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Putrajaya revokes Heineken’s MCO exemption approval
/ Mainstream, Top
By Emmanuel Samarathisa PUTRAJAYA has revoked its approval for brewer Heineken Malaysia Bhd to operate during the movement control order (MCO), according to Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa. Annuar tweeted today that the exemption had been rescinded this morning for not following the government’s policy on the matter. Sudah di batalkan pagi ini..kerana tak selari dgn dasar yg di tetapkan kjaan https://t.co/hZ9ytTiAXm— Annuar Musa (@AnnuarMusa) April 6, 2020 Heineken said in an April 5 statement that the brewer had received approval from the government to resume limited operations with a “minimal number of essential workers” during the MCO ...
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Banks well-positioned to weather downturns, say analysts
MIDF Research said banks ended 2019 on a solid footing with Return On Equity (ROE) at 13.0%, above the estimated average cost of capital of 9%. This was despite weakness in net interest income as loans growth was tepid and Net Interest Margin (NIM) contraction seen. Pre-tax profits of the banking system recorded a growth of 15.4% yoy, supported by strong growth in non-interest income as banks took advantage of falling yields in government bonds and sukuk. “Total capital ratio in the banking system improved further to 18.3%. Its Common Equity Tier (CET1) and Tier 1 capital ratios were 14.3% ...
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Antimalarials not effective on Covid-19 after all, studies show
/ antimalarials, Covid-19, Featured, Mainstream, Top
By Xavier Kong HOPE had blossomed with the news that antimalarial drugs hydroxychloroquine and its associate chloroquine, along with antibiotic azithromycin, were a combination that had proven effective against Covid-19. However, more recent studies have shown that there is actually no credibility to those drugs. The combination had been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration under an Emergency Use Authorisation on March 29, following the news that the drugs have proven effective against Covid-19. According to The Conversation Australia, a study published in French medical journal Médecine et Maladies Infectieuses by a group led by Dr Jean Michel ...
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FDI policy reforms needed to ride out Covid-19 impact, says don
MALAYSIA must undertake bold structural and sectoral reforms in its Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) policy in order to ride out the Covid-19 shock, says an academic. Professor Sufian Jusoh of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia’s International Trade and Investment Institute for Malaysian and International Studies said Malaysia should conduct aggressive investment promotions in order to revitalise its economy. “The investment priority sectors must include areas that could assist Malaysia to overcome any potential economic and healthcare problems and promote emergency preparedness and food security in the future,” Sufian said. The Covid-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented disruption to the global economy and world ...
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Foreign net selling of local equities slows to RM486 mil, says MIDF
THE pace of foreign net selling on Bursa continued to slow down last week. Based on data from the exchange operator, international investors sold RM486 mil net of local equities between March 30 and April 3, compared to the RM631.9mil net disposed of in the preceding week. The FBM KLCI declined 0.9% for the week after settling at 1,330.7 points. Similarly, the ringgit depreciated by 0.4% against the greenback to reach US$/RM4.355 during the week. MIDF Research analyst Adam M Rahim said: “On Tuesday, offshore investors mopped up RM113.4 mil net of local equities, snapping the 28-day foreign net selling ...
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Music app JOOX sees usage spike in Southeast Asia
/ JOOX, Lockdown, Others, Tencent
HONG KONG: Lockdowns and travel restrictions prompted by the new coronavirus have been a boon to JOOX, Chinese tech giant Tencent's international music streaming platform, driving traffic to its karaoke services up by as much as 50%, an executive said. Launched in 2015, JOOX is an overseas version of China's top music streaming company Tencent Music Entertainment Group and marks the gaming and social media group's international challenge to bigger rivals such as Spotify Technology SA. JOOX, which operates in Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and South Africa, is already vying for the top spot in music streaming services with Alphabet ...
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Energas has stable credit ratings outlook, says AM Best
AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating of A (excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating of ‘a’ of Energas Insurance (L) Limited Malaysia. The United States-based global credit rating agency in a statement said the outlook of these ratings was stable. These ratings reflect Energas’ balance sheet strength, which AM Best described as very strong, as well as its strong operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management. In addition, the ratings include a neutral impact from the company’s 100 per cent ownership by Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas), which is ultimately owned by the Malaysian government ...
