U.S. stocks pared early losses as gains in financial and technology shares helped the market recover following an early slump. The S&P 500 Index was little changed at 1,518 after retreating 0.3% earlier.
Local / News
SEC approved GTCAP plan to raise P10 billion in debt this month. The co. plans to offer seven- and 10-year fixed rate bonds between February 15 – 20. Of the proceeds, P1.9 billion will go to the Toledo plant, P3.9 billion for the Panay plant, and the P4.2 billion will be used to refinance debt that carry interest rates of 4.9638-5.225%.
GLO total sales at its mobile business grew by 6% at the end of 2012 to P67.2 billion, driven by increase in postpaid line subscribers. Postpaid revenues at the end of 2012 hit P22.8 billion, presenting a 24% spike from P18.5 billion in the previous year. GLO intends to sustain this momentum in 2013.
IPM Group, its subsidiaries and affiliates will subscribe to P500 million worth of MIC’s shares, which will come from an increase in MIC’s authorized capital. Of the new funds, P470 million will be used to acquire BEST—the country’s largest integrated waste solutions provider.
Notes: IPM, which operates the Payatas landfill in Quezon City, effectively gained automatic listing on the stock exchange via the acquisition of MIC, allowing it to tap into a wide pool of potential investors to provide itself with capital for future growth or working capital.
JFC currently has a 400-store footprint in China, Pres. & CEO of Tony Tan Caktiong estimates the company needs 500 breakeven and targets 2014 for the milestone. Recent disclosures say that JFC is targeting 4,000 stores worldwide by 2020. As of end-Sept. 2012, total network numbered 2,581, of which 2,040 are in the Philippines.
PNB-ABC execute merger effective Feb. 9, Staurday, via a share swap deal. Office-in-charge Omar Byron Mier was appointed the PNB board president. As an effect of the merger, public float has been reduced to 18.99% from 31.15% prior to the merger. To factor in the wider balance sheet, PNB is moving to amend its charter, pending SEC approval, to increase its authorized capital stock to P70 billion from P50 billion; which would comprise about 1.75 billion common shares with a par value of P40 per share.
Mier said the bank will work on increasing return on equity (ROE) in the next 18 to 24 months by enhancing revenues, cross sale, taking advantage of more branches and more customers, and by also bringing down costs. PNB emerges as the bank with the largest international footprint.
STI preneed unit PhilPlans First Inc. ties up with affiliate, Philippine Life Financial Assurance Corp to offer SureHealth, to offer a medical savings plan to the market.
VMC plans to diversify into allied businesses to strengthen operations ahead of a low-tariff regime under the Asean Free Trade Area (Afta) by 2015. Within the next two years, VMC may raise fresh funds to go into new ventures – first, power co-generation, then bio-ethanol production and allied infrastructure like co-investing in a railroad system to transport sugarcane. With said plans, the company may look to tap loans again in 2 years.
Local / Sector
BSP raises concern on he high-end segment of the property sector, noting rising rents amid falling vacancies. ”We are seeing some pockets of concern but not systemic in any way,” said Assistant Governor Ma. Cyd Tuaño-Amador. As of Q3 2012, total real estate loans went up to 14.97% form 14.28% in the previous year, equivalent to about P86.60 billion in additional loans.
Local / Economy
New York-based think tank Global Source: Philippines is likely to outperform consensus growth forecasts this year with the political and reform environment looking ripe for the implementation of more changes and the world economy appearing to be on the mend. However, external development risks remain and the PHL would have to rely on internal sources of growth. Global Source increased forecast to 6.1% from 5%.
Foreign direct investments (FDIs) barely rose in first 11 months of 2012 to $1.2 billion, up 1.1%. Most of the equity capital came from the US, Japan, Australia, the Netherlands and the British Virgin Islands. These investments went to sectors such as manufacturing, real estate, wholesale and retail, mining and quarrying and financial and insurance sectors.
Philippine government may forge a final peace agreement with Muslim rebels next month.
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