The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 30th June 2016

Singapore Economy

Financial strength of some insurers here could be sapped in short term
The capital adequacy ratio (CAR) or financial strength of some insurers in Singapore is expected to suffer in the short term, following the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union (EU) – and this is especially the case with those who hold substantial equities.  The full impact of “Brexit”, however, remains to be seen.  Although investment portfolios vary from insurer to insurer, analysts and observers agree that prolonged volatility in the stock market would lower an insurer’s CAR, which is a buffer to absorb losses.

Moody’s cuts 2016 growth forecast for Singapore
Singapore’s growth forecast for this year has been pared again, this time by ratings agency Moody’s.  Moody’s said yesterday that it was cutting the growth forecast from its earlier projection of 1.8 per cent to 1.6 per cent.  The forecast is at the lower end of the Government’s estimated growth range of between 1 per cent and 3 per cent. It is also lower than the forecast from a Monetary Authority of Singapore poll of private sector economists released earlier this month, which tipped gross domestic product growth of 1.8 per cent this year.

Singapore Real Estate

UOB suspends London property loans programme
UOB has become the first bank here to suspend its overseas loans programme for London properties in the wake of the “Brexit” vote.  Confirming this, the bank’s spokeswoman told The Business Times on Wednesday that it will temporarily stop accepting loan applications for London properties.  “As the aftermath of the UK referendum is still unfolding and given the uncertainties, we need to ensure our customers are cautious with their London property investments,” she said.

OCBC puts Bukit Pasoh shophouses on market
OCBC is putting another property in its historical property portfolio up for sale. This time it is a pair of freehold conservation shophouses along Bukit Pasoh Road, near Keong Saik Road and a stone’s throw from Outram MRT Station.  The guide price for 11 and 13 Bukit Pasoh Road is in the region of S$20 million, which works out to about S$2,350 per square foot based on the gross floor area (GFA) of 8,503 sq ft.  The shophouses have three storeys and a mezzanine level.

Only EC site on Confirmed List this year launched
An executive condominium (EC) site along Anchorvale Lane – the only EC site on the Confirmed List of the government land sales (GLS) programme for this year – was released for sale on Wednesday.  Property consultants believe the site could draw interest from developers who have had residential projects in the north-east region, but aggressive bidding is unlikely amid a supply overhang of unsold ECs and mass-market condominiums in that region.  The EC site was launched by the Housing & Development Board (HDB) via a public tender on Wednesday. It was on the Confirmed List of the H1 2016 GLS programme.

CDL still eyeing UK expansion
Undeterred by “Brexit” scares, City Developments (CDL) is still looking to add to its UK hotel portfolio. In fact, it believes that these uncertain times may be the best opportunity to pick up assets from anxious owners looking to sell.  Executive chairman Kwek Leng Beng told this to the audience at a signing ceremony, as he sought to reassure again that the group’s exposure to the United Kingdom is not big enough to warrant harm to the group.

LHN nominee to buy Beach Road carpark property for S$26m
Metropolitan Parking Pte Ltd, nominee for property management services provider LHN Group, has exercised an option to buy from Ottowest Pte Ltd a carpark property for S$26 million.  In a filing to the local bourse on Wednesday, LHN said the carpark property is located at Golden Mile Tower on Beach Road.  In exercising the purchase option, the group said Metropolitan Parking is required to pay a deposit amounting to 5 per cent of the purchase price.  It added that Metropolitan Parking’s internal resources would fund the purchase. This would be shared equally between its shareholders LHN Parking (GMT) Pte Ltd (LHN GMT) and GMTC Private Limited, and through Metropolitan Parking’s bank borrowings.

Funan clicks out for revamp
There have been more cardboard boxes than customers in the shops at Funan DigitaLife Mall on some evenings this week, while the piped music has been accompanied by the sound of tape being pulled from dispensers.  The six-storey North Bridge Road shopping centre, which specialises in electronics and IT-related goods, will close its doors tonight after 31 years. Its owner, CapitaLand Mall Trust Management, plans to redevelop the mall into what it describes as an “experiential creative hub” over the next three years.  Tenants began clearance sales in April and most of them have emptied at least half of their shelves.

