Month: December 2019

Gold price hit six-year high

gold price

As 2019 comes to an end, wealth builders will surely look back and marvel at how gold price had stormed back in style. Since the beginning of the year, gold price had surged 17% to reach a six-year high. The last time that gold price was in such bullish form was 2009 – 2011. That was the tumultuous period in the aftermath of the Great Financial Crisis and European debt crisis.

Since 2011, global loose monetary policies and low interest rate environment caused gold price to fall from a record high of USD1900 to a low of USD1068 per ounce in 2015. The crash of gold price was the result of recovering US economy and strengthening of US dollar.

gold price

Question now is whether gold price will reach another high in 2020? In this regard, I don’t see why not. This is because the world has not seen another alternative safe haven for financial assets. And gold has always been used as a form of hedge against uncertainties and volatility in the financial markets.

In 2016, the crash of China stock market, UK Brexit and the US Presidential Election saw gold price surging from USD1100 to USD1300 per ounce. Based on …

SingPost share price see light at end of tunnel?

Lo and behold! Is this really the light at end of tunnel for SingPost share price? Investors got massively hyped up over announcement of bankruptcy protections for its ill-fated United States subsidiaries, Jagged Peak and TradeGlobal. Under the scheme, SingPost will no longer recognise profit or loss from the toxic subsidiaries. In view of this, is SingPost share price out of the woods?

The latest development marked the end of a dark chapter that started way back in December 2015. Jagged Peak and TradeGlobal were the two major assets acquired under former CEO Wolfgang’s tenure. Within months after the acquisitions, Wolfgang resigned. I do not know what transpired behind the scene. But since the acquisitions, the eCommerce segment had been consistently loss-making and the management struggled to turn the business unit. SingPost share price also plunged from a high of $2.00 to the current $0.93.

SingPost share price

Of course, it is not fair to solely attribute the ailing SingPost share price to the two United States subsidiaries. There was also a special audit ordered by regulators in 2015 to look into a possible lack of interest disclosure by one of its former directors, Keith Tay. That saga concerned the acquisition of FS …

A Comprehensive Property Buying Checklist

property buying

Below is a guest post on property buying in Singapore. It is written by Stuart Chng, Senior Associate Executive Director of OrangeTee & Tie, a renowned leader, real estate broker and personality in the real estate industry.

He is a licensed real estate agent, team leader, industry trainer and speaker, columnist for several property newsletters and blogs and is often quoted in media interviews on 938FM, Channel 5, PropertyReport, PropertyGuru and other publications.

Throughout his career, he has also coached many top million dollar producing agents from different real estate agencies in Singapore. You can find out more about him at www.StuartChng.com.

A Comprehensive Property Buying Checklist

Congratulations on starting your search for a new home or investment property!

Whether you’re a soon-to-be parent, a first time property buyer or investing in your Xth property, it helps to have a comprehensive guide & checklist to follow when deciding on a property.

Apart from the criteria cited in my earlier article, Important Entry Signals for Property Investors, here’s a checklist of stuff you would do well to check for when committing to possibly the largest purchase in your lifetime!

Some are basics, some take a little more …

DBS CEO can still laugh his way to the bank

DBS CEO

As 2019 draws to a close, it is timely to review the performance of the largest bank in Singapore – DBS Group. In a year which many analysts predicted to be a challenging year for DBS Group, the Singapore bank stunned many critics by posting a series of solid financial results. For nine months, net profit rose 13% to $4.88 billion. Total income grew 12% to $11.1 billion. Against this backdrop, DBS CEO can laugh all the way to the bank.

Piyush Gupta joined the bank in November 2009. In the blink of an eye, ten years had passed. Under the helm of the current DBS CEO, the Singapore bank has enjoyed a decade of tremendous growth.

Of course, there were challenges along the way, such as the European debt crisis (2011-2012), the oil slump (2014-2016) and the unfolding trade war between USA and China. Somehow, the DBS CEO managed to steer the bank to safe harbor and grew the bank to an even bigger scale than what it was ten years ago. Very impressive indeed.

