☕️ Vegetable prices in Malaysia experiencing hyperinflation

Employees in MY are expected to see a real salary increase of 2.8% in 2022. Average of USD241 bil in nominal value of Tesla options traded daily. Sweden gets its first-ever female prime minister.

1. MARKET SUMMARY


2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE

The cost of shipping a container from Asia has increased over 500% since last year from USD1,500 to USD10,000, according to Traeger Gills’ CEO Jeremy Andrus.

Malaysian workers are expecting a 2.8% pay increase in 2022, according to the latest Salary Trends Report by ECA International. In 2021, Malaysian workers are already short-changed as their salaries only increased by 1.5%, almost half of the 2.3% inflation rate year to date. Have you considered this into your company’s 2022 budget?

43 months — the sentence given to Tony Chung (pictured below), the leader of the pro-Hong Kong independence group Studentlocalism, after being convicted of secession and money laundering. At 20 years old, he is the youngest person sentenced under the city’s draconian national security law.


3. COVID-19 SUMMARY


4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾

Politics and Local

  1. The Election Commission has given the date for the 12th Sarawak election — Dec 18, 2021. The nomination day for the 12th Sarawak election would be on Dec 6. Opposition leaders have asked the government to implement price controls for flight tickets to allow Sarawakians in Peninsula Malaysia to exercise their basic and constitutional rights.

    The Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (Muda) asked for the state polls to be held on Jan 2, after Undi18 is implemented. Fat chance.

    On another note, all mentris besar (MB) and chief ministers (CM) have agreed to amend their respective state constitutions to allow 18-year-olds to stand for election.

  2. Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s request to defer the Dec 8 decision date in his appeal involving the RM42mil SRC International Sdn Bhd case has been rejected by the Court of Appeal. What is your verdict? Will Najib be a free man coming Dec 8?

  3. Speaker Tan Sri Azhar Azizan Harun said he would speak to the police over the questioning of Datuk Azis Jamman over a speech made in Parliament, asking for Sabah to consider seceding Malaysia. MPs have legal immunity when speaking in the Dewan Rakyat. However, this immunity does not apply to cases involving the Sedition Act 1948.

  4. Individuals will be given tax deductions of 7% if they contribute to Yayasan Hijau Malaysia for the "Malaysian Greening Programme: 100 Million Tree Planting Campaign" under Section 44 (11 C) of the Income Tax Act 1967. Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan added to date, a total of 23,746,874 trees had been planted nationwide through the programme. Check the programme out here.

Business

  1. Semiconductor manufacturer Malaysian Pacific Industries Bhd (MPI) posted a net profit of RM81.68 mil for 1QFY22 ended Sept 30, 2021, contributed by higher revenue across all segments and effective cost management.

    MPI declared an interim dividend of 10 sen per share, payable on Dec 23.

  2. Jaya Grocer’s founder — the Teng family — bought back its entire stake in Jaya Grocer from AIGF Advisors Pte Ltd. AIGF disclosed no details of the deal. What’s in store for Jaya Grocer next — an IPO?

  3. AirAsia’s unicorn, AirAsia Super App has launched its parcel deliveries services — AirAsia Xpress — under its logistic arm, Teleport. AirAsia Xpress will cover selected cities within Klang Valley and six other key cities nationwide, namely Melaka, Johor Bahru, Kota Bharu, Penang, Ipoh and Kota Kinabalu.

  4. According to the Guardian, the UK government has initiated its inquiry on Supermax Corp Bhd over allegations of forced labour. Supermax, one of the National Health Service's (NHS) main suppliers of personal protective equipment, won a £316 million (RM1.78 billion) contract for 88.5 million rubber gloves amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

    If the allegations are proved to be accurate, Supermax could be banned from supplying the NHS.

  5. The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) said all contributions would go into first go into Account 1 to replenish the savings of its members who have withdrawn funds since the start of the pandemic via the i-Lestari, i-Sinar, and i-Citra programs.

    Once the amount has been replenished, the contribution will go back to 70% in Account 1 and 30% in Account 2.

    Economist and professor Dr Geoffrey Williams said many Malaysians would not be able to replenish their Employees Provident Fund (EPF) Account 1 fund to meet the minimum threshold set by the pension fund during the remainder of their working life.


5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎

  1. Tesla Inc’s rise to a USD1 trillion company may have grabbed the headlines lately, but the stock has a broader footprint of what might be called the “Tesla-financial complex.”

    The Tesla options market has helped push US option trading volumes above actual stock trading volumes this year. According to Goldman Sachs, the nominal trading value of Tesla options has averaged USD241 bil a day in recent weeks.

    According to Dean Curnutt, the chief executive of Macro Risk Advisors, market veterans have no choice but to contend with the complex, which sticks out like a sore thumb as Telsa is its own animal and changes how markets price risk. As a result, managers who have been underweight Telsa have been punished. Short positions in Tesla has also dropped tremendously from 20% at the start of 2020 to just 3.3% by mid-Nov 2021.

  1. Residents and long term housing activists in Spain have come together to form a group called ‘Guerra a Cerberus’ - War Against Cerberus - to fight back against eviction attempts by the investment giant. Cerberus - named for the 3-headed dog guarding the underworld in Greek mythology, has been evicting renters from their apartments in Spain as the residents struggled to pay rent during the pandemic. 

    Large American private equity firms, including Blackstone and Lone Star, have been buying cheap properties across Spain after the global financial crisis started in 2008, collectively purchasing thousands of properties across the European country. The housing crisis in Spain worsened during the pandemic, with evictions rising 14% in early 2021 YoY, but has been hitting residents hard since 2008. In the last decade, the number of renters in Spain grew by more than 40%. 

    The broken monetary system, where money can be created out of thin air, has allowed the financial institutions and wealthy individuals easy access to cheap and ever-increasing amount of money printed by central banks since the pandemic erupted, whilst the everyday person struggles to put food on the table, and in Spain’s case, a roof over their heads, causing greater wealth disparity. This is known as the Cantillon effect

  2. Samsung Electronics has unveiled plans to invest USD17 bil in a new advanced chip plant in Texas, further fortifying the US semiconductor industry. Samsung joins Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) in making substantial investments in the US. TSMC has earlier announced its USD12 bil investment in Arizona. 

    Although it will not alleviate the shortages in the near term, it will safeguard the production of cutting-edge chips vital to defence and technologies like autonomous cars in the longer term. The global chip crunch exposed imbalances in the industry and prompted governments to reevaluate their strategy and court TSMC and Samsung to establish a presence in their countries.

    News in brief:

  3. Guilty — France and Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema was handed a one-year suspended jail term and a €75,000 (USD84,000) fine for conspiring to blackmail a fellow French footballer with a sex tape.

  4. The Biden administration has snubbed China by inviting Taiwan to its “Summit to Democracy” next month. The first-of-its-kind gathering aims to help stop democratic backsliding and the erosion of rights and freedoms worldwide. The list does not include China or Russia.

  5. Sweden gets its first-ever female prime minister — Magdalena Andersson (pictured), who is currently finance minister. She was elected because under Swedish law, she only needed a majority of MPs not to vote against her. A single vote won her victory as 174 out of 349 members of the Riksdag voted against her. From the remaining 175, 117 MPs backed her while 57 abstained.

    However, she resigned a few hours later after her coalition partner quit the government and her budget failed to pass.


6. FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE 👁👁

  1. Bill Murray was in 9 out of 10 of Wes Anderson’s films.

  2. Inflation in Malaysia — vegetable edition.

  3. Watch how a coal power plant in Australia get demolished.