COE, HDB 3-room, Michelin down?


Are these indicators that all may not be well on the economic front?

I refer to the article “COE prices for bigger cars lowest in eight years” (Straits Times, Jun 7).

It states that “COE premiums for cars up to 1,600 and 130bhp ended at a nine-month low of $36,426, down from $38,001 previously. COE prices for cars above 1,600cc or 130bhp closed at an eight-year low of $36,000, down from $37,989.

Prices for the Open COE, which can be used for any vehicle type except motorcycles, ended at$37,000 – the lowest since March 2010 – down from $38,700.”

According to the article “HDB resale prices rise 0.5% in May from April; volume slips 5.3%: SRX” (Straits Times, Jun 7) – “Prices in May have dipped 1.8 per cent from the same month last year, and are down 13.1 per cent since the peak in April 2013.

There was also a 5.3 per cent drop in the number of resale flats sold last month – to 1,753 units sold in May 2018 from 1,851 transacted units in April 2018.

Resale volume was down 52 per cent compared to the peak of 3,649 units sold in May 2010.

On a month-on-month basis, last month’s resale prices of HDB four-room flats, five-room flats, and executive flats rose by 0.1 per cent, 0.5 per cent, and 1.5 per cent respectively. Meanwhile, resale prices of HDB three-room flats fell 0.1 per cent.”

It is interesting to note that the prices of three-room flats fell 0.1 per cent, whilst four-room flats only increased by 0.1 per cent.

According to the article “Joel Robuchon Restaurant, Singapore’s only 3-Michelin-starred eatery, to close by end June” (Straits Times, Jun 7) – “Singapore’s only three-Michelin-starred restaurant Joel Robuchon Restaurant – located at Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) – will close by the end of June.

Its sister outlet at RWS, the two-Michelin-starred L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon, will also close, although it may reopen in Orchard Road, according to a report by The Business Times on Thursday (June 7).

The imminent closures of the two high-end restaurants come as a blow to Singapore’s fine-dining scene, which earlier this year lost the two-starred Restaurant Andre.”

The above three stories on the same day in one newspaper may be indicators that all may not be well on the economic front.

Leong Sze Hian

About the Author

Leong Sze Hian has served as the president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), Hotel Mumbai (associate producer), invited to speak more than 200 times in about 40 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of 2 countries. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.