Reuters: Singapore stocks fell for a tenth straight session on Friday, its longest spell of losses in nearly 14 years, a day after a report from Moody’s Investors Service reinforced a gloomy ratings outlook for the city-state’s banks.
Other Southeast Asian markets ended mixed as cautious investors awaited direction from U.S. payrolls data while concerns over global economic growth persisted in the wake of weak data from China.
Singapore’s Straight Time Index ended down 1.3% to its lowest close since 2 March, Thomson Reuters data showed. It fell for the tenth straight session on Friday, its longest falling streak since Aug-Sept 2002, data showed.
Moody’s on Thursday said March quarter results of three large Singapore banks point to rising challenges and support the negative outlook on their ratings.
DBS Group Holdings, Singapore’s biggest lender which posted a 6% rise in net profit on Tuesday, fell 0.9%, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp closed 1.7% down, while United Overseas Bank lost 1.3%.
“Investors are awaiting the announcement of the non-farm payrolls report later today,” Singapore-based NetResearch Asia said in a note.
The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week, posting the biggest gain in more than a year, although its four-week average, often seen as a better gauge of the underlying trend, still stood near a four-decade low.
Investors are already concerned over the slower pace of expansion last month in China’s services sector, compared with March, which added to worries over China’s disappointing manufacturing data and downgrades on growth and inflation forecast by the European Commission.
The Philippine stock index fell 0.1%.
Vietnam’s VN index closed up 0.8%, boosted by financials on upbeat earnings, while Malaysia recovered to close 0.3% higher.
Markets in Indonesia and Thailand were closed on Friday for a holiday.