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ASEAN STOCK WATCH 3  November  2010

ASEAN Markets to Hit New Record Highs

Shayne Heffernan

Expect a strong day on ASEAN Markets after US stocks closed at a 6 month high.

ASEAN Banks, UOB, OCBC, SCB, CIMB should be on your watch list today as well as miners like Bumi, Banpu, PTTEP.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 64.10 points, or 0.58 percent, at 11,188.72. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 9.19 points, or 0.78 per cent, at 1193.57. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 28.68 points, or 1.14 per cent, at 2533.52.

The Fed is expected to announce a program of asset purchases of at least $US500 billion via quantitative easing -- in effect printing money to buy bonds and lower borrowing costs. A statement is expected on Wednesday after a two-day meeting by the US central bank.

In Kuala Lumpur the Bursa Malaysia fell 0.20% to close at 1506.57 points on some nervous activity at the 1500-level.


Trading volume declined to 1200.23 mil shares worth RM1609.26 mil as compared to Monday's 1271.41 mil shares worth RM1512.18 mil.

The Losers were GENTING (-8 sen to RM10.48), AXIATA (-2 sen to RM4.44), AMMB (-5 sen to RM6.30), MAYBANK (-2 sen to RM8.98) and IOI (-2 sen to RM5.83).

The Winners were BAT (+12 sen to RM48.00), PETD (+4 sen to RM11.10), BJTOTO (+1 sen to RM4.16), YTL (+1 sen to RM7.90) and HONG LEONG BANK (+1 sen to RM9.29). Market breadth was negative with 279 gainers as compared to 463 losers.

The market traded within narrow range as investors stayed cautious ahead of the Federal Reserve's decision on monetary policy and the mid-term election in the U.S. The Finance Index lost 0.24% to 13739.38 points, the Properties Index eased 0.19% to 988.38 points and the Plantation Index fell 0.16% to 7615.38 points. The market traded within a range of 5.07 points between an intra-day high of 1509.79 and a low of 1504.72 during the session.

SET index closed at 1,005.58, up 2.34 or 0.23% in trade worth 38.15 billion baht on Tuesday.

Mitr Phol Sugar Corporation plans to buy as much as 19.9% of Australian Securities Exchange-listed Maryborough Sugar Factory (MSF) from the Guinness Peat Group, which holds a 24.47% stake.

In a statement, MSF said the proposed acquisition price is A$4 per share in cash, compared with last Friday’s close of $2.73.

The sale is conditional upon Mitr Phol obtaining a seat on the board of MSF and Foreign Investment Review Board approval.

MSF previously said it was evaluating various options for funding of its growth strategy including the possibility of developing a relationship with a strategic party and was in discussions with a number of interested parties.

Mitr Phol has to date not participated in that process, and thus MSF’s board said it is not aware of Mitr Phol’s intentions.

“MSF looks forward to discussing with Mitr Phol their intentions and how Mitr Phol may help create value for all shareholders,” the company said.

“Until MSF has evaluated this, it will be unable to determine its response to Mitr Phol’s requests.”

MSF is being advised by Greenhill Caliburn and Mallesons Stephen Jaques.

Erawan Sugar Co, the Tangkaravakoon family’s sugar milling unit, plans to spend 2 billion baht to double production capacity in a bid to cash in on rising global prices.

Thailand’s newest sugar miller based in Nong Bua Lam Phu province will begin expanding daily production capacity to 30,000 tonnes over the next couple of years from 15,000 tonnes now.

The investment is on top of existing plans to build a second, 500-million-baht biomass power plant in the vast sugar complex that covers more than 2,000 rai.

The new power plant is now under construction.

The Tangkaravakoon family owns TOA Paint (Thailand), the country’s largest paint producer, controlling most of the domestic paint industry.

Songchai M.Charath, Erawan’s deputy managing director, said the company will step up sugar cane yields in lieu of expanding growing areas.

It expects to raise productivity to at least 15 tonnes a rai over the period from 10 tonnes now by introducing more high-quality varieties and organic fertilisers.

Erawan now produces 800,000 tonnes of sugar cane a year. It plans to double that amount within the next five years.

Most Active Today

PTTAR increased to 33.75 baht, up 1.75 baht or 5.47%.

PTTCH increased to 154.00 baht, up 6.50 baht or 4.41%.

CPF was unchanged at 23.60 baht.

TOP increased to 56.50 baht, up 1.50 baht or 2.73%.

STA increased to 32.75 baht, up 2.75 baht or 9.17%.

In Singapore the STI closed 0.41% higher, as investors remained cautious ahead of the US Federal Reserve meeting.

The benchmark Straits Times Index (STI) gained 13.10 points to end the session at 3,205.28.

A total of 1.40 billion shares valued at S$1.69 billion changed hands. Gainers outnumbered losers 249 to 195, with 766 issues unchanged.

City Developments rose 1.40 per cent to S$13.04 while Sembcorp Industries fell 1.93 per cent to S$4.58.

OCBC gained 0.9 per cent to S$9.30 following its stronger-than-expected third quarter earnings on Monday.

Shayne Heffernan of Ebeling Heffernan Issued a strong buy on UOB with a price target of $26 in 2011.

In Jakarta the JCI fell 19.66 points, or 0.5 percent, to close at 3,625.49.

5.6 billion shares worth Rp 5.6 trillion ($627.2 million) changed hands. Decliners outnumbered gainers 126 to 88.

Telekomunikasi Indonesia, the nation’s top telecom, lost 4.1 percent to Rp 8,300, while Tower Bersama Infrastructure, an operator of cellular towers, rose 0.8 percent to Rp 3,000.

In energy, state gas distributor Perusahaan Gas Negara gained 1.8 percent to Rp 4,225. Medco Energi Internasional, the nation’s biggest listed oil company, gained 1.9 percent to Rp 4,075.

Crude oil for December delivery rose to a two-week high, gaining 1.9 percent to $82.95 a barrel in New York.

State-owned tin miner Ebeling Heffernan strong buy Timah gained 2.6 percent to close the day at Rp 2,925.

Meanwhile, the rupiah was steady, trading unchanged at 8,923 against the dollar as of the stock market’s close on Tuesday, ahead of the Fed decision today on whether to boost asset purchases to support growth in the world’s biggest economy.

The Fed may announce plans to buy at least $500 billion of long-term securities, according to economists surveyed by Bloomberg.

The rupiah has rallied 5.2 percent this year as global funds pumped $2.3 billion into the nation’s equities, Bloomberg said.

The Central Statistics Agency (BPS) said foreign investors sold more Indonesian stocks than they bought on Monday after a report showed exports in September grew 23 percent year-on-year, the slowest pace in 10 months.

In Manila the Philippine Stock Exchange index racked up 73 points to close at 4,341.74.

The upswing was supported by the holding firms and property firms which went up by 2.8 percent and 2 percent, respectively. All other counters also rose by over 1 percent.

There were 86 advancers as against 49 decliners and 34 unchanged stocks. Value turnover was P5.97 billion.

The Winners were Alliance Global Group Inc., Megaworld Corp., Banco de Oro Unibank Inc., Ayala Land Inc., Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co., Metro Pacific Investments Corp., Universal Robina Corp., Filinvest Land Inc., DMCI Holdings Inc., International Container Terminal Services Inc., Aboitiz Power Corp., First Gen Corp., Ayala Corp. and SM Investments Corp. which led the day’s rally.

The Losers were Cebu Air Inc., Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co., Atlas Consolidated Mining & Development Corp. and SM Prime Holdings Inc.


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