Breakfast briefing: Tuesday, November 1


  • Business
  • Tuesday, 01 Nov 2016

Still in Pakistan: The Pakistan's government dropped a request for access to Blackberry Inc's user data. — Reuters

MarketWrap: Wall Street ended barely changed on Monday as investors digested the latest large-scale corporate mergers as well as the most recent twist in a tumultuous US presidential election. - Reuters

The DJIA fell 18.77 points, or 0.1%, to 18,142.42, the S&P 500 lost 0.26 points, or 0.01%, to 2,126.15 and the Nasdaq dropped 0.97 points, or 0.02%, to 5,189.14.

Forex summary

*The ringgit gained 0.03% to 4.1933 per US$

*It was 0.07% lower at 4.5988 per euro

*Down 0.26% to 5.1241 per pound sterling

*Down 0.06% to 3.0148 per Singapore dollar

*0.08% higher to 3.1901 per Aussie

*Up 0.03% to 4.0004 per 100 yen

Energy

Oil prices fell sharply on Monday to touch a one-month low on doubts about Opec's ability to implement its planned production cut, while global equity prices were shaky as Wall Street struggled to build on a sentiment boost from a string of M&A deals. Brent crude settled down US$1.41, or 2.84%, at US$48.30 a barrel. - Reuters

Top foreign stories

BlackBerry in software deal with Ford, first with an automaker: BlackBerry Ltd has signed a deal to work directly with Ford Motor Co to expand the carmaker's use of its QNX secure operating system, the Canadian technology company said on Monday, as Ford develops increasingly automated vehicles. The deal with Ford is the first BlackBerry has done directly with a major automaker, though it currently sells its technology to auto industry suppliers. - Reuters

CenturyLink to buy Level 3 Communications for about US$24b: CenturyLink Inc said it would buy Level 3 Communications Inc in a deal valued at about US$24 billion to expand its reach in the crowded market that provides communications services to businesses and compete with rivals like AT&T and Verizon. - Reuters

Sony surprises with profit warning on sale of battery business: Sony Corp cut its annual profit outlook due to losses related to the sale of its battery business - disappointing a market that had been hoping for an upward revision on buoyant sales momentum for PlayStation 4 and the launch of its virtual reality headset. Sony now expects to post 270 billion yen (US$2.6 billion) in operating profit for the year ending in March, down 30 billion yen from its previous forecast made in July and an 8% decline from the previous year. - Reuters

Top local stories

FGV rules out steering committee: Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) dismissed talk the Government will play a more active role in running the public-listed plantation company. “The board of directors of FGV would like to deny the existence or plans for such a committee and that it is not aware of any proposal to form a steering committee,” the company said. - StarBiz

CREC buying into Titijaya?: China Railway Group Ltd (CREC) is said to be buying shares in Titijaya Land Bhd, sparking speculation that the Chinese company is building a strategic stake in the property developer. On Monday, a block of 10.2 million Titijaya shares, or 2.5% stake, changed hands in an off-market trade at RM1.72. Sources say the buyer was either CREC or some other related China parties. - StarBiz

Code of conduct soon for money and forex markets: Bank Negara is expected to unveil a new code of conduct for Malaysia’s wholesale money and foreign exchange (forex) markets by January next year to enhance the professional and ethical standards of the financial industry. - StarBiz

Encorp in deals to develop Malacca land: Encorp Bhd has entered into preliminary agreements with several companies, including Tiong Nam Logistics Holdings Bhd and Farm’s Best Bhd, to develop its huge land bank in Malacca. - StarBiz

KFC operator picks  banks for IPO: QSR Brands (M) Holdings Sdn Bhd, which operates KFC and Pizza Hut restaurants in South-East Asia, picked banks to arrange a Malaysian initial public offering next year that could raise about RM2.1bil, sources said. - Bloomberg

EPF targets 10% minimum internal rate of return: The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) is targeting a minimum internal rate of return of at least 10% for its investment in infrastructure assets Chief executive officer Datuk Shahril Ridza Ridzuan says the EPF remained confident of achiev- ing its targeted returns despite the prevailing challenges in the local and global markets. - StarBiz

EPF to work on home financing plan with banks: First-time home buyers opting for higher loan limits in the proposed end-financing scheme for affordable housing under the Perumahan Rakyat 1Malaysia (PR1MA) programme won’t be allowed to withdraw their contributions from Account 2 of the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) for other purposes until the loan is fully paid. - StarBiz

Ekovest gets development order for RM2.6bil KL project: Property and construction player Ekovest Bhd has obtained a development order for its RM2.6bil project, EkoGateway@KL River City. The project spans across 14.5 acres in the northern region of Kuala Lumpur. - StarBiz

Better second half seen for gloves industry: The market and demand for gloves is still very strong and the industry is expecting a better third and fourth quarter, according to Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association. - StarBiz

SC launches new guidelines to counter cyber risk: The Securities Commission (SC) has set up new guidelines to enhance governance measures and counter cyber risk and protect investors within the capital market. The SC said the measures aim to ensure that cyber risk is managed in an optimised manner, given the changing landscape in the market. - StarBiz

Construction sector expanding  despite lean times: The construction sector continues to flourish amid relatively lean times for Malaysia and the sector is the fastest growing GDP component in the first half of 2016, expanding at 8.9%, said RAM Rating Services. - StarBiz

Aviation sector mostly positive on new PSC: The aviation industry is mostly positive on the Malaysian Aviation Commission’s announcement of the revision to the passenger service charge (PSC) for Malaysian airports. Mavcom said the PSC for domestic flights will be fixed at RM11 for all airports, from the previous rates of RM6 for klia2 and RM9 for KLIA and other airports. Rates for Asean destinations are now set at RM35, compared with RM65 for KLIA, RM32 for klia2 and RM65 or RM26 for other airports before. - Edge FD

CGN weighs RM1.68b IPO of Edra Global: China General Nuclear Power Corp (CGN), which bought embattled 1Malaysia Development Bhd’s (1MDB) power assets for US$2.3 billion this year, is considering listing the business as early as 2017, people with knowledge of the matter said. The state-owned company could raise as much as US$400 million (RM1.68 billion) from a Malaysian initial public offering (IPO) of Edra Global Energy Bhd, the sources said. - Bloomberg

External auditors express doubt over continuity of Perwaja, Lion Diversified: Perwaja Holdings Bhd’s and Lion Diversi ed Holdings Bhd’s external auditors have raised concerns over the viability of the two long-suffering steel makers’ restructuring plans based on their annual audited accounts for the financial year ended June 30, 2016. - Edge FD

Foreign investments on Bursa remain suppressed: General foreign investor activity on Bursa Malaysia remained suppressed last week, though there was a notable pick-up in trading aggressiveness, with foreigners offoading RM396.8 million during the week, the highest amount since the second week of September, according to MIDF Research. - Edge FD

KPS shareholders give nod to Century Bond buy: Kumpulan Perangsang Selangor Bhd (KPS) has obtained its shareholders’ approval for the proposed acquisition of an approximately 71.44% stake in Century Bond Bhd, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Perangsang Packaging Sdn Bhd, for RM150.03 million. - Edge FD

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