The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 14th April 2016

Top Story

M&A increasingly favoured as internationalisation strategy
MORE Singapore companies are internationalising via mergers and acquisitions (M&As) – using these deals as a quick way to ramp up their overseas presence and address capability gaps.  According to data obtained from International Enterprise (IE) Singapore, the agency has seen a steady take-up of its M&A grants, with a total of S$8.3 million awarded over 95 projects from 2011 to 2015.

Singapore Economy

Monetary Authority of Singapore sets zero appreciation path for Singdollar with switch to neutral policy stance
The central bank will set the rate of the Singapore dollar’s appreciation to zero per cent, in a move to support economic growth against a dimmer global economic outlook since its last meeting.  The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), which uses the currency rather than interest rates to guide the economy said on Thursday (April 14): “This is not a policy to depreciate the domestic currency, and only removes the modest and gradual appreciation path of the S$NEER policy band that was in place.”

MAS eases monetary police in surprise move, adopts neutral, 0% exchange rate stance
In a move that caught the market by surprise, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announced on Thursday that it would remove the appreciation stance on the Singapore dollar, citing a “more modest” growth prospects than envisaged in its policy review in October.  The Singapore dollar fell after the announcement by MAS. At about 8.40am, the Singapore currency was at its weakest against the greenback since March 29,

Singapore economy grows 1.8% in Q1, just beating expectations: Flash estimates
The Singapore economy grew by 1.8 per cent in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period a year ago, just topping analyst forecasts, according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry’s flash estimates released on Thursday morning (April 14).  Private economists surveyed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) last month had said they expected economic growth in the January to March quarter to come in at 1.6 per cent.  Growth was flat compared with the last three months of 2015, in contrast to the 6.2 per cent expansion seen in October-December quarter.

Review choice of home used in means-testing
I refer to the report “Annual value of home ‘best available proxy’ in means-testing” (April 12).  While I agree that the annual value of one’s home is a good tool for helping our Government to determine who should get more help, the method of determining one’s home should be reviewed. A person is now means-tested by assessing the annual value of his residential address as stated on his identification card. This address, however, may not be his home.  For example, a retiree may own a four-room flat, which he rents out for his retirement, and stay in his child’s home. This allows his child to care for him.

Singapore Real Estate

Rental transactions jump in March: SRX
The number of rental transactions for condominiums, private apartments and Housing & Development Board (HDB) flats swelled by double digits in March, as rentals continued to decline.  Consultants believe this is likely due to rental renewals and tenants’ property hopping in search of a better deal, rather than new demand generated. February was also a lull month with Chinese New Year festivities, hence the low base for comparison.

The Ascott launches prized selection of properties
THE Crest Collection, launched on Wednesday by CapitaLand’s The Ascott, is a selection of the serviced residence business unit’s most prestigious and unique luxury apartments.  The debut collection comprises the newly added Metropole, which will open in Bangkok in June 2016, and three of Ascott’s Citadines Suites properties in Paris that have been renamed to La Clef Louvre Paris, La Clef Champs-Élysées Paris as well as La Clef Tour Eiffel Paris, where the launch of The Crest Collection was held.

FCL launches new executive condo in Sembawang
DESPITE upcoming supply, Frasers Centrepoint Limited (FCL) is not concerned about the executive condominium (EC) market, proceeding with the launch of its latest project, Parc Life, at an average price of S$770 to S$800 per square foot (psf).  “We believe there is healthy demand from HDB homeowners who have achieved the minimum occupation period (MOP) and are looking to re-invest or upgrade,” said Cheang Kok Kheong, chief executive officer of development and property at FCL.

Companies’ Brief

Keppel DC Reit posts 3.7% rise in Q1 DPU
KEPPEL DC Reit posted a 3.7 per cent year-on-year increase in distribution per unit (DPU) to 1.67 Singapore cents for the first quarter ended March 31, buoyed by net tax and other adjustments.  This surpasses its forecast by 1.2 per cent and translates to an annualised distribution yield of 6.34 per cent based on the market closing price per unit as at March 31.  “The manager remains committed in its ambition to grow the portfolio. Apart from pursuing third-party acquisition opportunities, Keppel DC Reit can tap the visible pipeline of assets under Rights of First Refusal arrangement with its sponsor,” the Reit manager said on Wednesday.

Views, Reviews & Forum

Property curbs help the average Singaporean
While property developers, property agents and even MPs such as Mr Christopher de Souza have called for the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) to be removed, I do not think that the average Singaporean is supportive of it (“Do property curbs help or hurt?” by Mr Russell Lee Pynn; Monday).  The exuberant increase in property prices from 2009 to late 2013 affected many home buyers.  While some enjoyed profits from flipping and owning several properties, many home buyers had to pay exorbitant prices for their homes, which consequently affected the HDB market too.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

IMF urges govts of advanced economies to use fiscal policies to support demand

Malaysia’s EPF plans to double property assets

CRCT’s net property income rises 6.2% in Q1

Frasers Property Australia

Mori to spend 400b yen building 3 Tokyo towers

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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