I ,being a small fry, have an investment in Genting Perpetual 5.125% retail which i bought during IPO for diversification. It's only takes up about 5% of my investible assets, excluding property. Now that you know that i am vested,i want to say that i totally do not agree with MAS being alarmed by people buying perpetual bonds. By being alarmed and placing restrictions on these kind of investments, it will simply reduce investment alternatives and push retail investors into more exotic and more risky products.
Let's look at the worst case scenario, Genting going bankrupt. Holding the perpetuals is still safer than holding the shares as pertpetual holders are paid first from the proceeds of any sale of Genting's assets.
Let's look at the risk of interest rate rising and the price of Genting getting lower. How low can it get? Can you forsee it dropping more than 20%? How about Genting Shares,can you forsee it dropping more than 20%? In fact, the longer one holds Genting perpetuals, the less risky it becomes as it's accumulated coupons would have reduced the invested outlay by 5.125% every year, and raising by 6.125% in 2022. How much dividends does Genting Shares give?
When i, a small fry retail investor, bought the perpetuals, i did it to hold it to provide me an income after my retirement or sell it when QE3 is announced and funnel it into shares. It was crystal(Internally Flawlessly) clear to me that i can forget about any meaningful upside capital appreciation. The bullshit about it being a perpetual and the company never going to redeem it is irrelevant. I knew i could sell it in the open market to get back my principal, and true enough it was hovering at 1.012-1.011 in the open market, till MAS came up with restrictions and it fell to 1-1.002, still above IPO price.I also took into consideration Ben Bernake's (US Fed) comments about interest rates staying low till at least 2014 when i bought it.
Having said that, perps is just for diversification. Bonds having maturity is better than perps. Keep perps or bonds to a small percentage of your assets as a store of value only. Market looks like its falling,look at volume and prepare for some firing at shares!