SINGAPORE (June 20): Over 30 stocks listed on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) make up part of the 1,200 stocks representing the hotel, restaurant and leisure industry, a key driver of the world’s consumer discretionary sector.

According to the SGX, 20 of these counters have averaged 18% price gains in the year to date (YTD) – comparable to their global peers with average YTD price gains of 18% in SGD terms.

In SGX’s weekly e-newsletter on Monday, the bourse’s market strategist, Geoff Howie, points out that one such stock is Genting Singapore (GENS): Singapore’s largest capitalised stock within the hotel, restaurant and leisure industry, and also Asia Pacific’s eighth biggest stock in the sector by market capitalisation.

The counter’s share price has rallied 25% in the YTD, with its indicative dividend yield now in line with the Asia Pacific average of 2.6%. For FY16, the group paid 3 cents per share in dividends, which is double of that of FY15.

Catalist-listed Kimly – which began trading this year on March 20 and has a net cash position – is another stock which gained 58% from its initial offer price of 25 cents.

The group is ranked 12 among Singapore’s biggest hotel, restaurant and leisure stocks by capitalisation, and intends to pay out no less than 50% of its net profit attributable to shareholders as dividends.

Another stock highlighted by Howie is secondary listing Mandarin Oriental International, which saw its shares gain 10% over the last week alone, bringing its 2017 YTD price gain to 52% in SGD terms.

Earlier this month, Mandarin Oriental announced it was undertaking a review of its long-term strategic options for The Excelsior hotel in Hong Kong.

(See also: Mandarin Oriental mulls sale of The Excelsior, HK)

“Last week’s move was also on high volume, with its shares trading more than four times its average three-month volume. Over the past three months, the stock has traded an average of $1 million a day, with trading on the primary exchange negligible,” notes the market strategist.

For FY16, Mandarin Oriental reported diluted earnings per share (EPS) of 4.38 US cents (6.1 cents) compared to 7.41 US cents in 2015.

“Amongst the largest 20 stocks, the best performer in the 2017 year-to-date excluding Kimly was Mandarin Oriental. Together, Mandarin Oriental, Kimly and Genting Singapore International provide a microcosm of Singapore’s hotel, restaurant & leisure stocks,” says Howie.

As at 10.50am, shares of GENS, Kimly and Mandarin Oriental are trading at $1.16, 39 cents and US$2.06 respectively.