline.”

The STI is currently trading at 13.2 times its historical earnings and has a market capitalisation of S$521.3 billion.

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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 Sudhan P doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.