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Research

JUl-sep 2008/3rd quarter


real estate
highlights

Highlights
• Singapore’s private residential market continued to show signs of cooling.
Prices and rentals of private residential properties fell in 3Q 2008 after
nearly four years of consecutive quarterly growth. However, average HDB
resale flat prices still grew 4.2% qoq in 3Q 2008.

• Prime retail rentals generally fell for the first time since 3Q 2005, as retailers
are increasingly cautious about committing to lease at high rentals.

• Office rentals showed signs of softening. Rentals of office space islandwide


dropped in 3Q 2008 after growth was noticed to have eased for some areas
in previous quarters.

• The industrial property market moderated in performance during 3Q 2008,


with rents and capital values for most industrial properties remaining similar
to 2Q 2008.
jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Residential
Property Market
Singapore’s private residential market marginally, this improvement was short
lived. The following month of August 2008
continued to show signs of cooling as prices witnessed a trifling 194 units launched in
the private residential market, the smallest
and rentals of private residential properties number since monthly data was made
available in June 2007.
fell in 3Q 2008 after nearly four years of
In the month of September however, the
consecutive quarterly growth. However, total number of new launches increased to
767 units islandwide, up from the meagre
average HDB resale flat prices still grew number of homes launched in the preceding

4.2% qoq in 3Q 2008. month. The expansion in September was


due to a sharp decline in August, as some
projects were withheld from launching

Private Residential during the Seventh Lunar Month where


people generally refrain from making
Sector home purchases. Though an improvement
on a monthly basis, the number of units
Muted Launch Market launched in September was still 42% lower
than the 1,323 units launched in July, the
Singapore’s private residential market period when the most number of units was
continued to show signs of cooling as launched in 2008. Nonetheless, the 767
launch market activity waned amid elevated units launched in September was heartening
fears of the possible crumbling of global as it surpassed the nine-month average of
financial markets. While the month of July 611 units launched per quarter in 2008.
saw the number of units launched increase

Chart 1
Private Home Launch and Sales Volume Islandwide
16,000

14,000

12,000

10,000
No. of Units

8,000

6,000

4,000

2,000

0
3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08

New Sales Secondary Sales New Launches


Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research

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Monthly statistics indicate that despite until there is some stability in the financial moderate take-up as well, as the increase
abatement in the total number of new markets. was a surge compared to 1Q 2008’s 1,395
launches this quarter, the launch market units, which was the second lowest quarterly
still experienced encouraging growth. The figure over the past 12 years. With the take-
number of units released by developers in up of developer sale mellowing significantly,
3Q 2008 was the highest among the first Languish Sales in this reflects heightened caution from
three quarters this year, totaling about 2,244 homebuyers will be acting prudently amid
units, reflecting a 24% quarter-on-quarter Primary Market severe global economic conditions.
(qoq) increase. Mirroring the previous
Based on the Urban Redevelopment Of the three regions, the bulk of new sales
quarter, most units were launched in the
Authority (URA)’s monthly statistics, a total (45.5%) in 3Q 2008 were in the mass market
mid-tier market, while the prime private
of 1,597 units were sold by developers in 3Q while the prime Core Central Region (CCR)
residential market comprised 20.6% of all
2008. Although this was the largest number saw a further decline in both the number and
new launches in 3Q 2008.
of new units sold per quarter in 2008 to date, proportion of sales. It is expected that while
With the financial health of global markets it was a mere 3.6% more than the number of overall new sale volume has shown signs of
uncertain and overall growth fundamentals private residential units sold in 2Q 2008 and moderation, the coming months would see
expected to thwart the dynamics of the approximately 70% of the five-year quarterly figures for 2008 rest at around 60% of the
residential market, it is anticipated that the average sale figures. The 1,820 private total new sales in 2007.
launch market will remain moderate, at least residential units sold in 2Q 2008 reflected

Some Possible Major Launches in the Next 6 Months


Projects Tenure District Developer Location Units
Marina Bay Suites 99-year 01 Cheung Kong / Hongkong Land Central Boulevard 221
/ Keppel Land
Residential Development 99-year 04 City Developments Ltd Sentosa Cove 228
Seascape 99-year 04 Ho Bee Group / IOI Land Sentosa Cove 151
The Peak @ Balmeg* FH 05 MCL Land Balmeg Hill 180
Urban Resort* FH 09 Capital Land Residential Limited Cairnhill Road 64
Residential Development FH 09 Heeton Holdings Grange Road 28
Paterson Suites* FH 09 Bukit Sembawang Estates Ltd Paterson Road / Lengkok Angsa 102
The Oliv* FH 10 TG Development Pte Ltd Balmoral Road 23
Madison Residences* FH 10 Keppel Land Bukit Timah Road 56
Verdure FH 10 Bukit Sembawang Estates Ltd Holland Road 75
Latitude* FH 10 CapitaLand Ltd Jalan Mutiara 127
The Trizon FH 10 Singapore Land Ltd Ridgewood Close 247
Nathan Residences* FH 10 Tat Aik Property Pte Ltd Nathan Road 91
VIVA FH 11 Allgreen Properties Ltd Suffolk Road 235
Trilight FH 11 Ho Bee Investment Newton Road 152
L’VIV* FH 11 Wing Tai Asia Newton Road 100
The Arte FH 12 City Developments Ltd Jalan Raja Udang / Jalan Datoh 336
The Mezzo FH 12 Soilbuild Group Balestier Road 82
Silversea* 99-year 15 Far East Organization Amber Road 383
Residential Development 99-year 18 Kheng Leong / UOL Simei St 4 645
The Cascadia FH 21 Allgreen Properties Ltd Bukit Timah Road 536
Residential Development 99-year 22 Frasers Centrepoint Homes Lakeside Drive 712
Note: *Projects on preview

