The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 11th, 12th and 13th August 2018

Top Story

Singapore’s economy grows 3.9% in Q2; expected to slow down in H2 2018
Singapore’s economic growth is expected to slow down in the second half of this year, as the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) kept to its 2018 forecast of 2.5 to 3.5 per cent in 2018 even with trade tensions weighing on the outlook.  But the step-down in growth in the second half of 2018 was anticipated and taken into account into the central bank baseline, said Monetary Authority of Singapore’s (MAS) deputy managing director Jacqueline Loh.

Over 30 en bloc tenders closed without a buyer this year; none sealed after cooling measures 
Singapore — With less than a third of collective sale sites sold so far this year and no deal inked since property cooling measures took effect more than a month ago, one property analyst has declared the current cycle of en bloc fever to be over.  More than 30 collective sale sites have failed to secure a buyer since January, according to data from real estate agencies Huttons Asia, Savills and Colliers.

Singapore Economy

Manufacturing sector drives Singapore GDP growth at ‘robust’ clip in Q2 2018
The manufacturing sector was once more behind Singapore’s economic growth in the second quarter, according to the latest figures from the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) on Monday.  It expanded by 10.2 per cent year-on-year in Q2 2018, which the MTI called a “robust” showing, against the 10.8 per cent growth in the first quarter, amid global tensions over trade skirmishes and what the ministry called in its outlook “uncertainties and downside risks in the global economy”.

Singapore Q2 non-oil exports jump 9.4%; full-year forecast raised to 2.5-3.5%
Non-oil domestic exports (NODX) jumped 9.4 per cent year-on-year in the second quarter, up from 1.1 in the first, leading government planners to raise the full-year export growth forecast from 1-3 per cent to 2.5-3.5 per cent.  Similarly, trade expanded 10.2 per cent, against 2.5 per cent in the first quarter, prompting the growth forecast for 2018 to be upgraded from 3-5 per cent to 5-6 per cent, according to government trade promotion agency Enterprise Singapore.

Retail sales up 2% in June, driven by vehicles
Retail sales in Singapore grew at a faster clip in June, driven mainly by a surge in motor vehicle sales, according to the latest release by the Singapore Department of Statistics.  Retail takings went up 2 per cent in June compared with the same period a year ago, beating economists’ expectations of a 1.2 per cent expansion.

SGD savings deposit growth flatlining as depositors seek options
Savings deposits’ growth is plateauing as alternative instruments lure consumers with higher payouts for Singapore-dollar funds.  One major alternative competing with bank deposits could be Singapore Savings Bonds (SSB) – a type of Singapore Government Securities targeted at individuals. There has been massive interest in these bonds, with six out of eight issues oversubscribed this year despite upsizing the issuances since April. The September 2018 issue which has been upsized to S$300 million pays 2.97 per cent in year 10 and an average annual return of 2.44 per cent if held till maturity. 

Malaysia says HSR report to be presented to Cabinet next week following meeting with Singapore
Seremban: A detailed report on the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project will be presented to Malaysia’s Cabinet next week, following a meeting between the country’s Economic Affairs Minister Mohamed Azmin Ali and a Singapore Government representative on Saturday (Aug 11).  This was according to Malaysia’s Transport Minister Anthony Loke, who spoke to reporters at a flag-raising event in Seremban on Saturday.

Singapore Real Estate

3 en bloc bids hit by weaker sentiment as property cooling measures take their toll
The latest property cooling measures have taken their toll on plans by at least three freehold projects to sell en bloc, with a marketing agent resigning from two, while a third has shelved plans for a sale.  PropNex, the marketing agent of Boonview in Marymount Terrace and Le Wilkie in Wilkie Road, has resigned from handling their collective sales, while Pasir View Park in Pasir Panjang has shelved its first attempt to sell en bloc after the new measures kicked in on July 6.

Kingsley Mansion in Balestier to launch en bloc tender with S$45.5m reserve price
The owners of Kingsley Mansion are launching a collective sale by tender for the 18-unit condominium in the Balestier area with a reserve price of S$45.5 million.  The tender will launch on Tuesday and close at 3pm on Sept 13.

