The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 28th April 2017

Top Story

Private home prices fell for 14th straight quarter in Q1, with decline easing slightly to 0.4%: URA
Private home prices in Singapore continued to fall in the first quarter, marking a 14th consecutive quarter losing streak, according to data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Friday (April 28).  Overall values dipped by 0.4 per cent in the first quarter from the last three months of 2016, compared to the 0.5 per cent decline from the third to the fourth quarter.

Josephine Teo, Desmond Lee promoted to full ministers from May 1
Singapore will soon have two women full ministers in the Cabinet for the first time, after Senior Minister of State Josephine Teo was promoted in the latest round of Cabinet changes announced on Thursday.  Mrs Teo, 48, will be Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and Second Minister at both the Manpower and Foreign Affairs ministries.


Singapore Economy

Economists see MAS seeking labour market clues before next move
How Singapore’s soft labour market develops in the coming months may be the final, crucial piece of the puzzle on when the central bank’s next policy move – a tightening – will be, economists say.  This is despite the city-state’s growth outlook becoming rosier in the six months since the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) last said that it would maintain its policy stance for an “extended period”.

MAS urges retail sector to hop on e-commerce train for growth
Singapore’s subdued retail sector can take a leaf out of the playbook of the manufacturing sector, which has harnessed technological advancements to benefit from the latest upswing in global demand for its products.

Swee Say unveils more help for PMET job-seekers
More help was unveiled on Thursday to help professionals, managers, executives and technicians looking for jobs.  Announced by Minister of Manpower Lim Swee Say, the aid comes in the form of beefed-up professional guidance and additional schemes offering wage and training subsidies for PMETs who want to work in the manufacturing sector.

Overall price pressures muted but inflation to keep edging up
Inflation will keep inching up this year driven mainly by pricier oil but overall price pressures will stay muted, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said yesterday.  It pointed to uneven economic growth and the fragile labour market as factors that will help keep prices in check.


Singapore Real Estate

HDB resale prices slip 0.5% in Q1 as sales drop 9.6%
Prices of resale Housing and Development Board flats slipped 0.5 per cent in the first quarter from the previous three months, bringing the decline from the peak in 2013 to 10.3 per cent, according to final figures released by HDB on Friday (April 28).  The April drop was higher than the 0.1 per cent decline seen in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Slide in office and retail rents, prices worsen in Q1: URA
Market conditions remained challenging for the office and retail property segments in the first quarter, as rentals and prices fell further.  Office rents declined at a faster clip of 3.4 per cent in the first quarter from the last three months of 2016, compared with 1.8 per cent drop from the third to the fourth quarter.

Industrial rents and prices continue decline in Q1
The recovery in Singapore’s trade and manufacturing output has yet to translate into higher demand for industrial space in the first quarter of this year, JTC Corporation’s latest figures on industrial property prices and rentals show.  Prices of Singapore’s industrial spaces are down 2.2 per cent from the previous quarter; rentals are 0.9 per cent down.

25% of Funan’s retail net lettable area leased before 2019 opening
A quarter of Funan’s total retail net lettable area has been leased more than two years ahead of its opening in Q4 2019.  Tenants will include theatre company W!ld Rice, which will build a 380-seat theatre spanning about 18,000 square feet (sq ft). Carrie K., a homegrown artisan jewellery label; and Keepers, a collective of Singapore designers – both founded by local designer Carolyn Kan – will set up a flagship store at Funan.

Victoria Park Close bungalow being sold for S$40m
Big residential property deals continue to be sealed. The latest deals include a bungalow in the Victoria Park Good Class Bungalow Area that is transacting at S$40 million, an apartment at The Marq on Paterson Hill that has fetched S$21.8 million and a couple of bungalow deals in Sentosa Cove.  The Victoria Park Close bungalow that is being sold was built about 20 years ago and is on a sprawling site of 29,955 sq ft with 999-year leasehold tenure.

Subcontractors seek to recover $5m for work at T4
A dispute between two large contractors at Changi Airport’s Terminal 4 is inflicting serious cash-flow problems on a group of local subcontractors.  The dispute between Acesian Star and main T4 contractor Takenaka Corp is creating ripple effects that are squeezing four subcontractors. Acesian Star, a unit of Catalist- listed Acesian Partners, is battling Takenaka over the value of work it carried out and various deductions imposed by the Japanese company.

