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Stocks to watch: First Reit, BRC Asia, Hong Lai Huat, Pan Ocean

THE following companies saw new developments that may affect trading of their securities on Monday:

First Real Estate Investment Trust (First Reit): The Reit's manager on Monday announced a renounceable rights issue to raise S$158.2 million, which it said was critical for it to meet its debt covenants. The manager is proposing to issue around 791.1 million units at an indicative price of 20 Singapore cents each. First Reit units closed at 40.5 cents on Thursday, down 1.2 per cent or 0.5 cent.

BRC Asia: Now that a vaccine is available and countries are actively trying to restart their economies, BRC Asia's chief executive officer and executive director Seah Kiin Peng says he is cautiously optimistic that the company can aggressively pursue expansion in the second half of 2021 or early 2022. The 82-year-old steel dealer continues to have China and overseas expansion in its sights. Shares of BRC Asia closed S$0.01 or 0.7 per cent higher at S$1.47 on Thursday.

Hong Lai Huat: The real estate and property developer on Sunday announced that it will now use S$14.4 million, or some 54.8 per cent of its net proceeds from its proposed renounceable non-underwritten rights issue to repay outstanding debt to its group chief executive, Ong Bee Huat. This involves re-allocating part of the rights issue proceeds originally allocated for the repayment of bank borrowings. Hong Lai Huat shares closed at 12 Singapore cents on Thursday, down 0.2 cent or 1.65 per cent.

Pan Ocean Co: The South Korea-incorporated shipping firm is investing 204 billion won (S$246.5 million) in a shipbuilding contract for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) carrier which is expected to be delivered in 2023. The investment represents 7.04 per cent of Pan Ocean's 2.9 trillion won equity capital, and is intended to expand the company's LNG business. Pan Ocean closed unchanged at S$4.29 on Thursday with no trades.

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