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Best of rose gold
/ De Beers, Fashion, Lifestyle
By YK Hong De Beers’ Horizon Collection offers joyful, playful designs to add sparkle to your wardrobe. When reviewing gold settings, you’ll notice there are three options: white gold, rose gold and yellow gold. While similar,they differ primarily in their colour and composition. Selecting the type of gold for your ring should be based on personal preference, although composition or price could play a small role in your decision. For the best of rose gold, you can check out De Beers’ Horizon Collection, which promises a new aesthetic. Elegant, simple and pure, it is joyful and playful collection. Where the ...
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Ringgit lower against the US dollar amid risk aversion
/ Covid-19, Hong Leong Bank, Mainstream, US dollar
THE ringgit traded lower against the US dollar today as the safe-haven greenback remained steady across the board amid ongoing risk aversion that  dampen demand for riskier currencies. At 9.05am, the ringgit was quoted at 4.3630/3700  against the US dollar compared with last Friday's close of 4.3520/3620. Hong Leong Bank Research in a note said protracted and heightening concerns over Covid-19 health and economic issues continued to unnerve global financial markets, while emergency and unconventional central banks’ responses worldwide created more panic than calm, hastening safety bids. - April 6, 2020, Bernama   ...
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Residents take coronavirus surveillance into their own hands
/ Coronavirus, Featured, Lockdown, Mainstream
ROME/KUALA LUMPUR: A week after Malaysia ordered a partial lockdown to slow the spread of the coronavirus, construction supervisor Hafi Nazhan saw residents in his affluent Kuala Lumpur neighbourhood jogging outside. He took photos of people flouting the stay-at-home order and published them on Twitter, receiving hundreds of shares. Hafi's followers informed the police, who subsequently arrested 11 joggers in his neighbourhood. They were charged with violating the movement restriction order and each fined RM1,000 in court. "I was upset some people did not take this stay-at-home order seriously. These are well-educated people," Hafi, 26, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation, ...
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Short-term rates  to remain stable on BNM's operations
SHORT-term rates are expected to remain stable today on Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) operations to absorb surplus liquidity from the financial system. Today's liquidity is estimated at RM55.20 bil in the conventional system and RM34.19 bil in Islamic funds. BNM announced that Reverse Repo, Sale and Buy Back Agreement (SBBA) transaction and Collateralised Commodity Murabahah (CCM) transaction facilities are also available for tenors of 1-3 months. At 4pm, BNM will conduct up to RM53.2 bil for conventional overnight tender and RM28.4 bil for Murabahah overnight tender. - April 6, 2020, Bernama ...
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Indians light lamps to heed Modi's call for coronavirus comradeship
MILLIONS of Indians turned off their lights and lit up balconies and doorsteps with lamps, candles and flashlights yesterday, in response to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal to “challenge the darkness” spread by the coronavirus crisis. Modi’s call was met with a huge response, with many people lighting up their balconies. Others lit firecrackers, played musical instruments, and sang patriotic songs. Grid data showed India’s national power consumption plunging more than a quarter in a matter of minutes. Modi, who imposed a three-week long nationwide lockdown on March 25, asked all citizens to turn out their lights for nine minutes ...
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UK's plan B if 'Team Johnson' is incapacitated? Answer is unclear
BRITAIN’s constitution offers no clear answer to the question now on many Britons’ minds: what happens if Prime Minister Boris Johnson, undergoing tests in hospital after persistent symptoms of coronavirus, cannot continue to lead. Johnson was admitted to hospital on Sunday in what his office said was a “precautionary step” after testing positive 10 days ago and still suffering from a high temperature. He remains in charge of the government, his office said. Johnson has said he can keep working from self-isolation in his Downing Street residence, just as his health secretary, Matt Hancock, who also tested positive for the ...
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Nadia the tiger at New York's Bronx Zoo tests positive for coronavirus
/ Bronx Zoo, Covid-19, Malayan tiger, New York City, Others
A TIGER at the Bronx Zoo in New York City has tested positive for the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus, in the first known case of a human infecting an animal and making it sick, the zoo’s chief veterinarian said today. Nadia, the four-year-old Malayan tiger that tested positive, was screened for the Covid-19 disease after developing a dry cough along with three other tigers and three lions, the Wildlife Conservation Society, which manages the zoo, said in a statement. All of the cats are expected to recover, it said. The virus that causes Covid-19 is believed to ...