DBS CEO

According to SGX filing, DBS CEO Piyush Gupta held 1.84 million of DBS shares as at 25 February 2019. Most of the shares were …

OUE share price emerged from nightmare

OUE share price

On 29 October 2018, I wrote that OUE share price plunged to a record 14-year low of $1.37. Since that fateful day, the counter confounded all critics by staging a magnificent run to reach a high of $1.80 on 12 April 2019. It certainly seemed like OUE share price is out to prove me wrong. Well, I have no problem with that as long as shareholders made money out of the rebound!

After that minor bull run, OUE share price tamed off quite a fair bit to reach the current level of $1.50. At current OUE share price, the Price/Book Value amounts to a mere 0.33. Is OUE share price undervalued or is it a value trap?

OUE share price

For sure, OUE is not in the league of CapitaLand, City Development or UOL. But this stock is no pushover either. With a market capitalization of $1.46 billion, OUE share is considered a large cap among SGX property counters. Furthermore, OUE boasts many premium grade assets under its stable, among them are OUE Bayfront, One Raffles Place, Lippo Plaza, Mandarin Orchard Singapore, Crowne Plaza Changi Airport, Marina Mandarin Singapore and Mandarin Gallery.

Given the pedigree of OUE, the Group is in strong …

Mapletree Logistics Trust in amazing form

Mapletree Logistics Trust

Can anything stop Mapletree Logistics Trust? Since my last coverage on this counter in September 2019, the unit price had been on an incredible bullish form. The surging unit price of Mapletree Logistics Trust had created plenty of wealth for unitholders. Christmas certainly comes early for these investors!

To be frank, I had underestimated the potential of this S-REIT. Amid the rally in the S-REIT sector, 2019 turns out to be a fantastic year for Mapletree Logistics Trust as its unit price rocketed from $1.30 in January to the current $1.68. The increase of almost 30% within a year is certainly very impressive for an S-REIT!

Mapletree Logistics Trust

It appears to me that the management is riding on the current industry upturn and seizing opportunities in the Asia Pacific region. In November 2019, Mapletree Logistics Trust had raised $250 million through private placement of 154.6 million unit to fund the acquisition of 50% interest in four properties in China, 100% interest in two properties in Vietnam and 100% interest in one property in Malaysia.

Despite the equity financing, the unit price of Mapletree Logistics Trust remained resilient. Question now is: will this S-REIT takes its swashbuckling run right into 2020? On …

Lost my wedding expenses to stock market

wedding expenses

2019 come and go. In the blink of an eye, it has been 10 years since the Great Financial Crisis took place. As I look back, I can’t help but feel intrigued at the transformation of my wealth building journey. This blog was borne in an era of great financial upheaval and also at a time when I was struggling financially. Specifically, 2009-10 was the period in which I lost a substantial portion of my wedding expenses to the stock market.

The loss was attributed to a poor strategy executed for one of the penny stocks – China Enersave. I have always maintained that there is no good or bad stocks. In investing, there are only good or bad strategies. When the share price of a stock dived, you can always choose to cut loss or short-sell. In my case, I did neither. The loss of my wedding expenses culminated in one of the biggest challenges that I had to face in the course of my financial journey.

wedding expenses

Losing money to the stock market is not the end of the world. But being on the receiving end, it did feel like the end of the world. This is especially so …

OCBC share price led to my first investment in decade

OCBC share price

On 13 December, OCBC share price turned bullish upon the announcement of Bangkok Bank winning the bid for Bank Permata acquisition. Previously, it was reported that OCBC had mulled over the acquisition of the Indonesian bank. On the basis of the mild recovery of OCBC share price, it seems that shareholders are glad that OCBC pulled out of the deal.

Incidentally, the latest development came at a time when I opened my Supplementary Retirement Sum (SRS) and looking at investing in a blue chip to generate reasonable returns. After much consideration, I opted to invest in OCBC share. In this article, I will share my view on why I chose to enter at current OCBC share price.

OCBC share price

Strictly speaking, my last stock investment was in 2010 when I bought K1 Venture, an investment holding company of Keppel Group. Back then, the intent was not really to grow wealth but to divert a portion of my CPF monies from the Ordinary Account before HDB wiped out the monies for the settlement of my HDB flat purchase. I wanted this investment to be a buffer in case I got retrenched from my job and still need to service my housing loan. In …

Gallant Venture transformed into fallen angel

Gallant Venture

How Gallant Venture had fallen. This listed company used to have a track record of making good profits and even counted Sembcorp Industries as one of its major shareholders. But in the aftermath of the Great Financial Crisis of 2009, Gallant Venture share price free fall from the sky to become a perennial penny stock. This counter would have been placed under SGX Watch List for failing to meet the Minimum Trading Price (MTP), if not for its $619 million market capitalization.

