The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 7th August 2018

Top Story

Changes to Stamp Duties Act
The Ministry of Finance (MOF) introduced the Stamp Duties (Amendment) Bill 2018 in Parliament on Monday, with key amendments providing for stamp duty to be levied on electronic records that enable a transfer of interest in properties and shares. Presently, transfers of immovable properties and shares are typically done through physical records, and stamp duty is levied.


Singapore Economy

Singapore economy and exports expected to grow with CPTPP trade deal: Chan
Singapore’s economy is expected to grow 0.2 per cent by 2035, arising from the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).  Total exports are also expected to go up by the same percentage in the same period.

Singapore banks brace for chill from mortgage slowdown
Singapore banks are bracing for a slowdown in the home loan space in the coming years given the latest property cooling measures, but note that most of the current mortgage book should stay intact for the rest of this year.  The chill over the property market comes alongside a new form of “cold war” amid trade tensions between the US and China. The three banks, in reporting higher earnings for the second quarter ended June 30, 2018, also flagged worries on the impact of trade conflict on the global economy, with OCBC’s chief Samuel Tsien pointing out bluntly that “the trade tensions have now evolved into a trade war”.

Govt, industry, educational bodies ‘have role in innovation’
Everyone has a role to play in promoting innovation, including the government, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and educational and research institutions, Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat said on Monday.  Large local enterprises can also collaborate with SMEs and educational institutions to help industry transform.

Singapore’s MOT says no date fixed for High-Speed Rail talks with Malaysia
Kuala Lumpur: While Malaysia’s Economic Affairs Minister Mohamad Azmin Ali had suggested that a discussion will take place between Singapore and Malaysia on the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Railway (HSR) in August, Singapore’s Ministry of Transport (MOT) clarified on Monday night (Aug 6) that no meeting has been scheduled.  The ministry also said that Azmin did not meet with Singapore officials overseeing the HSR.

Singapore to release final Q2 GDP data on Aug 13
The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) will release the second quarter 2018 economic survey of Singapore on Monday, Aug 13, at 8am.  The report will give the final growth figures for the economy for the April to June quarter, including detailed information on sectoral performance, sources of growth, inflation, employment and productivity.


Singapore Real Estate

Freehold St Thomas Ville targets bids of more than S$58m in collective sale
Owners of St Thomas Ville, located along 38 St Thomas Walk, are eyeing bids in excess of S$58 million for their District 9 property in a collective sale.  Over 80 per cent of the owners have consented to the sale, said sole marketing agent JLL in a media release on Monday.

Shophouses in Little India, Chinatown conservation areas launched for sale
Three plots of prime conservation shophouses located in Little India and Chinatown conservation areas are being offered for sale by expression of interest.  Of the three plots for sale, one is a block of four adjoining shophouses in Little India, while the other plots are two shophouses in Chinatown.

Industrial site at Corporation Drive triggered for public tender: JTC
JTC on Monday said that it has accepted an application to put up an industrial site at Corporation Drive for sale by public tender. The land parcel was made available for application through the Reserve List system under the second half 2018 Industrial Government Land Sales programme.  JTC said it had received an application with a committed bid price of at least S$20.7 million. “As the minimum price committed by the applicant is acceptable to the government, the site will be released for sale by public tender,” it said.

Two warehouse buildings at Gul Crescent put on market for over S$13m
Two large interlinked warehouse buildings in Gul Industrial Estate are up for sale by expression of interest, said its sole marketing agent JLL. The sellers, an import and distribution business servicing the print industry, are relocating in order to optimise their operations, and are seeking offers in excess of S$13 million, said JLL.  The property at 3 Gul Crescent near the Gul Circle MRT station has been zoned “Business 2” and consists of warehousing and production space, office areas, loading and unloading bays and a large open yard.

20 workplace fatalities in first half of 2018; construction sector accounts for majority of cases
Singapore: There were 20 workplace fatalities in the first half of 2018, said Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamad in Parliament on Monday (Aug 6).  It is slightly higher than the 19 cases in the same period last year, he said in response to questions from Members of Parliament Melvin Yong and Desmond Choo.

OCBC to re-price mortgages for gradual margin lift
OCBC expects to re-price parts of its Singapore mortgage book in the second half of the year, a move that should lift its net interest margin (NIM) gradually. This comes as its expansion in NIM in the second quarter was smaller than its two banking peers.  Rate movements are in particular focus this season, as analysts have been bullish on banks on hopes that lenders can make a bigger margin during this period of rate normalisation.

Court rules in favour of PACC Offshore
PACC Offshore Services said on Monday that the Singapore court has ruled in its favour on its counterclaim for the return of a deposit made to Kensteel Engineering Pte Ltd over a failed Singapore property purchase, with costs to be determined at a later date.  Pursuant to the ruling, Kensteel has also discontinued its action against PACC Offshore, with an undertaking that it will not bring any subsequent action against the offshore marine services provider.


Companies’ Brief

Corporate governance: More bouquets, but also more brickbats
At first glance, this year’s Singapore Governance & Transparency Index (SGTI) points to a general improvement in corporate governance practices here.  But a closer examination of the scores reveals a telling rise in the amount of demerits handed out and, yet again, a yawning gap between the standards of top-ranked and bottom-ranked companies – all serving to remind investors to stay vigilant.

Keppel DC Reit to build new Australia data centre at a cost of up to A$36m
Keppel DC Reit (real estate investment trust) will build a new data centre in Macquarie Business Park in Sydney, Australia, which is estimated to cost between A$26 million and A$36 million (S$26.26 million and S$36.35 million).  The fee will be payable to master lessee Macquarie Telecom upon completion.


Views, Reviews, Forum & Others

Neighbours all, condominium or HDB
Thanks to careful urban planning, Singapore’s housing estates have long mixed public and private homes, with residents of condominiums and landed property sharing town centres and amenities with those who live in HDB flats. Social mixing has not been left to chance, either. Organised groups of residents have been active on the ground in HDB estates for the past 40 years, running activities to encourage neighbourliness, guard against crime, and deal with public health issues, among others.

Brexit property bargains are only for the wealthy
There’s a price for everything, even in Brexit Britain.  London’s absurd property bubble is a case in point: Even with the threat of foreign investment drying up, financial-sector jobs heading abroad and emerging-market cash under scrutiny, rich bargain hunters are stirring once more.


Global Economy & Global Real Estate

China Meets Trump’s Tariff Hardball With Pledge to Endure

New York mayor Bill de Blasio signs into law new crackdown on Airbnb

Investors wary of stormy political and economic UK weather to come

London luxury homes market starts to climb on more realistic prices

IWG plummets after abandoning talks with takeover firms

UK’s House of Fraser settles CVA challenge from landlords

China’s stocks and yuan slide as US-China trade war heats up

Developer China Evergrande expects H1 core profit to more than double

Indonesia Q2 growth fastest in 4 1/2years; beats expectations


Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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