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jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Subdued Secondary 50.8%, a 14.6 percentage point reduction


from 1Q 2008. Though still declining, the dip
Sentiments Fail to
Market in the number of resale transactions was Undermine Foreign
a smaller -7.4% qoq this quarter and the
The secondary market continued to
highest concentration of such sales was still Interest
experience deflated demand as resale
in areas Outside of the Central Region. Preliminary figures indicate that there
activity began to diminish at the onset of
Speculative property sales, as measured may be a slowdown in the percentage of
the second half of 2007. Secondary market
by the subsale activity persisted to decline foreigners that have purchased private
transactions have substantially decreased
when the proportion of subsales islandwide residential properties in Singapore.
in the beginning of 2008. While the number
was recorded at 11.0% in 2Q 2008 (still 6 The figures for 3Q 2008 hinted that this
of secondary market transactions started to
percentage points higher than the five- proportion has taken a further decline, as
fall when financial market woes began as
year quarterly average). As repercussions 21.6% of all transactions islandwide were
early as 3Q 2007, it was only at the start of
from tumultuous global markets remain home-purchases by foreigners. This was 0.9
this year when the sales were registered
ambiguous, it was the mass Outside Central percentage point lesser than the five-year
less than the five-year quarterly average of
Region that saw the strongest number of quarterly average proportion. The onset of
about 3,020 units. This was partly due to
subsales, when this proportion climbed to 2008 had already seen a dip in the number
the reduction in collective sales and partly
8.1% in 2Q 2008, the highest proportion in of foreign transactions when numbers
due to the uncertain market sentiments.
the last five years. It was the sub-markets fell below the five-year quarterly average
As at 2Q 2008, secondary market sales
that have risen to risky heights, which saw a figures. The decline in 2008 was magnified
stood at about 2,800 units and early
smaller proportion of subsales. Specifically, by the substantial growth in foreign buying
estimates indicate that this figure stood at
both the prime Core Central Region and interest from 2005 to 1H 2007.
approximately 2,400 units for 3Q 2008. Of
note, the Outside Central Region saw the mid-tier Rest of Central Region experienced 1H 2008 figures showed that Malaysians
largest proportion of secondary sales in a smaller proportion of subsales in the and Indonesians continued to be major
the second quarter of the year, reflecting last quarter, however, it was the mid-tier foreign homebuyers in Singapore, making
a better interest for mid- and mass market private residential market that was more up 17.6% each of all foreign transactions.
homes for well-located and affordably-priced pronounced in its decline when it registered However, the share of foreign home
suburban projects which were launched. at 10.5% in 2Q 2008. This could be because purchases by Indonesians and Malaysians
those property players who wanted to exit have declined and are lower than five-year
In 2Q 2008, the proportion of resale
the market had already done so earlier. quarterly average values. On the other hand,
transactions islandwide was registered at
foreigners that hail from China and India
have shown greater interest in Singapore’s
Chart 2 private residential market in recent times
Private Home Sales Volume Islandwide when they made up 10.5% and 12.8% of
16,000 all foreign transactions respectively. The
14,000
profile of homebuyers are also increasingly
international, as developers attempt to
12,000
market some projects in less traditional
10,000 countries, such as Korea.
No. of Units

8,000 Although both Indonesians and Malaysians


6,000 were the biggest group of foreign buyers,
the types of properties preferred by each
4,000
differ. Indonesians have transacted much
2,000 pricier homes than buyers from Malaysia
0 since 2003. Generally, the bulk of properties
3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08
bought by Indonesians fell into the S$1.5
New Sales Sub-Sales Resale million – S$5 million price range compared
to Malaysians who purchased homes that
Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research
were within the S$500,000 – S$1 million

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range. Additionally, Indonesians also Chart 3


formed the group that was most active in Proportion of Foreign Homebuyers
Singapore’s high-end residential market. Islandwide as at 1H 2008
They made the most number of purchases
for homes that cost S$5 million and above.

In terms of location, foreign homebuyers


have their penchant. Foreign homebuyers in
Singapore’s residential property market has,
in the past 13 years favoured purchasing
property in certain districts over others.
Districts 9, 10 and 15, in ascending order,
have traditionally attracted strongest foreign
interest. This remained similar in 1H2008
although there were more foreigners who
purchased homes in districts 10, followed by Australia 4.9%
districts 9 and 15. China 10.5%
Hong Kong 0.8%
Districts 9 and 10 have been the choice India 12.8%
home-buying location for foreigners over the Indonesia 17.6%
Malaysia 17.6%
past 13 years. However, as at the first half of
Taiwan 2.0%
2008, District 15, which generally covers the USA 2.3%
Katong, Joo Chiat and Amber Road planning United Kingdom 8.7%
areas seemed to have grown in favour with Others 22.7%
foreigners. This is due to the increasing Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority,
appeal of the eastern districts, including Knight Frank Research
for some who have been priced out of the
Central Region as prices of homes soared Chart 4
in 2006-2007. Transactions by Foreigners Islandwide
As Singapore rose to become the 13th most 30%
Percentage of Transaction by Foreigners

expensive city in the world for expatriates 25.9% 26.6%


to live based on Mercer’s Worldwide Cost 25% 23.5%
22.4%
of Living Survey 2008, these rising costs of
20% 18.4%
living as well as worrying market sentiments
seemed to have affected foreign demand 15%
for property in Singapore, as suggested
by abatement in both the proportion and 10%
number of foreign transactions based
on preliminary numbers for 3Q 2008. 5%

Nevertheless, while market sentiments have


0%
inevitably impaired demand from foreigners, 2004 2005 2006 2007 1H 2008 (Prelim)
the appeal of a city that is becoming
Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research
increasingly enchanting and cosmopolitan
is likely to continue to entice foreigners.

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jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Slump in Prices Softening in Rentals increased in 2007, some tenants were


