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Stocks Roundup: Maybank steady on news of expansion

Stocks Roundup

SHARES in Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) on the Kuala Lumpur stock exchange remained stable last week after Chief Executive Officer Abdul Wahid Omar’s announcement on Tuesday that the bank plans to add five additional branches in Cambodia. Maybank closed on Friday at 6.92 ringgit (US$2.05) after opening at 6.92 ringgit and beginning the week at 6.85.

Shares in the Malaysian lender have hovered around 6.85 ringgit over the past few months, hitting a 52-week high of 7.08 in November.

On Tuesday, Maybank opened its seventh branch in the Kingdom in Phnom Penh’s Tuol Kork district. Maybank international head Abdul Farid Alias said at the event that the firm is optimistic about prospects for growth in Cambodia, and plans to open at least one more branch here by the end of June.

Trading in property investment fund JSM Indochina resumed last week after it was suspended following the December 7 resignation of Numis, the fund’s nominated adviser. London’s AIM board had JSM listed at $0.66 before the suspension last month; it opened on Wednesday at $0.67 before closing down Friday at $0.595. Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited has been installed as the fund’s new nominated adviser and broker.

San Francisco-based hedge fund Passport Capital LLC, which controls about 13 percent of JSM’s capital, called for the December 7 investor meeting in London in which a new chairman, Scott Verges, was appointed along with two new non-executive directors.

Verges and his new colleagues, Paul Kaju and John Duggan, touched down in Cambodia last week to review JSM’s investment strategy in the region at the request of shareholders. New JSM investments are on hold pending a review of its investment strategy, the firm said last week, adding it was working with Panmure Gordon to return uninvested cash to shareholders.

France-based holding firm Electricite et Eaux de Madagascar (EEM) closed up 4.72 percent on Friday at the Paris Stock Exchange, finishing at €8.21 (US$11.83). EEM operates hotels in Cambodia and Vietnam, including the Victoria Angkor Resort and Spa in Siem Reap, under EEM subsidiaries EEM Victoria and Victoria Angkor.

The company hit a 52-week high of €9.10 in October before falling below €8 towards the end of the year.

Vimpelcom, owner of Cambodian mobile phone company Beeline, finished at $20.42 on the New York Stock Exchange Friday, up 3.50 percent from its December 1 price of $19.73.

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