SINGAPORE (June 5): The unprecedented “circuit breaker” measures in Singapore has caused most of commuter traffic to disappear. It has also sent ComfortDelGro shares down 32% year to date to close at $1.61 on June 3. For the land transport giant — which operates taxis, buses and trains — the Covid-19 outbreak was an unprecedented challenge for a business which for years has been seen as one of the more defensive stocks to own.

On May 29, the transport heavyweight was also axed from the MSCI Singapore index in its semi-annual review, which added to the woes of existing shareholders. Shares tumbled 4% over the course of that day alone with 255.7 million shares worth $374.1 million changing hands, as fund managers rebalance their holdings in line with the index.

While the circuit breaker period has essentially been a “doom and gloom” scenario for ComfortDelGro, its fortunes could change soon. Singapore has now scaled back some of its restrictions in a “partial reopening”, allowing more businesses and schools to resume operations. With more people commuting, market watchers say this could indicate a “potential recovery” for ComfortDelGro. Some analysts have also changed their minds about the company, and over the past week they have turned bullish on the counter — a reversal from the more sombre projections previously.

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