attracted to the eastern districts, such as
Since mid-2007, the rate of private home Leasing activity of non-landed homes the East Coast. The current rental decline
price growth has been decelerating. In 3Q remained active in 3Q 2008. Approximately of non-landed private homes in the East is a
2008, prices fell for the first time after about 9,500 units were leased in 3Q 2008, reflection of tenants who are more cautious
four years of expansion, according to official about 19.6% more than 2Q 2008. The first in their accommodation requirements and
figures. URA’s flash estimates indicated that nine months of 2008 saw a total of about are resisting significant rental hikes.
home prices contracted by 1.8% qoq growth 22,900 leasing deals concluded while the
Similarly, rents of non-landed private
the third quarter. The price decline came not same corresponding period in 2007 saw a
residential properties in the West dropped
so much as a surprise as it was expected marginally smaller 20,200 leasing deals of
3.3% qoq, the first fall in the past three
that the unyielding subdued transaction non-landed homes.
years. The relatively milder rental decline
volume would have eventually led to a drop
However, the leasing activities seemed in the suburban areas is due to the smaller
in prices.
to have taken place across a backdrop rental increase in 2006 and 2007.
Specifically, all non-landed market of softening rents. Islandwide rentals for
segments, except for the mass-market private residential properties showed the
segment (Outside Central Region), saw first decline over four years in 3Q 2008.
prices easing in the third quarter. For According to URA, islandwide rentals fell
the prime market segment (Core Central 0.9% qoq in 3Q 2008, with rentals of private
Region), the tapering of prices since the non-landed properties dropping by 1.1%
previous quarter saw growth decline by 2% qoq. However, rents of private residential
qoq in 3Q 2008. In addition, there was no properties are still experiencing double-digit
residential unit sold or launched at above yoy percentage growth, of 15.1%. Of note,
the S$4,000 psf in 3Q 2008, reflecting the tenants are increasingly cautious amid
more subdued mood in the high-end luxury the economic uncertainty and becoming
housing segment. Private home prices realistic in their accommodation needs. In
in the mid-tier (Rest of Central Region) the current market, tenants generally prefer
recorded a slightly faster fall of 2.1% qoq, dwellings which offer attractive rents, at the
after achieving 0.7% qoq expansion the expense of homes with luxury features. The
preceding quarter. The larger price fall in the drop in overall rents was also due to cost-
high-end and mid-tier segments are partly cutting measures by companies, such as by
due to the robust price growth that these reducing generous expatriate packages that
two segments had enjoyed in the past three include housing allowances.
years, where prices of some properties
Based on Knight Frank’s research of
reached record highs. By comparison,
non-landed property, rents of luxury
average prices in the mass-market private
condominiums eased further by 6.6%
home segment had a slower start and
qoq. With the fall, it brings rents of luxury
increased by a marginal 0.1% in 3Q 2008.
condominiums to below that of end 2007.
Likewise, the private residential landed Rents of luxury condos are some 2.6% lower
market also saw minimal growth in 2Q 2008. than that of 4Q 2007.
This was the first time in six quarters when
There was a fall in the rents of non-landed
prices of landed homes were below the
residential properties in all micro regions,
five-year average quarterly growth. Prices of
according to Knight Frank’s research. The
landed homes grew at only 0.6% qoq, with
greatest fall in rentals for this quarter was
median prices of the three sub-categories of
in the East region, which reflected an 8.7%
landed homes registering expansion rates
qoq decline. This was partly because rents
of between 0.5% and 1.0% in 2Q 2008.
for homes in the East have been staging
Notwithstanding the limited increase, the
one of the fastest escalations in 2007. As
landed housing segment is still considered
the number of homes in the prime districts
stable.
were collectively sold for redevelopment

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Public Housing resale HDB flats as a result of increasing


number of new immigrants in Singapore
S$700,000 level, particularly in areas such
as Marine Parade, Queenstown and Bukit
Sector and demand from newly- formed families. Merah. Prices of new and resale flats were
In addition, the more cautious mood among generally positive and reflect optimism going
Unruffled Sentiments these newly formed families could have ahead. Additionally, the 50-storey Pinnacle@
caused some of them to purchase HDB Duxton, due to be completed this year, have
The public housing sector still appears to flats instead of private properties. This latest prices starting at S$545,000 and going up
hold steady in terms of its performance, flash estimate also indicates that the current to S$645,800, much higher than the record
notwithstanding frail financial markets. average resale price has exceeded the all- held by a S$531,500 five-room unit in Toa
The Housing Development Board (HDB)’s time high in 4Q 1996 by 0.4%. Payoh. (Note that the record excludes flats
flash estimates for the third quarter of 2008 under the Design, Build and Sell Scheme).
showed that the market is still experiencing The strong home-buying sentiment in the
healthy growth. Average HDB resale home public residential market is partly due to a With this strong demand, the unsold stock
prices still achieved a relatively impressive more conservative buyers’ behaviour during of HDB flats has shrunk. It is believed that
qoq growth of 4.2% in 3Q 2008, which could the global economic crisis. Although rare, there are presently 1,500 unsold completed
be attributed to the healthy demand for there were flats concluded at above the units, around 40% of the previous number
in 2007. The 4.5% qoq increase in resale
applications to 8,112 units in 3Q 2008 also
Chart 5
echoes brimming demand for public flats.
HDB Resale Transaction Volume and Price Index
However the amount of the cash-over-
9,000 140 valuation (COV) of the transacted prices
8,000 135 of larger HDB flats has been decreasing
7,000 in the past three quarters. In this quarter
130
HDB Resale Price Index

the average COV of 5-room flats and


No. of Transactions

6,000
125 Executive flats are S$17,000 and S$18,000
5,000
120 respectively. In 4Q 2007, the average COV
4,000 of 5-room flats and Executive flats were
115
3,000 S$26,000 and S$33,500 respectively.
110
2,000

1,000 105

0 100
3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08

3-room Flat 4-room Flat 5-room Flat Executive Flat HDB Resale Price Index
Source: Housing Development Board, Knight Frank Research

Chart 6
Median Resale Prices of 4-room flat
$350,000 30.0%

$300,000 25.0%

$250,000 20.0%

$150,000 15.0%

$100,000 10.0%

$50,000 5.0%

$0 0.0%
3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08

4-room Flat Valuation Price Change (qoq)


Source: Housing Development Board, Knight Frank Research

7
jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Outlook for Private Table 1


Rentals of Selected Non-Landed Private Residential Units as at 3Q 2008
Residential Property
Locality Monthly Rent (psf)
Sector Districts 9, 10 and 11 (Luxury) S$ 5.00 – S$ 5.50
In recent months, the embattled financial Districts 9, 10 and 11 (Others) S$ 4.30 – S$ 5.10
markets have created a ruckus globally,
East Coast S$ 2.90 – S$ 3.90
leaving the Singapore private residential
West S$ 2.60 – S$ 3.30
market unsettled. The third quarter of this
year has seen prices take a dip and going Upper Bukit Timah S$ 2.20 – S$ 2.60
forward, it is anticipated that the price Thomson, Toa Payoh, Bishan S$ 2.40 – S$ 3.00
decline is likely to persist. Essentially, Yio Chu Kang, Yishun S$ 2.00 – S$ 2.30
whatever price gain achieved in the first half
Source: Knight Frank Research
of this year would be given up in 2H 2008,
resulting in overall price movement of 0%
to a drop of 3% for the whole of 2008. The
mass-market segment’s weak price growth Table 2
of 0.1% in 3Q 2008 could be the prelude Capital Values of Selected Non-Landed Private Residential
to a decline in the following quarter. Prices Units as at 3Q 2008
are expected to continue to fall in 2009 Locality Capital Value (psf)
and this could result in a challenging year
Freehold 99-year Leasehold
for Singapore’s private residential property
market. Districts 9, 10 and 11 (Luxury) S$ 2,220 – S$ 2,260 -
Districts 9, 10 and 11 (Others) S$ 1,750 – S$ 1,810 S$ 1,260 – S$ 1,350
East Coast S$ 1,070 – S$ 1,210 S$ 810 – S$ 1,120
West S$ 790 – S$ 840 S$ 660 – S$ 740
Outlook for Public Upper Bukit Timah S$ 610 – S$ 710 S$ 550 – S$ 790

