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Thread: Soleil

  1. #1
    urpas
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    Default Soleil

    http://www.soleil.sg/

    anyone knows about Soleil launch? price range..?

    it looks situated in quite strategic location with MRT station, hospital, shopping center, (coming) hotel, etc. at door step...it is also the biggest project with full facilities, and boasting a landmark of novena for its tallest twin tower of residential in singapore.

    however, condo supply in the area is also soaring..other than the existing projects in surrounding area, allgreen potential new launch, next to united square, will add another hundreds units of supply to flood the area. an old apartment just opposite the soleil's site is apparently another en bloc target? easily, new supply can hit 1,000 units in the near future in the proximity area.

    also, a friend said that locals/chinese do not like house next to hospital..

    any thought?

  2. #2
    Unregistered
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    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by urpas
    anyone knows about Soleil launch? price range..?
    Heard that it is about $1300 psf.

  3. #3
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by urpas
    http://www.soleil.sg/

    anyone knows about Soleil launch? price range..?

    it looks situated in quite strategic location with MRT station, hospital, shopping center, (coming) hotel, etc. at door step...it is also the biggest project with full facilities, and boasting a landmark of novena for its tallest twin tower of residential in singapore.

    however, condo supply in the area is also soaring..other than the existing projects in surrounding area, allgreen potential new launch, next to united square, will add another hundreds units of supply to flood the area. an old apartment just opposite the soleil's site is apparently another en bloc target? easily, new supply can hit 1,000 units in the near future in the proximity area.

    also, a friend said that locals/chinese do not like house next to hospital..

    any thought?

    Its very true.... " locals/chinese do not like house next to hospital "

  4. #4
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Talking Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Its very true.... " locals/chinese do not like house next to hospital "
    Is it because they are afraid that germs will fly into their condos?

  5. #5
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Is it because they are afraid that germs will fly into their condos?
    Bad feng shui.... hospitals are associated with illnesses and deaths... so...

  6. #6
    urpas
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Bad feng shui.... hospitals are associated with illnesses and deaths... so...
    given this 'fengshui' issue and the fact that most of the buyers will be chinese, either local or indonesians... do you think the condo will be valued at 'discount' than its instrinsic value?

    when they start to launch? saw its ad in paper today.

    btw, which one should be valued better..is it viva since it can be considered part of newton's neighboorhood...or soleil for the location and amenities: MRT, etc.

  7. #7
    Unregistered
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    Thumbs down Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by urpas
    given this 'fengshui' issue and the fact that most of the buyers will be chinese, either local or indonesians... do you think the condo will be valued at 'discount' than its instrinsic value?

    when they start to launch? saw its ad in paper today.

    btw, which one should be valued better..is it viva since it can be considered part of newton's neighboorhood...or soleil for the location and amenities: MRT, etc.
    Soleil is a 99 yrs leasehold. Metropolitan also is a 99 yrs leasehold. Both just next to MRT. Draw a straight line to Orchard, both almost equal.

    For me personally, I will take Metropolitan because it only cost $1000 psf subsale while soleil is about $1350. Novena square is just next door but so does thiong bahru mall is just 1 mrt stop away.
    Another reason is the hospital. It is true I find several investors really dont like hospital next to home because of certain believe and will have a hard time to sell because of the hospital.

  8. #8
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Unhappy Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Soleil is a 99 yrs leasehold. Metropolitan also is a 99 yrs leasehold. Both just next to MRT. Draw a straight line to Orchard, both almost equal.

    For me personally, I will take Metropolitan because it only cost $1000 psf subsale while soleil is about $1350. Novena square is just next door but so does thiong bahru mall is just 1 mrt stop away.
    Another reason is the hospital. It is true I find several investors really dont like hospital next to home because of certain believe and will have a hard time to sell because of the hospital.
    I agree with you, remember SARS time the property over there are badly affected.

  9. #9
    urpas
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Soleil is a 99 yrs leasehold. Metropolitan also is a 99 yrs leasehold. Both just next to MRT. Draw a straight line to Orchard, both almost equal.

