☕️ TODAY: King to meet 114 MPs that signed SD to support Ismail Sabri as PM
Touch n' Go GO+ now shariah-compliant. Amazon overtook Walmart to be the world's largest retailer ex-China. After furniture, IKEA to sell renewable energy.
1. MARKET SUMMARY
2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE
The United States market accounts for 35% of worldwide premium whisky sales but only 3% of consist of Japanese whisky. Kirin Brewery will begin exporting Japanese-made whisky to the U.S. next month as the brewery sees potential for growth.
€1.35 billion — Barcelona’s total debt as of March 21, 2021, as revealed by its president, Joan Laporta. Laporta said the club’s wage bill had reached an unsustainable 103% of the club’s income, mainly due to the faults of the previous board of directors.
40x more water is required to contain a Tesla fire compared to a regular car fire according to Austin Fire Department Division Chief Thayer Smith. A regular car would require about 500 to 1,000 gallons (~ 3,785 litres) while Tesla’s may take up to 30,000 to 40,000 gallons (~ 151,416 litres). Not so environmentally friendly after all. 😅
3. COVID-19 SUMMARY
On top of breaking all-time high for the daily new Covid-19 cases, the health ministry has detected 49 new Covid-19 clusters in the past 24 hours, with 30 of them were workplace clusters. Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah also revealed that between Mar 28 to Aug 17 this year, 1,549 clusters (53.2%) are workplace-related. Thank you Azmin Ali! Jasamu pasti dikenang.
On the “breakthrough deaths” from Covid-19, the recent clinical audit showed that among the 12,993 deaths (as of Aug 18, 2021), 80 cases had been partially vaccinated (0.6%) and 4 cases had full vaccination (0.03%).
Universiti Malaysia Sarawak’s (Unimas) Institute of Health and Community Medicine (IHCM) has found that the Covid-19 Delta variant is the dominant variant with detection rate in Sarawak stood at over 73% as of Aug 10.
Penang’s Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow reported that over 40% of Covid-19 hospitalisations in Penang are Categories Three and Five. Penang hit a record high of 1,867 cases yesterday.
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4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾
Politics and Local
All the MPs should have submitted their candidate for the prime minister seat. A total of 114 MPs who signed the statutory declaration to support Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri as the PM candidate have been summoned to Istana Negara today, in what UMNO secretary-general Ahmad Maslan describes as a sign that Bera MP Ismail Sabri has obtained sufficient support to form a new government.
Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah wants the person who will be appointed as the country’s 9th Prime Minister to undergo a confidence vote in the Dewan Rakyat once it is confirmed.
Floods hit several areas in northern Peninsular Malaysia yesterday after heavy rain. Below is a video was taken near a tourist spot — Air Terjun Titi Hayun Yan in Kedah. We hope everyone is safe from the flash floods.
Malaysia’s labour productivity, measured as value-added per employment, increased by 13.6% YoY for the second quarter of 2021 with a value of RM22,117 per person. An intriguing fact — the mining and quarrying sector has the highest labour productivity of RM322,554 per person.
The underlying fund for Touch ‘n Go’s GO+ is now shariah-compliant according to an announcement made by Touch ‘n Go Group and Principal Asset Management, making it the country’s first shariah-compliant eWallet product!
AirAsia Group Bhd's logistic outfit Teleport will be acquiring 100% stake in the local food delivery app, DeliverEat for USD9.8 mil (RM41.52 mil) in both cash and Teleport shares. The acquisition is part of AirAsia Group Bhd’s plans to expand in the online food delivery space.
Sime Darby Plantation Bhd's (SDP) recorded a net profit of RM617 mil for 2QFY21 ended June 30, 2021, a 63.2% jump compared to RM378 mil from a year ago. The plantation group expects FY21’s financial performance to be promising and has declared an interim dividend of 7.9 sen per share.
The group also expects the crude palm oil (CPO) prices to trade within the range of RM4,000 to RM4,700 per tonne in the next 6 months.
S P Setia Bhd posted a net profit of RM74.81 mil for 2QFY21 ended June 30, 2021, a healthy improvement compared with a net loss of RM134.34 mil a year ago. The group's quarterly earnings were contributed by a profitable property division and the absence of impairment of completed inventories.
5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎
From selling furniture to running a real estate business, IKEA now plans to sell clean energy to end consumers. IKEA has revealed its plans to sell clean energy to Swedish homes through a subscription service - pay a fee (yet TBD) and consumers will get certified solar or wind-generated electricity with usage that can be tracked via an app. The company did not say whether it would expand its nascent energy business to other countries, but it hoped to let people “use and generate” renewable energy in “all our Ingka Group markets” by 2025.
The Taliban took over Afghanistan at lightning speed, however, it won’t be able to get its hands on the country’s central bank, Da Afghanistan Bank (DAB) USD10 bil of assets in the form of foreign currency, gold and other treasuries. In its financial statement posted online by DAB, it holds to total assets of USD10 bil, including USD1.3 bil in gold reserves held by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, USD362 mil in foreign currency cash reserves and USD6.1 bil in investments in the form of US Treasury bonds and bills.
DAB’s acting governor that has fled Kabul, Ajmal Ahmady, estimates that only 0.1-0.2% of Afghanistan’s total reserves are accessible by the Taliban. Some USD362 mil worth of currencies, USD160 mil worth of gold bars and silver coins and a hoard of 2,000-year-old gold jewellery, ornaments and coins known as the Bactrian Treasure according to UNESCO have been held at the bank’s HQ and branches as well as the presidential palace. As the Taliban is on the international sanction list, these assets abroad will be frozen and will not be accessible. The US Treasury Department made an emergency decision to halt the shipment of sealed pallets of cash to Afghanistan.
Sea, the owner of Shopee, reported revenue of USD2.28 bil for the 3 months through June, up 158% from a year earlier. Net loss grew as well from USD393 mil a year earlier to USD433 mil as Sea pursued aggressive marketing campaigns to compete with regional rivals including Grab and GoTo - its sales and marketing expenses for the quarter increased 138% to USD921 mil.
Its e-commerce business, grew 160% to USD1.2 bil with operating losses doubling to USD627 mil. Sea’s core markets include 6 Southeast Asian countries and Taiwan. During Q2, it launched its e-commerce sites in Chile and Columbia, following its expansion into Brazil and Mexico.
News in Brief:
More than 500,000 children have been left without proper food, shelter or clean water after the powerful earthquake rocked Haiti on Saturday, according to UNICEF. To make matters worse, flooding and mudslides from Tropical Storm Grace will further complicate humanitarian response.
Amazon now has dethroned Walmart to become the world’s largest retail seller outside of China. Amazon captured spending of more than USD610 bil over the 12 months ending June whilst Walmart posted sales of USD566 bil for the 12 months ending in July.
China is taking a direct hand in managing internet companies by acquiring stakes in them. Beijing Bytedance Technology Co, the China-registered entity, in April sold 1% of its shares to a state-backed firm and was granted the right to appoint a director to its board according to publicly available government records. Weibo, the microblogging site similar to Twitter also sold 1% stake in its Chinese entity and granted the right to appoint a director to its board.