Housing Sector Thomson, Toa Payoh, Bishan S$ 650 – S$ 770 S$ 610 – S$ 690

While the star seems to be fading for the Yio Chu Kang, Yishun S$ 490 – S$ 610 -
private residential sector, the outlook for the Source: Knight Frank Research
public sector in the short term looks set to
dwarf that of the private market this year.
The strength in the HDB resale flat market is
expected to continue for at least another six
months, which could result in a 12% to 17%
increase in the average HDB resale home
price for the whole of 2008. However the
gradual decline in the amount of cash-over-
valuation of the transacted prices of larger
HDB flats indicates that the period of robust
price expansion may be drawing to a close.

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Retail Property
Market
Prime retail rentals generally fell for the first Consumer sentiments were still considered
optimistic for the Great Singapore Sale
time since 3Q 2005 and are expected to have (GSS), which was held from 23 May to 20
July. While figures by Mastercard showed
mild corrections going ahead, as retailers are that local cardholders spending in the GSS

increasingly cautious about committing to went up by close to 25% over last year, this
rise fares poorly against last year’s when

lease at high rentals. spending grew at 45% over the year before.
Visitor expenditure in the GSS grew by 11%
to reach S$349 million.
Bumpy Road Ahead Retailers may also experience a slight fall in
Retail sales index, excluding motor vehicles, visitors’ spending, due to fewer visitor arrivals.
for June decreased 1.3% year-on-year (yoy) For example, an immediate concern is that
after 16 consecutive months of increase. the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) may fall
Consumers were generally more cautious, short of its targeted 10.8 million visitor arrivals
especially in buying bigger-ticket items. set out earlier this year, as visitor arrivals
As such, sales of big-ticket items such as contracted for the third consecutive month.
jewellery and telecommunication apparatus Latest figures indicate that visitor arrivals in
& computers fell by 20.0% and 21.8% yoy in August declined 7.7% yoy, the largest fall
June 2008. The index, however, recovered since the SARs period in 2003.
strongly in July 2008, reflecting a 9.3% yoy
expansion. Stripping price effect, real retail
sales improved 6.4% yoy in July.

Chart 1
Retail Sales Index at Current Price
(Excluding Motor Vehicle)

140 16.0%
Reatail Sales Index (Excluding Motor Vehicle)

130 12.0%
Yoy Change

120 8.0%

110 4.0%

100 0.0%

90 -4.0%
Mar 08 Apr 08 May 08 Jun 08 Jul 08

Reatail Sales Index (Excluding Motor Vehicle) Yoy change in Retail Sales Index

Source: Singapore Department of Statistics

9
jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Healthy Demand and (158,000 sq ft) which is scheduled to be


completed in early October and is likely to
nosedived due to road closures and visitors
for the F1 race who were too focused in
Limited Supply open officially later this year. This was the the race than shopping in the area. This
former Ginza Plaza which is repositioned benefited Orchard Road, the prime shopping
Occupancy of retail space in 2Q 2008
as “An Oasis in the West”. This may attract belt, as shoppers find it more convenient to
remained positive, improving for the fourth
residents and students from more than 27 visit the area. Tangs department store thus
consecutive quarter to reach a high of
educational institutions within 3km of the enjoyed an additional 40% sales takings
93.7%. This was led by retail space in
mall and will add variety to the West. Gross over the F1 race weekends compared to that
Orchard Road, which was 96.7% occupied.
rentals are expected to range between S$8 in the first week of September.
Of note, occupancy for retail space in the
to S$25 per square foot (psf) for the mall.
Fringe Area, as defined by URA, increased Notwithstanding, the F1 race was a major
1.2 %-points to achieve 91.8%. Leasing boost to retailers in shopping areas not
activities in 2Q 2008 were still relatively affected by the race. A total of 50,000
strong with retailers committed to about tourists turned up for the F1 race and were
70% of City Square Mall’s tenancy. The first The Great Singapore estimated to have spent about S$100 million
phase of the retail space in Fusionopolis
(183,000 sq ft) was also more than 50%
Grand Prix in Singapore. The F1 race has placed
Singapore in a positive light and this may
taken up with Cold Storage and Fitness First Besides enhancing Singapore’s attraction, be beneficial for STB’s long-term target of
as two of their largest tenants. retailers were much excited about the attracting 17 million visitor arrivals by 2015.
inaugural F1 night race, as it was expected
With the absence of any significant new
to radically increase retail sales. There were
supply, total existing retail stock (excluding
however drastic drops in sales taking for
F&B space) decreased further in 2Q 2008 to
reach 34.5 million sq ft. There will however
retail shops in Suntec City Mall and Marina
Slight Dip in Overall
Square, due to massive road closures. This
be some notable suburban new malls that
will be completed in 2008. These include
was akin to the International Monetary Fund Prime Retail Rentals
(IMF) 2006 when sales of Suntec City Mall
the redevelopment of West Coast Plaza Overall prime retail rentals, for the first time
since 3Q 2005, fell by a marginal 0.7% qoq
to S$30.96 psf pm islandwide. Prime retail
Chart 2
rentals for central Orchard Road, including
Islandwide Demand and Supply
Wisma Atria and Centrepoint, remained
20 94.0% stable at S$48.60 per sq ft (psf) per month
(pm) for 3Q 2008. However, malls along the
fringe of Orchard Road registered a slight
10
fall of 4.1% quarter-on-quarter (qoq) to
93.0%
S$23.00 psf pm. Similarly, rents of malls in
0 the city fringe, such as Novena Square, slid
2.5% qoq.
92.0%
The decline in prime retail rents is in line
-10
with general expectations as the current
economic situation has forced retailers to re-
-20 91.0% evaluate their business plans. Many retailers
2Q07 3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08
are currently reluctant to commit or renew
New Demand New Supply Occupancy Rate their leases at high rentals as they anticipate
poorer sales due to lower consumer
Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research
confidence.

