Pos Malaysia, HB Global, Bina Darulaman, Wing Tai, UOA REIT, Ajinomoto, plantation stocks

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KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 04): Based on news flow and corporate announcements today, the stocks that may be in focus on Friday (Sept 05) could include the following: Pos Malaysia, HB Global, Bina Darulaman, Wing Tai, UOA REIT, Ajinomoto, as well as plantation stocks.

Postal service provider Pos Malaysia Bhd has allocated RM150 million in capital expenditure (capex) for the financial year ending March 31, 2015 (FY15), said its chief executive officer Datuk Iskandar Mizal Mahmood.

The post services company is looking at the possibility of creating a mobile app to further reach out to its customers.

"We are not just a brick and mortar company. We need to be relevant to people. We need to have an app, perhaps at a later stage, to make it easy," Iskandar told reporters after Pos Malaysia's annual general meeting today.

Meanwhile, the group is embarking on parcel lockers where customers could send their parcels to specific lockers, to avoid loss of parcels or undelivered packages.

Besides, some of its capex will also be channeled into its integrated parcel centre in KLIA, upgrading some of its post offices, as well as acquiring a new fleet of vehicles to replace some ageing ones.

Its shares gained 3 sen or 0.6% to RM4.93, with 461,600 shares done today.

Trading of HB Global Ltd’s shares will be suspended next Thursday (Sept 11) until further notice, as it has failed to submit its annual report for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2013, to Bursa Malaysia, within the stipulated timeframe.

HB Global, formerly known as Sozo Global Ltd, is a convenient food specialist that produces various types of cooked or fresh food material.

Township developer Bina Darulaman Bhd, the only public-listed government-linked company in Kedah, has made a cash call together with a bonus issue, to raise RM95 million. The group also plans to acquire 467.4 ha of land in Kedah for RM202 million.

Trading in its securities has been halted from 10.40am until 5pm today, pending the material announcement. Its shares were last traded at RM2.40. It will resume trading tomorrow (Sept 05).

Wing Tai Malaysia Bhd’s UNIQLO today announces that its online store in Malaysia will be launched on Sept 15, to complement its stable of 21 stores across the country.

In a press statement, UNIQLO (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd chief executive officer, Satoshi Onoguchi, said Malaysia is an important market for the Japan-based global apparel retailer.

It remains to be seen whether Wing Tai will be positively impacted by the launch of the online store.

Employees Provident Fund Board (EPF) has emerged as a substantial shareholder of UOA Real Estate Investment Trust (UOA REIT), after buying some 21.206 million shares or a 5.01% direct stake in the open market on Tuesday (Sept 02).

A quick check on UOA REIT’s annual report 2013 showed that as at Dec 31 last year, there are four major shareholders in the company, namely Desa Bukit Pantai Sdn Bhd, Wisma UOA Sdn Bhd, Rich Accomplishment Sdn Bhd and Damai Positif Sdn Bhd, which collectively controls a 71.57% stake.

The shareholders base of UOA REIT also consists of nine banks or finance companies, three investment trusts, foundations or charities, as well as 37 industrial and commercial companies.

Shares of UOA REIT gained 1 sen or 0.7% to RM1.42 today, with 208,600 shares traded.

Food and seasoning manufacturer Ajinomoto (Malaysia) Bhd has set an ex-date for its dividend of 18.5 sen apiece on Oct 02, 2014. The first and final dividend is for the financial year ended March 31, 2014 (FY14), and is payable on Oct 21 this year.

Plantations stocks could also be in focus, as palm oil prices are seen to be higher this year and next, as global palm oil production growth is anticipated to slow down.

Oil World executive director, Thomas Mielke, said palm oil production is likely to see the slowest growth rate going forward, as compared to the average growth rate in the last five years.

Speaking at the Palm Oil Industry Leadership Forum today, Mielke said this is the second consecutive year that palm oil production has dropped below average.

"If confirmed, it will result in higher prices of palm oil in 2014 and 2015," he told a room packed with industry players.

Mielke added that if this trend of slower growth in palm oil production continues, palm oil prices will bottom out before rising, but will be moderate due to strong demand from the energy sector.