Quek's Hong Leong Bank stake seen as attractive despite premium valuation - A + A Tan Sri Quek Leng Chan (Photo by Bloomberg) KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 10): Hong Leong Bank Bhd chairman Tan Sri Quek Leng Chan's reported attempt to pare down his controlling stake in the bank may not be an easy task, given the size of his shareholding and the premium valuation, whose share price is hovering near the historic high of RM21.20 it reached in May. Hong Leong Bank, with a market capitalisation of RM45.26 billion, is a screaming buy among analysts tracking the banking stock because of its attractive return-on-equity (ROE) and asset quality. There is not a single sell call on Hong Leong Bank. Nonetheless, this raises the question whether its rivals will pay a premium for it? Quek controls 62% of Hong Leong Bank via Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd (HLFG), which is way above the 10% limit that any individual is allowed to hold in a financial institution, according to the … [Read more...] about Hong Leong Bank seen as attractive but are there any buyers?
Mahindra & Mahindra | CMP: Rs 1,234.50 | The scrip jumped 6 percent on August 1 hitting all-time high after it recorded 1,00,000 bookings for the all-new Scorpio-N within 30 minutes of booking commencement on Saturday. The rush has translated into a book value of Rs 18,000 crore on ex-showroom price basis. The firm said the enthusiasm for the SUV was so high that it recorded 25,000 bookings within the first one minute. PRO Only Highlights - Quarterly performance largely backed by improved realisations - Medium-term triggers China plus and protectionist measures for tyre industry - Valuations not inexpensive; but improved medium-term outlook The financial performance of Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) (CMP: Rs 1,236; M cap: Rs 1.53 lakh crore) in Q1FY23 was in line, driven by the auto segment that moderated the weakness in the tractor segment. The auto segment continues to do well on the back of new/refreshed products. The auto segment’s order booking and … [Read more...] about Auto segment comes to M&M’s rescue, any upside?
- A + A KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 9): Apple has partnered with Ambank, Maybank and Standard Chartered Malaysia to offer its mobile payment services to Malaysian customers. “Customers with Visa and Mastercard cards from banks including AmBank, Maybank and Standard Chartered Bank can now use Apple Pay, with American Express cards to be available with Apple Pay later this year,” the consumer electronic company announced on its website on Tuesday (Aug 9). "Merchants such as KFC, Maxis, Machines, McDonald’s, Mydin, Pizza Hut, Starbucks, U Mobile, Uniqlo, Village Grocer and Watsons — and apps and websites including Shopee, Sephora, Atome and Adidas — now offer customers the ability to pay with Apple Pay." Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet Jennifer Bailey said the company is delighted to bring Apple Pay to Malaysia, providing an easier, safer and more secure way to pay with iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad and Mac. “Our customers in Malaysia will benefit from using … [Read more...] about Apple jumps onto Malaysia’s mobile payment bandwagon
- A + A (Aug 9): China’s top auditor is conducting a review of the US$3 trillion trust industry, paving the way for a potential overhaul of a key shadow banking sector where losses on property loans are mounting. In an unscheduled move, the National Audit Office — which previously led an examination of bank exposures to Jack Ma’s Ant Group Co — has for the past month been inspecting the books of at least 20 trust firms, including the top five, to gauge the risks they pose to financial stability, according to people familiar with the matter. The firms are being asked to report on their risky loans to developers and any plans to dispose of them, the people said, asking not to be named as they’re not authorised to speak publicly. The audit office is expected to submit its conclusions to policy makers in Beijing, who may decide on the future reforms of the sector, the people said. While it is unclear what regulatory action the scrutiny will spur, the move illustrates … [Read more...] about China orders surprise audit of US$3 trillion trust industry
Heavy fighting was reported on Tuesday in frontline towns near the eastern city of Donetsk, where Ukrainian officials said Russian troops were launching waves of attacks as they tried to seize control of the industrialised Donbas region. - A + A KYIV (Aug 9): Russia unleashed ground forces, air strikes and artillery as it pressed ahead with a grinding offensive designed to complete its capture of eastern Ukraine, but Kyiv said its troops were putting up fierce resistance and holding the line. Heavy fighting was reported on Tuesday in frontline towns near the eastern city of Donetsk, where Ukrainian officials said Russian troops were launching waves of attacks as they tried to seize control of the industrialised Donbas region. "The situation in the region is tense — shelling is constant throughout the front line ... The enemy is also using air strikes a great deal," Pavlo Kyrylenko, governor of the Donetsk region, one of two that makes up Donbas, told Ukrainian … [Read more...] about Moscow steps up assault in eastern Ukraine as Kyiv calls for ‘ban’ on Russians
