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Mplus Market Pulse - 04 Mar 2024

Publish date: Mon, 04 Mar 2024, 11:16 AM
An official blog in I3investor to publish research reports provided by Malacca Securities research team.

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US Still In The Cloud Nine After Earnings Season

Market Review

Malaysia: The FBM KLCI (-0.86%) ended lower, despite the positive performance in the regional stock markets, dragged by Banking heavyweights. On the broader market, the Plantation sector (+0.41%) was the leading sector, while the Construction sector (-2.68%) declined.

Global markets: Wall Street ended higher as the investors are looking towards mega cap technology stocks growth potential from AI to outrun inflation. Both the European and Asian stock markets ended higher, the latter ended higher after China’s manufacturing PMI data came in line with consensus estimates.

The Day Ahead

After the corporate earnings season, and the FBM KLCI hitting the resistance along 1,559 last week, profit taking activities have emerged after the MSCI rebalancing activities. Meanwhile, on Wall Street, the 3 major indices have surged again; the S&P500 rose towards new highs after the Core PCE data came in within expectations and investors were focusing on the AI trend and sustainable earnings going forward. We believe the positive sentiment may spillover towards stocks on the local front this week. On the commodity market, the Brent oil price turned higher above USD83/bbl ahead of the OPEC meeting this week, while the Gold price has experienced a solid breakout above USD2050 after softer factory sector output.

Sectors focus: This week, we expect traders to look at the commodities sectors after a firmer trend on Brent oil and Gold prices; the O&G may continue to charge higher, while Gold-related stocks may trend positively this week. Also, the Plantation sector may ride higher in tandem with the FCPO price hitting the RM4000 range. Meanwhile, we like the Furniture sector in view of the weak ringgit position – LIIHEN’s prospective dividend yield stood more than 6%.

FBMKLCI Technical Outlook

The FBM KLCI ended lower after hitting resistance along 1,559 level. The technical readings on the key index were mixed, with the MACD Histogram extending another negative bar, while the RSI has declined below 70. The resistance is envisaged around 1,545-1,555 and the support is set at 1,520-1,530.

Company Brief

Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd plans to write off RM27m in capital cost estimates for its South Furious Merah exploration well, after an initial assessment found that the hydrocarbon volumes seen in the well may not achieve commercially viable economic thresholds. The well is part of Hibiscus’ drilling programme by its indirect wholly owned subsidiary, SEA Hibiscus Sdn Bhd, to drill three exploration wells to evaluate prospective near-field exploration locations within the boundaries of the 2011 North Sabah Enhanced Oil Recovery Production Sharing Contract. (The Edge)

Having missed the Feb 29, 2024 deadline to release its fourth quarter ended Dec 31, 2023 results, Country Heights Holdings Bhd (CHHB) is likely to be slapped with a trading suspension. CHHB said the results were delayed as the Malaysian Department of Insolvency is still in the midst of verifying the claims amount between the creditors and Mines Waterfront Business Park Sdn Bhd, an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of the company that is in liquidation, due to non-substantiated claims. The management is also in the midst of negotiation with a bank on the defaulted loan. (The Edge)

YNH Property Bhd, whose lapses in governance raised eyebrows recently after several delayed disclosures, has redesignated its senior independent, non-executive director Khong Kam Hou as chairman of its audit committee to help the group in fulfilling its oversight and fiduciary duties. Khong will lead a three-member team to help the board to, among others, assess its processes relating to risks, oversee the group's financial reporting, and evaluate the group's internal and external audit processes. (The Edge)

KUB Malaysia Bhd's wholly owned subsidiary KUB Agro Holdings Sdn Bhd (Kubah) is acquiring the 40% equity interest in KUB Sepadu Sdn Bhd (KUBS) not in its control from Medan Sepadu Sdn Bhd and Lembaga Amanah Kebajikan Kaum Melanau Sarawak for RM60m. KUB Malaysia said the acquisition is being undertaken to regain control of KUBS, which is in liquidation. (The Edge)

Sapura Energy Bhd said a Mexican unit of the group has been declared bankrupt, after it had failed to restructure its debts with creditors within the stipulated time frame given by a court in that country. The unit, Sapura Energy Mexicana Sociedad Anónima Promotora de Inversión de Capital Variable (SEM), is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sapura Offshore Sdn Bhd and SapuraMex Pte Ltd, which are both ultimately wholly owned subsidiaries of Sapura Energy. However, the group said SEM is challenging the court's decision and is preparing an appeal against the bankruptcy declaration. (The Edge)

Kumpulan Jetson Bhd has initiated a legal action against requisitionists of a failed attempt to call for an extraordinary general meeting to remove the entire board of directors of the construction group. Kumpulan Jetson said it had through its solicitors filed a lawsuit against the 10 individuals at the High Court. The group is seeking a declaration that the shareholders' notices to remove the directors are defective and inconsistent with the law, specifically Kumpulan Jetson's constitutional rights. Kumpulan Jetson is also seeking damages for alleged defamation resulting from the notices, claiming that the shareholders have damaged the group's image, reputation and interests. (The Edge)

Pekat Group Bhd is selling an industrial freehold land, measuring 12,813.89 sq m, for RM21m cash, to realise the value of the unused property, with proceeds from the sale to be used for working capital. The proposed disposal is expected to net the group a gain of about RM1.82m, based on the net book value of the freehold plot of RM17.82m as of end-2023, after deducting estimated expenses for the sale and an estimated real property gains tax of RM630,000. Besides working capital, it will use the proceeds to repay the land's financing. (The Edge)

Orgabio Holdings Bhd has appointed Ean Yong Hian Wah, the chairman of the Port Klang Authority (PKA), as its executive chairman with immediate effect. Ean Yong succeeds Teh Chee Ghee, who was redesignated as the company’s independent and non-executive director. Ean Yong, 44, has served as a DAP state assemblyman for 15 years and as Selangor state executive councilor from 2008 to 2018. He was appointed as PKA chairman in 2023. His father, Datuk Ean Yong Tin Sin, is the founder of Orgabio and is currently its executive deputy chairman. The senior Ean Yong holds an indirect stake of 62.04% in the company via Ean Yong & Sons Sdn Bhd and a 0.21% direct stake. (The Edge)

Source: Mplus Research - 4 Mar 2024

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