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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bursa Chat-News Highlights

KNM Group
(KNMG MK, Hold, TP: RM0.67) expects its earnings for this year to be comparable to last year, underpinned by the recovery in oil prices and as it moves up the value chain. Group MD Lee Swee Eng said KNM was also pushing ahead with its three pronged business model, which entailed moving up the value chain, seeking new markets and exploring new industries in the O&G sector. He said that the Group planned to move up the value chain via joint ventures, strategic alliances or M&A, depending on the size of the candidates. KNM sees demand picking up in three areas, namely Australia, Brazil and the Middle East, with a higher demand for LNG in Australia, deepwater oil exploration in Brazil and oil and gas in the Middle East. (Financial Daily)
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AirAsia(AIRA MK, Buy, TP: RM1.90) stands to lose up to RM400m a year at the group level with the abolishment of its administration fee from its fare structure but the airline says it will replace lost revenue with income from higher passenger growth and its ancillary business. Group CEO Datuk Seri Tony Fernandez believes that reducing costs of fares is the only way to get people to travel. He hopes that the move woul d increase load factor and increase competitiveness of the airline. There are also other ways of generating income, such as hotel, food operations and priority booking, he added. The administration fees range from RM22.50 to RM43 per route (one way). (Starbiz)
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Firefly, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines (MAS MK, Sell, TP: RM2.00), expects it Singapore flights to contribute 10% of revenue this year .Firefly is set to operate six flights daily from various Malaysia ai rports into Singapore by December this year.(BT)
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The government has appointed a consultant to find the middle path in a dispute between AirAsia Bhd(AIRA MK, Buy,TP: RM1.90)and Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) on total airport taxes of RM65m which is being owed byAirAsia.Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Ibrahim said that the Government will remain neutral in a dispute between MAHB andAirAsia on the amount of airport tax owing by AirAsi a. He also said that MAHB had never accorded AirAsia or any other airline the special privilege of owing airport tax.(Financial Daily)
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MK Land Holdings Bhd is venturing into India, partnering India’s property developer Embassy Group for an integrated township development with a gross development value (GDV) of RM3bn on a 120ha parcel of land in northern Bangalore. The joint venture (JV) also sees the participation of MK Land’s sister company, MKN Embassy Development Sdn Bhd, which is under the privately owned Emkay group. The project will be undertaken by a JV company named Mialn Gateway Sdn Bhd. MK Land via Ritma Mantap Sdn Bhd, and Embassy, vi a Star Dreams, each holds a 47.5% stake in the JV company, while MKN Embassy owns the remaining 5%. (Financial Daily)
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Top Glove Corp Bhd said profit growth this fiscal year may be double the company’s earlier estimate after swine flu bolstered demand and the cost of raw materials fell. Net income in the year ending August 30 is on course to climb at least 30%, executive di rector Li m Cheong Guan said in an interview. Thi s would swell earnings to a record RM143m. The group hadearlier forecast growth of 15% to 20%. (Financi al Daily)
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Malaysian Resources Corp Bhd will launch a new brand identity for its property division on Saturday. In a statement yesterday, Group MD Sharil Ridza Ridzuan said the company hoped to achieve robustness in its product offerings and increase the market value with the unveiling of the new brand. MRCB would also launch the second phase of its pioneer project at Bandar Seri Iskandar, in Perak. Over 200 units of residential properties comprising bungalows, semi-detached and terrace houses woul d be showcased this weekend. (Starbiz)
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Rating agencies see more potential downgrades in the second half of this year although the global economy is showing some hints of recovery. According to RAM CEO Liza Mohd Noor, the overall credit quality of its rated portfolio, though resilient in 2008, will trend downwards for the remainder of the year. She believed that GDP trend growth of 5-6% will likely be gradual, possibly taking up to 2 years. She noted that corporate issuers, especially those with significant dependence on export earnings, would be the most vulnerable as the global demand slump had resulted in weaker internal cash flow generation. (Starbiz)
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Global
The Nasdaq trimmed gains Wednesday and the Dow dipped after the Federal Reserve kept a key short-term interest rate near zero, but said nothing about expanding a program meant to keep long-term rates from spiking. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 0.3% (-23.1 pts, close 8,299.9). The Standard & Poor's 500 gained 0.7% (+5.8 pts, close 900.9) and the Nasdaq composite gained 1.6% (+27.4 pts, cl ose 1,792.3). In currency trading, the dollar gained versus the euro and the yen. U.S. light crude oil for August delivery fell 57 cents to $68.67 a barrel on the New York Mercantil e Exchange. (CNNmoney)
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The Federal Reserve refrained from increasing its US$1.75trn bond-purchase program, said the pace of economic contraction is slowing and predicted inflation will remain subdued for some time. “Substantial resource slack i s likely to dampen cost pressures, and the Committee expects that inflation wi ll remain subdued for some time,” the Federal Open Market Committee said in a statement after a two-day meeting in Washington where it also kept the benchmark interest rate between zero and 0.25%. The rate wi ll stay at “exceptionally low levels” for an “extended period. (Bloomberg)
