☕️ PM Ismail Sabri + DPM Hamzah Zainuddin? Nightmare in Malaysia continues..

BNM revises MY's GDP growth to 3% to 4% in 2021. Taliban recapturing Afghanistan, the president fled the country. Watch literally the highest advertisement in the world by Emirates Airlines.

1. MARKET SUMMARY


2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE

40% of Singapore’s water supply comes from recycled sewage, a figure that’s expected to rise to 55% by 2060.

11 Picasso works including paintings, sculptures, and drawings valued up to USD104 mil will be auctioned by MGM Resorts in a Las Vegas Casino. The pieces were originally collected by Steve Wynn, former casino mogul and ex-head of Wynn Resorts who sold his Mirage Resorts business to MGM in 2000.

£1,750 — the price of a slice of Princess Diana and Prince Charles’s wedding cake.


3. COVID-19 SUMMARY

  • Education Minister Dr Radzi Jidin said schools will reopen in stages starting with exam year students on Oct 3 — the reopening, however, would not involve schools in Phase 1 of the National Recovery Plan (NRP).

  • PM (at the time of writing) has announced Langkawi will be the pilot project for the tourism bubble when the island has reached 80% vaccination rate for its population.

  • National Poison Centre has received two cases of poisoning involving the use of the Ivermectin drug in the country. Just as a reminder, Ivermectin has not been approved for use as a treatment or prevention of Covid-19 infection in Malaysia.

  • Effective Aug 16, 2021 (today), 11 more economic sectors have been given the green light to reopen in states and federal territories under Phase 1 of NRP, provided that 50% of the adult population have been fully vaccinated.


4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾

Politics & Local

  1. In the last resort to save his position, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin offered bipartisan cooperation to all opposition parties. Bipartisanship is when opposing political parties find common ground through compromise. Pakatan Harapan, UMNO and even Perikatan Nasional’s own ally, PAS rejected the offer.

    After his plans to buy the opposition parties durian failed, PM will submit his resignation to the King today. How will the political drama end?

  2. Nazri Aziz has revealed UMNO’s grand plan — for Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to be the next prime minister after he signed a statutory declaration endorsing his support.

    Langkah Royal Chulan has happened — deputy prime minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob (potential PM) and home minister Hamzah Zainudin (potential DPM) were seen meeting at the hotel yesterday to discuss succession plans & gather statutory declarations following reports that PM would be resigning today. Ismail Sabri even met with Zahid Hamidi to get his backing.

    How does Ismail Sabri have the audacity to present himself as the PM candidate after being part of the gang that brought the country to its knees?

  3. Single mum in Bintulu lost nearly half a million ringgit in an investment scam after being invited to invest in an oil and gas project in Sicily. The victim made 30 bank transfers from March to May totalling RM494,000. Well, lucky for you as a reader of The Coffee Break, we’ve put together a simple guide on how to spot an investment scam. Check it out!

Business

  1. Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) has revised its 2021 gross domestic product (GDP) growth forecast for Malaysia to between 3% and 4%. Malaysia’s GDP for 2Q 2021 grew 16.1% YoY but contracted by 2% QoQ.

    BNM governor Datuk Nor Shamsiah Yunus said the FMCO is expected to have a cumulative impact of five percentage points to the 2021 growth, or an average of RM400 million to RM500 million in daily real output losses.

  1. Malaysia’s public listed companies (PLCs) have on average, 17% of women directors on their boards in 2020 compared to 15% in 2019 according to Minority Shareholders Watch Group (MSWG) in its latest corporate governance (CG) 2020 assessment. 220 PLCs assessed still had no female board representation.

  2. MISC Bhd reported a healthy net profit of RM538.8 mil for 2QFY21 ended June 30, 2021, from RM299.5 mil a year ago, contributed by lower impairment, and improvement in its petroleum shipping and non-shipping businesses. The group has approved a second dividend of seven sen per share, goes ex on Aug 30 — bringing total declared dividends of 14 sen YTD.