- A + A KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 9): Leong Hup International Bhd's unit Leong Hup Feedmill Malaysia Sdn Bhd (LFM), one of the five feed millers recently issued with a proposed decision by the Malaysia Competition Commission (MyCC), said that MyCC has proposed to impose a financial penalty of RM157.47 million in the event LFM is found to have infringed the Competition Act 2010. In a filing with Bursa Malaysia on Tuesday (Aug 9), Leong Hup said that it provided the additional information for the purpose of clarity. Besides the RM157.47 million fine, Leong Hup also said that if LFM is found to have infringed the Act, MyCC proposed to direct LFM to undertake the following: i) to cease and desist from participating and engaging in the alleged anti-competitive horizontal agreement in relation to any discussion on price-related matters pertaining to chicken feed; ii) to submit monthly price-related matters to MyCC including the announcement of price adjustment to customers, a … [Read more...] about Leong Hup’s unit to be fined RM157.47 mil if found to have infringed Competition Act 2010
- A + A KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 9): Perbadanan Nasional Bhd (Pernas), who is suing Serba Dinamik Holdings Bhd's managing director Datuk Dr Mohd Abdul Karim Abdullah and two former senior executives of the oil and gas services outfit's subsidiaries to claim the return of RM46.49 million over a share investment that went bad, has applied for a summary judgement against the trio. It filed the application on Aug 1 through Messrs Azmi & Associates, claiming that the defendants' defence has no merit, and that there are no longer triable issues to be decided by the court. Pernas, a Minister of Finance Inc (MOF Inc)-owned company with the mandate to lead the development of Malaysia's franchise industry, initiated the lawsuit in May. The two other defendants named in the lawsuit are Rosland Othman and Rosli Hamat. Rosland was previously senior vice president (special project) under Serba Dinamik Group Bhd (SDGB), while Rosli was senior VP (investment) of Serba Dinamik … [Read more...] about MOF Inc-owned Pernas seeks summary judgement in RM46 mil lawsuit against Serba Dinamik MD, two former execs
Peter Bergen is CNN's national security analyst, a vice president at New America and a professor of practice at Arizona State University. Bergen's new paperback is "The Rise and fall of Osama bin Laden." from which this article is, in part, adapted. The views expressed in this commentary are his own. View more opinion on CNN. (CNN) In 1961, after a CIA-backed invasion of Cuba failed spectacularly, President John F. Kennedy said of the Bay of Pigs fiasco, "Victory has 100 fathers and defeat is an orphan." Peter Bergen Last week, President Joe Biden took a victory lap when he announced that the US had tracked down and killed its most wanted terrorist, al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, who was living in a house in Kabul, Afghanistan. Don't expect a similar celebration on August 30, the first anniversary of the US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, which ended the longest war in American history. Any realistic assessment of that action shows that it … [Read more...] about Opinion: Biden’s Afghanistan exit decision looks even worse a year later
Jill Dougherty is adjunct professor at Georgetown University and a former CNN Moscow Bureau Chief. The views expressed in this commentary are her own. View more opinion on CNN. (CNN) Some of the most dramatic -- and diplomatically delicate -- moments in United States-Russia relations are linked to prisoner exchanges. Jill Dougherty February 10, 1962: In a Cold War, Hollywood-style trade on the Glienicke Bridge between Berlin and Potsdam, two men -- an American and a Soviet -- walked in opposite directions across what would decades later be known as the "Bridge of Spies." They were Francis Gary Powers, the American pilot of a spy plane shot down over the USSR, and Soviet KGB colonel Rudolph Abel, who had served five years in the US on espionage charges. More than half a century later, Vladimir Putin, a former KGB officer, certainly knows the value of prisoner swaps. In April, his administration freed former US Marine … [Read more...] about Opinion: Putin’s prisoner swap calculus
Washington (CNN) After months of internal debate, the Biden administration has offered to exchange Viktor Bout , a convicted Russian arms trafficker serving a 25-year US prison sentence, as part of a potential deal to secure the release of two Americans held by Russia , Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan, according to people briefed on the matter. These sources told CNN that the plan to trade Bout for Whelan and Griner received the backing of President Joe Biden after being under discussion since earlier this year. Biden's support for the swap overrides opposition from the Department of Justice, which is generally against prisoner trades. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Thursday that "so far, there is no agreement on this issue." Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced Wednesday that the US presented a "substantial proposal" to Moscow "weeks ago" for Whelan and Griner, who are classified as wrongfully detained. Speaking at a press … [Read more...] about CNN Exclusive: Biden administration offers convicted Russian arms dealer in exchange for Griner, Whelan