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The Week In Numbers: Has Keppel Turned A Corner?

So now we know. Or at least we think we know. It would appear that the dysfunctional Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has finally agreed to cut production for the first time in eight years. The impact on the price of crude was immediate, with benchmark oil prices up by as much as 10%.

The response from Singapore’s major oil and gas players was almost as impressive. Keppel Corporation (SGX: BN4) jumped 9.4% and Sembcorp Industries (SGX: U96) gushed 6.5%.

China’s economy is on track to grow between 6.5% and 7% this year. The latest Purchasing Manager’s Index suggests that both the large state-owned enterprises and the smaller manufacturing sector expanded in November.

The price of an ounce of gold has fallen to a 10-month low. Love for the yellow metal is waning, as the market ponders the likelihood of a US interest-rate rise in December and two further rises next year.  Adding to the woes for gold is a higher US dollar, which can have the effect of depressing the price of commodities including gold.

The Dow Jones Industrial Index closed at a record high of 19,191 points. The gains in the benchmark index were driven by banks and energy companies. Banks have been buoyed by the possibility of higher interest rates, while oil companies have jumped on the possibility of higher oil prices.

And finally the Bank of England is appealing to bank-note suppliers to find an alternative to animal fat in the production of its new plastic five-pound notes. More than 100,000 people have signed a petition that object to the use of tallow, which contains animal fats, in the manufacture of the notes.

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