The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 16th March 2018

Top Story

CNY lull, absence of launches cause 28% drop in Feb new home sales
Singapore developers sold 377 private homes – excluding executive condominium (EC) units – in February, a 28 per cent drop from the 524 units sold in January, as developers held back from launching new projects during the Chinese New Year festivities, amid a depleting inventory of units for sale in the market.

Singapore Economy

Analysts expect strong growth, fret over protectionism
Private-sector economists have raised their growth forecast for the year, in what has been their most upbeat prediction since late 2014.  At the same time, they flagged the threat of trade protectionism as their biggest worry, which could cast a shadow on future prospects.  Economists expect the economy to grow 3.2 per cent this year, according to a Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) quarterly survey released yesterday. This is up from their tip of a full-year expansion of 3 per cent made in the December survey.

Local employment improves; upward trend expected to continue: MOM
As the Singapore economy picked up last year, the labour market also improved, with higher employment levels for locals.  Layoffs fell, while incomes for Singaporeans also rose, both at the median and 20th percentile levels.

Asia-Pac private equity industry soars to new highs in 2017
The private equity (PE) industry in the Asia-Pacific region put in a record showing in 2017, with all signs pointing to it having entered a new era – one defined by a broader market, intense competition and shifting sources of value.  Bain & Company’s (Bain) Asia-Pacific Private Equity Report 2018 points to deals being larger, investment broader and large global investors being more active than ever, with all markets in the region rising to new highs, and total deal value reaching a record level last year.

Critical to promote free trade amid US moves that increase protectionist pressure: PM Lee
Recent moves by the United States to protect domestic industries have raised the spectre of tit-for-tat trade wars, warned Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Thursday as he urged countries to continue promoting free trade.  While noting that Singapore has been impacted by US trade measures, he said his concern was that a precedent had been set and countries were now “under pressure to retaliate”.

Singapore Real Estate

Mandarin Gardens ‘likely to draw joint ventures and foreign players’
With an eye-popping reserve price of S$2.45 billion and sprawling size of over one million sq ft, Mandarin Gardens could be a tough sell.  But if what could be the nation’s largest residential en bloc deal ever materialises, it will likely involve several developers joining hands – perhaps including a foreign developer.

CDL to launch new Tampines condominium
Developer City Developments Limited (CDL) is launching a new condominium project in Tampines, starting from S$596,000 for a one-bedder.  On Thursday, CDL announced that The Tapestry, which has 861 units, will be the “first premium suburban condominium launch” this year.  The 99-year leasehold property comprises seven 15-storey blocks, with unit sizes ranging from 441 sq ft for a one-bedroom unit to 1,765 sq ft for the largest five-bedroom, dual-key apartments with study.

Bye, bye, Sim Lim Square? Shop owners make bid for en-bloc sale  
The en-bloc wave sweeping through the property market could wipe off the iconic “tech mecca” otherwise known as Sim Lim Square, if the mall on Rochor Canal Road makes a successful bid for a collective sale.  Signings for the agreement were brisk, judging from the queue of shop owners spilling out of the management office at the mall’s basement on Thursday (March 15).

Asian investors push global property to new high
Investors from Asia powered global real estate investments to an all-time high in 2017, and are likely to dominate the market in 2018 as the range of capital sources within the region continue to increase, according to a report by Cushman & Wakefield on Thursday.  The findings come from its Global Investment Atlas 2018 study which found that Asian investors accounted for 52 per cent of the record US$1.62 trillion of capital deployed for all kinds of property investments globally last year, topping 2016’s US$1.43 trillion.

Companies’ Brief

Chip Eng Seng exits Tower Melbourne project with A$55m sale
Chip Eng Seng Corporation is exiting from Australian redevelopment project Tower Melbourne, now that it has found a buyer willing to pay A$55 million (S$56 million) for the site.  The group said on Thursday that it has entered into an agreement with the purchaser, who is not related to the company or its controlling shareholders.

