A Brief Research Note on Temasek Holdings and Singapore: Mr. Madoff Goes to Singapore

13 Pages Posted: 9 Feb 2012  

Christopher Balding

Peking University - HSBC School of Business; ESADE University Faculties - ESADEgeo

Date Written: February 8, 2012


Financial data reported by Temasek Holdings and Singapore reveal problematic characteristics. First, Temasek reports an average annual return of 17% for 35 years despite Singaporean stock returns averaging less than 8% during this same time period. Given the range of stock market returns and its portfolio companies’ returns, it is highly improbably that Temasek has earned the returns claimed in its annual reports. Second, Singapore has become one of the most indebted countries in the world despite supposedly running large and sustained government surpluses. Given publicly available economic data on Singaporean finances, there is a minimum of $350 billion SGD or $275 billion USD unaccounted for from historical surpluses and financing operations. Third, given these results I find that for every $1 SGD in public borrowing, Singapore has received only 25 cents of publicly held Singaporean assets. Either financial returns have been drastically overstated or there are large unreported Singaporean controlled holdings.

Suggested Citation

Balding, Christopher, A Brief Research Note on Temasek Holdings and Singapore: Mr. Madoff Goes to Singapore (February 8, 2012). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2001343 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2001343

Christopher Balding (Contact Author)

Peking University - HSBC School of Business ( email )

University Town
Nanshan District
Shenzhen, Guang Dong 518055

ESADE University Faculties - ESADEgeo

Mateo Inurria, 25-27
Madrid, 28036

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