Brent crude was 0.23% higher to US$47.06 per barrel at 2.51pm.
Ringgit down 0.25% to 4.3512 versus the US dollar at 2.47pm.
Top foreign stories
Singapore to launch blockchain project for interbank payments: In a major move to explore the use of digital currency in Singapore, the city-state’s central bank plans to launch a pilot project with the country’s stock exchange and eight local and foreign banks to use blockchain technology for interbank payments. Cross-border foreign currency transactions will also be reviewed under the pilot as Singapore’s central bank looks to position the financial centre as an important Fintech hub. — Reuters
Bank of Shanghai surges 44% on debut after US$1.6b IPO: Shares in Bank of Shanghai Co Ltd soared 44% on debut on Wednesday, the most allowed in one day, after it raised 10.7 billion yuan (US$1.58 billion) in the Shanghai bourse’s largest IPO this year. — Reuters
Trump plans to scrap Dodd-Frank; for banks, it’s complicated: US President-elect Donald Trump has vowed to eliminate the landmark Dodd-Frank financial reform law adopted in the post-crisis era but Wall Street has mixed feelings about such a drastic move. Trump’s transition team announced it will work “to dismantle the Dodd-Frank Act and replace it with new policies” to encourage growth. Details remain scant, however. — AFP
Top local stories
Bank Negara asks foreign banks to refrain from trading NDFs: Bank Negara has asked foreign banks to refrain from trading in the offshore non-deliverable forwards market in the ringgit, according to a letter seen by a Reuters sent to banks. — Reuters
CIMB Q3 net profit jumps to RM1.02b: CIMB Group Holdings Bhd’s earnings for the third quarter increased to RM1.023bil, driven by gains from the sale of PT Sun Life, higher non-interest income and lower operating costs, partially offset by an uptick in provisions. — StarBiz
Boustead Plantations earnings surge 58%: Boustead Plantations Bhd’s net profit jumped 58% to RM37.36mil in the third quarter compared with RM23.63mil a year earlier on better palm product prices and lower operating expenditure for shortfalls in fresh fruit bunches production. Its revenue rose to RM199.32mil from RM166.55mil previously. The company declared a dividend of 5 sen per share for the year ending Dec 31, 2016. — StarBizReach Energy receives overwhelming support for oilfield buy: Reach Energy Bhd has received 81% approval from its shareholders for its proposed qualifying acquisition of an asset in Kazakhstan for US$154.89mil (RM640.54mil). — StarBiz
Taliworks net profit jumps 80%: Taliworks Corp Bhd’s net profit for the third quarter surged by 80.6% to RM19.5mil on higher metered sales from water business, toll compensation, higher income derived from management fee and an unrealised foreign exchange gain. Its revenue increased 13.6% to RM83.8mil. The company declared a third single-tier dividend of 2 sen per share. — StarBiz
SME contribution to GDP to grow 5%-5.5% this year: The contribution of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to the gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to grow by between 5% and 5.5% this year. Second Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan said this would be on the back of the country’s GDP, which was projected to expand by between 4% and 4.5% in 2016. — Bernama