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Japan PM Abe to declare state of emergency as early as tomorrow
JAPANESE Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will declare a state of emergency over the coronavirus as early as Tuesday (April 7), the Yomiuri newspaper reported, as the number of infections topped 1,000 in the capital, Tokyo. Abe will likely announce his plans to declare the emergency today, the paper said. Pressure had been mounting on the government to make the move as the pace of infections - while slow compared with harder-hit countries around the world - continues to accelerate. Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike indicated last week she would favour a state-of-emergency declaration as a means to help her push residents for ...
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Oil skids on oversupply fears, US stock futures jump
OIL prices skidded today after Saudi-Russian output discussions showed no immediate signs of progress while US stock futures jumped as investors were encouraged by a slowdown in coronavirus-related deaths and new cases. Sterling fell after British Prime Minister was admitted to hospital following persistent coronavirus symptoms as the pandemic rapidly spreads. Brent crude fell as much as US$3 in early Asian trading after Saudi Arabia and Russia postponed a meeting over a potential pact to cut production to Thursday. Analysts said the news could lead to some sell-off in currency markets too. Also weighing on the pound were fears other ...
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Confidence in ringgit to return, says economist
THE ringgit is expected to bounce back amid volatility and unpredictable currency markets, said Juwai IQI Global chief economist Shan Saeed. He said the US dollar is expected to further weaken in the coming quarters as the US Federal Reserve slashed its benchmark interest rate by a full percentage point to near zero and promised to boost its bond holdings by at least US$700 bil. He said the Fed made such a move to save the US economy from the fallout from Covid-19. "If you pick the latest issue of Forbes magazine, it clearly makes the point that the dollar ...
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Wall Street looks for light at end of tunnel, sees risk stocks will re-test lows
/ Others
WALL Street analysts and investors see a risk that stocks could retest recent lows in the coming days or weeks as they worry about the spread of the virus and its impact on the economy, although some spot glimmers of light at the end of the tunnel. Wall Street's main indexes fell more than 1.5% on Friday as the coronavirus abruptly ended a record US job growth streak. The S&P 500 closed at 2,488.65, after rebounding about 13% from its intra-day late-March low, although it is still down more than 26% from its mid-February record high. Markets have shown some ...
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Mavcom: Govt financial assistance to airlines should be last resort
THE government’s financial assistance to airlines amidst the Covid-19 pandemic must be carefully structured, and it should be the last resort, says the local aviation regulatory body, the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom). In a statement, Mavcom said considering the pressures on the government’s fiscal resources, industry operators must exhaust other options first, including assistance from their respective shareholders, before approaching the government. It said the government should only act as a lender of last resort for the industry. “The government should also bear in mind that its main policy objectives should be to maintain essential air connectivity (most notably Public ...
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40% of technology startups may fold from June if aid not provided
ABOUT 40% of technology startups and social enterprises may fold from June this year if assistance are not rendered to the local startup community, says Future Digital, the think tank arm of the National Tech Association of Malaysia (Pikom). Future Digital chairman Ganesh Kumar Bangah, in a statement, said the RM250 bil Prihatin Rakyat Economic Stimulus Package, aimed to cushion the negative impact of Covid-19, should also cover the local technology startup community. “The current stimulus provides little or no help to technology startups because they do not qualify for most loan as most of them are less than one year ...
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Smart city: Leveraging on master plan towards shared prosperity
/ Property, Top
By Sharina Ahmad AS more Malaysians live in urban areas, cities are starting to face pain points such as congestion, pollution and inefficient deployment of urban services. Building smart cities is seen as a solution that addresses these issues and improves the quality of life of urban dwellers. In September last year, then Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad launched Malaysia Smart City Framework. He said it is important to turn Malaysia into a “smart city” and it is among the items of priority under the 12th Malaysia Plan (12th MP). Arkitek Mustapha Kamal Sdn Bhd principal Mustapha Kamal Zulkarnain ...
