S'pore Index at 2-mth high, lifted by Hongkong Land, CapitaLand

S'pore Index at 2-mth high, lifted by Hongkong Land, CapitaLand

SINGAPORE - Singapore shares rose to the highest in two months, lifted by Hongkong Land Holdings Ltd and CapitaLand Ltd on hopes of stronger property sales in China, whose economy is showing signs of picking up.

The Straits Times Index rose as much as 1 per cent to 3,109.92 points, the highest intra-day level since Oct. 5. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.5 per cent higher.

Shares of Hongkong Land rose as much as 4.4 per cent to the highest since early August 2011, while CapitaLand shares gained as much as 3.4 per cent to their highest since late January last year.

Hongkong Land and CapitaLand have significant exposure to the Chinese property market.

"One reason is the China portfolio is looking good. Li Keqiang keeps talking about rural urbanisation, sending China properties stocks soaring," said a trader.

Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang said urbanisation will drive most of the country's development in the next decade, the local media reported last week, boosting Chinese property, railway and other infrastructure-related stocks.

The pace of activity in China's manufacturing sector quickened for the first time in 13 months in November, a survey of private factory managers found, adding to evidence that the economy is reviving after seven quarters of slowing growth.

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