Breakfast briefing: Thursday, July 6 (Update) - Business News | The Star Online


Breakfast briefing: Thursday, July 6 (Update)

MarketWatch: A steep drop in oil prices dragged energy shares lower and kept the Dow and S&P 500 in check on Wednesday, while the Nasdaq was buoyed by gains in tech stocks. The DJIA fell 1.1 points, or 0.01%, to close at 21,478.17, the S&P 500 gained 3.53 points, or 0.15%, to 2,432.54 and the Nasdaq added 40.80 points, or 0.67%, to 6,150.86.  - Reuters




Oil prices tumbled about 4% on Wednesday, ending their longest string of daily gains in more than five years, as climbing Opec exports and a stronger dollar spurred selling. Brent crude futures settled down US$1.82, or 3.7%, at US$47.79 a barrel. Prices had climbed for eight straight sessions to Monday. - Reuters


Forex summary

*The ringgit lost 0.03% to 4.2995 versus the US$

*It was down 0.06% to 4.8750 versus euro

*Down 0.32% to 5.5615 per pound sterling

*Down 0.17% to 3.1120 per Singapore dollar

*Up 0.08% to 3.2673 per Aussie

*Down 0.21% to 3.8028 per 100 yen


Top foreign stories


PSA wins EU approval to buy GM's German unit Opel: French carmaker PSA Group secured unconditional EU antitrust approval on Wednesday to acquire General Motors' German unit Opel, a move which will help it better compete with market leader Volkswagen. The European Commission said the deal did not pose any competition concerns. - Reuters


Fed minutes suggest increasing tensions on inflation shortfall: Federal Reserve policymakers were increasingly split on the outlook for inflation and how it might affect the future pace of interest rate rises, according to the minutes of the Fed's last policy meeting on June 13-14 released on Wednesday. The details of the meeting also showed that several officials wanted to announce a start to the process of reducing the Fed's large portfolio of Treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities by the end of August but others wanted to wait until later in the year. - Reuters


US card firm Vantiv goes global with US$10b Worldpay buy: US credit card processor Vantiv agreed to buy Britain's Worldpay for 7.7 billion pounds (US$10 billion) on Wednesday in a move expected to trigger further deals. Payments companies have become targets for credit card companies and banks seeking to capitalise on a switch from cash transactions to paying by smartphone or other mobile device, with Danish payment services firm Nets A/S revealing it had been approached by potential buyers. - Reuters


EU considers record fine as panel checks Google Android case: EU antitrust regulators are weighing another record fine against Google over its Android mobile operating system and have set up a panel of experts to give a second opinion on the case, two people familiar with the matter said. - Reuters


Top local stories


KWAP eyes ANZ stake in AMMB: The Retirement Fund Inc (KWAP) is keen on purchasing Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd’s (ANZ) stake after the proposed merger between RHB Bank Bhd and AMMB Holdings Bhd . At present, ANZ owns 24% of AMMB and is the single largest shareholder. After the proposed merger, ANZ’s stake will be down to about 11% in the enlarged banking group. - StarBiz


Palm oil inventories likely rose in June: Palm oil inventories in Malaysia probably rose 1.9% from a month earlier to 1.59 million metric tonnes in June as production in the world’s second-largest grower outpaced sluggish exports, a poll shows. CPO production fell 0.6% to 1.64 million tonnes, the first monthly decline since February. - Bloomberg


Report: FGV’s plan to sell stake to Indonesian tycoons on hold: Talks to sell stakes in Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) to two Indonesian billionaires have been suspended due to a management crisis at the world’s third biggest palm plantation group, sources said. - Reuters


MoF targets Fortune 500 firms for Bandar Malaysia: The Finance Ministry (MoF), which owns Bandar Malaysia, has opened the request for proposal to seek a new master developer for Bandar Malaysia and among the criteria is that the company must be in the Fortune Global 500 list. - StarBiz


Bina Puri unit makes powerful debut on Indonesia bourse: Bina Puri Holdings Bhd ’s 80%-owned Indonesian power subsidiary, PT Megapower Makmur Tbk, made a strong debut on the Indonesia Stock Exchange, opening 70% above its offer price. It was the top gainer on the exchange on Wednesday. - StarBiz


IWC and IWH to extend restructuring deadline to Sept 4: Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd (IWC) and Iskandar Waterfront Holdings Sdn Bhd (IWH) have agreed to extend the date to provide details by 60 days on which land will be injected into the soon-to-be listed IWH to Sept 4. The original lapse date for this exercise was Wednesday. - StarBiz


PetDag selling Philippine LPG stakes: Petronas Dagangan Bhd (PetDag) will sell its 100% equity interest in Petronas Philippines Energy Inc and 40% equity interest in Duta Inc to Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Inc for US$124mil (RM532.5mil). The move marks the group’s exit from the liquefied petroleum gas business in the Philippines. - StarBiz


Research institute revises up GDP projection to 5%: The Socio-economic Research Centre (SERC) on Wednesday raised its 2017 gross domestic product (GDP) growth projection to 5% from the initial estimate of 4.6%, driven by sturdy domestic demand, especially in private consumption and investment, and strengthening exports. GDP grew 4.2% in 2016. - StarBiz


Export growth to remain robust in May, says RAM: RAM Rating Services Bhd expects Malaysia’s export growth for May to remain at a robust 20%, slightly lower than the 20.6% recorded in April, supported by expansionary momentum. RAM said import growth was envisaged to stay at 20.4%, below April’s 24.7%. - Bernama


GFM set to graduate to Main Market: Ace market-listed GFM Services Bhd is proposing to graduate to the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia and expects to complete the transfer in the second half of this year.


Positive outlook for power sector in second half: The power utilities sector remains positive given its defensive earnings with good visibility, despite a challenging second half envisioned for industry players, said Kenanga Research. The research house said the sector is still a good avenue for investors looking for a defensive play. - StarBiz

Breakfast Briefing