Singapore property seen on path to recovery after prolonged slump

Singapore property seen on path to recovery after prolonged slump

Singapore (Reuters): Singapore’s housing market is expected to build on its recovery over 2018, analysts say, as private home prices marked their first annual rise in four years.

After hitting a record peak in the third quarter of 2013, a string of government cooling measures drove private residential home prices down for 15 consecutive quarters through to the second quarter of this year.

That downturn may be over if optimistic forecasts by analysts are anything to go by, with a strong pick up on the cards after home prices edged up just 1.0 percent for the whole of 2017.

Credit Suisse forecast residential prices to rise 5-10 percent in 2018, and named UOL Group Ltd (UTOS.SI) as its top pick for stocks among Singapore developers.

“Particularly supportive of sustained property price increases is the breadth of household income growth and strong household balance sheets today,” Credit Suisse analysts said in a note on Wednesday.

Morgan Stanley forecast an increase of 8 percent this year and said the pace could be sustained even in 2019, as it expects rising home buyer demand to outweigh a tight supply of unsold inventory. It named City Developments (CTDM.SI) as its top pick in a research note on Monday.

If the forecasts stack up, the city state’s economy could get an extra fillip from the expected pick up in construction activity, though there was scant data on the specific impact on output.

Jefferies expects a rise of low-to-mid single digits in residential prices in 2018.

Real estate services firm Colliers on Wednesday said average home prices may rise by 17 percent over 2018-2021, supported by higher economic growth, falling physical completions and ongoing collective sale deals.