Perk-up in developers’ private-home sales likely to continue in November
The revival in developers’ private homes sales last month – sparked by new launches Forest Woods and The Alps Residences and supported by sales from earlier launches – is expected to continue this month. Two new major condo developments have hit the market this month so far – Queens Peak near Queenstown MRT station and Parc Riviera in the West Coast. Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) data released on Tuesday shows that developers found buyers for 1,252 private homes last month. This was more than twice the 509 units they moved in September, and the 549 units sold in October last year. Last month’s sales were the highest in any month so far this year; it was also the best showing since the 1,655-unit primary-market sales recorded in July 2015.
Sibor, SOR rise sharply with tighter rules
Domestic interest rates have shot up finally and are back to July levels as domestic funding tightens amid a weak Singapore dollar. The key three-month Sibor (Singapore Interbank Offered Rate), used to price mortgages, rose to 0.91 per cent on Tuesday from 0.88 per cent on Monday after flatlining around 0.87 per cent since July. The year-high was 1.25 per cent on Jan 19. The volatile three-month SOR (swap offer rate), a benchmark for commercial loans, was up sharply at 0.89 per cent on Monday, up from 0.78 per cent last Friday. After diving to the year-low of 0.48 per cent on Sept 26, the SOR had been trundling below 0.70 per cent the past two months.
Retail sales improve in September, rising 2%
Retail sales turned positive in September, rising 2 per cent from a year earlier, and registering a smaller 1.9 per cent decline when vehicles are excluded. Takings at the till had shrunk 0.5 per cent in August, with a sharper 6 per cent drop without auto sales. Auto sales by themselves have been losing steam, rising by 20.4 per cent in September, the figures released by the Department of Statistics on Tuesday (Nov 15) showed.
S’pore will remain open and connected
As opposition to globalisation increases, Singapore remains focused on becoming even more open and connected to the rest of the world, said Mr Chan Chun Sing, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office. Mr Chan told an awards dinner last night that increasing connectivity will be a key plank of Singapore’s strategy, one reflected in the Committee on the Future Economy report expected next year. He said the wave of anti-globalisation arising from recent political developments in the United States and Europe has created a climate of anxiety for business.
Ascott signs 10 new management contracts in South-east Asia
The Ascott Limited, CapitaLand’s wholly owned serviced residence business unit, has signed 10 new management contracts in South-east Asia, bringing the number of apartment units it has added this year to over 10,000 – its largest increase in a single year. The group signed new contracts in Hanoi and Halong City in Vietnam, Phnom Penh, Bangkok, Manila and Cebu. These follow the opening of Metropole Bangkok as part of The Crest Collection, a group of luxury serviced residences.
GLP signs 204,000 sq m of leases with logistics service providers
Mainboard-listed Global Logistic Properties (GLP) announced on Wednesday (Nov 16) that is has signed 204,000 square metres of new and renewal leases with leading global third party logistics service providers across China, Japan, US and Brazil. With these leases, signed in the past three months, GLP said it has strengthened relationships with existing customers including DHL, Hitachi Transport System, Schenker and AGV Logística. The customers are using the facilities for domestic distribution catering to demand from the pharmaceutical, auto parts and consumer goods industries.
Views, Reviews & Forum
Getting town councils to raise their game
Given that about 80 per cent of Singaporeans live in public housing estates, town councils are an integral part of Singapore life. Last month, the Ministry of National Development (MND) initiated a public consultation on the proposed amendments to the Town Councils Act (TCA), which was first enacted in 1988 to empower elected Members of Parliament and unelected town councillors to run public housing estates. MND’s proposals have four broad aims: To clarify town councils’ roles, improve the governance of town councils, strengthen their financial management and enhance MND’s regulatory oversight of town councils.
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