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Death at home: The unseen toll of Italy's coronavirus crisis
IT took Silvia Bertuletti 11 days of frantic phone calls to persuade a doctor to visit her 78-year-old father Alessandro, who was gripped by fever and struggling for breath. When an on-call physician did go to her house near Bergamo, at the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in northern Italy, on the evening of March 18, it was too late. Alessandro Bertuletti was pronounced dead at 1.10 am on March 19, 10 minutes before an ambulance called hours earlier arrived. The only medication he had been prescribed, over the phone, was a mild painkiller and a broad-spectrum antibiotic. “My father ...
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Malaysia intercepts boat ferrying 202 suspected Rohingya
/ Kedah state headquarters, Langkawi, Others, Rohingya
MALAYSIAN authorities today said they had intercepted a boat ferrying a group of 202 people believed to be ethnic Rohingya. The boat was found adrift around one nautical mile from a luxury beachside resort on the holiday island of Langkawi, off the west coast of the Malaysian peninsula, the Malaysian maritime enforcement agency said in a statement. The group included 152 men, 45 women and 5 children. All 202 have been detained at the coastguard’s Kedah state headquarters. - April 5, 2020, Reuters ...
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Covid-19: Singapore to  announce its third support measures tomorrow
/ Covid-19, Mainstream, MoF, Singapore, Third budget
SINGAPORE will announce its third support measures tomorrow that aims at further helping workers, businesses and households, to face the COVID-19 situation. In a statement today, the Ministry of Finance (MoF) said the republic’s Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat will deliver his Ministerial Statement in Parliament at 2pm on April 6. Heng, who is also Finance Minister, will announce the additional support measures that will better cope with the upcoming elevated set of safe distancing measures to pre-empt the trend of increasing local transmission of Covid-19. On April 3, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced a month "circuit breaker" to ...
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Put Malaysians back to work now, government urged
THE federal government has been urged to allow Malaysians to go back to work as soon as possible in order to cope with the economic impact from the Movement Control Order (MCO). In a statement, Datuk Seri Lee Kah Choon, special investment adviser to the Chief Minister of Penang, said that the country has come to a virtual standstill following the MCO, adding that there is a high chance of the MCO period being extended due to the increasing number of new Covid-19 cases. He urged the federal government to quickly work on an Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) protocol ...
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AirAsia Foundation launches digital donation drive to support vulnerable communities
AIRASIA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the AirAsia Group, has launched a public digital donation drive as part of the group’s #InThisTogether campaign to help vulnerable communities impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, starting from today to April 30. In a statement, the foundation said all donations would be channelled to social enterprises and charities such as Perak State Parks, SEED Foundation and Beyond Borders Malaysia that provide food and medical aid to Orang Asli families, people without permanent shelter and refugees.  Those who wish to contribute may do so via AirAsia Foundation’s dedicated fund-raising page at https://airasiafoundation.com/relieffund, through BigPay’s P2P ...
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BHB, Bank Islam contributes RM1.6 mil to Covid-19 efforts
BIMB Holdings Bhd (BHB) and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Bank Islam Malaysia Bhd have pledged to contribute RM1.6 mil to support various humanitarian and medical-related causes in combating the Covid-19 pandemic. In a joint statement today, they said BHB contributed RM1 mil to #MusaadahCovid-19 Fund - a fundraising programme initiated by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs) - to provide relief to Muslim and non-Muslim frontliners adversely affected by the outbreak. Meanwhile, Bank Islam, through its corporate responsibility arm, AMAL, has allocated RM600,000 for micro-entrepreneurs whose business have been severely affected by the pandemic, as well as for the ...
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BPN payouts will be credited to accounts starting Monday
THE first phase of the Bantuan Prihatin Nasional (BPN) payouts will be credited to accounts starting from Monday (April 6 to Wednesday, April 15), said Bank Simpanan Nasional (BSN), the bank which has been entrusted to manage the BPN payouts. In a statement today, the bank said recipients may withdraw the sum from automated teller machines (ATMs) under the MEPS network nationwide, adding that the government has exempted the RM1 cash withdrawal charge at all ATMs throughout the Movement Control Order. The bank advised recipients to ensure social distancing of at least one metre when performing banking transactions at any ...
