Valuations Update of STI

Current P/E of STI – 6.84x

Current P/B of STI – 1.34x

Mean P/E of STI – 16.3x

Mean P/B of STI – 1.73x

P/B of STI to be in “crisis range” – 0.98x (or -2SD)

P/B range of 0.7-1.2x in past crises

When STI is declining, it’s better to look at P/B than P/E as the earnings will usually drop if the crisis lasts long. This phenomenon will cause an inflated P/E as the denominator becomes smaller.

Bank on Singapore

I recently visited Sentosa to take a look at the new casino and the Universal Studios. The first thought that came to my mind when I saw the Universal Studios globe was, “Singapore is really going to prosper from this!”. The casino was grand and the entire area around Waterfront station has been transformed to something spectacular. It wasn’t the Sentosa I used to know. The Sentosa IR and the Marina Bay Sands included will certainly bring Singapore the revenues. With the YOG coming up, F1 slated to happen in September and the economy outlook for this year being very positive for Singapore, I’m sure Singapore will be doing extremely well for the next few years to come. Recently, Singapore has also been ranked one of the best places to do business in due to the tax incentives, low crime rate, low corruption and high literacy rates.

To bank on Singapore, I recently bought the STI ETF. The Straits Times Index (STI) is the benchmark index the¬†representative¬†30 companies in Singapore and it consists of some of the biggest players like DBS, Capitaland, SMRT, SGX, SIA, Singtel and Starhub, among others. When you buy 1 lot of STI ETF (or STI exchange traded fund), it’s like buying the entire STI with its 30 component stocks at one go for one price. You are entitled to the dividends paid by the component stocks as well. The dividend yield of STI ETF is around 4% and it’s better than putting the money in the bank and getting a paltry 0.1% as interest.