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Chart 3
Prime Retail Rentals in the Orchard Road (Central) Locality
Outlook
16.0% As the financial crisis in the US and Europe
$55
developed into a global recession, consumer
sentiments would continue to be deflated
Prime Retail Rentals (psf pm)

$50
12.0% in the coming year. Singapore, being
heavily exposed to the global economy,
$45
is unlikely to remain unscathed as the
8.0%
confidence of retailers and consumers are
$40
starting to be affected. Despite the negative
4.0% repercussions, Singapore’s strong fiscal
$35 position and low unemployment rate is
expected to tide the country through the
$30 0.0% economic slowdown.
3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08
In the next few quarters, with the economy
Prime Retail Rentals in the Qoq Change in
likely to contract, the retail sector will
Orchard Road (Central) Locality Prime Retail Rental
experience a softening of demand from both
Source: Knight Frank Research local and foreign retailers. Retailers will be
more cautious in expanding their businesses
and retail rents are likely to undergo
Table 2 corrections to reflect the gloomy outlook.
Current Rentals of Prime Shopping Centre Space Retail sales may also suffer as consumers
become more prudent and discerning in
Locality Average Prime Monthly Gross Rental1 (psf)
their expenditure with uncertainties in the
Orchard (Central) S$ 48.60 job market brewing. Islandwide prime retail
Orchard (Fringe) S$ 23.00 rentals however, are still expected to have
Marina Centre, City Hall, Bugis S$ 30.70 grown between 1% to 4% for the entire
City Fringe S$ 23.50 2008. In 2009, if the recession in Singapore
were to worsen, the demand for retail space
Suburban S$ 29.10
would be aversely affected, which in turn
1
Based on pre-defined portfolio of properties; refers to prime shop space of between 400 could result in a projected 8% to 13% yoy
and 800 sf typically located on ground level with good frontage; any yields implied refer
contraction in prime retail rents.
only to such prime space and may not be reflective of the entire shopping centre
Source: Knight Frank Research

11
jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Office Property
Market
Office rentals showed signs of softening going 5% year-on-year (yoy). If such a scenario
were to come about, this growth for 2008
into the third quarter of 2008. Rents of office would have fallen below the 4% mark for the
first time since 2003.
space generally dropped in 3Q 2008 after While the effects of the US sub-prime crisis
growth was already noticed to have eased sent ripples across the globe, its effect
is starting to be felt in Singapore. Local
for some areas in previous quarters. economists predicted that the more salient
impact would be a less hiring in the job
market, asset prices dropping as well as
Market Review corporate bottom lines dwindling.

With the world economy faltering, there is The unraveling of global events is expected
a growing worry of beleaguered markets to plague the Singapore office market with
across the globe that may now be faced less than cheery sentiments. In 2Q 2008,
with a spate of new problems. In Singapore, the financial and business services sector
this has developed into a more softened continued to ease with expansion rates at
economic outlook. Economists at the 10.2% quarter-on-quarter (qoq) and 7.5%
Economic Growth Centre have predicted qoq respectively. Despite the slowdown,
that it now looks increasingly likely that figures still represented better than average
Singapore’s economic growth may fall below growth rate numbers, especially for the
4% in 2008, below the Ministry of Trade and business services sector. In terms of five-
Industry (MTI)’s range of between 4% and year quarterly average growth figures, this

Chart 1
Prices and Rentals
16.0% 250

14.0%
Office Price and Rental Index

200
Price and Rental Changes

12.0%

10.0% 150
8.0%

6.0% 100

4.0%
50
2.0%

0.0% 0
2Q07 3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08

Price Index Change (%qoq) Rental Index Change (%qoq)

URA Price Index URA Rental Index


Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research

12
www.knightfrank.com

sector performed above the average rate of up about 40% of the total office stock in in this region was recorded at about 10,800
4.8%. However, the financial services sector Singapore, it made up 60% of the increase sq ft.
performed below the quarterly average rate in demand for office space between 2Q
Islandwide occupancy remained healthy.
of 10.8%. Since financial institutions are 2004 and end-2007, when rental growth
At 92.2%, islandwide occupancy levels
one of the main source of demand for office was accelerating. Nevertheless, since 1Q
dipped by a marginal 0.1 percentage point
space, especially in the Central Region, the 2008, there appears to be a crack in the
in 2Q 2008, based on official figures from
turmoil in financial markets would impact the growth momentum as office demand in the
the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).
take-up of new office space in the coming Downtown Core area started to shrink, while
Based on Knight Frank’s basket of office
months. overall islandwide demand expanded.
properties, occupancy of average Grade
Notwithstanding, currently Singapore is The tapering of rentals this quarter as A office space also witnessed a decline by
expected to be relatively less affected well as the slowdown in demand in the 0.2 percentage point to register at 98.8%
by the external jolts in the global market Downtown Core does not come as a in 2Q 2008. The third quarter of 2008 saw
owing to its diversified economy, steady surprise. The tenants here are primarily occupancy levels remain at 98.8%, 0.3
investment opportunities as well as steady financial institutions, many of which had percentage point less than a year ago.
job creation. According to a recent study by already completed their expansion or
Despite shrinking new demand for offices
the World Trade Organisation, Singapore’s consolidation plans over the last 24 months.
in the Downtown Core, demand for prime
economy was cited as one of the most open In addition, some are putting any further
office space still looks healthy for Marina
and competitive in the world. In addition, a expansion plans on hold. As at 2Q 2008, the
Bay towers office space. Although Phase 1
survey commissioned by the City of London new demand for office space in Downtown
of the Marina Bay Financial Centre is due
ranked Singapore as the third financial Core was about 65,000 sq ft.
for completion only in 2010, Tower One
centre in the world (survey). These global
On the other hand, new demand for office is already fully let, Tower 2 is 45% pre-
recognitions can help provide opportunities
space Outside of the Central Region, which leased and Tower 3 is 55% pre-committed,
for the Singapore office market.
has been lower over the past five years (2Q suggesting that positive sentiments still
2003 – 1Q 2008), saw stronger growth from prevail for the prime office property market.
the second quarter of 2007. In 1Q 2008, this The strong take up for office space in the
value was a high of about 97,000 sq ft, the Marina Bay towers highlights interest for
Possible Crack in largest since 3Q 2002. The steady growth new prime office space, and the interest

Growth Momentum in demand in these four quarters (2Q 2007


– 1Q 2008) did not continue in 2Q 2008
for offices in Downtown Core should still
be supported by Singapore’s move to
of Demand though, when new demand for office space establishing as a leading financial hub.

