Singapore Rates Weekly


USD 1M Libor 0.18225%
USD 3M Libor 0.27975%
USD 6M Libor 0.41090%

1Q15 Unemployment Rate 1.8% vs expected 2% but …the last time Singapore created only 300 jobs for a quarter was back in 2009, compared to 4Q14 where 40.7k jobs were created. Is this why Singapore’s Tiger Moms are becoming a headache for the government ?

singapore jobs created

With the labour force growing at about 90k per year, the unemployment rate cannot stay at 1.8% for long with 300 jobs per quarter which is possibly an anomaly but we cannot be sure because weakness is registered in all 3 industry segments.

I won’t be harping on this because USDSGD is much more interesting and we were right from the trading angle that 1.31 would hold as a pivot and that higher rates were a better bet than for rates to head lower.

That said, we appear to be heading into election times onshore with the Prime Minister talking up leadership renewal at the May Day rally speech. I think we shall not expect markets (including SIBOR and SOR) to be too whippy or exciting till it is over (USDSGD at mid NEER i.e. 0% as we speak) while in the meantime we can expect the goodies to pour forth, starting with the retail bonds and Singapore savings bonds initiatives.

MAS also formally announced the list of Domestic Systemically Important Banks and we have the usual suspects – all the QFBs.

DBS Bank;
Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation;
United Overseas Bank;
Malayan Banking Berhad;
Standard Chartered Bank; and
The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation.

Given that they are all over-capitalised already, depositors will have to pay the price and not expect any better service.

The main risk in the week ahead would be Friday’s US Non Farm Payrolls and the rumour on the HKD un-peg, a big clash in directions which means that it would pay to stay out of the markets for the time being, taking off the USDSGD and the bond bets given that yields are just back to the middle of their 12 month ranges.