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Manulife US REIT debuts in Singapore slightly below IPO price

SINGAPORE, May 20 (Reuters) - Units in newly listed real estate investment trust Manulife US REIT opened on Friday in Singapore at $0.82, slightly below their offer price in a $519.2 million sale, the city-state's biggest initial public offering in almost two years.

The IPO was priced at $0.83 per unit. The asset is priced in U.S. dollars, though listed in Singapore.

The listing of the REIT, whose sponsor is a part of life insurer Manulife Financial Corp, is Singapore's biggest since the $611 million debut of Accordia Golf Trust in July 2014.

The Singapore Exchange (SGX) has been facing a dearth of IPOs, hurt by weak market sentiment. Funds raised through IPOs and reverse takeovers on the SGX's main board totalled S$276 million ($200 million) in 2015, compared with S$3.18 billion the previous year.

At 0622 GMT, units of Manulife US REIT, comprising three office properties in the United States, were trading at $0.79. The broader market was up nearly 0.75 percent.

($1 = 1.3782 Singapore dollars) (Reporting by Aradhana Aravindan; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)