Islandwide demand for office space was


relatively strong in the past three years Chart 2

(2005 – 2007), but new demand started to New Supply, New Demand and Occupancy Levels Islandwide
(Private and Public Sectors)
slow in the last quarter of 2007 when this
value stood at about 130,000 square feet 100 93.00%
(sq ft). Going into 2008, the opening months
80 92.50%
saw a slight renewal in new demand figures.
Office Space (‘000 sqm)

However, in 2Q 2008, new demand for office


Occupancy Rate (%)

60 92.00%
space islandwide dipped again to register
40 91.50%
at approximately 108,000 sq ft, the lowest
quarterly figure since the start of 2004. 20 91.00%

Although the growth in demand for office 0 90.50%


space islandwide appeared to be strong
-20 90.00%
in the past three years with an average
absorption of about 500,000 sq ft every -40 89.50%
2Q07 3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08
quarter, growth momentum may not
necessarily be so rosy in reality, especially
New Demand New Supply Occupancy Rate
for offices in the Downtown Core. Although
Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research
the prime Downtown Core area makes

13
jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Subdued Demand for development period for such transitional


office sites could take between 1.5 and 2
this particular site in the current market.

Other than the Marina Bay Financial Centre,


Transitional Offices years, approximate completion, in 2010
office space in the CBD that is expected
would mean that these sites would have
Scheduled to be completed in about a year, to enter the market could also pose as
to compete with a large supply of about
the transitional office site at Scotts Road/ competition to the transitional offices. In
4 million sq ft of office space that would
Anthony Road, which was awarded via 2011, a 38-storey development, known as
also be completed that year. As such, it is
tender earlier in May 2008 with 130,000 sq One Raffles Place, will provide 350,000 sq
anticipated that the site at Mohamed Sultan
ft of office space, is set to house various ft of prime office space. This development is
Road might receive cautious bids or a few
businesses under WPP, which is one of the to be built next to the existing OUB Centre
opportunistic bids. Subsequently, if the site
world’s largest communications services Tower and retail mall. Such new prime office
is sold and the development is completed,
groups. This development is situated space could be completed in time for the
it could still attract potential tenants such
next to another transitional office site sold expected economic recovery.
as architects, designers and marketing
to UOB Kay Hian and also opposite the
firms, who do not require office space in the
pioneer transitional office development,
CBD. The tender closing date for this site is
Scotts Spazio. While response for such
scheduled to be 14 October 2008.
transitional office space is strong, especially Softening of Rentals
for those in better locations, future demand The more recent site released at
Mountbatten Road paints a bleak picture for Office rentals showed signs of softening
for transitional office space remains
the future of transitional offices. Situated a going into the third quarter of 2008. Although
questionable, especially considering the
distance away from the future Mountbatten rents were observed to be sliding, lease
ease in the supply crunch.
MRT Station, the site was already expected renewals was noted to still be healthy.
Two new commercial sites at Mohamed
to fetch bids between 15% and 40% lower Across the board, rents of office space
Sultan Road and Mountbatten Road, which
than an earlier site in the vicinity that was witnessed a drop in 3Q 2008 after growth
have a corresponding site area of 0.6
sold in January 2008. The less than optimal was already noticed to have eased for some
hectares (ha) and 1.2 ha, were launched
location, coupled with present market areas in previous quarters. Specifically, the
for tender on 19 August 2008 and 23
sentiments, do not bode well for demand for decline in rental growth of Grade A offices
September 2008 respectively. While the
was the steepest in the Suntec/Marina/City
Hall area, where the rate of growth was
Table 1 registered at -6.2% quarter-on-quarter (qoq).
Transitional Office Sites Launched The slowdown in rentals was followed by the
S/N Location Nearest MRT Maximum Date of Award Shenton Way/Robinson Road/Tanjong Pagar
Station GFA (square area, which also saw negative growth of
feet) -2.8% qoq. On the other hand, office rentals
1 Site at Scotts Road Newton 168,600 27 August 2007 in the Raffles Place area dropped the least
2 Site at Tampines Tampines 124,000 19 November by 1.4% qoq.
Ave 5 / Tampines 2007
Concourse Grade B offices in Singapore’s office
property market reflected the general
3 Site at Mountbatten Mountbatten 215,300 10 January
Road 2008 weakening of rental growth in 3Q 2008.
Grade B offices in Orchard Road saw a
4 Site at Aljunied Road Aljunied 203,300 Not Awarded
reduction in rental growth by 7.8% qoq,
/ Geylang East Ave 1
the greatest fall for all Grade B offices
5 Site A at Scotts Road Newton 140,200 25 April 2008
islandwide. Raffles Place and Shenton Way/
/ Anthony Road
Robinson Road/Tanjong Pagar Grade B
6 Site B at Scotts Road Newton 145,900 6 May 2008
offices, however, were less impacted with
/ Anthony Road
office rentals dipping by 1.8% qoq and 2.0%
7 Site at Mohamed Clarke Quay 99,700 Not Awarded
qoq respectively.
Sultan Road
8 Site at Mountbatten Aljunied 126,400 Tender stopped. As a whole, offices in non-CBD locations
Road Moved to also mirrored the general slowdown in rental
Reserve List growth this quarter. Rentals continued to
Source: Knight Frank Research weaken for the Beach Road/Middle Road
area when growth lessened by 0.9% qoq

