The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 13th, 14th and 15th August 2016

Singapore Economy

Singapore banks’ outlook: What does it mean for investors?
After barely recovering from the global stock market rout at the start of 2016, shares of Singapore’s banking heavyweights have come under recent pressure amid concerns over their loans to energy firms following the problems surrounding Swiber Holdings.  Among the three biggest banks, DBS Group Holdings has suffered the worst hit after announcing a more than S$700 million exposure to the SGX-listed offshore oil and gas services provider, which has been placed under judicial management.  Shares of the Republic’s biggest lender and most profitable blue-chip firm have tumbled more than 6 per cent since Jul 28, while its local rivals Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp (OCBC) and United Overseas Bank (UOB) were not spared in the selloff, down around 5 and 3 per cent over the same period, respectively.

Singaporeans, Worried Over Jobs and Pay, Are the Gloomiest Since 2009
Singaporeans are the most pessimistic about the economy in seven years as they’ve grown more gloomy about their quality of life, their income and job security.  Mastercard’s consumer confidence index for the city-state plunged to 33.6 in the first half of 2016, down from 44.3 for the previous six months, the company said in a statement on Aug. 11. It’s at the lowest level since June 2009, when the city’s gross domestic product contracted for four straight quarters.

Singapore Real Estate

Marina Bay mixed-use site to go on sale
A mixed development or “white” site in Central Boulevard is to go on sale nearly a decade after the sale of the last Marina Bay office site. An unidentified developer triggered the site’s release for sale from the Government’s reserve list by committing to bid at least $1.536 billion at the tender, or about $1,010 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf ppr).  The news comes despite a tough office leasing market, with concerns over the 3.6 million sq ft of space in the central area due for completion this year and the next – across such projects as Guoco Tower, Duo Tower, Marina One and 5 Shenton Way.

Different kinds of leases for new HDB flats under consideration: MND
The government is considering having different kinds of leases for new HDB flats in the Greater Southern Waterfront as well as the new central business district in Jurong, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong said on Thursday (Aug 11).  “Frankly if I have a HDB flat there, and it’s highly subsidised, the person who gets the flat has a huge gain, and how do you ensure equity for the guy who gets the flat as opposed to the guy who doesn’t get the flat, so we are thinking through what is the best way to have HDB living in the city centre,” said Mr Wong, speaking at a forum organised by the National University of Singapore Students’ Political Association.

Upgraded Hougang CC to be ready by 2018
Come 2018, Hougang residents will have a bigger community club, with a new daycare centre for seniors. Announcing this at the constituency’s National Day dinner yesterday, Hougang grassroots adviser Lee Hong Chuang said the upgraded space, costing an estimated S$700,000, will have an additional fourth level.  The basketball court will have a shelter so that people can continue playing at the court and various classes can be held “rain or shine,” said Mr Lee, who promised more services to cater for residents of all ages. Renovation will commence in the next three months.

Several UK property launches lined up
As the dust begins to settle on Britain’s shock vote to leave the European Union, some real-estate agencies here are starting to market British residential property again.  One key lure: the greatly weakened British pound.  As agencies test the post-Brexit appetite for British properties in the coming weeks, one key focus is on homes in London and Manchester.

Companies’ Brief

Keppel DC Reit acquires data centre in Milan for 37.3 million euros
Keppel DC Reit – said to be the first pure-play data centre Reit listed in Asia – has acquired the shell and core building of a data centre in Milan, Italy, for 37.3 million euros (S$57.3 million).  This marks the Singapore Exchange-listed Reit’s first property in Italy. Chua Hsien Yang, chief executive officer of Keppel DC Reit Management, which manages the Reit, said Milan is an “emerging regional IT hub that is well-connected to other European markets”.

GLP’s Q1 net profit falls 24%
Global Logistic Properties (GLP) on Friday reported that its net profit for the fiscal first quarter to June 2016 fell 24.3 per cent to US$202.9 million.  This was due to US$36 million of foreign exchange losses over the yen and yuan, but it stressed that most of this was actually unrealised accounting losses resulting from marking inter-company forex loans to market.  The fund manager and developer of logistics facilities was also affected by lower revaluations (a difference of about US$47 million), mostly on its fund management business in its joint venture funds.

Australian properties boost Ho Bee’s Q2 profit, revenue
It was a “g’day, mate” for Singapore’s mainboard-listed Ho Bee Land: the property group reported a sterling showing for the second quarter ended June 30, thanks to the recent completion of two of its Australian residential projects.  Ho Bee Land said yesterday that its net profit attributable to shareholders rose to S$42.0 million for the three months ended June 30, 2016; that’s a 151.8 per cent jump from the S$16.7 million reported the year before.  The group said it managed to achieve this despite being hit by a foreign exchange loss of S$8.0 million from the weakening Australian dollar and British pound.

Views, Reviews & Forum

What went wrong with Indiabulls Property Investment Trust?
The short answer to the question posed in the headline above is “everything”. From the time it listed to its impending delisting sometime soon, Indiabulls Property Investment Trust (IPIT) brought nothing but grief to its unitholders, so much so that if Singapore Exchange (SGX) is serious about developing the market here into an attractive global hub for listing of real estate investment trusts (Reits), it should scrutinise the entire chain of events associated with IPIT’s eight-year existence on the mainboard with a view to improving its quality control and ensuring that the investing public never suffers such a devastating loss again.  Retail investors too should learn from this sorry episode, that when it comes to investing in instruments exposed to overseas assets, greater care should be taken because risks are likely to be significant.

Balancing the need for liquidity in an investment asset
When it comes to investing, liquidity has two aspects – first, the ability to convert an asset to cash quickly and, second, perhaps more importantly, the ability to convert to cash without the asset losing value.  In general, it is preferable to purchase something with a good amount of liquidity because you will be able to dispose of it quickly without affecting the asset’s value.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Rough patches for China on road to sustainable growth: IMF

China’s economic activity slows in July as reforms begin to bite

Prices of UK homes for sale see biggest fall in 9 months: Rightmove

US dollar nurses losses on Fed outlook as Japan futures signal drop

KL to help urban poor to own homes

China property oversupply dampens growth outlook

Plans to transform Penang face local backlash

Indonesia cuts a property tax in bid to aid home sales

Jakarta plans tax haven on two islands near Singapore

Cheung Kong’s Victor Li says open to selling Hong Kong buildings

London’s lavishly high home prices take a Brexit hit

Chinese envoy challenges new Vancouver home tax as fallout spreads

Growth slows further in Malaysia

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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