    For me personally, I will take Metropolitan because it only cost $1000 psf subsale while soleil is about $1350. Novena square is just next door but so does thiong bahru mall is just 1 mrt stop away.
    Another reason is the hospital. It is true I find several investors really dont like hospital next to home because of certain believe and will have a hard time to sell because of the hospital.
    but, metropolitan is just situated in a different class of neighborhood, tiong bahru/bukit merah, hdb flats are around, mrt is above ground (noisy). talking about orchard, unless yu drive, no direct access from metroplitan to orchard by public transportation, taking MRT you need to transfer in raffles city, it can take 20 minutes or more with transfer time. there is one bus only from opposite of redhill MRT station, 132, but much less frequency than MRT, and it doenst go through main orchard road (it turns left to scott road). it is a short 5-minute MRT travel from novena to orchard; also several direct buses.

    no doubt, soleil -- situated in middle-up class neighborhood, with better amenities, access, etc. but minus hospital! -- must be priced at premium vs metropolitan...the question is how much the premium is..30%, 40%, 10%...i guess around 25%-35% sounds alright. personally, for my own living purpose, at 35% premium i'll go to metropolitan, because i cant afford anything above 1,000 psf!

  10. #10
    Metro
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by urpas
    no doubt, soleil -- situated in middle-up class neighborhood, with better amenities, access, etc. but minus hospital! -- must be priced at premium vs metropolitan...the question is how much the premium is..30%, 40%, 10%...i guess around 25%-35% sounds alright. personally, for my own living purpose, at 35% premium i'll go to metropolitan, because i cant afford anything above 1,000 psf!
    Hi urpas,

    If you eventually buy Metropolitan, please let us know if you bought a low, mid or high floor unit and the stack (i.e. which unit) and the psf price.

    I am a Metro owner and is very keen to know the current subsales situation for Metro.

    Thanks in advance.

  11. #11
    Unregistered
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    Default Re: Soleil

    I think there will be a 35%-40% difference between Metropolitan and Soleil.
    Thats quite a lot.
    MRT is electric operated so I dont think it will be noisy.

  12. #12
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    MRT is very noisy, every 5 minute or so, one long six-cabin electric train with the gloon-gloon sound (every floor can hear and it radiates diagonally towards 10th or 11th floor - usually the loudest). Metro also near to the station, so trains stopping and leaving will add to further noise and pollution. Not a good idea to face an open MRT. Don't believe, go and see those hdb near to mrt and you will understand. Soleil got undergrnd mrt so it is much better in this aspect.

  13. #13
    urpas
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by Metro
    Hi urpas,

    If you eventually buy Metropolitan, please let us know if you bought a low, mid or high floor unit and the stack (i.e. which unit) and the psf price.

    I am a Metro owner and is very keen to know the current subsales situation for Metro.

    Thanks in advance.
    hi metro, i didnt buy the metropolitan condo. wanted to book one before, but my friend -- and my agent as well -- didnt recommend saying that price was elevated already ...but it is now higher. i dont blame anyone, property price is always not easy to predict.

  14. #14
    metro
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by urpas
    hi metro, i didnt buy the metropolitan condo. wanted to book one before, but my friend -- and my agent as well -- didnt recommend saying that price was elevated already ...but it is now higher. i dont blame anyone, property price is always not easy to predict.
    Hi urpas,

    Have you considered Tanglin View condo, which on the other side of the road from Metropolitan? Tanglin View is further away from the MRT station, noise should be less.

  15. #15
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Developer : Riverside Investments Pte Ltd
    Location : LOT 931T TS 29 at Sinaran Drive, beside Novena MRT
    Tenure : Leasehold 00 years W.E.F 23 October 2006
    Expected TOP : 30 September 2012
    Expected Legal Completion : 30 September 2015
    CSC : 30 September 2013
    No. of Blocks / Storeys : 2 Blocks / 36 Storeys
    Total No. of Units : 427
    Site Area : Approx 134,160 sq ft / Plot ratio 3.5
    Unit Types :
    Type No. of Units Unit size range
    1-Bedroom 94 509 - 579 sq ft
    2-Bedroom 109 926 - 958 sq ft
    2-Bedroom + study 60 1110 sq ft
    2-Bedroom loft 32 1370 sq ft (include void)
    3-Bedroom 64 1467 sq ft
    4-Bedroom 64 1727 sq ft
    5-bedroom penthouse 4 4972 - 5262 sq ft
    TOTAL 427

  16. #16
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Question Re: Soleil

    Anybody know what is the selling price for this project???

