Business & Markets 2012
Written by Surindran Murugiah of theedgemalaysia.com
Wednesday, 02 January 2013 18:57
KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 2): The FBM KLCI could trend higher on Thursday in line with most regional markets and early gains in European markets on Wednesday after US politicians struck a long-awaited deal to avoid a fiscal crisis.
US lawmakers approved a plan to prevent huge tax increases and delay spending cuts that together would have pushed the world's largest economy off the "fiscal cliff" into a likely recession, according to Reuters.
European markets, following their Asian counterparts, rallied on the news while futures markets pointed to Wall Street doing the same, it said.
The FBM KLCI started the year on a dismal note, falling 0.85% on its first trading day, as profit taking weighed on the local index. However, the positive news flow from the US and encouraging reaction in global markets could help lift investor sentiment at Bursa Malaysia and push the local benchmark upward.
But with little corporate developments, only a few stocks on Bursa Malaysia are likely to be in focus. They include MALAYAN BANKING BHD , ESTHETICS INTERNATIONAL GROUP  Bhd (EIG), Handal Resources Bhd and KUMPULAN EUROPLUS BHD .
Maybank has been given a further extension until June 1, 2013, to sell down its stake in PT Bank Internasional Indonesia Tbk (BII). Maybank said on Wednesday that it had received a letter dated Dec 27 from Indonesia’s Badan Pengawas Pasar Modal dan Lembaga Keuangan (Bapepam), giving it more time to undertake the corporate exercise that will fulfil the mandatory sell-down requirement for BII.
EIG’s units have inked agreements with Davines SPA for the distribution of the latter’s haircare products in Malaysia, Brunei and Singapore. In a filing on Wednesday, EIG said its unit EIG Dermal Wellness (M) Sdn Bhd (Eigmy) had signed a distribution agreement granting it the exclusive right to distribute Davines' haircare products in Malaysia and Brunei.
Meanwhile, EIG Dermal Wellness (S) Pte Ltd signed an agreement with Davines to distribute the latter's haircare products in Singapore.
EIG said the agreements were for a period of 10 years, from Jan 1, 2013 to Dec 31, 2022, with the option to renew for another 10 years.
Handal Resources Bhd (HRB) is hoping to bid for larger Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) contracts by subscribing for 12.7 million irredeemable convertible preference shares (ICPS) of RM1 each at an issue price of RM1 each in Handrill Sdn Bhd (HSB) for RM12.7 million
In a filing on Wednesday, HRB said HSB possessed a Petronas licence. HRB currently holds 2.7 million ordinary shares or a 97.6% stake in Handrill.
Meanwhile, Kumpulan Europlus Bhd’s 80%-owned subsidiary West Coast Expressway Sdn Bhd (WCESB) has entered into a concession agreement with the government in relation to the West Coast Expressway (WCE) project. The WCE project involves the development of a highway from Banting, Selangor to Taiping, Perak.