Singapore property stocks jump after some curbs eased

The Ministry of National Development, Ministry of Finance and Monetary Authority of Singapore said that "calibrated adjustments" to the Seller's Stamp Duty and Total Debt Servicing Ratio framework would take effect from Saturday (March 11).
The Ministry of National Development, Ministry of Finance and Monetary Authority of Singapore said that "calibrated adjustments" to the Seller's Stamp Duty and Total Debt Servicing Ratio framework would take effect from Saturday (March 11).PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Property counters jumped on Friday (March 10) after the Government said it would slightly relax measures previously put in place to cool Singapore's residential property market.

In a joint statement on Friday morning, the Ministry of National Development, Ministry of Finance and Monetary Authority of Singapore said that "calibrated adjustments" to the Seller's Stamp Duty (SSD) and Total Debt Servicing Ratio (TDSR) framework would take effect from Saturday.

Stocks of Singapore developers, which had already been drifting upwards in recent weeks, jumped on the news.

An index of 44 Singapore real-estate companies rallied to the highest since July 2015, according to Bloomberg.

The top active counter in the sector was CapitaLand, which was up 17 cents or 4.76 per cent at S$3.73 as at 1.24pm.

Other top gainers were City Developments, which jumped 65 cents or 6.66 per cent to S$10.25.

UOL Group rose 43 cents or 6.5 per cent to S$7.05.

Bukit Sembawang rose rose 16 cents or 2.59 per cent to S$6.33.

OUE rose 8 cents or 3.85 per cent to S$2.16.

From Saturday, the SSD, which is currently payable by those who sell a residential property within four years of purchase, will be revised down to apply only to those who sell a property after a holding period of just three years. This applies to residential properties purchased on or after March 11.

The SSD rate will also be lowered by 4 percentage points for each tier, to range from 4 per cent to 12 per cent.

Also from Saturday, a rule that banks cannot lend to a borrower beyond the TDSR threshold of 60 per cent will no longer apply to mortgage equity withdrawal loans with loan-to-value ratios of 50 per cent and below. These refer to loans where borrowers borrow against the value of their properties to obtain more cash.