The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 24th, 25th, 26th and 27th December 2016

Top Story

Reits still offer refuge from global volatility
Brokerages are flagging more volatility for the Singapore real estate investment trust (S-Reit) sector, but they are also calling a “buy” on it.  This is mostly because brokerages believe S-Reits still make a good defensive yield play amid growing global uncertainty and slowing growth in major economies. Yield plays gain traction as a safe haven in an unsafe world.  S-Reits have also outperformed the broader market and their defensive counterparts, such as telecommunications and utilities. Year-to-date, the FTSE ST Reit Index has returned 7.2 per cent (assuming dividends are reinvested), versus 3.3 per cent for the Straits Times index, 1.7 per cent for the telco index, and a negative 11.2 per cent for the utilities index.

Latest cooling measures unlikely to work: HK property watchers
The world’s least-affordable major city continues to be plagued by troubles in the residential property sector, with housing woes expected to take centrestage during the March 2017 chief executive election.  Incumbent leader Leung Chun Ying has grappled with calls for better use of Hong Kong’s land, of which less than 25 per cent has been developed.  This is one of the main reasons housing is expensive and land supply is short, Mr Leung told attendees of a banquet hosted by the Bauhinia Foundation Research Centre think-tank, according to a government press release.

Singapore Economy

Singapore manufacturing output rises 11.9% in November
Better-than-expected Singapore manufacturing output data has brought some cheer to the festive season, with economists sanguine that the odds of a technical recession in the fourth quarter are reduced.  The 11.9 per cent total manufacturing output growth year-on-year in November was lifted by strong output from the biomedical manufacturing and electronics clusters.  A Bloomberg poll of 15 private sector economists showed a median estimate of 1.6 per cent industrial production growth year-on-year in November.

Singapore Real Estate

Kallang Riverside Park could be redeveloped
Plans to redevelop Kallang Riverside Park could be on the horizon after a change of management earlier this year.  In response to queries from The Straits Times, both Gardens by the Bay and the National Parks Board said that Gardens had taken over the management of the Crawford section of Kallang Riverside Park and Marina Promenade in May this year.  Both areas will come under one of the three gardens under Gardens by the Bay – Bay Central Garden, which runs from Crawford Street to Raffles Avenue.

Future-proofing Funan mall
It will take three years before the new Funan mall is completed, so architecture firm Woods Bagot has designed features that will make version 2.0 “future-proofed”.  When the mall is unveiled in 2019, shoppers will not see trimmings of a regular mall or a traditional layout.  The former Funan DigitaLife Mall closed for redevelopment on June 30 after 31 years.

Rochor spirit colours new HDB project
Rochor Centre, with its iconic yellow, green, red and blue hues, may soon be gone but its community spirit lives on in Kallang Trivista.  The Upper Boon Keng Road development, which was fully completed in June, is now home to most of the residents from Rochor Centre, an HDB development with a mix of businesses and residences.

Government trims marginally industrial land supply for first half of 2017
In what is seen as a mild trimming of industrial land supply in a weak market, the government is releasing six sites on the Confirmed List and five sites on the Reserve List under the Industrial Government Land Sales (IGLS) programme for the first half of 2017 spanning 11.25 hectares.  The six sites on the Confirmed List can potentially yield 656,167 square feet in gross floor area (GFA) based on their plot ratios, after the government offered seven Confirmed List sites that can yield 705,466 square feet in H2 2016 IGLS.  But in ensuring continued land supply for industrialists, all six sites are zoned Business-2 for heavier and more pollutive industrial use, each with a tenure of 20 years.

Views, Reviews & Forum

2017 economic outlook: welcome to the jungle
Brace yourselves: 2017 looks set to pan out very differently from previous years, with a veritable jungle of risks and opportunities lurking ahead.  The election of Donald Trump as US president is changing the global environment.  After years of seeing monetary easing as the only game in town to support growth, global markets are reacting positively to Mr Trump’s victory, anticipating that the US will enter a period of fiscal expansion. Tax cuts and infrastructure investment are expected to reflate the US economy, which would be positive for the global economy.  However, I am not convinced that we will see the global benefits from such US policy – at least not in 2017.

Main contractors should be held liable for safety lapses
A development project is usually awarded to a main contractor, who will in turn select sub-contractors (“Hold sub-contractors to account for safety lapses” by Mr Han Wenqi; Dec 22).

The main contractor should be held responsible for any safety lapses because the contract is between the main contractor and the project owner, not the sub-contractor.

The project owner, its consultants and architects have to clearly state the work and safety criteria in their tender documents.

Rents and capital values down, risk appetite up
Q What were the best and worst things (financially) that happened to you this year?

A It’s been a bittersweet year. I was instrumental in one of the largest commercial lease relocations (100,000 sq ft) at Marina Square involving a top educational firm.

Another high point for me was being appointed by a major telco for a consulting job and being able to execute the onward recommended strategy/transaction process.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Analysts give cautious forecast after a rough 2016

Outlook 2017 East Asia: Japanese PM could be tripped up by Trump, economy

Export surge gives a boost to fragile Thai economy

Trash stops in Brooklyn run afoul of communities

Selling Trump’s hotel to end conflicts of interest may mean loss

Beijing to step up measures to cool market for homes

Sales of new US homes rise to second-fastest pace since 2008

China’s tallest skyscraper resolves issues that delayed opening

New fund to help UK areas hit by 2nd-home ownership

Oakland’s Ghost Ship fire a disaster waiting to happen

London property market shifting in favour of tech firms

Tokyo jazzes up retail scene to woo shoppers

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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