Straits Times Index resilient this week despite war jitters. Oil-producing countries have become global stock leaders. 18Feb2022

Straits Times Index resilient this week despite war jitters. Oil-producing countries have become global stock leaders. 18Feb2022
Photo by Austin Distel / Unsplash

Singapore Straits Times Index(STI) remains resilient in a week rocked up and down by Russian-Ukraine war jitters. It is the market leader among Asian stock markets today. The USD-adjusted year-to-date gain for STI is 10.06% as of 19Feb2022.

Stock indices performance 19Feb2022

Right at the top are the stock indices of the world's major oil-producing countries, Brazil and Saudi Arabia. The powerful rally in oil has propelled them to the top. The oil rally means inflation is likely to stay high. High inflation will cause central bankers to raise interest rates. Rising interest rates are going to be bad for stock markets, particularly this round since the strong stock market rally in the past decade was driven by record low interest rates.

Given the strong momentum in energy commodities, I will pay special attention to energy-related stocks this year. Unfortunately, many have already run up and is no longer safe to buy up.

An interesting observation is the strong performance of Southeast Asian indices. Most stock indices are in the red year-to-date but most of the Southeast Asian indices are up there in the green among the top 10. Number 1 among the Asean countries is Singapore, followed by Thailand, Indonesia, Philipines and Malaysia. Is the stock market telling us that the coming 12 months will be relatively better for Asean economies compared to the rest of the world?

2022 has been a terrible year for global tech stocks so far.

Right at the bottom are the technology stock indices of the world's 2 biggest economies. Nasdaq100 is near the bottom. At the very bottom is ChiNext index which is China's Nasdaq-style stock index.

Broad market statistics 18Feb2022

Broad market statistics do not look good enough to go aggressive. My stock portfolio size remains small at the moment.

U.S stock indices did not rebound from last week's bad streak and followed up with another bad week.  

In this market environment, it is safer to keep more cash on hand to wait for opportunities to emerge later. Entry criteria will remain stricter than normal.

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