(Feb 21): Singapore’s tax increase on home purchases exceeding $1 million is aimed at making duties more equitable rather than imposing an additional property curb, said S. Iswaran, minister of trade and industry.

Stamp duty on the portion of a property’s price above $1 million will be raised starting Tuesday to 4% from 3%, the government said in its budget Monday. Home prices have rebounded in the past two quarters, prompting aggressive land bids from developers as the property market shrugged off cooling measures ranging from additional taxes to limits on loans to emerge from a four-year slump.

See: Top marginal buyer's stamp duty for residential properties raised to 4%

"The measures have had the desired effect," Iswaran said. "If in fact there’s any concern, you would have seen far more significant measures."

See: Higher home buyer tax seen cooling Singapore's collective sales frenzy

While a recovery in home prices is not a cause for concern, “exuberance” in the so-called en-bloc market for redevelopments may not be warranted, Ravi Menon, the managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, said at a conference last month. Collective apartment sales for redevelopment in the first two months of 2018 totaled more than $3.1 billion, almost double the $1.66 billion seen in same period during the last en-bloc market peak in 2007, Nomura analyst Min Chow Sai wrote in a note dated Feb 19.