SINGAPORE (Oct 21): Sembcorp Marine (SembMarine) has been issued with a query from Singapore Exchange Regulation (SGX RegCo) after its share price jumped 11.7% on Monday afternoon. 

This marks the company’s second query from the market regulator over the span of four months. 

Shares in SembMarine opened at $1.20 on Monday, and remained relatively stable. However, after the mid-day break, the counter surged to as high as $1.34, with some 15.7 million shares traded as at 2.57pm. 

At 2.05pm, the exchange asked SembMarine to declare if it was aware of any information not previously announced that might explain the “unusual price movements” in the shares.

“Such information may include events that are potentially material and price-sensitive, such as discussions and negotiations that may lead to joint ventures, mergers, acquisitions or purchase or sale of a significant asset,” says SGX RegCo.

SGX RegCo also asked the group if it was aware of any other possible explanations for the trading, which might include the public circulation of information by rumours and reports.

SembMarine was also asked to confirm its compliance with the listing rules. 

Meanwhile, shares in Sembcorp Industries, SembMarine's parent company, are also charging up. As at 2.57pm, the counter is trading 17 cents higher, or up 8.2%, at $2.25, with some 12.8 million shares changing hands.

Year to date, shares in SembMarine have fallen some 13.5%. 

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Meanwhile, Temasek Holdings on Monday announced it is moving to increase its stake in Singapore's other largest oil-rig builder, Keppel Corporation, to 51% in a deal worth about $4 billion.

Temasek already currently directly owns 20.45% of Keppel. And it is now making a $4 billion partial offer, through indirect wholly-owned subsidiary Kyanite Investment Holdings, to acquire an additional 30.55% of shares in Keppel at $7.35 each.

This will result in Temasek and Kyanite directly owning 51% of shares in Keppel.

The offer price implies a premium of around 26% to Keppel’s closing price of $5.84 on Oct 18. It also represents a premium of around 21 to its volume weighted average price (VWAP) of $6.07 for the 3-month period up to Oct 18.

See: Temasek moves to raise stake in Keppel Corp to 51% with partial offer at $7.35 per share

Temasek says it intends to undertake a “comprehensive strategic review” of Keppel's businesses.

In response to SGX's query, SembMarine said in a regulatory filing at 6.56pm that, apart from possible market speculation arising from Keppel's announced voluntary pre-conditional cash partial offer, it was not aware of any possible explanation for the trading.

SembMarine also confirmed its compliance with the listing rules, adding that the group will issue announcements if and when there are material contracts secured.

Shares in SembMarine closed at $1.34 on Thursday.