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Iran warns of coronavirus surge after many ignore 'stay home' rules
A SENIOR Iranian health official said the greater Tehran area may face a coronavirus resurgence after many residents flouted advisories to stay home, crowding streets and causing traffic jams across the city as the country’s New Year holidays ended yesterday. Iran - the Middle East country worst-hit by the epidemic -said earlier yesterday that 158 more coronavirus patients had died in the past 24 hours, bringing the total death toll to 3,452. The total number of cases reached 55,743. “We are still concerned about the virus, for example with the level of traffic in Tehran today and queues of cars ...
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The Americans defying Palm Sunday quarantines: 'Satan's trying to keep us apart'
HER house sits on a tidy, peaceful suburban street outside Cincinnati. For the past few weeks, she has been doing everything right: sheltering at home and working out of her makeshift office to help stop the spread of the new coronavirus. The Ohio megachurch down the road, Solid Rock, has charted a different course. Despite warnings from local and state officials, Solid Rock had been holding its 1,000-strong gatherings in person, and plans keep the church open on Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week in Christian churches. “I think they should obey the laws of the land, like the ...
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OPEC+ meeting delayed as Saudi Arabia and Russia row over oil price collapse
OPEC and Russia have postponed a Monday meeting to discuss oil output cuts until April 9, OPEC sources said yesterday, as a dispute between Moscow and Saudi Arabia over who is to blame for plunging crude prices intensified. The delay came amid pressure from US President Donald Trump for the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries led by Saudi Arabia and its allies, a group collectively known as OPEC+, to urgently stabilise global oil markets. Oil prices hit an 18-year low on March 30 due to a slump in demand caused by lockdowns to contain the coronavirus outbreak and the ...
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Mainland China sees rise in new coronavirus cases
MAINLAND China reported 30 new coronavirus cases yesterday, up from 19 a day earlier as the number of cases involving travellers from abroad as well as local transmissions increased, highlighting the difficulty in stamping out the outbreak. The National Health Commission said in a statement today that 25 of the latest cases involved people who had entered from abroad, compared with 18 such cases a day earlier. Five new locally transmitted infections were also reported yesterday, all in the southern coastal province of Guangdong, up from a day earlier. The mainland has now reported a total of 81,669 cases, while ...
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Trump: 'Going to be a lot of death' in US next week from coronavirus
PRESIDENT Donald Trump told Americans to brace for a big spike in coronavirus fatalities in the coming days, as the country faces what he called the toughest two weeks of the pandemic. “There’s going to be a lot of death,” Trump said at a briefing with reporters. He pushed back on criticism that the federal government has not done enough to get ventilators that many critically ill coronavirus patients need to survive to the states, saying some governors are asking for more machines than they will need. “Fears of shortages have led to inflated requests,” Trump said of submissions his ...
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Suspected cartel shootout kills 19 in northern Mexico
A SHOOTOUT between suspected drug cartel hitmen has killed 19 people in the northern Mexico state of Chihuahua, the state government said yesterday, in one of the country’s worst outbreaks of gang violence this year. “They’re two criminal groups fighting over drug trafficking routes to the United States,” Chihuahua’s attorney general Cesar Peniche told Reuters. Security forces found 18 bodies on Friday evening at the site of the gunfight in the municipality of Madera, and a wounded man picked up at the scene later died of his injuries, the state attorney general’s office said in a statement. They also secured ...
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Covid-19: Government fully aware of the need to be agile
THE government is fully aware of the need to be agile and to respond swiftly to the Covid-19 threat in the country, said Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz. “Many have asked me, does the government expect to see economic recovery this year? The answer to that is contingent on how well and quickly we can overcome the threat of Covid-19 in the country. “All Malaysians must play their part and be united in responding to this fight. As mentioned by our Prime Minister, we are a nation at war with invisible forces,” he said in a ...