  17. #17
    My Opinion
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Indicative pricing to be $1700 psf for this 99 year leasehold project.

    For that, you get a great location (although it is not Orchard, but still a great location nonetheless), MRT, shopping malls, 3 supermarkets, schools, marvellous views, access to high-end medical suites next door. Premium developer like Frasers Centrepoint will always give you high quality construction and finishes.

    Make no mistake: this isn't a chic location like Orchard or Mohd Sultan, but as far as amenities and functionalities go, this location is hard to beat.

    You get high rental yield paid for by those middle-management expats coming into Singapore by the thousands every year.

    And there is medical tourism: I can see the just think of all those rich arabs, indians, and indonesians who come here for healthcare. They may very well buy a unit here to stay for their annual visit to their specialist doctor.

    I definitely see an upside to this project, and the intrinsic value of this location will be evident even during a recession.

  18. #18
    My Opinion
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Almost forgot.

    Novena is also a great location for early childhood education. Besides serving as a base for several international Embassies and Consulates, United Square is a "kid's mall", with lots of private tuition and specialist tuition facilities, some of them very high-end charging premium fees.

    All around Novena there is Pat's Schoolhouse, Eton House, Kumon, and a host of other education facilities for young children. It is no wonder expat families love this area.

    Location, location, location? Intrinsic value contributes greatly to what makes a location prime. Intrinsic value has nothing to do with fashion or whether it is the "in" place to stay. Intrinsic value is fundamentals - facilities and stuff.

    Disclaimer: hip, happening, and swinging singles should look past this area and head for River Valley and MacKenzie Road. For this area, only couples with young kids need apply.

  19. #19
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    I think the modern Chinese are not as pantang to not live next to hospital.

    Plus it is not a full govt hospital, it has johns hopkins (dunno whether still there?), novena medical suites, singapore's top neurology department, etc. So it is more "high class" lah, ha ha...

  20. #20
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Default Re: Soleil


  21. #21
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    I dont think this one will be priced at $1700. Developers will give carefull consideration when they come to pricing. Yes they can sell it at $1700 but only 20% will be sold.

    Once price have been set they cannot change their mind and say : ok lets lower by $300. This will disappoint the 1st 20% buyers and decrease the developers image. THIS IS DANGEROUS. Once people dont trust the developers, they hard to make a living next time.

    At $1700 people can add $100-200 and get the Subsale condos like Trillium, cosmo, Newton one, visioncrest, Rivergate, Tribeca, watermark, urbana, and these condos are freehold and located very near to orchard.

    Wiser price will be $1300-$1500. earn lesser but sell amolst all units. Dont forget their break even price is approx only at $750. Multiply by 2 will be fair at $1400.

  22. #22
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    my opinion... u almost hit it.. i think we'll see prices of $1600-1800psf... actually they intended to test $1500psf...

  23. #23
    Any complaints please PM me
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    8,129

    Default Re: Soleil

    Published July 19, 2007

    Condos-on-columns the in thing in S'pore

    [email protected] is latest in new trend for high-rises that enhances privacy


    By ARTHUR SIM


    THE upcoming Frasers Centrepoint Homes condo [email protected] is the latest to reflect the trend for soaring buildings raised high on columns.


    Bigger landscape: For [email protected], Frasers Centrepoint Homes' upcoming condo, raising the building has allowed to free more space for landscaping

    Architects 61, which also designed The Cosmopolitan in the River Valley area, said that by elevating the 417-unit [email protected], 'the privacy of the units is enhanced to greater heights'.

    Considerations in the design of [email protected] included a high plot ratio of 3.5, a height restriction of about 40 storeys and high-density living.

