The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 30 Jul 2020 (Thu)

Singapore Real Estate

Adjoining condos at Sophia Road to be up for collective sale with S$64m indicative price
Adjoining condominiums Fairhaven and Sophia Ville at Sophia Road will be launched for collective sale by tender on Aug 3 with a combined indicative price of S$64 million. The majority owners of both developments agreed to band together so that the sites may be offered to a developer who can redevelop them into a larger residential project, sole marketing agent JLL said on Thursday.

Competition to heat up at District 21 with upcoming launch
The launch of Forett At Bukit Timah will amp up competition in District 21, delivering more options for buyers in the area. Indicative prices for the 633-unit freehold project by Qingjian Realty (South Pacific) Group and Perennial Real Estate Holdings start from S$1,800 per square foot (psf). The former Goodluck Garden site on Toh Tuck Road was acquired via a collective sale in 2018 for S$610 million.

Mortgagee sales not likely to spike up in 2020 despite recession
Even as Singapore’s economic outlook worsens, there probably will not be a sharp spike in mortgagee sales this year because of government relief measures such as a deferment of loan repayments, and banks holding off on foreclosures until the loan deferment period ends.

Tender launched for funeral parlour complex in Woodlands
The tender for a new funeral parlour complex in Woodlands was launched on Tuesday by the Housing Board, as Singapore prepares for an expected increase in resident deaths in the near future. It is the first of four funeral parlour complex sites that the National Environment Agency (NEA) will roll out over the next decade to cope with the ageing population.


Singapore Economy

Layoffs double in Q2; total employment dives by quarterly record of 122,000
Singapore’s total employment saw its worst quarterly contraction on record in the second quarter of 2020, according to preliminary data, and economists fear the worst is yet to come. The total number of people working between April and June shrank by 121,800, almost five times the 25,700 seen in Q1…

Experts fear worst may be yet to come in S’pore job market
The worst may be yet to come on the employment front, experts said, following the release of preliminary figures yesterday that showed retrenchments more than doubled in the second quarter of the year. They agreed that the job market has not bottomed out amid the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, but that government measures have gone some way in mitigating the impact.

Singapore bank lending extends fall in June for fourth consecutive month
Bank lending in Singapore continued its slide for the fourth consecutive month in June, dipping 0.7 per cent from the previous month to come in at S$680.36 billion, preliminary data from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) showed on Thursday.


Companies’ Brief

Ascott’s co-living brand lyf adds 6 new properties in Australia, China, Philippines
CapitaLand’s wholly-owned lodging business unit, The Ascott, is adding over 1,000 units across six new properties in Australia, China and the Philippines, under its co-living brand lyf. With this, Ascott will have a total of 14 lyf properties with over 2,700 units, the company said in a press statement on Thursday.

Aw & Sons Capital buys another 10 shophouses at Teck Chye Terrace
Aw & Sons Capital, a low-profile boutique developer and family office, has bought 10 contiguous freehold shophouses along Teck Chye Terrace, just off Upper Serangoon Road, for S$39 million. The company already owns the remaining five shophouses in the same row.

CDL Hospitality Trusts’ DPS for H1 tumbles 63.7% to 1.51 Singapore cents
CDL Hospitality Trusts’ (CDLHT) distribution per stapled security (DPS) sank 63.7 per cent to 1.51 Singapore cents for the six months ended June 30, 2020, from 4.16 Singapore cents a year ago. Gross revenue was down 44.5 per cent to S$52.1 million for the half year, from S$93.8 million a year ago.

Far East H-Trust DPS for H1 slides 43.4% to 1.03 S cents
Far East Hospitality Trust’s (Far East H-Trust) distribution per stapled security (DPS) fell by 43.4 per cent to 1.03 Singapore cents for its first half ended June 30, 2020, from 1.82 cents a year ago. The managers had retained part of the distributable income to provide for further rental rebates and deferment in rental payments by tenants in the months ahead to help tide them over the challenging Covid-19 period.

Portfolio valuation, Covid impact leads to Hongkong Land’s US$1.8b H1 net loss
Property developer and investment company Hongkong Land on Wednesday announced that it made a net loss of US$1.8 billion in its first half ended June 30, compared to a net profit of US$411 million a year ago. This was mainly due to net non-cash losses of US$2.18 billion arising from the bi-annual revaluation of the group’s investment properties, due to lower open-market rents.

Lian Beng posts 12.8% drop in net profit
Lian Beng on Wednesday posted a 12.8 per cent drop in net profit to S$28.7 million in its FY20 ended May 31. This was partly due to its higher share of loss of associates of S$10.9 million (compared to S$246,000 in FY19) due to its share of fair-value loss of investment properties held by associates of S$13.8 million.

