Halim Mazmin: THIS shipping company can sail through the current year with a profit despite the global economic downturn, thanks to an innovative business formula. In the acquisition of ships, Halim Mazmin as the purchaser ropes in its time-charter partners as associate partners by giving them stakes in joint-venture companies. An OSK In- vestment Research analyst says the main advantage of the company’s time-charter contracts is that it does not have to worry about fuel price fluctuations as the charterer bears that cost under the agreement. The counter should appeal to those with a low-risk appetite, given its stable earnings and decent dividends.
IJM: ANALYSTS view positively IJM Corp Bhd's maiden township development project in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh as it diversifies the construction giant’s earnings base. As its RM179mil Tada-Nellore Highway is nearing completion, the housing project will generate revenue from India for IJM as it bids for other construction projects. Analysts estimate IJM's current order book at about RM1.3bil without factoring in the township project. According to Multex Glo- bal Estimates, the consensus estimate is a net profit of RM142.7mil for the current year ending De- cember. In the last financial year, it reported a net profit of RM120.2mil and revenue of RM1.3bil.
BAT: AS the top choice among analysts and investors for defensive play, the country’s largest cigarette manufacturer touched a record high of RM39 in intra-day trade on March 27; its price has been locked in a tight trading range of RM38.25 and RM39 ever since. The stock has outperformed the benchmark in- dex by almost 12% since late Fe- bruary. Analysts like BAT’s re- silient business and steady consumer demand, its market share of 70% and widening profit margin, thanks to a lower cost structure. Analysts are not ruling out the possibility of BAT distributing its treasury shares as dividends to shareholders now that the company has proposed a share buyback of 10% of its paid-up capital.
VSI: CONCERNS over the integrated plastics and electronic product manufacturer's deteriorating margins remained although an analyst said that the downside for its price share was probably limited as it was already trading near the counter's net tangible assets. VSI reported a net profit of RM2.1mil for the six months ended Jannuary compared with RM14.9mil in the previous corresponding period. Turnover, however, surged to RM497mil from RM327.7mil in the same period in view of its new turnkey vacuum cleaner manufacturing operations in Malaysia and an increase in production from its China division. Last month, shareholders approved the company's proposal for a 3-for-5 bonus issue.
MPI: THE country’s largest semiconductor manufacturer remains a buy with UT Securities, which also likes Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd (MPI) for its leadership in the ad- vanced packages business des- pite lower global semiconductor sales in February. Sales in February fell 3.3% month-on-month to US$11.8bil from US$12.2bil in Jan- uary. The analyst said that sales in February marked the third consecutive month of negative growth. The semiconductor sector has shown improvement in most of the months in 2002 with month-on-month growth largely trending upwards. According to Multex Global Estimates, the consensus forecast is a net profit of RM28mil for this financial year.