Colliers Jardine Singapore property auction flops

PUBLISHED : Monday, 16 January, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 16 January, 1995, 12:00am

AN auction in Singapore on Friday failed to sell any of eight small properties offered for sale by Colliers Jardine.

These included conservation shophouses, residential sites, a factory unit and a Housing Board shophouse.

Those present laughed at the high opening prices on some of the properties.

A restored, two-storey shophouse on Serangoon Road with freehold land area of 1,109 square feet, was to open at S$3.2 million (about HK$16.94 million).

Sentiment on Singapore's property market was badly shaken on Wednesday and Thursday.

Average winning bids at an Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) auction under-performed last year's bids by as much as 17 per cent.

The news of the URA auction's poor results threw the Stock Exchange of Singapore into a two-day tailspin.

The Straits Times Industrial Index fell more than three per cent from the close on Wednesday to that on Friday. On Friday, the SES All-Properties Index fell 3.1 per cent.

Property counters were among the most actively traded shares all week. The giant DBS Land fell 15 per cent last week.

Analysts, however, have suggested that the property slump has been engineered by the government.

In the past year, government officials have expressed concern that rising real estate prices could make Singapore uncompetitive and make home buying difficult.

Last year, non-retail property prices in Singapore rose by 40 to 60 per cent, according to Jones Lang Wootten, international property consultants.

In the past year, the government has released more land on to the market in a bid to cut down on speculation.

Meanwhile, all eyes are on Wednesday's closing tenders for residential sites of up to 270,000 sq ft.

Some analysts expect URA land to fetch better prices this week because much bigger land parcels will be for sale.