Next Week’s News Today: Will Keppel Corporation Continue to Recover?

It is another holiday-shortened trading week next week. The markets will be closed on Good Friday, not only here but in other parts of the world too. But there will be plenty to keep traders busy before then.

On the local economic front, Singapore’s inflation numbers could make for some interesting reading. Headline consumer prices in the Lion City have fallen for 15 straight months, with little sign of a reversal. The decline last time has been attributed to falls in housing, utilities and transportation costs.

But core inflation, which strips out volatile elements from the basket of goods, has been rising. So when housing and transportation costs are excluded, prices are actually on the up.

Staying in Singapore, the Economic Development Board will announce the latest Industrial Production numbers. For the last twelve months, the numbers have made for depressing reading. They have fallen between 1.7% and 11.9%.

Elsewhere, the market could get a gauge of how businesses are faring in the Middle Kingdom when the MNI China Business Sentiment Indicator is released on Tuesday. From a high of 56.0 in August, the indicator has shown signs of coming off the boil. A reading below 50.0 indicates contraction. In January it was 49.9.

Finally, investors in the beleaguered oil and gas sector may want to tune into the latest crude US oil inventory numbers on Wednesday. A build-up of American stock piles could dent the recovery in the price of oil and halt the recent recovery in shares of Keppel Corporation (SGX: BN4) and Sembcorp Marine (SGX: S51).

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