Streetwear shop 77th Street to close by end-July
The road for iconic streetwear shop 77th Street has come to an end, with the shutters on its last shop at Ang Mo Kio Hub to come down by the end of July.  The shop’s founder Elim Chew told Mediacorp in an exclusive interview that her decision to close the shop was mainly because of high rentals.  “Well, you know, the dream during that time was to open up to 24 or 30 outlets all around Singapore. The rental was then affordable. But as the rental became higher and higher and higher, we find that we’re just working for the landlord to pay off the rental,” she said.  “When I first started, (the rental rate) was S$9 per square foot, today it’s S$35 per square foot.

Marriott looks to launch 5 hotel brands in S’pore
Marriott International, which on Monday secured antitrust approval from the European Union to acquire Starwood in a merger transaction, is scouting for the “right partner, property and place” in the Republic to launch at least another five of its 19 hotel brands here.  “Occupancies and room rates are still high in Singapore … We would like to have Renaissance, Courtyard, Fairfield, Moxy and Bvlgari in Singapore. It is about finding the right location for these brands, the perfect product which means the property and the right partner,” said Mr Craig S Smith, president and managing director of Marriott International in Asia Pacific to TODAY at the sidelines of a press conference to introduce two of the group’s brands into Singapore.

Companies’ Brief

Second Chance Properties
Second Chance Properties reported a third-quarter net profit of $3.1 million, down 27.59 per cent from the same period the previous year.  Revenue for the three months to May 31 came in 3.2 per cent lower at $10.2 million.  Second Chance operates apparel, gold and property businesses.  Revenue from the apparel business fell by $1.75 million for the nine months to May 31, going from $7.95 million to $6.2 million.

Views, Reviews & Forum

Home loans cheaper as Fed holds off rate hikes
The slow steady rise in interest rates is starting to taper off amid slower economic growth, and homeowners are already reaping the benefits in the form of cheaper mortgages.  The decline comes on the back of the US Federal Reserve’s decision two weeks ago to keep interest rate hikes on hold and slow the pace of future increases.  Mr Keff Hui, a broker at Mortgage Supermart Singapore, said: “Overall, interest hike expectations have cooled off a bit, given the slowing economy, and I would view the recent fall-back as a normalisation of the uptrend interest cycle.”

Lessons for Asia from Brexit: be careful with deep integration
A decade or so ago, there was much discussion in East Asia about what form of economic cooperation, or even integration, was best suited to this part of the world and whether the European Union (EU) could provide a good model – even to the point of achieving monetary, fiscal and political union.  Surveying the mess created by the prospective British Exit or “Brexit” from the EU (although it is still not certain that this will occur, despite last week’s referendum in favour of it), Asia’s reaction will probably be to shy away in horror at the prospect of a similar muddle.

After Brexit, Asia should strengthen its regional safety net
The shocking decision of the United Kingdom to pull out of the European Union has reverberated around the world. Financial markets have been jittery.  In the UK, the centre of the storm, the pound sterling has plunged at one point to a four-decade low and the FTSE has fallen sharply. Moody’s quickly downgraded the UK’s credit rating from stable to negative and a number of American banks in London have initiated the process of relocating to other European capitals. The Bank of England has announced a £250 billion (S$452 billion) contingent facility.

Workplace injury claims SMEs’ biggest insurance risk: AIG
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) face rising business risks as they deal with increasing costs amid an economic slowdown.  But AIG Asia Pacific Insurance (AIG Singapore) forecasts that internal factors such as workplace injury will pose the greatest risk over the next 12 months.  It said in a report yesterday that its claims data shows the top three risks for SMEs are workplace injuries (56 per cent), fire or water damage to property (20 per cent) and legal liability (20 per cent).

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Brexit shock leads to record negative Danish mortgage rates

May consumer spending up for second month

Wanda Commercial offer faces hurdles over price

London’s loss is Asia’s gain as property funds seek safe havens

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Do older condos in CCR offer better yields? (the Edge Property, Dated : 27 June 2017)
The launch of CapitaLand’s 268-unit Cairnhill Nine and Oxley Holdings’ 149-unit The Rise at Oxley in March have refocused investors’ attention on prime District 9. OUE’s deferred payment scheme for the 462-unit OUE Twin Peaks and Wheelock Properties’ 15% discount and 15% additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) assistance package for the 84-unit Ardmore Three in April further shone the spotlight on projects in prime Districts 9 and 10.

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

Scroll to Top