The Straits Times Index (SGX: ^STI), which tracks the performance of the top 30 largest and most liquid companies listed in Singapore, ended September in the green.
For the month, the index put on 1.4%, or around 44 points, to 3257.1. Of the 30 index components, 16 were in the positive territory while the remaining 14 were in the negative region.
The top three best-performers of the Straits Times Index for September were Yangzijiang Shipbuilding Holdings Ltd (SGX: BS6), Sembcorp Industries Ltd (SGX: U96), and Thai Beverage Public Company Limited (SGX: Y92).Source: S&P Global Market Intelligence
Shipbuilder Yangzijiang made public last month that it had agreed to form a 50-50 joint venture company with Mitsui & Co, Ltd in the Republic of Panama with an initial registered share capital of US$13.2 million. Yangzijiang said in its announcement that the new company aims to “satisfy the diversified needs of our global customers through delivery of top-notch quality and performance vessels”.
At the end of September, global oil prices surged to their highest close in almost four years. OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) left production steady, fuelling speculation that the US sanctions against Iran and outages in Venezuela will lead to supply shortages.
Sembcorp Industries’ Marine business is largely driven by oil prices. This, on top of news that Sembcorp Industries had signed a long-term solar energy deal with social media giant Facebook, could have led to the surge in its share price.
On the other end of the spectrum, the top three losers of the index were Golden Agri-Resources Ltd (SGX: E5H), Hongkong Land Holdings Limited (SGX: H78), and Ascendas Real Estate Investment Trust (SGX: A17U).Source: S&P Global Market Intelligence (stock price for the Hongkong Land has been converted to Singapore dollars from US dollars)
The recent Indonesian rupiah rout against the US dollar could have affected investor sentiments surrounding Golden Agri-Resources. As mentioned by my Foolish colleague Jeremy Chia in his article here, currency translation risks might dampen Golden Agri-Resources’ earnings.
Earlier last month, Ascendas REIT undertook a private placement to raise around S$452 million to partially fund the acquisition of a second UK logistics portfolio and the development of a build-to-suit facility in Singapore.
The acquisition of the second UK logistics portfolio of 26 properties, which costs £257.5 million (around S$459 million), is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2018. Following the acquisition, Ascendas REIT will have a total of 98 properties in Singapore, 35 properties in Australia and 38 properties in the UK.
The SPDR STI ETF (SGX: ES3), an exchange-traded fund which can be taken as a proxy for the Straits Times Index, was valued at a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.4 and had a distribution yield of 3.4% on 28 September 2018.
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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. The Motley Fool Singapore has recommended shares of Hongkong Land and Facebook. Motley Fool Singapore contributor Sudhan P owns shares in Sembcorp Industries and Hongkong Land.