Friday, August 16th, 2019


WEF survey: Few Singaporean youths aim to be entrepreneurs, most want to work in Singapore

SINGAPORE, Aug 16 — Youths in Singapore overwhelmingly aim to work here rather than venture abroad, and only a small proportion want to become entrepreneurs, according to a new survey by the World Economic Forum (WEF). In terms of entrepreneurial…

Wall Street opens higher on hopes for trade war relief

NEW YORK, Aug 16 — US stocks muscled higher at the open today as investors found relief in hope for progress in the US-China trade war, and housing data offered enough good news not to ruin the party. After a wild week in which the Dow posted its…

Report: Germany ready to ditch balanced budget in case of recession

BERLIN, Aug 16 — Germany’s right-left coalition government would be prepared to ditch its balanced budget rule and take on new debt to counter a possible recession, Der Spiegel magazine reported today. Fears are mounting that Europe’s largest…

US homebuilding falls sharply in July

WASHINGTON, Aug 16 — Homebuilding projects initiated in July in the US fell sharply and unexpectedly compared to June due to another steep drop in apartment construction, according to data released today. The weakness was widespread across the…

Tony Fernandes doubles up as CEO

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 16 — AirAsia Group Bhd chief executive officer (CEO) Tan Sri Tony Fernandes has been appointed as the CEO of, the low-cost airline’s travel and lifestyle e-commerce platform. In a statement today, AirAsia said the…

Strong 2Q GDP drives ringgit higher against US dollar

KUALA LUMPUR: The ringgit rebounded sharply against the US dollar today as sentiment in the local market turned positive following stronger second-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) results amidst external uncertainties.

At 6pm, the ringgit finished at 4.1760/1810 against the greenback from 4.1920/1950 yesterday.

“Despite some external uncertainties, with the US-China trade war still raging and political instability in Hong Kong, positive news from the local front like this (GDP results) is a boost to the market.

“Investors are cheering up the results,” a senior banker told Bernama.

Malaysia’s economy grew by 4.9% in the second quarter of 2019 from 4.5% in the first quarter on the back of higher household spending and private investment.

Announcing the results, Bank Negara Malaysia governor Datuk Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus said private sector activities remained the key driver of growth with domestic demand up by 4.6%, while private consumption expanded by 7.8%.

She said Malaysia’s growth accelerated despite global headwinds, supported by the recovery from commodity supply disruptions and improved performance in the manufacturing and construction sectors.

Against other major currencies, the ringgit also traded higher.

It rose against the Singapore dollar to 3.0097/0140 from 3.0173/0199 on Thursday, improved versus the Japanese yen to 3.9230/9288 from 3.9570/9609 and edged up against the euro to 4.6283/6346 from 4.6737/6787.

The local currency, however, depreciated vis-a-vis the pound to 5.0763/0828 from 5.0706/0760 as appetite for the British currency strengthened on the country’s latest political developments, with the cross-party government measures were being taken to avoid a no-deal Brexit.

The growing optimism over a substantial stimulus package by the European Central Bank also helped push British pound higher. — Bernama

Bursa Malaysia ends mixed on better GDP results

KUALA LUMPUR: Bursa Malaysia wrapped up the week mixed on the back of the better than expected second quarter gross domestic product (GDP) announcement by Bank Negara Malaysia, today.

The benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia (FBM KLCI) almost recouped earlier losses following the GDP announcement, as it briefly breached the 1,600 resistance level, before sliding back to 1.599.22 at close.

However, on the broader market, sentiment remained strong as gainers outpaced losers 390 to 325, while 420 counters remained unchanged, 795 untraded and 14 others suspended.

The market barometer opened 2.23 points lower at 1,598.06 from yesterday’s close of 1,600.29 and moved between 1,590.18 and 1,600.17 throughout the day.

Turnover was lower at 1.78 billion units worth RM1.44 billion compared with 1.94 billion units worth RM1.85 billion yesterday.

Inter-Pacific Securities Sdn Bhd head of research Pong Teng Siew said investors remained cautious after two days of heavy selling and in line with the dip by the Dow Jones Industrial Average on Monday and Wednesday.

“We can see from the scoreboard that the gainers did overcome losers, but it was marginal. This is an indicator that investors do not want to jump right in and be caught in the volatile market situation,” he told Bernama.

He said the market barometer would continue to trade between 1,580 to 1,600 before reaching the resistance level.

“All eyes remain on global conditions. However, the domestic economy has proven its resilience despite the challenging economic situation,” Pong added.

As for the performance of heavyweights, Kuala Lumpur Kepong rose 12 sen to RM24.02, Digi and Press Metal both gained three sen to RM5.02 and RM4.79 respectively, while Petronas Dagangan and Tenaga Nasional both shed four sen to RM22.80 and RM13.68.

For the most active stocks, Eduspec and KNM gained half a sen to six sen and 38 sen respectively, while PCCS bagged 3.5 sen to 54 sen.

However, Sime Darby Property lost two sen to 85 sen and My E.G dropped one sen to RM1.47.

The FBM Ace declined 3.89 points to 4,587.72, the FBM 70 was down 27.11 points to 14,074.12, the FBM Emas Index lost 9.37 points to 11,308.11 and the FBM Emas Shariah Index depreciated 5.61 points to 11,843.22 as the FBMT 100 Index slid 10.77 points to 11,145.65.

Sector-wise, the Financial Services Index was 31.87 points lower at 15,5524.51, the Plantation Index declined 45.06 points to 6,758.37, and the Industrial Products and Services Index inched down 0.09 point to 149.72.

Main Market volume declined to 1.13 billion units worth RM1.30 billion from 1.19 billion shares worth RM1.67 billion yesterday.

Warrants turnover also fell to 404.74 million units worth RM95.41 million compared with 497.67 million units worth RM129.53 million.

Volume on the ACE Market, meanwhile, increased to 250.02 million units worth RM387.33 million from Thursday’s 245.44 million units worth RM42.77 million.

Consumer products and services accounted for 250.56 million shares traded on the Main Market, industrial products and services (184.23 million), construction (72.65 million), technology (101.79 million), SPAC (nil), financial services (39.62 million), property (116.02 million), plantations (9.97 million), REITs (16.51 million), closed/fund (3,000), energy (187.48 million), healthcare (11.41 million), telecommunications and media (114.29 million), transportation and logistics (16.77 million) and utilities (10.68 million).

The physical price of gold as of 5.00pm stood at RM196.46 per gramme, down RM1.04 from RM197.50 at 5.00pm yesterday. — Bernama

Turkey’s military pension fund reaches British Steel deal

ISTANBUL, Aug 16 — Turkey’s military pension fund OYAK has reached a provisional agreement to take over British Steel and could close the deal by the end of this year, potentially saving thousands of jobs. The British government welcomed the…

UK shares gain after delayed stock market open

LONDON, Aug 16 — British shares rose after a delayed open today following the London Stock Exchange’s longest outage in eight years, as more stimulus plans from China and strong US retail sales data drove gains across sectors. The main index…