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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Bursa Chat News Highlights (17.03.2009)

NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

EPF declares 4.5% dividend for 2008 The EPF has declared a dividend of 4.5% for 2008, lower than the 5.8% in 2007. The lower dividend rate is due to the increase in investment provisioning resulting from the sharp decline in global equity prices brought about by the worldwide financial crisis, the pension fund said. However, despite the financial meltdown, the EPF recorded the highest ever earnings of RM20bn in gross income for 2008, an increase of 9.4% over the previous year's gross income of RM18.3bn. (Bernama)

PNB moves for another big merger PNB is creating a large property group with yearly revenue of RM1.3bn by combining three property companies under one roof, sources said. The merger of Island & Peninsular Bhd, Pelangi Bhd and Petaling Garden Bhd will help PNB to squeeze more profits from a leaner organisation. It expects to complete the deal next month. PNB has already set up a new company, PNB Property Holdings, to handle the merger, which is being done virtually out of sight as all three companies have been taken private. The merger could pave the way for an initial public offering for the new property group when the economy recovers. (Business Times)

IOI Corp to maintain IOI Prop offer price IOI Corp announced that it has no intention to revise the offer price of RM2.598/share or to maintain IOI Prop’s listing status. The group was responding to a news report quoting IOI Prop’s minority shareholders holding out for a better offer. IOI Corp said based on current economic downturn, the offer is fair and reasonable. (Bursa Malaysia) Maybank sinks below RM4 Maybank’s share price lost its footing, sinking below RM4
yesterday, the first time in almost a decade as the heavy selling prompted by the RM6bn cash call and concern over hefty impairment losses continued. Maybank’s shares had been battered down in the past three weeks, losing RM1.42 or 26.3% from RM5.40 on Feb 24 following the announcement on the capital rights issue to boost its capital. (Financial Daily)

Management buyout of KNM hinges on funds A management buyout (MBO) will be considered for KNM Group Bhd but funding must be available, said managing director Lee Swee Eng. Lee said KNM is undervalued, and the opportunity for privatisation is a good opportunity. A Bloomberg report yesterday quoted Lee as saying he would consider leading an MBO as long as banks will provide the funds. (Star Biz)

JCorp investing RM500m in phase two of port expansion Johor Corp (JCorp) will be investing RM500m under the second phase of the Tanjung Langsat Port expansion plan this year, said chief executive officer Tan Sri Muhammad Ali Hashim. Two new berths measuring 500m each dedicated to the handling of general cargo would be built at the port. Ali said the port was originally built to handle liquid petroleum-related cargo, not general or dry cargo. However some changes have to be made to include berths for handling general cargo as there is demand for such facilities here. The port would have between 12 and 14 berths under the port’s long-term expansion plan. (Star Biz)

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