☕️ GE15 to cost RM1 billion 💸, double of GE14 of RM500 mil
MY unemployment rate improving - 3.8% in June '22. How to use Apple Pay. Apple's chips causing sleepless nights at Intel, AMD & NVidia. China cuts tariffs from 16 of the world's poorest countries.
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1. MARKET SUMMARY
2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE
The job market in Malaysia is improving as the unemployment rate continues its downward trend — 3.8% in June, the lowest since the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country. The number of unemployed decreased by 630,600 in June. Which committee or jihad should we credit? There should have been one by now.
RM1 billion — the expected cost of the upcoming general election, according to the Election Commission (EC), double of 2018’s cost of RM500 mil. Should snap elections be called, an estimated 21.1 million people would be able to vote. Brace yourself, check your voting details here.
8 casualties have been reported due to the flooding caused by torrential rain that hit parts of South Korea’s capital Seoul. The heavy rainfall submerged roads, flooded metro stations and caused blackouts across the city and neighbouring provinces. Some areas received the highest rate of rainfall in 80 years, Korea's meteorological agency said.
3. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾
A winning day for road users as the Federal Court has ruled that victims of road accidents should automatically be given compensation without having to sue insurance companies. Judge Abdul Rahman Sebli mentioned in his ruling that provisions in the Road Transport Act 1987 should be construed to protect all motorists, including victims of road accidents.
In an episode of The Opposition Strikes Back: Anthony’s Tirade — the former transport minister Anthony Loke asked Wee Ka Siong and Tengku Zaful Abdul Aziz to ‘eat back their own words’ since the Klang Valley Double Tracking Phase 2 (KVDT2) project was being continued at the cost of RM4.47 billion — just how the Pakatan Harapan government renegotiated it. Loke said Wee talked big back in Aug 2020, and he had mocked the former transport minister for not opting for the open tender of the KVDT2 project. Amidst all the politicking, Loke brought up a good point — can the finance minister show projects under the current administration that have been awarded direct negotiation? Does such a list exist in the government’s domain?
Apple Pay finally makes its debut in Malaysia after being launched almost eight years (the feature has been available since iPhone 6). Currently, three banks are supporting the service — Maybank, Ambank and Standard Chartered. Well, Malaysia is the second country in the region to have the service after Singapore.
Hartalega Holdings Bhd recorded only RM88.28 mil net profit first quarter ended June 30, 2022, compared to RM2.26 bil in the same period last year — a massive drop of 96.1%. The glove maker remains cautious as the industry faces a challenging outlook due to normalising average selling prices (ASPs) and higher operating costs.
Cradle Fund Sdn Bhd, an agency under the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), and Microsoft Malaysia have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to provide access to upskilling opportunities and technical guidance for startups to improve capabilities. The collaboration aims to empower startups in Malaysia and bring them to a global level. Remember — five unicorns by 2025!
Will the littoral combat ships (LCS) sink the Barisan Nasional-led government? They’re supposed to sink the enemies’ ships.
PKR deputy president Rafizi Ramli (a.k.a. Raja Formula) said multi-layered subcontracting for two packages of the LCS project had caused the project's cost to balloon by 298.4% from RM391 mil to RM1.2 bil!
Former PM Muhyiddin Yassin is rocking the BN ship by taking a swipe at his rival and counterpart Ahmad Zahid Hamidi. He asked if voters could trust a coalition led by Zahid in the next GE15.
Of bribery cases and gasps they induce.
Former Najib Razak has withdrawn allegations of bribery against the then High Court judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali, who convicted and sentenced the former prime minister to 12 years in jail and a RM210 mil fine in the SRC International Bhd trial. Crazy how nobody bats an eye when the former PM is attacking our judiciary system.
