Singapore shares closed 0.28 percent lower on Wednesday after China's foreign exchange regulator released data showing China's capital outflow re-emerged in July.
Banks in China sold 28.5 billion U.S. dollars of Renminbi last month on behalf of clients, versus net purchases of 9 billion U.S. dollars in June, according to data from the State Administration of Foreign Exchange. Goldman Sach Research said "the return of foreign exchange outflow likely reflected adverse sentiment from the equity market correction." Given the capital flight, Goldman Sach believed China is unlikely to allow further significant depreciation on its currency in the coming months.
Warning that corporate earnings could decline this year, DBS Group Research said "sectors which had performed well could bear the brunt of profit taking, as investors capitalize on their outperformance to raise cash levels."
The benchmark Straits Times Index fell 8.4 points to close at 3, 041.25 points. Trading volume was 1.51 billion shares worth 1.17 billion Singapore dollars. Decliners outnumbered advancers 325 to 137, while 478 stocks closed unchanged.
Midas Holdings closed flat at 27 Singapore cents. It has secured three contracts worth 94.6 million Chinese yuan for the supply of aluminum alloy extrusion profiles for metro trains in China. The contracts are awarded by long-time customers CNR Changchun and Nanjing SR Puzhen Rail Transport. The orders are slated for delivery in 2015 and 2016.
Thakral Corporation rose 7.3 percent to 29.5 Singapore cents. It has tied up with the Puljich family, the developers and owners of retirement resorts in Australia, to develop resort-style retirement villages to tap the rising demand for retirement housing in Australia.
Queensland and northern New South Wales to develop more than 1, 000 retirement homes before expanding into other major cities and regions in Australia.
Among the top gainers, SATS Limited rose 1.9 percent to 3.78 Singapore dollars, while Great Eastern Holdings dropped 1.6 percent to 19.81 Singapore dollars. (1 U.S. dollar equals to 6.399 Chinese yuan and 1.40 Singapore dollars)