The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 19th December 2017

Singapore Economy

November exports beat forecasts but growth eases
Singapore’s exports beat economists’ projections in November, but eased from October’s sizzling pace as high base effects from a year ago kicked in and electronics growth continued to slow.  Non-oil domestic exports (NODX) rose 9.1 per cent in November year on year, down from the revised 20.5 per cent growth in October, according to the latest data by trade agency IE Singapore. The expansion seen in October was the strongest pace of growth in eight months, due mainly to low base effects, as well as a pickup in the more volatile non-electronics segments.

Bright spot for private sector bonus, but not all sectors will see gains
Employees in the private sector have some reason to cheer this festive season, as the outlook for bonuses has brightened somewhat on the back of Singapore’s better-than-expected economic growth this year.  But they might want to hold back on the champagne and confetti as not every sector stands to gain, say HR analysts. Given that many sectors have yet to benefit from improved economic conditions, soaring bonuses across the board in 2017 is going to be unlikely.

Singapore Real Estate

Gaw Capital eyeing further Singapore property buys
Hong Kong-based private equity real estate group Gaw Capital Partners (GCP), which has invested more than S$500 million in the Singapore property market in the past couple of years, is keen to further expand its presence here.  Kenneth Gaw, president and co-founder of Gaw Capital, told The Business Times recently: “Singapore’s property sector is one of the very few major markets in Asia which suffered a downturn in the past few years. It is now on the cusp of recovery and we are confident about buying into a recovery.”

Worries about private homes oversupply unfounded for now: Report
It is “far too early” to worry about a potential oversupply of private homes due to a surge in en bloc deals, a research house said in a report on Monday (Dec 18).  While this could be a valid concern if the trend continues, the report by Maybank Kim Eng analyst Derrick Heng pointed out that the redeveloped properties from the collective sales would not come onstream until 2020 to 2021.

Local firm to lead Esplanade’s new theatre project
Singapore firm architects61 will lead the construction of The Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay’s new $30 million waterfront theatre, slated to open by 2021.  The local firm’s team includes international theatre planner Charcoalblue, which led the theatre and acoustic design of Chicago Shakespeare Theatre’s new indoor theatre, The Yard.

Combustible panels on buildings here
In June, thousands watched as the 24-storey Grenfell Tower in London burned – overwhelming emergency responders and killing 71 of its occupants.  Few watching in Singapore knew, however, that the disaster would later cast a spotlight on investigations into an incident that took place here a month earlier.

Companies’ Brief

Keppel Corp unit acquires two residential sites in Vietnam
Keppel Corp’s subsidiary, Keppel Land, has entered into two conditional sales and purchase agreements to acquire two prime sites in Ho Chi Minh City, which will yield about 1,550 homes in total.  The two sites will have a total development cost of US$297 million.

CDL chairman urges shareholders to accept revised offer of 620 pence a share
In light of City Developments’ (CDL) improved offer to minority shareholders to take London-listed Millennium & Copthorne Hotels (M&C) private on 9 Dec, CDL’s chairman Kwek Leng Beng has written a letter to shareholders of M&C urging them to accept a revised offer of 620 pence a share.

Ascott adds Africa to its portfolio
The Ascott is entering Africa.  The serviced residence unit of CapitaLand has secured contracts to manage two properties in Accra, the capital of Ghana, in what has been a record year of growth as the company added 18 new cities across nine countries, and over 21,000 units to its portfolio.  Following the latest acquisition, it now has 69,464 units.

FCL’s Thai unit prices 2.5b baht of 7-year debentures at 2.94% under new programme
Frasers Centrepoint’s Thailand subsidiary has priced the first 2.5 billion baht of a 25 billion baht debenture programme.  The new debentures bear a coupon of 2.94 per cent and mature in 2024.  Proceeds will be used to repay existing debt, investment, financing working capital or any combination of the three.

Views, Reviews & Forum

Opportunities in commercial and industrial markets for SMEs
GDP growth has been revised upwards. Data for total trade and manufacturing output has been growing year-on-year since 2017 began. With most analysts claiming that the property sector will rebound in 2017 or 2018, every media story about the real estate sector is bullish.  Oddly, while property industry players are celebrating, the vacancies of office, retail, factory and warehouse space are setting new highs.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

US dollar falls on tax reform caution

US takes to kerbside grocery delivery

Prime London property market shows signs of life

China home prices still on steady growth as buyers shrug off govt curbs

Fosun sells tower as China cracks down on outbound deals

China’s Tencent to lead US$863m investment in online retailer

Japan exports boom in November, but inflation not following script

Blackstone taps Australia’s shadow-lending market with La Trobe stake

Macron rebuffs criticism for birthday stay in lavish chateau

Skyscraper city becomes citadel of Putin’s state capitalism

German residential property firm Vonovia buys Austria’s Buwog

Stockholm housing slump set to deepen, state mortgage bank warns

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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