Golden Mile Complex poised for collective sale
Golden Mile Complex, a familiar landmark with its eye-catching stepped terraced design, is going en bloc.  As 724 owners of 550 units have signed the collective sale agreement – representing 80.83 per cent of the total share value of the development – the required approval of 80 per cent has been met. The notice of the proposed collective sale was dated Aug 3.

Tender for exec condo site at Anchorvale Crescent launched
The tender for an executive condominium (EC) site along Anchorvale Crescent in Sengkang has been launched from the reserve list of the Government Land Sales (GLS) Programme.  Its tender was triggered last month with a successful application by an unnamed developer committed to a bid of at least S$255 million for the 99-year leasehold site.

Flexible spaces are the future of corporate real estate
We have heard a lot about flexible workspace – in particular coworking – and its rapid emergence in urban centres around the world, and most recently in Asia-Pacific. According to latest JLL data, the facts are staggering:  Flexible space has grown in the Asia-Pacific by nearly 36 per cent annually while the United States and Europe saw an annual increase of over 20 per cent from 2014 to 2017.  The stock of flexible floor space in the Asia-Pacific increased over 200 per cent from 2014 to Q1 2018.

New-age offices with the works
The Carrot Patch is a co-working space for entrepreneurs and start-ups. But instead of just conference tables and printers, the space also has a foosball table, retro arcade console and even a sauna.  It is not the only co-working space that has unique features that cater to a specific group of clients.

Companies’ Brief

China projects boost Ho Bee Q2 net
Ho Bee Land has posted net profit of S$71.5 million for the second quarter ended June 30, up 98.1 per cent year on year.  The stronger bottomline was on the back of recognition of a S$28.3 million fair value gain on investment property.

Koh Brothers Group’s Q2 net profit down 37%
Construction and property player Koh Brothers Group posted a net profit of S$961,000 for its second quarter, down 37 per cent from a year ago, partly due to a one-off compensation income recognised a year ago.  Revenue went up 30 per cent to S$85.7 million, mainly from improvements in the construction and building materials division.

Higher costs, losses from associates hit KSH’s Q1 profit
Higher expenses and deeper losses in its share of results from associates dented results for KSH Holdings (KSH) in its first quarter.  The construction and property development group’s net profit slid 3.8 per cent to S$6 million from the previous year.

Sotheby’s realty arm on path to expansion
Consultancy List Sotheby’s International Realty is expanding its foothold in the Asia-Pacific region, with new offices opening in three South-east Asian countries and the expansion of its Singapore office, which will serve as its South-east Asia regional headquarters.  List Sotheby’s International Realty has 15 offices in the Asia-Pacific region. These comprise 10 offices in Japan’s major cities such as Tokyo and Yokohama, two offices in Hawaii and one office each in the Philippines (opened in 2016), Singapore (2017) and Hong Kong (2017).

Roxy-Pacific associate to acquire property in Revesby, Australia for A$9 million
Roxy-Pacific Holdings has, via  RPPG (Revesby), entered into an agreement with BN Revesby PT to acquire a property in New South Wales, Australia for A$9 million (S$9.01 million).   The property, which is located at Mavis Street in Revesby, is in an industrial area and spans 8,433 square metres, said Roxy-Pacific in a release to the Singapore Exchange on Friday. It comprises a mix of warehouse and office space.

Surbana Jurong, Malaysia’s Help University to set up green design and technology centre
Surbana Jurong said on Friday it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Malaysia’s Help University to set up a Green Design and Technology Centre.  The centre, which will be based in Help University’s Subang 2 campus, will offer certificate courses on renewable energies, sustainable urban planning, architecture, engineering and infrastructure. It will also focus on research and development in these fields, and there are plans to offer these courses at undergraduate and postgraduate level, as well as in its international schools, at a later stage.

