COE prices end mostly lower in latest tender

Premium for motorcycles drops below $6,000 mark for first time in eight months

Certificate of entitlement (COE) prices ended mostly lower in the tender yesterday, with the motorcycle premium falling below the $6,000 mark for the first time in eight months.

The COE price for cars up to 1,600cc and 130bhp finished 2.3 per cent lower at $56,001, while the premium for cars above 1,600cc or 130bhp was 4 per cent lower at $57,501.

But the price for Open category COE, which can be used for any vehicle type, inched upwards by 1.1 per cent to close at $60,689.

The commercial vehicle COE price climbed 3.6 per cent to close at $43,809, while the motorbike premium took the steepest dive - closing 6.2 per cent lower at $5,912.

Motor traders said the results were not unexpected.

Mr Neo Nam Heng, chairman of the diversified Prime group of motor companies, said: "Dealers don't have as much profit margin as before to bid because of the stronger Japanese yen.

"So, despite so many orders and such big crowds at the showroom in recent weekends, premiums have ended lower."

Mr Neo said the weaker economic outlook may have made consumers more cautious - especially those eyeing bigger cars.

Because of the sentiment, dealers are also more cautious, he added.

As for motorcycle COEs, Singapore Motorcycle Trade Association president Tony Yeo said a number of dealers were stuck with COEs that had either expired or were fast expiring.

These included certificates clinched in April at a record $6,801 and those in May and June that ranged between $6,401 and $6,512.

"No one was buying at those prices, so the dealers had to bid lower," Mr Yeo said. "I foresee it might drop further to $5,700 or $5,600."

Christopher Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 05, 2015, with the headline 'COE prices end mostly lower in latest tender'. Print Edition | Subscribe