In the latest turn of events, investors of Gallant Venture should brace themselves for a roller coaster ride following the exit of Sembcorp Industries’ exit. On 11 June 2019, it was announced that Sembcorp Industries disposed its entire shareholdings in Gallant Venture and ceased to be a substantial shareholder.

Gallant Venture

Perhaps Sembcorp Industries had lost patience with Gallant Venture. For the past five years, revenue had declined from $2.33 billion in 2014 to $1.8 billion in 2018. Profits had become erratic and inconsistent as well. In 2014, full-year profit was $7.5 million while 2016 saw profit of $72 million. But in 2015, the Group suffered losses of $145 million. Subsequently, since 2017, Gallant Venture had been in the red.…

CapitaLand share price flying with Liang Court redevelopment

CapitaLand share price

Since my last coverage on 1st October 2019, CapitaLand share price had turned on the style, surging from $3.40 to $3.70. The driving factors for the bullish form of CapitaLand share price stem from the recent asset recycling activities and sale of new launches.

As of 20 November 2019, CapitaLand had divested close to $5.7 billion worth of assets, exceeding their annual target divestment of $3 billion. The most notable recent divestment was the divestment of The Star Vista for $296 million to Rock Productions. According to the management, the deal is expected to yield net proceeds of about $145 million and a net gain of about $32 million. The slew of divestments had led to the buoyant CapitaLand share price in 2019.

CapitaLand share price

Another catalyst for CapitaLand share price was the strong sale performance for its residential units in Singapore and China. One Pearl Bank has sold 235 of the 280 launched units while Sengkang Grand Residences sold 216 of the 280 available units. In China, the Group sold 3,694 units in the first nine months of 2019 with a value of RMB8.5 billion, and expects to launch an estimated further 1,700 units in 4QFY2019.

Against the backdrop of …

Golden Agri share price to lose shine after STI exit?

Goldern Agri share price

On 5 December, it was announced that Golden Agri share will be booted out of the prestigious Straits Times Index (STI). Taking over its place will be Mapletree Logistics Trust. With this latest development, I fear the worst for Golden Agri share price. In my previous article, I have mentioned that I am pretty bearish on Golden Agri share price in the medium term. This latest episode vindicated my point and also marked a sorry end to Golden Agri’s journey in the STI.

StarHub and SIAEC were booted out of STI in 2018 and 2017 respectively. Since then, the share prices of the two companies had plunged to abysmal levels. On this basis, I don’t see how Golden Agri share price can fight its destiny. Included in the STI since September 2008, Golden Agri share price had been in the limelight for the past decade and this counter enjoys much liquidity. The average three-month trading volume is actually 1.1 billion!

Goldern Agri share price

Since 2014, Golden Agri share price had plunged from $0.44 to the current $0.22, representing a massive decline of 50%. The huge fall of Golden Agri share price had caused much wealth destruction for shareholders. Thus, understandably, many shareholders must …

ThaiBev share price in happy hour mood

ThaiBev share price

It seems that ThaiBev share price is going places. After announcing a stellar full-year financial results, ThaiBev share price is set for a bullish run after the management acknowledged in a SGX filing that they are currently “evaluating strategic proposals and opportunities, including but not limited to a potential listing of its beer business”.

The discussion is still at preliminary stage and there is no certainty that the potential listing may take place. However, this positive development had already sent ThaiBev share price hitting the sky. The recent performance of ThaiBev share price was in stark contrast in 2018, which was when the Thai government implemented the new Excise Tax Act. Effective from 26 January 2018, Thailand government mandated that all alcoholic beverages and tobacco products, both imported and domestically produced, to be charged an additional 2% of excise tax.

ThaiBev share price

In face of the tax increase, the management had turned to merger and acquisition activities to bolster revenue. And the strategy worked like magic. Three major acquisitions helped to fuel revenue performance and turbocharged ThaiBev share price. Among the acquisitions was the successful bid for a 53.59% stake in Saigon Beer – Alcohol – Beverage Corporation (“Sabeco”). ThaiBev also expanded …