Singapore up on financials; Philippines, Indonesia off peaks

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(Oct 5): Singapore shares rose underpinned by gains in its big three lenders, while most other Southeast Asian stock markets edged lower, with the Indonesian and Philippine indexes weighed down by profit-taking after they hit record highs in the previous session.

Earlier, Asia shares ex-Japan held steady, tracking Wall Street that edged up to extend a run of record closing highs as services sector data added to signs of strength in the US economy.

The Singapore index closed 0.8% higher, with financial and real estate stocks leading the gains.

Real estate company CapitaLand Ltd rose 2.5%, while United Overseas Bank Ltd ended 1.7% higher.

"There has been a slew of positive macro news for Singapore, including close to 3-year high PMI to exports on pace for fastest growth in 6 years," said Paul Chew, head of research at Phillip Securities Research in Singapore. "We also have property sales set for the best performance in four years."

Thai equities inched up at the close, buoyed by telecom and industrial stocks.

PTT Global Chemical Pcl gained 1.6%, while Advanced Info Service Pcl rose a little over 1%.

Shares in Indonesia ended in negative territory after scaling a record high on Wednesday. The index posted its first fall in five days.

Mining contractor United Tractors Tbk plunged nearly 4%, while Unilever Indonesia Tbk closed 1.6% lower.

An index of the country's 45 most liquid stocks fell 0.9%.

Philippine stocks drifted lower as investors booked profits after recent highs, with index heavyweight Ayala Land Inc dropping 1.8% and SM Investments Corp slipping 0.8%.

"The Philippine index was at an all-time high yesterday, for a fifth time this month. So, I think profit-taking is occurring," said Edgar Lay, an analyst at Manila-based AB Capital Securities.

Vietnam shares reversed gains to end marginally lower after hitting a near 10-year high earlier in the session.

Malaysian shares edged lower, as utilities and consumer discretionary stocks dragged.

Genting Malaysia Bhd closed 2% down, while Tenaga Nasional Bhd edged 0.3% lower.

SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
Change on day

Market           Current       Previous close     % move
Singapore        3261.84       3236.65      0.78
Bangkok          1690.87       1687.77      0.18
Manila           8294.01       8344.05      -0.60
Jakarta          5901.906      5951.475     -0.83
Kuala Lumpur     1759.09       1761.84      -0.16
Ho Chi Minh      805.23        805.66       -0.05

Change on year

Market           Current       End 2016     % move
Singapore        3261.84       2880.76      13.23
Bangkok          1690.87       1542.94      9.59
Manila           8294.01       6840.64      21.25
Jakarta          5901.906      5296.711     11.43
Kuala Lumpur     1759.09       1641.73      7.15
Ho Chi Minh      805.23        664.87       21.11