Top foreign and local stories at 4pm


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  • Tuesday, 31 Oct 2017

- Reuters

Energy

Brent crude was 0.28% lower to US$60.73 per barrel at 3.53pm.

Forex

Ringgit up 0.18% to 4.2300 versus the US dollar at 4.04pm.

Top foreign stories 

SoftBank, Deutsche Telekom hit wall in Sprint, T-Mobile talks: SoftBank Group Corp and Deutsche Telekom AG have reached an impasse in their talks to merge Sprint Corp and T-Mobile US Inc, sources said, sending shares in the Japanese Internet giant sliding. One person briefed on the deal said SoftBank was moving towards breaking off the talks. — Reuters

BNP Paribas posts higher Q3 profits, helped by asset sale: BNP Paribas’ third-quarter net income stood at 2.04 billion euros, above the 1.9 billion euros expected by analysts, boosted by a sale of a stake in Indian insurance company SBI Life and cost cuts helped compensate for a goodwill impairment in Turkey and weakness in its markets-related unit. — Reuters

IMF endorses Saudi plan for US$500b business zone: The International Monetary Fund has endorsed an ambitious Saudi Arabian plan to build a US$500 billion business and industrial zone extending into Jordan and Egypt, saying the project could benefit the whole region. — Reuters

Samsung Elec names new business heads in changing of guard: Samsung Electronics Co Ltd named a new generation of leaders at its three main businesses on Tuesday as it seeks to steady the ship following the arrest of group scion Jay Y. Lee earlier this year on charges including bribery. The firm also announced CFO Lee Sang-hoon had been recommended as the new chairman of the board, and that long-time co-CEOs J.K. Shin and Yoon Boo-keun would step down. — Reuters

Sony raises earnings outlook, expects best-ever annual profit: Japan’s Sony Corp lifted its full-year operating income forecast on Tuesday, expecting to book its highest-ever profit due to strong sales of image sensors used in smartphones and other devices. The electronics firm forecast profit of 630 billion yen (US$5.57 billion) for the year ending March, from 500 billion yen estimated three months ago. — Reuters

BoJ keeps policy steady: The Bank of Japan (BoJ) kept monetary policy steady and roughly maintained its ambitious price forecasts on Tuesday, pointing to signs of growing strength in the economy that policymakers hope will accelerate inflation towards its elusive 2% target. — Reuters

Bank of England sees up to 75,000 finance job losses after Brexit: The Bank of England expects Britain to lose up to 75,000 financial services jobs after the country leaves the European Union in 2019, the BBC reported on Tuesday. The Bank of England thought the figure could vary depending on the terms on which Britain left the EU, and that 75,000 was at the upper end of projections provided by other groups. - Reuters

Top local stories

AirAsia to sell more stakes in non-flying businesses to fund dividends: AirAsia Bhd on Tuesday said it plans to sell more stakes in non-flying businesses to fund special dividends to shareholders, after announcing a new ground handling joint venture (JV) with Singapore’s SATS Ltd. The low-cost carrier, which expects S$119.3 million (US$87.7 million) in proceeds from the SATS deal, is close to selling some or all of its aircraft leasing arm and its remaining 25% stake in a travel booking joint venture with Expedia Inc, founder and Group CEO Tony Fernandes said. — Reuters

MMHE posts Q3 earnings of RM16.4m on lower heavy engineering losses: Malaysia Marine and Heavy Engineering Holdings Bhd (MMHE) posted earnings of RM16.4mil in the third quarter, from a net loss of RM4.53mil a year ago, as the heavy engineering segment’s losses narrowed sharply. Revenue fell 35.4% to RM215.35mil from RM333.49mil previously. Earnings per share were one sen compared with loss per share of 0.3 sen a year earlier. — StarBiz

Press Metal likely to be added to FBM KLCI by end-2017: UOB Kay Hian Malaysia Research said Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd, which has a market capitalisation of RM16bil, is likely to be included in the FBM KLCI Index by end-2017. It said Press Metal’s potential inclusion in the index, coupled with the low institutional shareholding of about 15%, will be the share price catalysts. — StarBiz

CI Holdings plans RM12.5m capex to expand: Edible oil maker CI Holdings Bhd will spend RM12.5mil in capital expenditure for the financial year ending June 30, 2018, to expand its production capacity. Group MD Megat Joha Megat Abdul Rahman said the new capacity from a plant under construction in Banting, Selangor, would enable the group to fulfil an additional 5,000 container loads of edible oil for export. — StarBiz

Benalec to gain RM24.7m from land sale: Benalec Holdings Bhd expects to realise a net gain of RM24.7mil from the sale of a 216,427 sq metre land in Pekan Klebang, Melaka, to Titanium Hallmark Sdn Bhd for RM110mil. — StarBiz

IDEAS publishes paper on illicit trade: IDEAS has published a new policy paper, entitled Illicit Trade in Malaysia: Causes & Consequence, which examinines the factors behind illicit trade and offers policy recommendations to overcome it. — StarBiz

Panelist warns of rising expenditure and shrinking tax revenue: Malaysia’s expenditure on healthcare and pension is set to rise over the medium to long term, as the country heads towards an aged population. The country’s revenue from income taxes, on the other hand, will decline as people move away from salaried jobs in line with Industry 4.0 and the internet revolution, said EPF’s Nurhisham Hussein. — StarBiz

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