Pelaburan Hartanah, Maybank Asset Management encourages AHB investments with prize draw

KUALA LUMPUR: Pelaburan Hartanah Berhad (PHB) and Maybank Asset Management Sdn Bhd (MAM) announced another initiative to promote and increase investment in Amanah Hartanah Bumiputera (AHB) scheme with the launch of “Simpan, Labur dan Menang” prize draw with customers standing a chance to win AHB units worth RM400,000 in overall prize. AHB unit holders with […]

With record in view, aging US bull market may still be frisky

NEW YORK: Why settle for nine-and-a-half years when you can do an even 10 or better? That’s the thinking of a lot of investors measuring whether a historically long run in US stocks still has legs. On Wednesday, the S&P 500’s bull-market run will turn 3,453 days old, which in some market watchers’ eyes will […]

India tells state oil firm ONGC to list overseas unit

MUMBAI/NEW DELHI: The Indian government has asked its biggest state-owned firm, Oil and Natural Gas (ONGC), to list its overseas unit ONGC Videsh, according to a letter seen by Reuters. The move to float the unit – which has investments in 11 producing assets in countries including Russia, Brazil and Iran – is part of […]

Trade minister unveils plan to make UK export ‘superpower’

LONDON, Aug 21 — Britain will bid to become an “exporting superpower” after Brexit, Trade Secretary Liam Fox said today as he unveiled the government’s future export strategy. The country, which is set to leave the European Union in March…

Japan, China seek to restart FX swap line in sign of warming ties, reports Kyodo

TOKYO, Aug 21 — Japan and China are in talks to resume a currency swap arrangement between their central banks worth about ¥3 trillion (US$27.2 billion), Kyodo News agency reported today. The resumption of the swap agreement represents a thaw in…

BHP lifts dividend to record as profit hits four-year high

MELBOURNE, Aug 21 — BHP Billiton Ltd paid out a record dividend as profits hit a four-year high on stronger prices and confirmed it’ll return the bulk of almost US$11 billion (RM45.14 billion) in asset sales to investors. The world’s top miner…

US will lose from trade war as flows shift, top miner says

SINGAPORE, Aug 21 — The US risks losing out from its curbs on trade as rival nations including China will seek to do more business with each other, BHP Billiton Ltd Chief Executive Officer Andrew Mackenzie warned as the head of the world’s…

AMMB’s Q1 net profit up 5.9% to RM347.6m

PETALING JAYA: AMMB Holdings Bhd's net profit rose 5.9% to RM347.6 million in the first quarter ended June 30, 2018 (Q1FY19) from RM328.27 million in the previous corresponding quarter, driven by higher interest income.

Revenue for the quarter grew 4.4% to RM2.17 billion againts the RM2.08 billion made previously.

The group's net interest margin (NIM) remained flat at 2.02% compared with the corresponding period last year.

Its total operating expenses recorded reduction of 7.3% compared to same period last year, while general and administrative expenses were controlled with less expenses incurred relating to compliance and governance.

Overall, the group's cost to income (CTI) ratio improved to 50.6% from 56.3% a year ago. Its net income from insurance business also improved substantially mainly due to lower insurance claims.

“We saw a strong pre-provision profit growth of 16.7% compared to 3.2% in Q1FY18. At RM501 million, this is the highest profit before provision (PBP) recorded since Q4FY15, a testament to the strength of our Top 4 strategy,” AmBank Group CEO Datuk Sulaiman Mohd Tahir said in a statement.

“Credit costs were still negligible considering our asset base. Overall, we recorded higher profitability and improved returns in Q1FY19,” Sulaiman said.

He added the bank's net interest income (NII) continued to grow steadily at 4.7% year-on-year (y-o-y) to RM642 million, paced by the consistent loans growth of 2.2% on a year-to date (YTD) basis.

However, he said non-interest income (NoII) was flat y-o-y at RM372 million.

On loans growth, Sulaiman said AMMB continues to see good loans growth in its targeted segments.

He said mortgage loans maintained its growth momentum and expanded by 4.8% YTD to RM27.7 billion, while loans to small and medium enterprises (SME) grew 2.8% YTD to RM17.2 billion.

“All in all, we are encouraged by the 8th consecutive quarter of loans growth. Our customer deposits grew 2.9% YTD to RM98.6 billion whilst our current accounts and savings accounts (CASA) increased by 2.1% YTD,” he added.

On liquidity, Sulaiman said the group's banking subsidiaries have maintained liquidity coverage and net stable funding ratios (NSFR4 ) above 100%.

“Our capital levels were adequate with CET1 capital ratio at 11.6%, up 30 basis points (bps) from March 31, 2018 whilst total capital ratio stood at 16.4%, down 20 bps,” he noted.

On its prospects, Sulaiman said the group is on track to achieve its full year CTI target of 55%.

“We will continue to maintain our focus on driving income and CASA growth as well as manage cost diligently through our BET300 programme to attain operational efficiencies while emphasising capital accretive growth,” he added.

At the midday break, AMMB's share price gained 7 sen or 1.8% to RM3.93 with 243,000 shares changing hands.

Reservoirs of demand set to lift US to best growth since 2005

WASHINGTON, Aug 21 — The US economy looks set to forge ahead as fresh reservoirs of domestic demand carry it past turbulence overseas, keeping the Federal Reserve on course for further interest-rate hikes. Households have more cash to spend than…

RBA says stronger US growth, lower Aussie could boost economy

SYDNEY, Aug 21 — Australia’s central bank sketched out a scenario where faster global growth and US stimulus withdrawal push the Aussie dollar lower and underpin a stronger outlook Down Under. Main takeaways In minutes of their Aug 7 meeting…