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 August 2017

Top Story

Buying momentum buoys July sales of private and EC homes
Developers sold almost twice as many private homes and executive condominiums (ECs) in July than they did in June amid two project launches – reflecting a buoyant buying momentum that analysts believe will continue for the rest of this year and the next.  A total of 2,086 units were sold by developers here last month, up from 1,064 units in the traditionally slow month of June and 8 per cent more than in July last year.  Particularly strong sales momentum was seen in the ECs, which marked the highest monthly sale of 978 units – four times that in June and 17 per cent more than a year ago.

Singapore Economy

We are not done building Singapore yet: Lawrence Wong
Singapore may already look “built-up” but major infrastructure projects that will unfold here over the next 10 years will put the economy on an even stronger footing, said Mr Lawrence Wong, Minister for National Development and Second Minister for Finance, yesterday.  Mr Wong told 600 representatives from more than 40 countries at the Singapore Regional Business Forum at the Ritz-Carlton: “Singapore may be a little red dot, very small; some of you may have the impression that we are already very built-up. But, in fact, we are not done building Singapore yet. We have not reached our physical limits.

4 partnerships forged to give Belt & Road a boost
Four partnerships were launched at the Singapore Regional Business Forum on Tuesday to give the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) a boost.  The Singapore Business Federation (SBF) and Chinese Enterprises Association (CEA) inked a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to roll out an online and offline platform for regional businesses to connect and work on BRI projects in Singapore, China and other countries located on the Belt and Road route.

Tapping blockchain technology to improve supply chain network
Pacific International Lines Pte Ltd (PIL), PSA International Pte Ltd and IBM Singapore Pte Ltd on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) during the Singapore Regional Business Forum to explore and trial blockchain-based supply chain business network innovations.  The three parties will work together to explore technologies such as blockchain to achieve better security, efficiency and transparency in regional supply chain business networks, as well as connect to trade finance solutions that can facilitate faster approval and fraud prevention, said PSA.

Singaporeans less happy with employers than global average: Poll
Singapore employees are less satisfied with their companies than workers in other countries, according to a survey out yesterday.  It found that employee engagement here has declined consistently over the past three years, in stark contrast to the upward trend observed across the globe.  The poll showed 73 per cent of Singaporeans are satisfied with the firms they work for, compared with the global average of 82 per cent.

Singapore Real Estate

Public area in the works at Pasir Panjang Terminal
In a move unusual for Singapore’s port operator, PSA Singapore is set to incorporate a public area in new facilities being built at its Pasir Panjang Terminal.  PSA is planning for a new office building and a staff clubhouse at the terminal, which will include the public space that will “bring people closer to our port”, a spokesman told The Straits Times.

Property agents may get tech boost
The next tech frontier is emerging for real estate agents – tapping government data in automated checks to verify information such as property ownership, floor area or prospective foreign tenants’ immigration status.  Second Minister for National Development Desmond Lee floated the idea at an industry event yesterday, while giving an update on the ministry’s Real Estate Industry Transformation Map announced in March.

Companies’ Brief

Sim Lian tipped to have bid S$970m for Tampines Court
Sim Lian Development is believed to have placed a bid of S$970 million for the collective sale of Tampines Court.  On Tuesday evening, Huttons Asia, the marketing agent for the privatised HUDC (Housing and Urban Development Company) estate, said the tender for the site, which closed at 3 pm the same day, received a bid of that sum – above the reserve price of S$952 million.

Oxley’s Stevens Rd hotel development gets TOP
Homegrown property developer Oxley Holdings said on Tuesday its hotel development on Stevens Road had received the Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) on Aug 3.  The group said the hotels at the development, operating under the Novotel and Mercure brands, are expected to commence operations in the second quarter of FY2018.

Fragrance Group launches £45m notes due 2021
Fragrance Group Limited announced on Tuesday that the company has launched and priced £45 million (S$79 million), 3.25 per cent fixed rate notes due 2021.  The notes are expected to be issued on Aug 23, 2017, with a maturity date on Aug 23, 2021.  The notes are issued under the company’s S$1 billion multicurrency debt issuance programme. The company says the notes will be issued at an issue price of 100 per cent of their principal amount and in denominations of £100,000 and integral multiples of £1,000 thereof. The notes will bear interest at a fixed rate of 3.25 per cent per annum and will be payable semi-annually.

Parkson Retail Asia issues profit guidance for FY2017
Parkson Retail Asia issued a profit guidance for its financial year ended June 30, 2017.  The group is expecting to report a net loss of approximately S$62 million for FY2017 as compared to a net profit of S$30 million a year ago.  The anticipated loss for FY2017 is mainly attributable to non-operational impairment charges on property, plant and equipment, and goodwill. In comparison, the profit for FY2016 included a gain on partial disposal of a former subsidiary of S$47 million.

Views, Reviews & Forum

Perennial-Yanlord bid for UE is ‘fair’: adviser
The takeover bid for United Engineers (UE) by a consortium led by Perennial Real Estate Holdings and Yanlord Land Group is “fair and reasonable”, the independent financial adviser to the independent directors said in a report.  Holders of UE’s common stock and preference shares should accept the bidding group’s offers – S$2.60 per common share and S$2.60 per preference share – unless they can get a better price on the open market, the adviser, SAC Capital, said.  Shares of UE – a property, engineering and construction group – ended at S$2.69 on Tuesday.

Japanese insurer to take shopping to another level?
Taking a leaf from its own book, Tokyo-based Sony Life Insurance is replicating in Singapore a distribution model that works in Japan – untested here – but which is likely to further accelerate Singapore’s life insurance industry’s shift to sell through the financial advisory (FA) channel.  Sony Life Singapore, affiliated with Sony Financial Holdings, plans to open more than 40 shops “mostly in major shopping malls” over 10 years.  Explaining this model as “a popular style in Japan”, its managing director Fumio Aono says Japanese consumers prefer to go to the shops to get financial advice or to compare products.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

US builders, realtors protest proposed tax changes that they say will hurt home sales

US household debt breaks pre-crisis record: New York Federal Reserve

Number of homeless school pupils on rise in New York

Retail sales show biggest jump in 7 months

China vows to act if the US damages trade ties

China’s Belt and Road acquisitions surge despite crackdown on outbound capital

Loss of China property momentum being felt as economy hits mid-year slowdown

Wanda Commercial bonds trading at junk level despite AAA China rating reports 496.4m yuan Q2 loss after spending to drive sales

Airbnb to boost engineering team in China to target rich millennials

McDonald’s China Counts on Property-Developer Deals to Catch KFC

Canada home prices fall most since 2008 recession

NZ’s Fletcher Building annual profits plunge, dragged by rising costs

Giants of retail tear prices down as they rush into Iceland

Dubai’s Union Properties reports 2.29b dirham Q2 loss

Johannesburg mayor insists on ‘shock and awe’ plan for city

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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