Friday, April 20, 2018


Dear readers, for the week (16 Apr 2018 to 20 Apr 2018), the two key events in the local stocks markets are nonetheless:

1) the trading resumption of Ezion stock (after a trading suspension of eight months); and

2) the announcement of Mr Neo Kian Hong as the incoming CEO of SMRT after Desmond Kuek

Let us first discuss the appointment of Mr Neo Kian Hong as the incoming SMRT CEO.

From a former Permanent Secretary to another Permanent Secretary; from a former Chief-of-Defence to another Chief-of-Defence; from another scholar and Administrative Service Officer to another scholar and Adminstrative Service Officer; from another CEO with no experience in land railway transport to another with no similar experience…. all these, in a nutshell summarize the reactions of quite a number of netizens online.

The feelings of netizens is understandable since it was announced that the choice of Mr Neo came after a global search of some 20 candidates. Many netizens were puzzled as to whether Mr Neo as what someone said in the newspapers someone with no experience in the private sector, in the land railway or transport industry was really the most qualified candidate among the candidates globally to take up the top post at SMRT after the much-touted global search of talent? And especially SMRT has had its fair share of both hardware and heartware problems during the recent few years, SMRT’s top man seems to need more relevant experience. I would not put here again the reasons touted by SMRT Board as to why Mr Neo is the Best man for the top SMRT job since these reasons have been well-publicized by the media. What I could say now is that since the top man at SMRT has now been identified, let us Singaporeans move on and give Mr Neo a chance to take SMRT to a greater height.

Similarly, for Ezion, a stock which resumed trading on 17 Apr 2018. Upon the resumption of trading on SGX, Ezion stock rallied like a star before eventually heading lower and lower. The trading performance of Ezion is again understandable since many investors who are vested in this stock are disappointed at the fundamentals of the stock like high-debt level despite now a credible note is the investment of Temasek Holdings in Ezion and the better oil prices these days. For myself, I believe Ezion stock will head for the worse before its stock prices becomes better. In light that some of the fundamental problems for Ezion have seemed to have bottomed out now and now an investor in Temasek and better crude oil prices, I believe investors may want to give Ezion a chance too.

Let us give Mr Neo Kian Hong and Ezion a chance to prove their mettle!
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