    The architects also felt that adjacent mid-rise private flats and Novena Square commercial development had large footprints and, therefore, views were minimised.

    Architects 61 said: 'Privacy of the lowest level of units is further enhanced by locating it as high from the ground as possible.'

    Like The Cosmopolitan - and many other new condominiums - [email protected] will rise from above street level.

    But will columns be the only thing visible from street level?

    Asked about the impact on the streetscape from buildings raised on columns, the Urban Redevelopment Authority said: 'Generally, in certain areas within the city centre, urban design guidelines are put in place where the context requires buildings to relate to the street and their surrounding developments.

    'In the case of The Cosmopolitan, it is located in a residential area where the relation of the building to the street is not as critical. Hence the guidelines do not specifically require the building to do so.'

    For [email protected], raising the building has allowed Architects 61 to free more space for landscaping that will include lagoons, pool lounges, entertainment pavilions with spa alcoves and spa pavilions to create a 'green podium'.

    'The landscaping extends into the depth of the tower footprint,' the architects said. 'Trees grown within the covered first-

    storey terrace provide a human scale to the tower rising above, 'dissolving' the boundary between the inside and the outside. It is this landscaped podium that provides the human scale at street level.'

    [email protected] is expected to be launched mid-August. Prices have not be fixed yet.

  24. #24
    Weekend Today
    Guest

    Default Hsien Yang's In-laws Buy F&N-developed Condo

    Hsien Yang's in-laws buy F&N-developed condo
    Cheow XinYi
    Weekend Today
    Saturday-Sunday, 26-27 January 2008



    Fraser and Neave (F&N) has sold a unit of its Soleil @ Sinaran residential development for $2.66 million to the relatives of its chairman Lee Hsien Yang.

    Mrs Lim Chong Yah, who is Mr Lee's mother-in-law, and Ms Lin Xueling, his sister-in-law, bought the unit, located in the Novena area, during the public launch of the project, F&N said in a filing with the Singapore Exchange. The project is developed by Riverside Investments, a wholly-owned subsidiary of F&N's property arm Frasers Centrepoint. F&N said no discount was given to Mrs Lim and Ms Lin, who were "walk-in customers".

    "The Audit Committee is satisfied that the number and terms of the sale are fair and reasonable, and the Audit Committee and Board are satisfied that the terms of the sale are not prejudicial to the interests of the company and its minority shareholders," said F&N in the statement.

    Mr Lee joined the company as its non-executive chairman last October, replacing Dr Michael Fam. Its announcement that Mr Lee stood to earn an annual fee of $1 million a year as part of a consultancy agreement raised eyebrows at the time. But F&N has since said the consultancy agreement will be dissolved at the end of this month "with a view to simplifying matters". The $1 million will be paid as director's fees, subject to a shareholder vote.

  25. #25
    The Sunday Times
    Guest

    Default Lee Hsien Yang's In-laws Buy Unit In F&N-built Condo

    Lee Hsien Yang's in-laws buy unit in F&N-built condo
    The Sunday Times
    Sunday, 27 January 2008


    Mr Lee's Mother-in-law and sister-in-law paid $2.66 million, the prevailing price, for a unit in the Soilel @ Sinaran in Novena.

    Fraser & Neave (F&N) chairman Lee Hsien Yang's in-laws have bought a unit in one of the company's condominium projects.

    Mrs Lim Chong Yah, who is Mr Lee's mother-in-law, and his sister-in-law, Ms Lin Xueling, paid $2.66 million for an apartment in the 99-year leasehold Soleil @ Sinaran in Novena.

    The 417-unit twin block project is being developed by Riverside Investments, a wholly-owned subsidiary of F&N's property arm, Frasers Centrepoint.

    In a filing with the Singapore Exchange on Friday, F&N said Mr Lee's relatives were walk-in customers during the public sale.

    According to the statement, no discount was given and the price was based on the prevailing approved price list at the time of sale.

    "The audit committee is satisfied that the number and terms of the sale are fair and reasonable, and the audit committee and board are satisfied that the terms of the sale are not prejudicial to the interests of the company and its minority shareholders," said the company.