Wee Hur Holdings’ net profit up 82%
Property group Wee Hur Holdings posted a net profit of S$6 million for its second quarter, up 82 per cent from a year ago.  Revenue went up 55 per cent to S$54.8 million, while earnings per share stood at 0.66 Singapore cents – up from 0.36 cents previously.

Boustead Projects’ net profit up 73% in Q1 on one-off gain
Real estate solutions specialist Boustead Projects posted a net profit of S$10 million for its first quarter, up 73 per cent from S$5.8 million a year ago. This was buoyed by a non-recurring other gain from the sale of 25 Changi North Rise.  After adjusting for this gain and expenses associated with the sale, total profit would be 11 per cent lower year-on-year, mainly due to higher overhead expenses and greater share of loss of an associated company and joint ventures.

ESR Reit DPU up 4.7% for Q2
ESR Reit (real estate investment trust) has reported a second-quarter distribution per unit (DPU) of 1.001 Singapore cents, up 4.7 per cent from 0.956 Singapore cent for the same period a year earlier, on higher net property income and and distributions from gains relating to past divestments.  This improvement was largely due to an increase in net property income and distributions from other gains which offset the negative impact of ongoing asset enhancement initiatives and conversion of single-tenanted buildings to multi-tenanted ones, the Reit manager said.

Viva Industrial Trust DPS up 2.2% for Q2
Viva Industrial Trust (VIT) has posted a second-quarter distribution per stapled security (DPS) of 1.902 Singapore cents, up 2.2 per cent for the same period a year earlier.  Gross revenue rose 3.9 per cent to S$28.7 million while net property income was up 3.3 per cent to S$20.9 million.

WeWork revenue, and losses, surge in first release of results
WeWork, the fast-growing coworking company gobbling up commercial office leases, said on Thursday that its second-quarter sales more than doubled from a year earlier as it added new members at a quickening pace, but losses also mounted.  In its first-ever release of financial results, the privately held firm said total revenue rose to US$421.6 million from US$198.3 million in the year-ago quarter as memberships jumped to 268,000 at the end of June from 128,000 a year earlier.


Mall offerings in the age of e-commerce
When her children were younger, general manager Sharon Andriesz, 46, used to shop for kids’ products at Tangs frequently. But now that her children are well in their teens, she hardly goes there.  It was only in March this year that the long-time Tangs member found the reason to visit the department store regularly again.

Move over millennials, it’s Gen Z’s turn to kill off industries
Millennials have been accused of killing so many products and industries – taxis, landlines, snail mail – that it’s become a media trope. But millennials are old news. Today, businesses and marketers are desperately anticipating the murderous whims of Gen Z, the demographic born after 1996.

Shopping for dividends
I remember a time when grocery shopping was a burden. Some people might say that it still is. But it’s nothing compared to when I was a child. In those days, we went to a butcher for meats, a greengrocer for fruit and vegetables, and separate trips to different specialists for bread, rice, fish and other provisions. But supermarkets changed the way we shop. Everything has been brought under one roof. These days, we can even do our regular shopping online. Supermarkets are everywhere. They are available on our phones too. We don’t even have to get up from our sofas to fill our pantries and refrigerators, if we can’t be bothered to.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Turkish crisis, US retail earnings to set direction

Inflation pressures rise modestly in July; Fed on track to raise rates

Luxury flats rise on NY’s industrial backyard

Former Battle of Britain command post now £2.4m penthouse

UK economy rebounds but services end quarter on a weak note

U.K. House Prices Are on the Longest Losing Streak Since Crisis

Chinese banks top ranking by assets – a cause for concern

US tells China’s HNA to sell stake in NYC building near Trump Tower

HNA gives up bid to build hotel empire with Radisson sale

WeWork China Rival Raises $120 Million in Hillhouse-Backed Round

Hong Kong’s economy slows as trade war, rates squeeze looms

Victor Li’s first land buy in HK since taking helm

Japan’s economy rebounds in Q2 on brisk spending, but trade rifts cloud outlook

Homing in on longer-lasting houses

Lombok tourism in tatters after fatal quakes

Germany says Trump’s tariffs, sanctions destroying jobs and growth

Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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