Thursday, June 13th, 2019
LONDON, June 13 — The pound held near a five-month low against the euro today after Boris Johnson won by far the most support from Conservative lawmakers in the first round of the contest to replace Prime Minister Theresa May. Johnson, the face of…
LUXEMBOURG, June 13 — The European Union’s push to bring Italy into line with the bloc’s fiscal rules intensified today as top officials called for new measures to address budget shortfalls and raised concerns for the euro zone’s stability…
WASHINGTON, June 13 — The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week, which could add to concerns that the labour market was losing steam after job growth slowed sharply in May. Other data today…
FRANKFURT, June 13 — Germany’s pricey 5G spectrum auction drew protests from existing mobile operators but cheered investors betting the entry of a new player will revive competition and help close a connectivity gap with the United States and…
BEIJING, June 13 — A flippant reference to pigs in an inflation analysis by UBS Group AG’s global chief economist has caused a furore in China, with some in the financial community rejecting UBS’s apology and calling for a boycott. Paul…
KUALA LUMPUR: There will be no more reductions in Bank Negara Malaysia’s Overnight Policy Rate (OPR) this year and it is expected that the next cut will only happen next year given the resilient Malaysian economy, according to HSBC Private Banking.
Its chief market strategist for Southeast Asia James Cheo described the OPR reduction last month as a “pre-emptive cut”.
“There are fears in the market that they (Bank Negara) will keep cutting (OPR) but the economy is still sound and there is no real need to make further cuts,” he told a press conference on the HSBC Private Banking 2019 2H Investment Outlook in Asia today.
“From now to the end of the year, BNM will be on hold in terms of policy rates and depending on the situation next year, they will assess the situation,” he added.
HSBC Private Banking has forecast Malaysia’s gross domestic product growth to stay firm at 4.5% in 2019 and 4.3% in 2020, as private consumption is going to remain robust despite a more uncertain global trade environment.
Cheo said Malaysia’s economy is expected to stay resilient, driven by strong consumer spending and a diversified export base. The resilience of consumer spending is a reflection of a relatively tight labour market and steady wage growth.
“Malaysia is more resilient than what most people think. To sum it up, the Malaysia economy still ‘boleh’ (can),“ he said.
It expects private consumption to remain one of the key drivers of growth for the remainder of the year, driven by a stable labour market and supportive fiscal and monetary policy.
“It (consumption) can hold up at about 6% this year because the labour market is strong, wages are rising with a young working population. This will be the engine to power Malaysia’s economy and we don’t see that waning.”
He said investments are soft so far but there is a good chance of thempicking up in the year-end or next year as public infrastructure projects start to come in.
Malaysia’s economy is expected to stay resilient, driven by strong consumer spending, says HSBC Private Banking’s James Cheo. – REUTERSPIX
NEW YORK, June 13 — US stocks opened higher today, led by gains in energy shares, with hopes of an interest rate cut adding to the upbeat mood. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 32.11 points, or 0.12 per cent, at the open to 26,036.94. The…
PETALING JAYA: A better way to generate affordable projects would be to remove regulatory obstacles, starting with reducing the direct involvement of government agencies in building low-cost homes, according to Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) senior fellow Dr Carmelo Ferlito.
“In contrast with what is suggested by the National Housing Policy, too-strict requirements for low-cost developments (i.e. minimum size) should be avoided in order to facilitate the interaction between supply and demand, taking into account the location and size factors, and therefore allowing lower income people to move toward the economic heart of the country, supporting thus not only their housing issues but also promoting their possibilities for a higher degree of social mobility” he said in a new policy paper titled “The Property Market, Affordability and the Malaysian National Housing Policy”.
He pointed out that the low-end market segment is not disregarded by the private developers because it is naturally unprofitable, but because it is artificially made unprofitable by a series of regulatory obstacles that become supply-side bottlenecks.
Ferlito also said disruptive entrepreneurship will play a key role in developing new technologies for making housing developments cheaper from the cost side.
“However, in order to emerge such kind of entrepreneurship requires the freedom to react to market signals and cannot be centrally designed by the government.”
Citing the property market is suffering a downturn that might lead to a wider economic crisis, Ferlito noted that the current discussion is strongly unbalanced toward the issue of affordability, while the property market’s cyclical dynamic is disregarded – such a tendency could lead to a situation in which the country will not be equipped to face the consequences of the downturn that has already started.
As the affordability issue is complex, he is of the view that imply looking at the ratio between median house price and median income is simplistic and misleading.
“To decide what is individually considered as affordable means making a choice involving a trade-off between three elements: price, floor area and location.”
Moving forward, Ferlito said the rental market will play a growing role because of generational cultural changes.
PETALING JAYA: Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) has appointed Datuk Noor Kamarul Anuar Nuruddin (pix) as its new managing director and CEO effective today.
He is a nominee of special shareholder Minister of Finance.
Noor Kamarul, 60, has vast experience of 34 years in managing telecommunication networks and services in Malaysia and Indonesia focusing on fixed network, mobile network and mobile broadband services.
He has led the strategy, planning and implementation of projects ranging from greenfield network, 3G, 4G to merger of cellular networks.
Noor Kamarul was a member of Celcom Axiata Bhd’s senior management team in driving the turnaround of Celcom’s performance from 2003 to March 2018.