PUB seeks supplier for smart shower devices to monitor water usage
National water agency PUB is seeking proposals for the supply of smart shower devices for 10,000 new homes.  The devices will track the amount of water used during a shower in real time. A study PUB conducted with the National University of Singapore showed that a person could save up to five litres of water a day using such devices.


Companies’ Brief

Starhill Global Reit’s Q3 DPU falls 6.3%
Starhill Global Reit’s distribution per unit (DPU) for the third quarter ended March 31, 2017 fell 6.3 per cent to 1.18 Singapore cents, while gross revenue and net property income (NPI) edged downwards slightly.  Gross revenue for Q3 FY17 dipped 0.6 per cent year on year to S$53.33 million while NPI declined 0.9 per cent to S$41.22 million, mainly due to lower contributions from its Wisma Atria property, Ngee Ann City property, Myer Centre Adelaide and Renhe Spring Zongbei property.

AA Reit’s Q4 DPU suffers as property income dips
Lower net property income and higher retained distributions took a toll on the distribution per unit (DPU) of AIMS AMP Capital Industrial Real Estate Investment Trust (AA Reit).  Its DPU for the fourth financial quarter came in at 2.78 Singapore cents, 5.8 per cent lower compared to the corresponding quarter a year ago.  This brings the full-year DPU to 11.05 Singapore cents, a decline of 2.6 per cent from FY2016.

First Sponsor’s Q1 earnings up 16.4%
Sales in China helped to boost performance for First Sponsor Group, which announced on Thursday a 16.4 per cent increase in its first-quarter net profit.  First Sponsor posted net earnings of S$14.24 million for the three months ended March 31, 2017, up from Q1 2016’s S$12.23 million. Earnings per share stood at 2.41 Singapore cents, compared with 2.07 Singapore cents the year before.

Frasers Hospitality Trust Q2 DPS dips 4.2%
Increase in the number of stapled securities following a rights issue led to a lower distribution per stapled security (DPS) for Frasers Hospitality Trust (FHT) in its second financial quarter.  For the three months ended March 31, DPS came in at 1.2063 Singapore cents, 4.2 per cent lower than the corresponding quarter a year ago, said the global hotel and serviced residence trust on Friday.

Global Premium Hotels shares to be suspended ahead of delistment
Shares in Global Premium Hotels will be suspended ahead of its delistment following a takeover bid.  JK Global Capital, an investment holding company owned by Global Premium chairman Koh Wee Meng, earlier this year launched a privatisation offer of 36.5 Singapore cents per share for the shares Mr Koh didn’t already own in Global Premium.

Tuan Sing’s Q1 earnings down 44%
Tuan Sing Holdings’ net profit slumped 44 per cent year on year to S$5.39 million for the first quarter ended March 31, weighed down by a decline in revenue.  Revenue was 29 per cent lower at S$74.8 million due to lower revenue from development properties.  Earnings per share fell to 0.5 Singapore cent, from 0.8 Singapore cent a year ago.

Mapletree Logistics Trust delivers higher DPU in Q4
Mapletree Logistics Trust has delivered a fourth-quarter distribution per unit (DPU) of 1.86 cents, up 3.3 per cent from a year ago.  Gross revenue in the three months ended March 31 jumped 9.1 per cent from a year ago to $96.5 million, due mainly to contributions from four acquisitions in Australia, Malaysia and Vietnam completed in the last 12 months.


Views, Reviews & Forum 

HDB flats meant for living in
Housing Board flats are heavily subsidised and are meant for us to live in, not to conduct business (Set aside HDB blocks for home offices, by Mr Pang Meng Hock; April 26).  If a few HDB blocks are designated for small office, home office (Soho) use, the area will eventually lookmore like a commercial estate than a residential one.

Singapore banks could use some HK property mania
Stable oil prices are fine, and a recovery in the Baltic Dry Index can’t hurt. But seriously, how long can Singapore’s banks remain hostages of the island’s shipping and offshore marine services industry?  That question is bound to be asked as another earnings season comes burdened with a high-profile bankruptcy.


Global Economy & Global Real Estate 

Singapore and Guangzhou sign LOI to commit to investments in technology

Interchangeability of Singapore and Brunei’s currencies facilitates trade and investment: MAS

UK housing starts indicator hits 10-year high

Zoning move fuels debate over NY’s garment district

China’s economic growth may be losing momentum

Xiongan’s 2t yuan development lifts hope for better Chinese cities


Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate 

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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