Cutting number of debt accounts slashes stress, improves decision-making

SINGAPORE (July 1): For Madam Rose (not her real name), 2015 was not a good year. She was in the midst of a divorce and worried about obtaining custody of her three children. She had no income and was saddled with debt incurred by her former husband. He needed money for lawyers’ fees in a criminal case and, on the promise that he would pay it back, she took out a $4,000 loan from a friend’s friend. But he did not pay up, the interest accrued and she was faced with a $6,000 debt and no way to pay it off.


OCBC says Soilbuild REIT has undemanding valuations, but still lacks catalysts

SINGAPORE (May 31): OCBC Investment Research is maintaining “hold” on Soilbuild Business Space REIT (SB REIT) with an unchanged fair value of 62 cents as the REIT continues to await rent payment due from its master lease tenant, NK Ingredients.

To recap, the distressed lanolin manufacturer is in the midst of restructuring.

Credit strains in Southeast Asia on the rise: Rajah & Tann

(Mar 26): Cracks are showing in Southeast Asia’s credit markets as struggling companies in troubled industries seek to repair their balance sheets, according to Rajah & Tann Singapore, which manages the largest network of corporate lawyers in the region.

Which markets face the most risks as frontiers drown in debt?

SINGAPORE (Mar 11): With a steady build-up of public debt becoming increasingly held by private creditors, frontier markets (FMs) are outpacing their emerging market (EMs) counterparts to become more and more vulnerable to global financial shocks.

This is according to Oxford Economics in its latest research briefing issued last Friday, where it noted that FMs are currently “drowning in debt”.

Sino Grandness to service $28.7 mil debt using dividends from China

SINGAPORE (Feb 7): Sino Grandness Food Industry Group says it is currently preparing to repatriate funds back from China, by way of dividend, amid ongoing negotiations with Soleado Holdings to extend the repayment of $28.7 million owed.

To recap, Soleado Holdings is demanding Sino Grandness pays an outstanding loan principal amount of US$21.2 million ($28.7 million) and $30,000 in interest and legal fees.

Battling eight giants with basic income

SINGAPORE (Jan 28): In 1942, British economist and social reformer William Beveridge issued an epoch-defining report that established a model for welfare states in the post-war era. He recognised that the old social protection system had broken down and that it was “time for revolutions, not for patching”. The challenge, Beveridge said, was to slay five giants: disease, idleness, ignorance, squalor and want.

Sunvic Chemical racks up $44 mil in corporate loan claims, says cash flow may be affected

SINGAPORE (Jan 11): Sunvic Chemical Holdings says two of its subsidiaries, Yixing Yinyan Import & Export Co and Jiangsu Jurong Chemical, have each received letters of demand regarding corporate loans amounting to about RMB 222.5 million ($44.3 million).

The first claim was lodged by Yixing City Futao Rural Micro Credit against Sunvic’s Yixing Yinyan, which acted as the corporate guarantor for Jiangsu Donglai Real Estate Development for an RMB 180 million loan from Yixing City Futao.

Debt is not the problem; sustainability is

SINGAPORE (Sept 21): There were at least 102 Singapore-listed companies with net gearing ratios of above 100%, with 17 operate in the property management and development industry, according to 12-month trailing data from Bloomberg.

Even so, there are wide differences in the financial strength of individual companies within each sector. Take the two largest developers City Developments (CDL) and CapitaLand, Each has net gearing below 50%, whereas several of the smallest developers, such as Aspial Corp and Chip Eng Seng, have net gearing levels of around two times or higher.

Khazanah in talks to sell stakes in M+S, Pulau Indah Ventures to JV partner Temasek

SINGAPORE (Aug 23): Khazanah Nasional, Malaysia's sovereign wealth fund, is in talks to divest its 60% stake in M+S to its joint venture (JV) partner, Temasek Holdings, according to reports from The Malaysian Reserve.

The JV company, which is 40% owned by Temasek, was set up by the duo in 2011 to develop two mega-projects in Singapore – Marina One and DUO – worth about $11 billion in total.

Excess $5.4 bil in excess taxes not refunded: Lim Guan Eng

SINGAPORE (Aug 23): Malaysia’s Finance Ministry yesterday said that the previous Barisan Nasional (BN) government did not refund RM16.05 billion ($5.35 billion) in excess income tax and real property gains tax (RPGT) paid by taxpayers as of May 31, 2018, with some being owed these refunds for the last six years.

This amount is on top of the outstanding goods and services tax (GST) input tax refunds of RM19.40 billion that has not been returned to businesses as of the same date.

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