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Last Updated: November 2, 2017
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Business Trends

By Devika Syamnath Nov 1 (Reuters) - Singapore and Indonesian stock markets closed higher on Wednesday as an extended gaining run in global oil prices lifted energy stocks, while Thailand slipped, dragged by industrials. Singapore shares gained 0.5 percent, marking their strongest close in nearly two-and-a-half years, as oil prices soared to their highest since mid-2015 on hopes that major producers would maintain their output cuts. "Brent has touched a two-year high and that's providing an uplift to oil and gas stocks. You can see oil and gas heavyweights are up more than 2 percent," said Joel NG, an analyst at Singapore's KGI Securities. Oil-rig builders Sembcorp Industries and Keppel Corp rose 3 percent and 2.1 percent, respectively, with Keppel touching its highest since August 2015. Indonesia rose 0.5 percent on stronger oil and foreign fund inflows, with financials and energy stocks leading the gains. "We expect the market to trend higher on the first trading day of November, supported by foreign net buying and steady price uptick of crude oil," analyst Taye Shim of Jakarta-based Mirae Asset Sekuritas said in a note. Oil and gas explorer Energi Mega Persada rose 3 percent while Indika Energy was up 3.1 percent. Investor sentiment was also boosted by Indonesia's annual inflation rate easing for a fourth straight month in October, reaching its lowest level since January, as price increases of some foods continued to slow. Vietnam surged 0.7 percent, helped by industrial and consumer staple stocks. Builder FLC Faros Construction closed at a record high, gaining 7 percent, and was the biggest boost to the index. Meanwhile, Thai shares lost 0.4 percent, dragged by industrials. Siam Cement shed 2 percent after it reported a 16 percent fall in third-quarter net profit on weak cement demand. Thailand's annual main consumer price index rose for a fourth straight month in October, slightly higher than forecasts, but the rate was still below the central bank's target, giving it room to keep monetary policy accommodative. The Philippine market was closed on Wednesday for a public holiday. For Asian Companies click; SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS Change on day Market Current Previous Pct Move close Singapore 3391.61 3374.08 0.52 Bangkok 1714.55 1721.37 -0.40 Jakarta 6038.146 6005.784 0.54 Kuala Lumpur 1743.93 1747.92 -0.23 Ho Chi Minh 842.71 837.28 0.65 Change on year Market Current End 2016 Pct Move Singapore 3391.61 2880.76 17.73 Bangkok 1714.55 1542.94 11.12 Jakarta 6038.146 5296.711 14.00 Kuala Lumpur 1743.93 1641.73 6.23 Ho Chi Minh 842.71 664.87 26.75 (Reporting by Devika Syamnath; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)

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