14
www.knightfrank.com

in the second quarter and 3.4% qoq this Chart 3


quarter. Rents of office spaces in all the Average Office Rentals
suburban areas also fell, ranging from 1% to $20.00
8% qoq. $18.00
After about four years of rental growth, the $16.00
decline in office rentals in the Raffles Place Rental ($psf) $14.00
area can also be partly attributed to an $12.00
increase in potential supply in the area. This $10.00
is due to a significant amount of commercial $8.00
land sold through the Government Land $6.00
Sales Programme. In addition, some $4.00
landlords are becoming more realistic in $2.00
their rental expectations and are more
$0.00
flexible in their rental negotiations. Some 3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08
landlords are also putting more effort to
Raffles Place Grade A Shenton Way/Robinson Road/Tanjong Pagar Grade A
retain tenants to maintain their buildings’
occupancy rates, leading to softening of Orchard Road Grade A Suburban Areas Suntec/Marina/City Hall Grade A
office rents in some cases. Source: Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research

Table 2
Outlook Average Effective Monthly Rentals in 3Q 2008

In the short term, the volatility in financial Location Average Effective Monthly Gross Rental (psf)
markets are expected to lead to many firms CBD (Grade A)
either postponing their expansion plans or
Raffles Place S$ 17.10 – S$ 18.20
consolidating their space usage. Possible
Marina Centre / City Hall S$ 14.40 – S$ 15.90
financial mergers and acquisitions as a
result of the financial turmoil could also Shenton Way / Robinson Road S$ 11.30 – S$ 12.30
contribute to the consolidation of office Orchard Road S$ 13.30 – S$ 14.30
space usage and the reduction in demand Non-CBD
for office space. Following which, we could
Beach Road / Middle Road S$ 9.70 – S$ 10.60
also start to see the restructuring and freeing
Suburban (North) S$ 8.40 – S$ 9.30
up of additional space and the offer of
‘sublease space’ due to the potential cash Suburban (East) S$ 6.60 – S$ 7.40
flow problems faced by some companies. Suburban (West) S$ 7.00 – S$ 7.80
This may lead to an increase in available Source: Knight Frank Research
office space in the market. As a result, it is
anticipated that average office rentals would
persist to wane by 14% to 19% in the next
twelve months.

15
jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Industrial
Property Market
The industrial property market moderated in shutdown for maintenance as production
switches from one to another. While this
performance during 3Q 2008, with rents and could be due to the volatility of the biomedical
industry, there seemed to be prolonged
capital values for most industrial properties weakening in biomedical output. In particular,
pharmaceutical production has been weak
remaining similar to 2Q 2008. However, for an extended period, bringing biomedical

this could be the turning point for industrial output to contract for almost five consecutive
months and total less than 13.8% yoy for the
properties, following which rents and prices first eight months. The prolonged decline in
biomedical output may pose some challenges
are expected to decline. for Singapore’s competitiveness, as the
sector has been identified as a bedrock for
Singapore to move up the value-chain in
Performance of industrial production.

Manufacturing Sector Similarly, the chemicals cluster fell 6.0% yoy


and electronics cluster contracted 7.1% yoy
The manufacturing sector in Singapore
in August. Considering the first eight months,
further contracted in 3Q 2008. This was
consumer electronics grew only 2.6% yoy,
reflected in total manufacturing output, which
due in part to the closure or relocation of
fell a drastic 21.9% year-on-year (yoy) in
mobile device production.
July 2008 and declined 12.2% yoy in August.
In the previous quarter, the manufacturing Of note, the Purchasing Manager Index
output contracted by 4.7% yoy in May (PMI), which gives an outlook about
and 13.0% yoy in June. If the decline forthcoming factory output, fell from 50.6
persists, this may reflect a lowered global in August to 49.5 in September. A reading
demand for numerous industrial outputs. above 50 would be an expansion and this
This will be discouraging for the industrial indicates a contraction in upcoming factory
property market, which was enjoying a output. The 1.1-points fall was also the
notable recovery in 2007. Hence, there are first contraction in three months and the
possibilities that industrialists will re-look at largest monthly decline since January 2008,
spatial requirements, including consolidating attributable to both a weakened local and
manufacturing functions and relocating to overseas demand. Meanwhile, new orders
cost-competitive countries. index dropped to 49.8 in August 2008 while
exports orders index increased to 48.9.
The contractions in manufacturing output
Notwithstanding, at below 50 points, the
were driven by a decline in biomedical
exports orders index was considered a
production, which shrank 67.3% in July and
contraction.
continued to fall 33.8% in August 2008.
The drastic fall in July was due to a 69.7% These were in sync with worldwide falls in
contraction in the pharmaceuticals segment. manufacturing and exports, especially the
The fall in biomedical output was part of the G-3 economies comprising United States,
volatility of the biomedical industry, where Europe and Japan. For example, the United
manufacturing facilities were periodically States’ manufacturing index dropped to 43.5

16
www.knightfrank.com

for September, the lowest since October


2001, while Bank of Japan surveyed
amid rising inflation in emerging economies.
Moreover, as the economy is expected to
Demand and Supply
manufacturers who expressed sentiments worsen and consumers will be increasingly Islandwide occupancy of factory space
to be lowest compared to the past five years. cautious, manufacturers will have limited increased 0.7 percentage-point in 2Q 2008,
opportunities to pass these increased to 93.1%. This was the highest occupancy
Besides a global drop in demand for
business costs to buyers, leading to a lower of industrial space since 1998. Together
manufacturing outputs, the manufacturing
profit margin. Nonetheless, the effect can with limited factory space completed in 2Q
sector has to grapple with the effect
still be partially mitigated by an appreciation 2008, total new demand for factory space
of higher production costs. The higher
of the Singapore currency and at best, remained healthy in 2Q 2008, at 2.69 million
production costs were exacerbated by
a gradual recovery of the US currency. sq ft. While this was lower by 13% qoq, the
increasing import costs for raw materials
industrial property market is growing as
there was no contraction in demand and this
Chart 1 new demand far exceeded the new supply of
Industrial Production Index 818,060 sq ft in 2Q 2008.
120 12.0%
Total new demand for warehouse space
8.0% increased from 1.04 million sq ft in 1Q 2008
to 1.16 million sq ft in 2Q 2008. The 1.16
Industrial Production Index

