SINGAPORE : Singapore share prices closed 3.75 percent lower Monday as Asian exchanges tracked Wall Street's fall and investors took profits ahead of the US Federal Reserve meeting starting Tuesday.
Traders said investors are still worried over the American economy and the possibility of a US recession.
The blue chip ST Index closed 118.42 points lower at 3,041.06 on a volume of nearly 1.4 billion shares.
There were 190 advances against 593 declining issues.
"This may be another testing week for global equities," Song Seng Wun, regional economist at CIMB-GK Research, said in a note to clients.
US shares lost ground Friday following a volatile week amid lingering economic uncertainty.
Investors were also awaiting US President George W. Bush's State of the Union address on Monday.
Last Tuesday the US Fed, the central bank, made an emergency cut of 0.75 percent, bringing its key federal funds rate to 3.5 percent as turmoil rocked global stock markets and fears of a US recession intensified.
The Federal Reserve is widely expected to trim borrowing costs again this week as insurance against a possible economic calamity.
"The impact of the cut is really more psychological than real. The real impact is not that substantial, but it's more the signal. We've seen that the Fed is always willing to step in if they perceive that there is a threat to economic growth," said Chan Tuck Sing, UOB Kay Hian dealing director.
Banking shares slumped, with DBS group losing 88 cents to S$18.06, United Overseas Bank down 58 cents at S$17.50 and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp falling 20 cents to S$7.60.
Among property stocks, City Developments fell 68 cents to S$12.20, CapitaLand fell 28 cents to S$6.25, Keppel Land was down 22 cents at S$6.43.
Singapore Airlines fell 46 cents to S$16.00 and Singapore Telecommunications declined 12 cents to S$3.64.
Shipping giant Neptune Orient Lines finished 20 cents lower at S$3.28. - AFP/ch