16 Things You Have To Know About Singapore’s Stock Market

I had an idea last May to collect important historical facts and figures about Singapore’s stock market and present them in a single article.

Some of you may wonder if there’s even any value in doing so. Thing is, while history has its obvious limits (the past is no guarantee of the future), knowing what to expect in the stock market can be very important in helping investors do well. And, that is what the knowledge of history can help with – it gives us an idea of what we can expect when we place our hard-earned money into the stock market.

My aforementioned idea took the form of the article 6 Things You Have To Know About Singapore’s Stock Market which was published on 29 May 2015. The article’s a work in progress and since then, I have been adding to it every now and then when I come across new information, bringing the fact-count to 15 in total prior to toady. You can see all the updates below:

Let’s take a look at the 16th piece of information that I had found recently:

16. Big long-term winners in the market have given investors plenty of short-term misery too

A common thread that links Raffles Medical Group Ltd (SGX: R01), Vicom Limited (SGX: V01), Straco Corporation Ltd (SGX: S85), and Riverstone Holdings Limited (SGX: AP4) is that all four stocks have been big winners in the local market over the past nine-plus years since the start of 2007. You can see this in the table below:

Company Share price gain: 1 Jan 2007 to 23 Feb 2016
Raffles Medical 393%
Vicom 392%
Straco 567%
Riverstone 627%

Source: S&P Global Market Intelligence

Their returns are impressive, especially when we consider the fact that the Straits Times Index (SGX: ^STI), Singapore’s market barometer, had dropped by 11% over the same timeframe.

Looking at the returns of the aforementioned quartet, I guess it’s really easy to think that they must have had given their investors a wonderful experience all the time since 2007. But if you do, then you’d be mistaken. Thing is, all four have actually given their investors an agonising experience every now and then.

This is illustrated nicely by the chart below, which plots the maximum peak-to-trough loss that each stock had suffered in each calendar year from 2007 to 2015.

Annual maximum peak-to-trough loss for Raffles Medical, Vicom, Straco and Riverstone
Source: S&P Global Market Intelligence (click chart for larger image)

Just to point out some examples. In 2008, Raffles Medical’s shares were absolutely hammered with a 64% decline. Vicom had likely unsettled some of its investors with a 15% fall in each of 2014 and 2015. In 2007, Straco’s peak-to-trough loss was nearly 40%. Riverstone’s largest loss in 2011 was a stomach-churning 30%.

As we’ve seen earlier, even the best long-term winners in the market can give their investors nauseating short-term declines. That’s something investors of all stripes should keep in mind when they invest.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore writer Chong Ser Jing owns shares in Raffles Medical, Vicom, and Straco.