Reported by Xiang Xue
Market strategist James Ooi said that the escalation of tensions between the United States and China and the frequent hawkish remarks of the Federal Reserve officials have increased market tensions. This week a number of important economic data will be released, he suggested that investors adopt a wait-and-see attitude first.
US Federal Reserve officials released hawkish signals, rekindling investors' nervousness about interest rate hikes, and dragging down stock market performance. According to interviewed analysts, several important pieces of data will be released this week, and under the influence of risk aversion, the market may continue to fluctuate and decline.
The Straits Times Index in Singapore closed at 3360.69 points last Friday (February 10), down 23.6 points or 0.70% for the week.
All three major US stock indexes closed lower on Friday. Nasdaq fell 2.41%, and S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.11% and 0.17%, respectively, making it the worst-performing week since December of last year.
James Ooi, the market strategist at uSMART Securities, said in an interview with Lianhe Zaobao: "Last week, tensions between China and the US escalated due to the reconnaissance balloon incident. The market's investment sentiment was tense, and Fed officials' consecutive hawkish attitudes suppressed investors' expectations that interest rate hikes were coming to an end. Under the negative investment impact, the Straits Times Index performed poorly."
He reminded investors that several important economic pieces of data will be released intensively this week. For example, the US will release the January Consumer Price Index (CPI) on Tuesday, and Singapore will release the fourth-quarter 2022 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the 2023 budget projections. Risk aversion may continue to drag down the Straits Times Index this week, and he recommends that investors take a wait-and-see approach for now.
Dr. Han Wei Bo, the portfolio manager of Phillip Securities, said that the previously "too good to be true" non-farm employment data suspended the bullish trend of the stock market. The market also began to worry that the Fed's tightening measures will continue, leading to low market sentiment. From a technical perspective, the Straits Times Index has tried to break through 3400 twice recently but failed to hold, so a correction is to be expected.
If Keppel O&M collaborates with Sembcorp Marine. Sembcorp Marine: it will accelerate strategic transformation.
Individual stock news: On Saturday (February 11), Keppel O&M stated in a press release in response to the Securities Investors Association of Singapore (SIAS) that if it cooperates with Sembcorp Marine, it will further accelerate its strategic transformation. The new group needs new vision and capabilities at the board and institutional level.
SIAS asked whether there would be accountability issues for Sembcorp Marine since all current directors would step down from the board after the merger except for the non-executive independent director and vice-chairman, Tan Cheng Gay. The new group's CEO will be Wong Weng Sun, currently CEO of Keppel O&M.
Sembcorp Marine responded that if the shareholders approve the merger plan, the new and expanded group will further accelerate its strategic transformation and develop offshore renewable energy, new energy, and clean offshore marine industries. The company must weigh the pros and cons between maintaining and changing the board. Sembcorp Marine believes that Tan Cheng Gay and Wong Weng Sun joining the new board will ensure continuity. Current Sembcorp Marine CEO, Wong Weng Sun, will become the new group's CEO, and current Sembcorp Marine CEO, Wong Hong Chew, will serve as the new board's senior advisor to provide support.
Sembcorp Marine will hold a special shareholder meeting on Thursday to vote on the merger. The company's stock price closed at 0.135 SGD on Friday, down 0.74%.
LHN Limited announced after the market closed on Friday that its indirect wholly-owned subsidiary has received an acceptance letter from GSM Vendors, confirming that the bid for the purchase of GSM Property has been accepted at a total price of 80 million SGD (excluding consumption tax). LHN Limited's stock price closed at 0.3 SGD on Friday, up 1.7%.
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