SINGAPORE – Singapore shares started Wednesday (Sept 11) on higher ground, despite mixed trading sessions in US and Europe markets overnight. The Straits Times Index gained 15.32 points or 0.49 per cent to 3,171.03 as at 9.03am.

About 35.1 million shares worth about $82.8 million changed hands, which worked out to an average unit price of about $2.36 per share.

Gainers outnumbered losers 81 to 39.

The most actively traded security was Yangzijiang Shipbuilding Holdings, which traded unchanged at $1.01 with 6.9 million shares changing hands. Other actives included automated equipment manufacturer Advance Systems and Suntec Reit.

Among financials, all three local banks gained ground with DBS advancing $0.19 or 0.8 per cent to $25.14, OCBC shares gaining $0.06 or 0.6 per cent to $10.91 and UOB jumping $0.39 or 1.5 per cent to $26.16.

Among other index stocks, Singtel was trading down $0.02 or 0.6 per cent to $3.21 with 1.6 million shares changing hands.

It was a choppy trading session in the US amid somewhat better sentiment on trade talks that was offset by lower optimism on the economy.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.3 per cent at 26,909.43, the broad-based S&P 500 edged up less than 0.1 per cent to 2,979.39 and the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index slipped less than 0.1 per cent to 8,084.16.

A rally in banking shares and other recently battered sectors such as oil and gas and carmakers lifted the mood in Europe markets on Monday, as investors speculated over policy measures by the European Central Bank later this week.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 index, after opening in the red, closed 0.1 per cent higher as the banking index climbed for a fifth session, its best five-day rally since December 2016.

The Austrian stock index, one of the worst performers of 2019, rose more than 1 per cent, while Swiss shares, a top performer, dropped 0.4 per cent.

Elsewhere in Asia, Tokyo stocks also opened higher as the yen remained cheaper against the dollar, providing some support to Japanese exporters amid a lack of other fresh market-moving events.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up 0.36 per cent or 76.87 points at 21,468.97 while the broader Topix index was up 0.52 per cent or 8.10 points at 1,566.09.