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MARC: Banks, private sector play critical role in Malaysia's economy
/ BNM, GIL, loans, Mainstream, MARC, SME, stimulus package
THE private sector, especially commercial banks, has a critical role to play in ensuring that Malaysia’s economic fabric remains intact in the long term, said Malaysian Rating Corporation Bhd (MARC). In a statement, it said that commercial banking institutions can help support the economy by effectively utilising the liquidity made available by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) by lending to businesses that are in need of lifelines like small medium enterprises with good prospects. “This is because experience from the global financial crisis (2008-2009) shows that a slow pick-up in lending growth in the United States (US) was the key reason ...
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Celcom to give free SIM cards to returning Malaysians undergoing quarantine
/ Axiata, Celcom, Featured, Free sim card, Internet, Mainstream, MCO
CELCOM Axiata Bhd (Celcom) will be providing free SIM cards to Malaysians who are required to undergo the 14-day mandatory quarantine at the respective quarantine centres upon returning from abroad. Celcom Axiata chief executive officer Idham Nawawi said they may request for a free SIM pack from the authorities and self-register their SIM via the Celcom Life application. “We are working closely with the authorities to ensure everyone remains connected during these challenging times,” he said in a statement. The prepaid packs are preloaded with 1GB of data and 10GB access to Facebook, Instagram and Games Walla, said Idham.  He ...
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China mourns thousands who died in country's coronavirus epidemic
CHINA yesterday mourned the thousands of “martyrs” who have died in the new coronavirus outbreak, flying the national flag at half mast throughout the country and suspending all forms of entertainment. The day of mourning coincided with the start of the annual Qingming tomb-sweeping festival, when millions of Chinese families pay respects to their ancestors. At 10am (0200 GMT) Beijing time, the country observed three minutes of silence to mourn those who died, including frontline medical workers and doctors. Cars, trains and ships sounded their horns and air raid sirens wailed. In Zhongnanhai, the seat of political power in Beijing, ...
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F&B operators navigate through MCO to sustain business
AS the Movement Control Order (MCO) enters its 18th day today, food and beverage (F&B) businesses across the country, from cafe and restaurant owners to big-name fast-food outlets, manufacturers and retailers continue to feel the impact of Covid-19. Under the second phase of the MCO starting April 1, supermarkets, restaurants, and food delivery services are allowed to operate from 8am to 8pm. While most entrepreneurs face an uphill battle as they navigate through the MCO to hold on through their business and support their employees, F&B operators and food delivery services were quick to adapt to the situation and seize ...
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Indian officials warn of lockdown extensions as Covid-19 cases in South Asia near 6,000
THE number of confirmed new coronavirus cases in South Asia neared 6,000 yesterday, even as authorities in some cities tightened restrictions on movement and warned lockdowns could be extended in a bid to rein in the pandemic. “If people don’t obey the rules seriously and cases continue to rise, then there may be no option but to extend the lockdown,” Rajesh Tope, the health minister of Maharashtra state which includes the financial hub Mumbai, told Reuters. “It could be extended in Mumbai and urban areas of Maharashtra by two weeks.” India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi said this week the country will ...
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Noripah Kamso's tenure as Bank Rakyat chairman has expired
/ Bank Rakyat, chairman, Mainstream, Noripah Kamso
THE tenure of Datuk Noripah Kamso as chairman of Bank Rakyat and all other positions held as chairman of the Bank Rakyat Foundation expired effective today. The name of the new chairman will be announced once the appointment process is finalised, the bank said in a statement here. Bank Rakyat said it is optimistic that despite the change in the bank leadership, all planned operations and directions will continue as usual to continue its legacy of excellence. Noripah, who was also a former advisor of CIMB Islamic, has been with Bank Rakyat since Dec 11, 2018, replacing Tan Sri Shukry ...
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Gold futures to trade cautiously next week
THE gold futures contract on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives is likely to trade cautiously next week, tracking the COMEX Gold market and the US dollar’s performance amid Covid-19, a dealer said. Phillip Futures Sdn Bhd trader Tan Jenn Yuan told Bernama it is still a tug-of-war situation for gold between the virus and the equity market, where the gold futures market could move in range-bound in the near-term. The global Covid-19 infection has passed one million cases, with the death tool of 53,198 as of Friday. On a Friday-to-Friday basis for the week just ended, new spot month April 2020 dropped ...
