☕️ Former PM Najib Razak's family monster RM1.75 billion LHDN tax bill

4-5 weeks to flatten the Covid-19 curve. Trump creating a new record - first president to be impeached twice. A programmer losing his password and might lose his USD240 million Bitcoin stash.

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1. MARKET SUMMARY


2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE

RM1.75 billion bill slapped to DS Najib Razak’s family by Inland Revenue Board over tax arrears from 2011 to 2017.

2,164,187 cars were sold by Mercedes in 2020.

18 million iPhones were sold in China during Q4 2020.

500 million - the number of users that Telegram messaging app has, following WhatsApp’s changing of privacy policy. It added 25 million downloads in the last 72 hours.


3. COVID-19 SUMMARY


4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾

  1. Eco World Development Group Bhd and UEM Sunrise Bhd supposed merger has been called off as the former cited challenging operating environment and the merger does not complement its business plans.

  2. You will soon be able to buy investment products from your Touch ‘N Go eWallet as Securities Commission of Malaysia (SC) has granted TNG Digital Sdn Bhd a conditional approval to operate as a Recognised Market Operator (RMO).

  3. Health Ministry says we need 4 to 5 weeks of lockdown to flatten the curve. The current MCO won’t be able to reduce the numbers but it should be able to reduce the load of patients.

  4. Netizens were having fun a couple of nights ago with the Twitter account of Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) after MCMC had reminded all internet users “to be polite and courteous when sharing their views online”.

    MCMC claimed it got hacked but the real story was that the MCMC Twitter account originally belonged to a secondary school student who had 50,000 followers. The student sold the account before purging the old tweets hence the fracas that follow suit. Here are some notable tweets (from 2014) that were captured by some netizens before MCMC stopped the party. Is MCMC cancelled?

    1. Two investment banks have a bearish stance against glove companies. JP Morgan says vaccination does not require gloves and AmInvestment Research cuts price-to-earnings ratio by 10% across the board for all glove counters. Looks like the 2020 glove mania won’t repeat itself.


5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎

  1. The US House of Representatives is planning to impeach President Trump, charging him with ‘incitement of insurrection’ that saw the US Capitol violently sieged last Wednesday. THis would make Trump the first president in history to be impeached twice. 

  2. China’s Sinovac Biotech vaccine is found to be 50.4% effective according to final-stage trial in Brazil. However, Sinovac CEO, Yin Weidong, defended the results that this low efficacy is due to trial participants being medical workers, a high-risk group. Western vaccines like from Pfizer, were tested on volunteers from the general population, some whom were less exposed to the virus.

  3. The Canadian owner of Circle K convenience stores, Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc, is exploring to acquire Carrefour, the French grocer for about USD20 billion. Couche-Tard runs convenience stores and gas stations and does not own any supermarkets. Carrefour operates 28,000 supermarkets and 793 large-format hypermarkets in Europe and Latin America and has 320,000 workers globally. 

  4. It is  estimated that 20% of the issued supply of Bitcoin of 18.5 million, valued at USD140 billion at today’s price appeared to be in lost or inaccessible wallets. 

    A case in point - a San Francisco-based programmer has 2 more password attempts to access his wallet before it gets encrypted permanently that contains 7,200 bitcoin, which he was paid in when they were worth USD2-6 each. Today’s value - USD240 million.

  5. Thailand unveiled a 210 billion baht (USD7 billion) stimulus package that includes cash handouts to as many as 30 million people, mostly informal sector workers and farmers. Each beneficiary will receive 3,500 baht per month for the coming 2 months. Other stimulus includes reduction in electricity and water bills for small businesses and low-income households and reduction in land and building taxes by 90%.

  6. Capitalising on the strength of its shares, Zoom, the videoconferencing company, is planning to raiseUSD1.5 billion through the sale of stock.  A wise move to fundraise now in anticipation of the pandemic coming to an end and falling out of favour with the investment community when it happens. Valued at more than USD100 billion, it is trading more than 30 times sales.

  7. Visa’s USD5.3 billion acquisition of fintech company, Plaid, has been called off after the intervention by US Department of Justice of anti-trust concerns.

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