Developers to keep playing quantum price game this year
Developers sold 8,136 private homes last year, up 9.4 per cent from the 7,440 units they moved in the previous year – and the best showing in three years. The pick-up is a reflection of improved sentiment and demand, say analysts. The executive condo (EC) market posted even more spectacular sales growth. Preliminary government numbers show that developers found buyers for 4,018 EC units last year – up 57.6 per cent from the 2,550 units in 2015 and a four-year high. Realistic pricing by developers has been cited as a key factor for the improved primary-market sales of ECs, which are a public-private housing hybrid.
Emerging Asia better able to cope with risks of financial tightening: MAS
The challenge of balancing growth and stability will become more acute in China and emerging Asia, as global financial conditions tighten, said Monetary Authority of Singapore managing director Ravi Menon. But emerging Asia is today better able to cope with the risks of tighter financial conditions, he said. “While there are several pockets of weaknesses, the household, corporate and banking sector balance sheets are, on the whole, strong enough to ride through the coming turbulence.”
S’pore tops Asia-Pacific in talent competitiveness: study
Singapore ranked first in the Asia-Pacific for the fourth year running in a global index on talent competitiveness. It trumped Australia, which came in sixth in the global standing and was the only other APAC country in the top 10 of the Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI). Internationally, Singapore was second only to Switzerland in terms of attracting and retaining talent. The Republic scored 74.09 while Switzerland scored 74.55. Britain and the US came in third and fourth respectively.
S’pore likely to prop up S-E Asia’s muted IPO market in 2017: analysts
Singapore is set to be 2017’s hottest spot for initial public offerings (IPOs) in South-east Asia with sales of stakes in business and real estate trusts, while currency volatility and weak investor sentiment curb deals elsewhere in the region. Singapore’s stock exchange has promoted itself as a centre for business trusts and real estate investment trusts (Reits), which offer stable dividends. That has helped it partly make up for a drop in major share sales as large Chinese firms favour the higher valuations and liquidity of Hong Kong.
Singapore Real Estate
Developers’ private homes sales slide to 367 units in Dec
Developers sold 367 private homes in December 2016, less than half the 860 private homes that they sold in November 2016 but close to the 384 units that they moved in December 2015. These figures exclude executive condominiums or ECs. Including ECs, which are a public-private housing hybrid, developers found buyers for 580 units in December 2016, down from 1,111 units in November 2016 but higher than the 508 units that they sold in December 2015.
Rebooted Mandai precinct to create jobs in hospitality and conservation
Work on the project to rejuvenate Mandai with two new nature-themed parks is about to start, following Monday’s ground-breaking ceremony, with the precinct expected to create jobs once it is fully operational. Speaking at the ceremony, Minister for Trade and Industry S Iswaran said: “There will be interesting career opportunities for Singaporeans interested in hospitality, conservation and research. There will also be tourism benefits, with Mandai helping to attract visitors from Asia and beyond, who are interested in eco-friendly experiences.”
Surbana axes 50 ‘poor performers’; MOM in talks with unions
Barely two weeks into the new year, news broke last Saturday that Surbana Jurong, a Temasek Holdings-owned infrastructure consultancy, had cut dozens of staff from its payroll. Amid an uncertain economic outlook and a lacklustre labour market, the immediate thought was that those affected had been retrenched, but a company spokesman stressed to The Business Times that “about 50” Singapore-based employees had been let go purely for performance reasons, and that it was not a retrenchment exercise. The number works out to less than 0.4 per cent of Surbana’s 13,000-strong global workforce.
Chip Eng Seng looks poised for take-off
In a property market where heavyweights such as CapitaLand and City Developments are in the limelight, a relatively small company like Chip Eng Seng Corporation appears to have escaped the attention of most analysts. Although earnings in recent years have varied – from as low as S$57.2 million in 2015 to as high as S$280.7 million in 2014 – the group has been quietly putting its chess pieces in play and is worth a closer look. Chip Eng Seng has come a long way from its humble beginning in the 1960s when Lim Tiam Seng entered the construction business as a subcontractor.
CapitaLand offloads The Nassim
CapitaLand on Monday said it has sold its 100 per cent stake in Nassim Hill Realty (NHR) to an unrelated private company, Kheng Leong, for S$411.6 million. Included in the sale are also 45 unsold units in The Nassim, a luxury freehold boutique condominium project in Nassim Hill which has sold only 10 units since 2015. CapitaLand said it is doing this to avoid paying extension charges which would kick in from August 2017. NHR, which developed The Nassim, is subject to the qualifying certificate (QC) condition to sell all the units in The Nassim within two years from August 2015, which was when it obtained its temporary occupation permit.
CapitaLand to develop office tower in Ho Chi Minh City with acquisition of prime CBD site
CapitaLand, through wholly-owned subsidiary CapitaLand (Vietnam) Holdings, has entered into a conditional agreement to acquire a prime commercial site in the Central Business District (CBD) of Ho Chi Minh City to develop its first international Grade A office tower in Vietnam. CapitaLand will hold a 100 per cent stake in the 0.6-hectare site with a gross floor area of 106,000 square metres. Located in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City’s District 1, the site will be developed into a 240m office tower with retail units at the ground and basement levels.
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