OUE and Fragrance Group expect net losses for H1 2020
Two property companies – OUE and Fragrance Group – have flagged guidance of losses made in the first six months of this year. OUE said that, following a preliminary review of its unaudited financial results for the first half ended June 30,  the group is expected to record a loss attributable to shareholders for the first half, reversing from a net profit of S$61.9 million recorded a year ago.

UOL snags $120m green loan to redevelop Pan Pacific Orchard hotel
UOL Group has secured a $120 million three-year green loan from United Overseas Bank (UOB) to redevelop the Pan Pacific Orchard hotel. It is the first green loan for the group. The proceeds will be used to partially finance the redevelopment of the hotel into a biophilic and zero-waste 347-room hotel.

Sembcorp, Sembmarine investors express concerns about ‘demerger’
Investors in Sembcorp Industries (Sembcorp) and Sembcorp Marine (Sembmarine) have expressed concerns about the companies’ move to “demerge”, especially given the poor macroeconomic conditions at present.

Sembcorp completes divestment of Chilean water business, exits market
Sembcorp Industries on Thursday said it has completed the divestment of its entire interests in its water business in Chile for 27.8 billion Chilean pesos (S$53.6 million) in cash. The water business was divested to Spanish construction and engineering service group Sacyr.

Surbana Jurong, Nippon Koei tie up to create urban development solutions
Consulting firms Surbana Jurong and Nippon Koei have partnered to deliver sustainable and resilient solutions to urban and infrastructure development projects worldwide. Both parties on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU), which is part of the firms’ joint action on climate change mitigation and resiliency, according to a joint statement.


Views, Reviews, Forum & Others

Data ethics: How we do right by customers in a digital economy
Data is the rails on which the digital economy runs. As more areas of our lives become digitalised, the proliferation of data being generated and data being stored will only continue to grow. In the digital economy, data is a raw material. How we use data will define us as individuals, as a business and as a society.

Time to bring JB-Singapore RTS Link project to quicker realisation
The meeting of Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong with his Malaysian counterpart Muhyiddin Yassin today to restart the stalled Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link project cannot come soon enough.

Foreign workers: Boon or bane to Singapore?
Foreign labour issues experience a certain periodicity in the local news cycle, typically peaking nearing general elections before fading (albeit incompletely) into the background after. The script seems to have remained largely unchanged in 2020 with one exception – the rapid spread of Covid-19 among the foreign worker population added the dimension of lives to the conversation that had until then, mainly revolved around livelihoods.

MAS calls on local banks to cap dividend, offer scrip option
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) on Wednesday called on local banks to cap their total dividends per share (DPS) for FY2020 at 60 per cent of the amount in the previous financial year, in a move to shore up capital amid the uncertain economic climate.

3 to 4-year timeline proposed for dropping Sibor
A consultation report has recommended that the SGD Singapore Interbank Offered Rates (Sibor) be discontinued in three to four years, and that the Singapore Overnight Rate Average (SORA) be used as the main interest rate benchmark for SGD financial markets going forward.


Update on COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) Situation

Coronavirus: Boy, 10, among four imported infections; 334 new cases in all
A 10-year-old boy was among four imported Covid-19 cases announced yesterday by the Ministry of Health (MOH). The Indian national is a student’s pass holder who arrived in Singapore on July 14 from India. Among the three other imported cases, one is a 36-year-old Singaporean woman who arrived from India on July 17.

Singapore battling third wave of imported Covid-19 cases
Singapore is now seeing a third wave of imported Covid-19 cases, with more than 100 such cases confirmed in the past month. These make up about 15.5 per cent of the total number of imported cases here since the start of the outbreak in January.

Coronavirus: Stay-home notice for all travellers to Singapore
Since June 18, all travellers to Singapore have been issued a stay-home notice (SHN) and tested for the coronavirus. Currently, they are allowed to serve the notice at their own places of accommodation if in the previous 14 days before arriving they had remained in Australia (except Victoria state), Brunei, Macau, mainland China, New Zealand, South Korea, Taiwan and Vietnam. All other travellers entering Singapore will serve their notice at dedicated facilities.

95 more dorms cleared of Covid-19; over 80% of all dorm residents free of virus
Ninety-five more foreign worker dormitories have been cleared of Covid-19 as of yesterday, said the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). This brings the total cleared to 975 dormitories and 64 blocks for recovered workers in 17 purpose-built dormitories.
*For more information, please visit the Ministry of Health (MOH) website at and refer to for updates on the COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) situation


Global Economy & Global Real Estate

US malls seek to evolve amid pandemic-induced retail overhaul

US jobless benefit at risk as Congress coronavirus talks stalled

‘Recession-proof’ US apartment buildings seeking buyers

Nomura cuts dozens of jobs at US investment-banking unit

Barclays signals economic pain ahead with bad loan charges

Australia boost for plan to send solar power to S’pore

Japan’s June retail sales fall for 4th month, but at slower pace

Hong Kong economy down 9% in Q2, extending first recession in a decade


Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

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