110 4.0% million sq ft of total new demand was more


Yoy Change
0.0% than 947,200 sq ft of new warehouse supply.
100 This led to a 0.4 percentage-point increase
-4.0% in occupancy, to 92% in 2Q 2008. With
-8.0% Singapore striving to develop into a global
90 logistics hub, the prospects for warehouses
-12.0% remain bright in the long term. In addition,
-16.0%
the current office space crunch and
80
3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08 expensive office rentals have caused the
users of prime offices to rationalize space
Industrial Production Index Yoy Change in Index
for storing files, records and archives, and
Source: Singapore Department of Statistics increasingly, warehouses are needed for
storage of such materials.
Chart 2
Demand and Supply of Factory Space The new take-up of industrial space is partly
(Private and Public Sector) influenced by the completion of new supple.
As there was no new completion of business
4,200 95.0%
park space in the second quarter of the year,
3,700 the new demand for such space fell from
94.0% 484,400 sq ft in 1Q 2008 to 183,000 sq ft in
Floor Space (‘000 sq ft)

3,200
2Q 2008. However, the overall occupancy
Occupancy Rate

93.0% increased by 1.7 percentage-points qoq to


2,700
89.7%. Although the office space crunch
2,200 92.0% is easing, the rental gap between office
1,700 and business parks space is still significant
91.0% enough to attract users to business parks.
1,200 As a result, the occupancy of business parks
700 90.0% is likely to continue to increase in the short
2Q07 3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08
term.

New Demand New Supply Occupancy Rate


Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority, Knight Frank Research

17
jul-sep 2008/3rd quarter
real estate highlights

Government Land Industrial Rents and in Kaki Bukit vicinity ranged from $130 psf to
$350 psf.
Sales Programme Capital Values For high-tech industrial space, rents
Only one industrial site was sold through the The industrial property market remained declined very marginally, by four cents to
Government Land Sales Programme in 3Q stable amid industrialists who are average $4.10 psf per month. This was due
2008. The first was a 60-year leasehold site increasingly cautious during the economic to a slight dip in the rents of older high-tech
at Woodland Avenue 4, which was awarded uncertainty. Rents of conventional industrial industrial space, such as New Tech Park,
to Soilbuild for S$13.61 million, or S$30.11 space was generally unchanged in 3Q 2008, while rents for the rest remained at 2Q
psf per plot ratio (ppr). This site could yield with only conventional industrial space in 2008’s level. With the completion of newer
a total of 180,833 sq ft of industrial space. Kaki Bukit sliding by 2% qoq to average higher-specifications buildings, pioneer high-
This marks the tenth industrial site acquired $1.47 psf per month. tech industrial buildings may be gradually
by Soilbuild since the company move into phased out as high-tech space.
Rents of conventional industrial space in
industrial property development in 2005, of
the rest of the micro-regions, such as at Conversely, rents of business park space
which six, including this site, are currently
Macpherson/ Paya Lebar, Admiralty and were stable in 3Q 2008, backed by demand
in the development stage. Scheduled to
Ang Mo Kio were flat. This was the first from some office space users. Many
complete constructions by 2010, the factory
quarter that conventional industrial space businesses have found business parks as
caters to Small-Medium-Enterprises (SMEs)
showed an almost flat growth in rentals, after an attractive alternative to house approved
engaging in clean/light industry, general
consecutive quarterly increases for the past back-end operations. This brings monthly
industry and warehousing.
two years. rents of business park buildings, such
as The Synergy, The Strategy and The
Similarly, the capital values of conventional
Signature in International Business Park,
industrial space were flat in 3Q 2008. Capital
to average $4.54 psf per month.
Industrial REIT values in the Admiralty area ranged from
S$125 psf to S$285 psf and capital values
Acquisitions
Similarly, the industrial investment market
Table 1
was quiet, with only two industrial buildings Rentals and Capital Values of Sample Factory/Warehouse (Upper Floors)
bought by REITs. The first was Natural and Business Park Space in 3Q 2008
Cool Building, acquired by Cambridge
Locality Average Monthly Average Capital
Industrial Trust (CIT), for S$55.2 million,
Gross Rental (psf) Value (psf)
averaging $260 psf. First REIT, on the
other hand, purchased a warehouse in Tua Conventional Industrial Space
View Lane, which is under development. MacPherson / Paya Lebar S$ 1.85 – S$ 2.20 S$ 195 – S$ 340
The warehouse was sold for S$42 million, Kaki Bukit S$ 1.35 – S$ 1.60 S$ 130 – S$ 350
averaging S$180 psf. In the months ahead, (60-year leasehold)
the number of industrial buildings that will Admiralty S$ 1.10 – S$ 1.35 S$ 120 – S$ 280
be purchased by REITs is likely to remain (60-year leasehold)
subdued as S-REITs are looking across High-tech Factory Space
the border in India, Malaysia and Vietnam
Islandwide S$ 3.90 – S$ 4.30 N.A.
for diversification and buildings with higher
Business Park Space
yields
Islandwide S$ 4.25 – S$ 4.85 N.A.
Source: Knight Frank Research

18
www.knightfrank.com

Chart 3
Factory Space Rentals
$1.60 12.0%

10.0%
$1.50

8.0%
$1.40

Qoq Change
Rentals psf

6.0%
$1.30
4.0%
$1.20
2.0%

$1.10 -0.0%

$1.00 -2.0%
3Q07 4Q07 1Q08 2Q08 3Q08

Rentals (psf) Qoq Change in Rentals

Source: Knight Frank Research

more sensitive in lease renewals and rental


Outlook negotiations to ensure occupancy and lease
After enjoying about four years of gradual sustainability.
price and rental increases, the growth in The fourth quarter could be the turning point
the industrial property market is starting to where average prices and rents of industrial
display strains of slowing down. space could start to decline. But for the
The slowdown in the manufacturing sector whole of 2008, rents and prices of industrial
would be one of the strongest factors properties are still projected to increase by
causing the fall in demand for industrial about 5% to 9%, while rents and prices of
space. The manufacturers in Singapore industrial properties may fall by 7%-12% and
may become increasingly pessimistic about 10%-15% respectively in 2009. However,
business outlook, as operating costs rise the individual performance of different types
and global demand for products such as of industrial space may be mixed. The
consumer electronics and semi-conductor rents and prices of conventional factory
products continue to contract. Output space may suffer a higher rate of decline,
from the two key manufacturing clusters, whereas rents of modern industrial space
biomedical and semiconductor industries and business parks would experience a
are also anticipated to slow, limiting the smaller fall. In the coming months, industrial
demand for such industrial space. Industrial landlords could be more flexible in order
landlords, including managers of REIT to maintain the occupancy levels of their
industrial buildings, are expected to be industrial portfolio.

19
Research

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