  3. Pentamaster Corp Bhd’s net profit for 2QFY21 ended June 30, 2021, rose 5.46% to RM17.94 mil from RM17.01 mil YoY supported by sales growth across all segments. The group expects to report its highest-ever revenue for FY21.


5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎

  1. Disney’s streaming service, Disney+, continues to see subscriber growth, beating analyst expectations of 114.5 mil to achieve 116 mil paid subscribers - up over 100% YoY. Disney+ took just 16 months to passed the 100 mil subscribers threshold and is on track to hit 260 mil subscribers by 2024. Revenue for its third quarter came in at USD17.02 bil, 45% growth YoY with net income of USD923 mil, a significant turnaround from a loss of USD4.7 bil in the same period last year. 

  2. Taliban forces have continued taking control over Afghanistan as the Americans abruptly left the nation after 20 years of pointless war. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and his immediate team have fled the country for Tajikistan as Taliban forces push into Kabul. 

    Some insights and facts about this war:

    1. The longest war in US history

    2. Deaths

      1. US service members: 2,448

      2. US contractors: 3,846

      3. Afghan national military and police: 66,000

      4. Afghan civilians: 47,245

      5. Taliban and opposition fighters: 51,191

      6. Aid workers: 444

      7. Journalists: 72

    3. During the Korean War and Vietnam War, the presidents during these periods raised top tax rates by 92% and 77% each respectively to fund the war. Instead of raising taxes, the war started during the time of George W.Bush, tax rates were cut for the wealthiest by at least 8%. 

    4. Direct Afghan and Iraq war costs financed by debt: USD2 tril

    5. Estimated interest costs by 2050: USD6.5 tril

What did the US and Afghan gain from this war?

‘War, what is it good for? Absolutely nothing’ - Rush Hour

Deals

  1. Adidas will offload its struggling Reebok sportswear brand to Authentic Brands Group for up to EUR2.1 bil (USD2.5 bil). The company acquired Reebok in 2006 for USD3.8 bil as a defensive move to fend off Nike. With this acquisition, Reebok will become a part of a retail conglomerate that has acquired many bankrupt brands such as Brooks Brothers, Aeropostale and Forever 21. 

  2. Aalto, a property tech startup that provides an online marketplace for homeowners to sell directly to buyers, removing agents in between, has emerged from stealth and announced it has raised USD13 mil in it Series A round led by Sequoia Capital

  3. TaxBit, a crypto tax and accounting software, has raised a USD130 mil Series B round led by IVP and Insight Partners at a USD1.33 bil valuation just 5 months after raising a USD100 mil Series A round. TaxBit connects to crypto exchanges and tracks digital asset transactions so individuals and enterprises can more accurately file their taxes. 

News in Brief:

  1. China “zero tolerance” approach has shut down a key terminal at its Ningbo-Zhoushan port, the 3rd busiest port in the world, after 1 (yes, one) worker was found to be infected by Covid-19. 

  2. British billionaire Richard Branson sold nearly USD300 mil of shares in Virgin Galactic despite its recent successful flight to space, the proceeds will be used to support the pandemic-struck leisure and travel businesses of Branson’s Virgin Group. Virgin Galactic fell by 3% upon this news. In April, he has sold USD150 mil worth. After the latest sale, this leaves Branson with about 46.2 mil shares worth roughly about USD1.2 bil. As at June, Branson’s Virgin Investment is the largest shareholder with a 22% stake. 

  3. Dubai-based Emirates has shot the highest advertisement in the world with a female Emirates flight attendant in uniform standing on top of the 828 metres Burj Khalifa (view ad here). However, many were skeptical that it was shot using a green screen and special effects. Following this, Emirates has released the behind the scenes video (watch below) of the making of this ad to prove the skeptics wrong.


6. FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE 👁👁

  1. A very unique performance - trampoline dance

  2. Think about it - have you ever seen a photo of Eiffel Tower taken at night? It’s illegal.