SGX to review quarterly report and dual class shares

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Exchange is reviewing the need for quarterly reporting and looking closely at dual class shares, in sweeping moves aimed at refreshing and improving the quality of the stock market here.

It is also mulling over whether to allocate a larger proportion of a mainboard listing's shares to retail investors, up from the previous 5 per cent level proposed, said SGX's chief executive officer Loh Boon Chye.

Apart from setting up teams to study the need for continued quarterly reporting, Mr Loh also added that first-time short-sellers will no longer be automatically penalised if they fail to deliver their stocks in time.

The SGX will also give more time for new rules to kick in. They will only start collateralised trading - where investors need to put up some capital when they buy a stock - in 2018 instead of this year.

"Given the many structural changes we have implemented to date, we remain conscious about striking a balance as too many changes in a relatively short time can be detrimental or counterproductive," said Mr Loh.

Yesterday, Mr Loh also took the opportunity to defend the performance of the Singapore market, saying that it has been consistently performing over the years.

The benchmark Straits Times Index returned a total of 5.7 per cent a year over the past ten years, just a shade under the 6 per cent annually the Dow Jones returned.

Compared with other developed markets, only Hong Kong did better than the STI, while the Nikkei returned just 1.5 per cent a year, London saw just 1.6 per cent in returns a year.

At the seminar yesterday, experts also discussed the Singapore and Asian markets for the rest of the year.

Mr David Kuo, chief executive of Motley Fool Singapore, said that he still likes Singapore Reits while OCBC's senior investment strategies Vasu Menon was bullish on emerging markets, noting that value has emerged after the recent sell-off.