Nov 042011
 

Singapore dividend stocks are one of the underappreciated gems of investing in Asia.

The Singapore market has a strong income culture, with most firms paying out dividends from relatively early on. It’s also generally seen as less glamorous than neighbouring markets and tends to trade on lower valuations. As a result, you can often buy into very solid companies at surprisingly high yields.

Take a look at the chart below, which shows the performance of the MSCI Singapore index over the last decade. You can see how large a contribution income made to returns from Singapore stocks. Continue reading »

Oct 282011
 

This is the second part of a review of Asian income funds and emerging market income funds for UK investors, focusing on investment trusts. Click here for Asian income funds – unit trust and oeics.

Asian income funds – investment trusts

There are three Asian income investment trusts in the UK market. And it shows how keen investors now are on the income theme that none trade at a significant discount to net asset value (NAV) – for most ITs, a small discount to NAV is normal.

The Aberdeen Asian Income Fund (LN:AAIF) has a rather different geographic focus to the funds we’ve already looked at in part one – it’s much more geared to Southeast Asia. Singapore is the single biggest holding at 20%, followed by Australia and then Malaysia and Thailand. It doesn’t include a sector breakdown in its factsheet, but I estimate that the biggest holdings are the familiar duo of financials and telecoms at 25% and 20% respectively

Continue reading »

Oct 282011
 

Asian income funds and emerging market income funds may sound like a contradiction. After all, Asia and emerging markets are supposed to be growth investments. So why turn to a growth market for income?

In fact, Asian income and emerging market income are themes that make a lot of sense when choosing funds, for several reasons.

First, emerging market dividends are no myth. Many emerging markets stocks now have a culture of paying high dividends, so they make up a major part of investment returns in several countries. Dividends accounted for 30% of Asia ex Japan returns over the past decade – about the same as in developed markets.

Continue reading »