Singapore shares eased by midday as regional markets fell following lacklustre data from the United States, with United Overseas Bank Ltd and Ascendas Real Estate Investment Trust figuring among the top traded stocks by value.
The Straits Times Index was down 0.2 percent at 2,994.57, while MSCI's broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside Japan shed 0.7 percent.
Shares of UOB fell as much as 1.6 percent to S$19.00 after Phillip Securities downgraded the stock to reduce from neutral, while maintaining its target price of S$17.50.
UOB shares have gained more than 3 percent since the company reported a 21 percent fall in fourth-quarter net profit in late February, outperforming the 0.9 percent gain in the STI.
Phillip said UOB's share price was overvalued following the weaker-than-expected result and dividend yields were less attractive at that high level. UOB reports first-quarter earnings on May 9.
Units of Ascendas REIT, which owns industrial properties, fell as much as 4.6 percent after pricing its private placement of 150 million new units at S$1.99 each, the bottom of the S$1.99-S$2.04 range.
Ascendas REIT units were down 4.3 percent at S$2.00 on volume of 13 million units, 3.2 times the average full-day volume traded over the past 30 days.
1330 (0530 GMT)
(Reporting by Eveline Danubrata in Singapore; Additional reporting by Leonhard How; firstname.lastname@example.org)