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KLCI futures to see range-bound trading next week
THE FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) futures contract on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives is likely to trade on a range-bound mode next week, taking the cue from the underlying cash market. Rakuten Trade Sdn Bhd head of research Kenny Yee said Bursa Malaysia is expected to continue its range-bound trading between 1,320 and 1,350 next week as volatility remain high in the market. “Broad-based profit-taking and bargain-hunting activities are expected to dominate the local stock exchange next week, resulting in range-bound trading in the market,” he told Bernama. On a Friday-to-Friday basis, new spot month April 2020 eased two points ...
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Ringgit likely to trade relatively stable against US dollar next week
/ Covid-19, FXTM, Mainstream, Opec, Ringgit, Trade data, US dollar
THE ringgit is likely to trade relatively stable against the US dollar next week at a range level of between 4.25 and 4.45, said FXTM’s market analyst Han Tan. He said key drivers for the ringgit would include the greenback’s performance, oil market reaction to the OPEC+ group of producers meeting and broader risk sentiment. The OPEC+ is made up of OPEC (Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) and 11 non-OPEC countries. “The OPEC+ meeting will focus on the oil markets, amid hopes that coordinated supply cuts would be enacted to help stabilise prices. “Major oil producers must arrest the deteriorating ...
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Trump invokes Defense Production Act to stop export of masks
US President Donald Trump on Friday signed an order directing his administration to stop N-95 face masks and other personal protective equipment needed in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic from being exported to other countries. In a statement, Trump said his order under the Defense Production Act “is another step in our ongoing fight to prevent hoarding, price gouging, and profiteering by preventing the harmful export of critically needed PPE.” - April 4, 2020, Reuters ...
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Saudis deny withdrawing from OPEC+ deal, says Russia was the one that withdrew
THE Saudi foreign minister said early yesterday that a statement attributed to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin about the kingdom’s withdrawal from the OPEC+ deal is not correct, and that Russia is the one that withdrew, state agency (SPA) reported. Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud added that the kingdom’s stance on shale oil production is known and that it is an important part of energy sources, SPA said ...
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World Bank sees 'major global recession' due to pandemic
WORLD Bank Group President David Malpass on Friday said the rapily spreading Covid-19 pandemic was expected to cause a “major global recession” that would likely hit the poorest and most vulnerable countries the hardest. “We intend to respond forcefully and massively with support programmes, especially for poor countries,” Malpass said in a posting on the LinkedIn networking site, adding that he planned to speak soon with the leaders of Ethiopia, Kenya and other countries. - April 4, 2020, Reuters ...
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Wall Street falls as coronavirus shreds US payrolls
WALL Street’s main indexes fell more than 1.5% on Friday as the coronavirus abruptly ended a record US job growth streak of 113 months, intensifying fears of a deep economic slowdown. Even the loss of 701,000 jobs that Labour Department data showed for March did not completely capture the economic damage from the virus. The survey considered data only until mid-March, before widespread US lockdowns put more people out of work. The worldwide spread of the virus has forced billions of people to stay indoors and pushed entire sectors to the brink of collapse, triggering mass layoffs and dramatic steps ...
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With over a million coronavirus cases, economic freefall looms
GLOBAL cases of the new coronavirus have shot past one million with more than 53,000 fatalities, a Reuters tally showed on Friday, as death tolls soared in the United States and western Europe while the world economy nosedived. In the space of just 24 hours, 6,095 infected people died - nearly twice the total number of deaths in China, where the virus and Covid-19, the disease it causes, originated. Atop the grim tally of officially reported data are Italy, with 13,915 deaths, and Spain, with 10,935. But the United States is becoming the new epicentre, with 243,635 cases - by ...
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Finance Ministry planning a special stimulus package for SMEs
THE Finance Ministry (MOF) is in the midst of refining a special stimulus package for the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to ease their current difficulties. Its minister, Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Aziz, said this proposed package designed especially for SMEs would be brought up at the cabinet level next week. “This additional package demonstrates that we are responsive to the problems faced by the SMEs. “Therefore, MOF will propose to the cabinet and if the cabinet approves, the prime minister will make the announcement next week,” he said during an interview aired on TV3’s Buletin Utama programme yesterday. Tengku ...
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