Hasanah Abdul Hamid, the former director-general of the Malaysian External Intelligence Organisation (MEIO), has been fully discharged and acquitted by the High Court of criminal breach of trust (CBT) involving RM50.4 mil funds belonging to the government. Hasanah was charged on Oct 25, 2018, with committing CBT between Apr 30, 2018, and May 9, 2018.
Former Sabah infrastructure development minister Peter Anthony has been acquitted of five counts of money-laundering charges at Kota Kinabalu’s Special Corruption Court. Anthony was discharged by Judge Abu Bakar Manat after the prosecution from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) informed the court that there were new developments in the case.
4. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎
Despite brewing economic problems in China and China’s benchmark CSI 300 Index down 16% year to date, China’s IPO market is defying economic headwinds and breaking records, hitting USD57.8 bil so far in 2022, the largest ever for such a period. There were 5 IPOs of above USD1 bil in 2022 versus one each in New York and Hong Kong and none in London. China’s share of global IPO proceeds more than tripled to 44% from 13 at end-2021.
Some reasons given for this surge in listing: the first half of 2022 is a good window as economic conditions could worsen further, a feedback loop of performing IPOs attracting new ones, and patriotic trades as several IPOs were companies that have been delisted from the US.
China cosies up with 16 other nations while Joe Biden is contemplating whether to remove the Trump-era tariffs. China plans to cut tariffs on almost all taxable items imported from 16 of the world’s poorest countries. The move will take effect on Sept 1 and covers 8,786 imported items. The deal would stimulate international acceptance of the yuan for cross-border settlements and reduce global reliance on the US dollar - another small step towards de-dollarization.
Flights to Hong Kong are up by 249%. The surge likely reflects increased demand from mainland residents looking to use Hong Kong as their layover. Hong Kong is expecting to dial down Covid-19 travel restrictions as it prepares to welcome more travellers. Hotel quarantines will be reduced to three days plus four days of health monitoring.
Now hiring — Chief Candy Officer. Candy Funhouse, a Canadian candy company, is looking for someone to be the company’s lead taste tester. According to the job description, the CCO is expected to test at least 3,500 products per month. The position pays USD78,000 annually and is open to anyone aged five and above. Sure hope the job comes with good dental benefits. Click here to apply!
The FBI raided former president Donald Trump’s Florida home — Mar-A-Lago club. The raid was reportedly connected to an investigation into Trump's handling of official papers. Boxes included “items marked as classified national security information” were seized. This comes as Trump prepares for a presidential run in 2024. Maybe Donald should get advice from Hillary Clinton on how to hide confidential info.
Apple is eating Intel’s, AMD’s and NVidia’s chips (not literally) — Digitimes reported that the major PC core chips suppliers Intel, AMD and NVidia have all revised downward their 2022 shipment or revenue projections in anticipation of the growing popularity of Apple’s silicons. Apple is the only company expected to see continued momentum for its Mac, thanks to its popular M1 and M2 chips.
Media marriage — Cox Enterprise is set to acquire digital news site Axios Media. The deal is reportedly worth USD525 million. Axios, best known for its brief, bullet-pointed stories, was launched in 2017. The company publishes daily and weekly newsletters that are targeted to specific industries.
The passing of two icons taken away by cancer:
Olivia Newton-John, a British-born Australian singer and actress, passed away from breast cancer aged 73. Newton-John was best known for playing the role of Sandy in Grease, one of the most successful film musicals ever made. The musical was the biggest box-office hit of 1978, which included singles like “You’re the One That I Want'' and “Summer Nights”.
Issey Miyake, a revolutionary Japanese fashion designer, died from liver cancer aged 84. Miyake was known for his innovative styles and perfume. He built a global fashion brand, which included designing Steve Jobs’ famous black turtle neck jumpers.
5. FOR YOUR EYES 👁👁
Maybe you will think twice before smoking after watching the video below.
A different perspective.
Three-quarters of our crops depend on pollinators to some extent, but only one-third of global crop production does. Why? Because many of the large producing crops (staples such as cereals) are not dependent on them at all.