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Modest Recovery in 2003
Financial Market Activity
Rise in Asian Dollar Market Lending . Box 12 – A Robust Financial System
Healthy Growth in Corporate Debt Market . Active Trading in Equities and Futures Market
Vibrant Treasury Market . Box 13 – The Singapore IPO Market
Mixed Performance for Insurance . Box 14 – Bank Loans to HDB Flat Buyers
Healthy Growth in Corporate Debt Market
The corporate debt market also continued to grow in 2003, with total outstanding corporate debt securities rising 16% to S$103 billion at year-end, as a diversified range of borrowers tapped the Singapore market. The volume of new corporate debt issuance also grew 79.7% to S$67.2 billion at end 2003 (See Chart 8).

The bond market saw strong interest in structured products as investors sought higher yields in a low interest rate environment.

Foreign entity corporate bond issuance dipped slightly in value to $1.7 billion (See Chart 9). Issuance in the first part of the year was low due to uncertainty brought about by the outbreak of SARS and the war in Iraq. However issuance started to pick up in the last quarter of 2003 and continued to be strong into the first quarter of 2004.
Enhancing Risk-focused Supervisory Approach
Box 1 – Fostering a Sound and Progressive Financial Services Sector
Enhancing MAS’ Supervisory Capabilities
Box 2 – Stress Testing of Life Insurers
Box 3 – Streamlining Inspection Function
Thematic Inspections to Improve Surveillance