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Orders for U.S. durable goods unexpectedly jumped in May, a sign companies are gaining confidence the recession is easing. The 1.8% rise in bookings for items meant to last several years matched the previous month’s increase, the Commerce Department said today in Washington. The durable-goods figures reinforce a trend of improvement that spurred the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development to lift its growth forecast for the world’s most developed nations for the first time in two years. The Federal Reserve today signalled the worst of the slump is over. (Bloomberg)
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The U.S. economy and financial system are improving amid declining credit-market risk, according to the head of the Treasury’s office overseeing the US$700bn rescue fund. “There are tentative signs that the financial system is beginning to stabilize, and that our efforts made an important contribution,” Herb Allison, assistant secretary for financial stability, sai d yesterday in testimony before a congressional oversight panel. “Key indicators of credit market risk, while still elevated, have dropped substantially.” (Bl oomberg)
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U.S. may need a second economic stimulus package as unemployment is poised to continue rising, said Warren Buffett. “It looks like we’re going to need more medicine, not less. We’re going to have more unemployment. The recovery really hasn’t got going. Economic rebound will be a slow process,” said Buffett, who predicted the joblessness rate will exceed 10%. “The economy hasn’t turned yet. There’s no telling how long it will take. It will happen.”(Bloomberg)
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The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development raised its forecast for the economy of its 30 member nations for the first time in two years as the U.S. slump shows signs of easing.
The combi ned economy of the world’s most-industrialized countries will shrink 4.1% this year and grow 0.7% in 2010, OECD said yesterday. The new projections compare with March forecasts for contracti ons of 4.3% and 0.1%. (Bloomberg)
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The European Central Bank said it will lend banks €442bn (US$621bn) for 12 months, the most it has ever allotted in an auction, as it steps up efforts to unblock credit markets in the 16-nation euro region. The Frankfurt-based ECB filled all bids in its first offer of 12-month loans to banks at the current benchmark interest rate of 1%. The 1,121 banks that participated receive the funds tomorrow. The euro interbank offered rate, or Euribor, for 12-month loans fell to 1.57% today, a record low.(Bloomberg)
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Global
Britain’s recovery from the worst recession in a generation will be slow and “uncertain”, according to Bank of England Governor Mervyn King. “There has to be a risk that it will be a long, hard slog” because of the problems in the banking system, King told lawmakers in London yesterday. “I feel more uncertain now than ever. This is not the pattern of a recession coming into recovery that we’ve seen since the 1930s. Having an open mind and not pretending to foresee the future when it’s so uncertai n is important.” The comments suggest the central bank isn’t yet planning to withdraw its stimulus for the economy even though some indicators show the end of the recession is near. (Bloomberg)
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The recession in Germany, will be deeper than previously expected this year as a global slump saps demand for the country’s exports, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said. German gross domestic product will drop 6.1% i nstead of a previ ously projected 5.3%, the Paris-based organization said in its global economic outlook published today. In 2010, the economy will expand 0.2%, it said. Germany’s RWI economic institute said Tuesday i t expects the economy to shrink 6.4% this year with “no initial signs of recovery.” (Bloomberg)
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The International Monetary Fund boosted its 2009 and 2010 forecasts for Australia . In preliminary staff findings released from Washington, the lender said Australia’s economy will shrink 0.5% thi s year, compared with a 1.4% drop predicted in April. The economy will grow about 1.5% next year, the IMF said, after previously predicting a 0.6% gain. This year’s contraction will be driven by lower commodity prices, an increase in the country’s jobless rate and “weak confidence,” the report said, with government spending likely to spur next year’s rebound. (Bloomberg)
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The International Monetary Fund boosted its 2009 and 2010 forecasts for Australia . In preliminary staff findings released from Washington, the lender said Australia’s economy will shrink 0.5% thi s year, compared with a 1.4% drop predicted in April. The economy will grow about 1.5% next year, the IMF said, after previously predicting a 0.6% gain. This year’s contraction will be driven by lower commodity prices, an increase in the country’s jobless rate and “weak confidence,” the report said, with government spending likely to spur next year’s rebound. (Bloomberg)
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Japan’s merchandise exports dropped by 40.9% y-o-y to ¥4trn (US$41.6bn), accelerating from the 39.1% decline of the previous month. This brought a halt to the trend seen in March-April, when the decline in exports had eased, stoking hopes for a recovery. Seasonally adjusted figures also show that exports fell by 0.3% in m-o-m terms in May, after two consecuti ve months of gain. Three out of the four major sectors posted a sharper y-o-y decline in export revenue: the manufacturing, machinery and equipment and electrical machinery and equipment sectors. However, Japan still recorded a merchandise trade surplus of ¥299.8bn, despite being l ower than the ¥341.1bn surplus seen in May 2008.(Bloomberg)
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