  26. #26
    URA
    Guest

    Default Soleil @ Sinaran

    Private Residential Units Sold in the Month of February 2008

    Project Name .. Locality . Units Sold In Month . Highest $psf . Median $psf . Lowest $psf
    Soleil @ Sinaran . CCR ....... 3 ............................... 1,676 ............. 1,524 ............ 1,492

  27. #27
    The Straits Times
    Guest

    Default Space Crunch In Orchard Pushes Doctors To Novena


    Space crunch in Orchard pushes docs to Novena
    The area could turn into medical hub as more private doctors set up clinics there

    Jessica Jaganathan
    The Straits Times
    Wednesday, 12 March 2008



    Private doctors are flocking to the Novena area as the squeeze on clinic space in the Orchard Road belt tightens.

    The migration could turn the area into Singapore's newest centre for private health services, some believe.

    In the space of two years, developer Far East Organization has already sold or leased 92% of the 145 medical suites at its new Novena Medical Centre (NMC).

    Private doctors at the centre, which opened last October, are allowed to use some X-ray machines and labs in Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH), which is just across the street.

    Developers in the area are also setting space aside for private doctors, as well as accommodation for patients and their families.

    The spill-over of demand has prompted Far East to house another 64 clinics in its 28-storey hotel in nearby Sinaran Drive. The group plans to either sell or lease the suites when ready, which is likely to be by 2010.

    In Newton Road, SC Global Developments will also save space for medical suites in its upcoming office building, Newton 200.

    Private specialists can also look to the Parkway Group's new hospital in Irrawaddy Road, which is scheduled to open in July 2011. The group is setting aside 30% of its space for them.

    Medical suites in Novena occupy about one-third of the space that clinics in Orchard do. At about 24,154 sqm in total, they cover about the same area as Clarke Quay.

    This spate of activity is fuelled by the Government's plan to attract one million foreign patients a year by 2012.

    Mr G.L. Yap, executive director for Far East Organization's property services, said: 'The infrastructure has to keep pace with expectations of growth.'

    Foreign patients number more than 400,000 a year and come mainly from Indonesia and Malaysia, with increasing numbers from China, the Middle East and developed countries. They come for a range of treatments, including day surgery and routine health checks.

    Spending on so-called medical tourism averaged about $1.3 billion in 2006 and is expected to double by 2012, according to Dr Jason Yap, director of health-care services at the Singapore Tourism Board.

    The space crunch is already being felt by medical centres at Mount Elizabeth, Gleneagles, Paragon and Camden.

    Company officials say that, save for three units, the buildings have been totally sold or leased out. While Paragon declined to say how many units it has, the three other centres have more than 540 suites.

    The demand for medical suites has been pushing rents up, said property analysts. In the Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre, a suite was last sold for $5,000 psf, up from $4,017 last March.

    Colorectal surgeon Francis Seow-Choen bought a unit at Novena two years ago because of high rents. For the past four years, he has also been renting a unit at the Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre, where rents have risen to about $18 psf, from about $8 psf four years ago.

    'The rents here have risen astronomically,' said Dr Seow-Choen. 'Instead of being subjected to market forces, I've decided to buy a unit in Novena, which as an area has a lot of potential.'

    The Singapore Medical Group moved its Sports Medicine Centre from Paragon to the NMC this year, because of the space crunch and the area's attraction as a sports and medical hub.

    Dr Jimmy Lim, a cardiologist who crossed over from TTSH to set up his own clinic at the NMC, said the new clinic allows his previous patients to visit him.

    'Having a restructured hospital and now a private hospital nearby is basically going to give my patients a wider choice when they use the in-patient facility,' he said.

    Medical suites in Orchard
    - Gleneagles Medical Centre: 164 medical suites
    - Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre: 232
    - Lucky Plaza: 56
    - Paragon Medical Centre: Did not reveal exact number of suites but occupies 160,000 sqft
    - Camden Medical Centre: 150
    - Ngee Ann City: 10
    - Shaw House: 4
    - Shaw Centre: 1

    Medical Tourism
    Foreign patients number more than 400,000 a year and come mainly from Indonesia and Malaysia, with increasing numbers from China, the Middle East and developed countries.

