Big 5 water-utility stocks' prices up

United Envirotech's wastewater treatment facility. The company conducts most of its business in China. Its share price has risen by 7.8 per cent over the past 12 months.
United Envirotech's wastewater treatment facility. The company conducts most of its business in China. Its share price has risen by 7.8 per cent over the past 12 months.PHOTO: UNITED ENVIROTECH

THE five largest capitalised stocks with water utility businesses on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) averaged a 12.2 per cent price gain over the past 12 months, below their five-year average of annualised gains of 17 per cent.

Three of the big five have traded at 12-month highs in the past two months, while the largest - Sembcorp Industries - traded at a 12-month low on Tuesday, said an SGX My Gateway report yesterday.

The big five are Sembcorp Industries, China Everbright Water, SIIC Environment Holdings, United Envirotech and Keppel Infrastructure Trust. Three of them conduct the majority of their businesses in China, Asia's largest economy: China Everbright Water, SIIC Environment and United Envirotech.

"They generated a wide range of gains in the year to date, with China Everbright Water rising 1 per cent, United Envirotech advancing 7.8 per cent and SIIC Environment climbing 55.8 per cent," the report said.

SGX My Gateway, a site that is used to educate the investing public, said these companies operate businesses akin to that of Singapore's national water agency PUB, which collects, produces, distributes and reclaims water.

Beyond the five stocks are companies such as water-services firm Hyflux, and those with market capitalisation of less than $100 million, such as Moya Holdings Asia, Darco Water Technologies and Annaik.

The biggest listed water utility, SembCorp Industries, is also involved in the power utility business. Its stock was downgraded by several houses last month after it posted a sharp drop in first-quarter net profit, with analysts seeing the company facing headwinds in the Singapore energy business.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 18, 2015, with the headline 'Big 5 water-utility stocks' prices up'. Print Edition | Subscribe