S&P raises Yanlord Land’s rating from ‘BB-‘ to ‘BB’ on better financial position
S&P Global Ratings has raised its long-term corporate credit rating on China-based real estate developer Yanlord Land Group from ‘BB-‘ to ‘BB’, citing an improved financial position and good profitability.  It also raised its long-term issue rating on the company’s outstanding senior unsecured notes to ‘BB-‘ from ‘B+’.

Surbana Jurong, Vanke to develop industrial new towns in China
Temasek-owned Surbana Jurong has inked a memorandum of understanding with Vanke Industrial Town Midwest (Vanke) – a unit of China Vanke – to jointly develop industrial new towns in China’s midwest regions.  According to the firms, an industrial new town is an urban development model in China which integrates industrial developments and urban living. It aims to create sustainable cities for residents to live and work in.

Oxley to raise S$78.1m from placement of 156.8m new shares at S$0.51 apiece
Oxley Holdings on Thursday entered into a placement agreement for the issue of 156.8 million new shares at S$0.51 apiece to raise S$78.1 million.  The issue price represents a discount of about 8.8 per cent to the volume-weighted average price of S$0.559 for trades done on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) on March 14, the property group said in a filing with the SGX on Friday morning.

Koh Brothers reveals JV partners for Woodlands Health Campus deal
Mainboard-listed Koh Brothers Eco Engineering on Thursday announced that Ssangyong Engineering & Construction and Daewoo Engineering & Construction are its joint venture partners for the building of the upcoming Woodlands Health Campus (WHC), touted as Singapore’s first “smart” hospital.

Tuan Sing unit disposes stake in China property developer for 103m yuan
Bauhinia Land, a unit of Tuan Sing Holdings, has disposed its entire stake in Chinese property developer Qingdao Shenyang Property on March 14 for about 103 million yuan (S$21.4 million).  Bauhinia sold its stake to an unnamed independent third party.


Education needed to make ‘foreign Reits’ more welcome in the local market
There is a prejudice institutional funds based in Singapore sometimes have towards Singapore real estate investment trusts (S-Reits) that hold foreign assets, but as more of such instruments join the local bourse, their attitude may have to change.

Risks and rewards of fintech in Singapore
The term “fintech” has seen widespread use since the 2000s, but some of the technologies it encompasses have existed for decades. For example, the science of cryptography has been fundamental to the financial system since the early days of electronic transactions.

100 per cent owners’ consent not needed for building conservation
In a commentary, Assistant Professor Yeo Kang Shua questioned why 100 per cent of owners’ consent is needed for voluntary conservation of strata-titled developments, like Pearl Bank Apartments, compared with a lower threshold of 80 per cent consent for collective sales (Safeguarding post-Independence ‘Pearls’; March 6).

NZ family’s Airbnb woes highlight lack of clarity on listings
A New Zealand family of four who turned up at Caribbean at Keppel Bay expecting to pick up apartment keys for a four-night stay booked on Airbnb were devastated when they were told such short-term rents were outlawed.  The case highlights problems with allowing rental listings for illegal stays as consumers may be none the wiser.

More luxe brands going for big time in resale
Yet another big name in Swiss watches has jumped into the fast-growing resale market for timepieces.  Vacheron Constantin, the oldest brand in luxury watches, announced in Singapore last week that it is stepping up its presence – and raising its profile – in the vintage watch trade.

Singapore Flyer still grounded ahead of 10th anniversary
The Singapore Flyer remains “grounded” – a month away from its 10th anniversary – and no date has been set for its reopening.  The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) has yet to approve letting the 165m-tall observation wheel open its doors again. Before it does so, the BCA must be satisfied that safety standards have been met.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

As US mortgage rates rise, refinancing falls to two-month low

Manhattan landlords race to fill apartments in declining market

Toys ‘R’ Us to wind up all its stores in US

Britain enters final Brexit talks with listless economy, high debt

China’s industrial output grows faster than forecast

HNA Group sells Hilton Grand Vacations stake for US$1.1b

Quixote Park at housing-crash emblem shows rising Madrid demand

Myanmar needs urgent reforms as economy’s in the woods

Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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