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Asia300

Singapore stocks fall for 4th day as telecom operators extend losses, Malaysia shares gain

SINGAPORE (Nikkei Markets) -- Singapore stocks fell for the fourth straight day on Tuesday as mobile phone operators and DBS Group Holdings extended losses. Malaysia shares ended higher, tracking overnight gains in U.S. stocks to record highs.

Singapore's FTSE Straits Times Index lost 0.1% to close at 3,318.08. StarHub declined 2.3%, extending losses from last week after it reported a more-than-20% decline in June quarter net profit. Index heavyweight Singapore Telecommunications, which reports earnings on Friday, fell 1.1%, while rival M1 lost 1.4%. Competition is set to intensify in the city-state as TPG Telecom will enter the market as the fourth operator next year.

DBS fell for the fourth day, declining 0.6% to a near one-month low. Following its June quarter earnings released last week, analysts expressed disappointment over the lack of sequential widening in net interest margins at Singapore's largest bank. The lender's management also reiterated concerns over asset quality.

In other banking stocks, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. added 0.8%, while United Overseas Bank fell 0.4%.

Global Logistic Properties ended little changed. The warehouse operator reported a 29% year-on-year drop in net profit for the first quarter, hurt by lower revaluations on its assets.

Yangzijiang Shipbuilding Holdings added 4.7% after second-quarter net profit soared over 70%.

Conglomerate Jardine Matheson Holdings advanced 1.3%, adding to Monday's gains following a 22% increase in first-half net profit.

Singapore markets shrugged off the positive overnight cues from Wall Street. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose to a record for the ninth straight day and S&P 500 climbed to life-time highs. Meanwhile, the Nikkei Asia300 Index of companies outside Japan edged higher by less than 0.1% on Tuesday after data showed China's exports in dollar terms grew 7% last month while imports increased by 11%, both missing estimates.

The FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI climbed 0.2% to 1,781.65. CIMB Group Holdings and Malayan Banking were the biggest contributors by points, adding at least 1% each.

AllianceDBS Research raised the target price on Malayan Banking to 10.70 ringgit on assumption that the lender's 2017 net interest margin would increase by three basis points.

For the KLCI, TA Securities said in a note that "immediate support stays at the 100-day moving average now at 1,762, which must hold to prevent further correction to 1,729, a key support level in April." It noted 1,782 as the immediate resistance.

P.I.E. Industrial advanced 2.2% after reporting a 75% jump in net profit for the second quarter. Revenues increased by 30%.

Malaysia Smelting Corp. declined 7.8%. For the second quarter, the company reported a 22% decline in revenues. Net profit stood at 9.02 million ringgit ($2.1 million) as compared with a loss a year ago.

--Nimesh Vora and Kevin Lim

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