  28. #28
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Thumbs down Re: Soleil

    Went to the show house and a lot of returned units!!!

  29. #29
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Went to the show house and a lot of returned units!!!
    HsienYang's in-laws also bought a returned unit.
    You should get one too.

  30. #30
    Unregistered
    Guest

    Default Re: Soleil

    Leading Economic Indicators in U.S. Probably Fell in February

    By Courtney Schlisserman

    March 20 (Bloomberg) -- The index of U.S. leading economic indicators fell for a fifth month in February, reflecting mounting signs that a recession has begun, economists said before a report today.

    The Conference Board's gauge, which points to the direction of the economy over the next three to six months, fell 0.3 percent last month, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey. The last time the index dropped for as many months was in 1990, when the economy was shrinking.

    The leading index dropped as building permits, stock prices and consumer sentiment sank and first-time claims for jobless benefits jumped. Federal Reserve policy makers this week said risks to growth remain even after lowering the benchmark interest rate and making billions of dollars available to banks and securities firms to try to stabilize financial markets.

    ``A losing streak of five months is usually reserved for recessionary periods,'' said Jonathan Basile, an economist at Credit Suisse Holdings in New York. ``Once the labor market cracks, like it did last month, it shows the cycle is starting to turn down.''

    The Conference Board, a New York-based non-profit research group, is scheduled to issue the report at 10 a.m. local time. The 58 estimates in the Bloomberg News survey ranged from a 0.7 percent decline to an increase of 0.2 percent.

    Reports so far this month signal the leading index will keep falling. A report from the Labor Department due at 8:30 a.m. in Washington is forecast to show that initial jobless claims rose to 360,000 last week, according to the median survey projection.

    Rising Claims

    Applications for unemployment benefits last month averaged 359,200, compared with 326,500 in January, according to Labor Department figures.

    A 10:00 a.m. report from the Fed Bank of Philadelphia is forecast to show manufacturing in the region contracted for a fourth month in March.

    Seven of the 10 components of the leading index are known ahead of time: stock prices, jobless claims, building permits, consumer expectations, the yield curve, supplier delivery times and factory hours. The Conference Board estimates the remaining three: new orders for consumer goods, new orders for non-defense capital goods and the money supply.

    Building permits for February fell 7.8 percent to an annual pace of 707,000, the lowest level in more than 16 years, the Commerce Department said on March 18.

    The Reuters/University of Michigan index of consumer expectations dropped to the lowest level since 1992 last month and a preliminary reading for March, issued last week, showed the measure is still declining.

    Spending Cools

    Americans are spending less as pessimism grows. AnnTaylor Stores Corp., the clothing retailer geared toward women ages 25 to 55, last week reported a fourth-quarter loss and said same- store sales may decline in 2008.

    The deteriorating economy had a ``major impact'' on store traffic, Chief Executive Officer Kay Krill said in a March 14 conference call.

    ``Downside risks to the economy remain,'' Fed policy makers said in a March 18 statement announcing the central bank lowered its target for the benchmark rate by three-quarters of a point to 2.25 percent. The Fed has cut the rate by three percentage points since September.

    On March 16, the central bank also lowered the rate on direct loans to banks and said it will provide up to $30 billion to JPMorgan Chase & Co. to help finance the purchase of Bear Stearns Cos. after a run on the fifth-largest U.S. securities dealer.

    More Funding

    Less than a week earlier, the Fed said it would make up to $200 billion in Treasuries available through weekly auctions in exchange for other securities that for the first time will include those backed by mortgages issued by private lenders.

    Companies are counting on gains overseas as the U.S. economy slows. General Electric Co. Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Immelt told investors on March 13 that demand for the company's products from infrastructure projects and growth in Europe, Asia and Africa is helping offset any drag from a slump in the U.S.

    ``I still believe in the strength of the global economy now, but the U.S. consumer is in a tougher patch,'' Immelt said in a forum on the company's Web site.

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