Note from Publisher
For the coming Chinese New Year, i Capital will not be published in the first two weeks of Feb 2016. The first issue in the year of the Monkey will be Volume 27, number 23, dated 18-24 Feb, 2016. However, during this period, our investment portal, www.icapital.biz will be updated as usual and apart from the public holidays, our office’s operating hours will not be affected.

The Malaysian government revised its 2016 Budget this week in response to the plunging oil price. The new assumption for crude oil price is US$30-35 per barrel, down from US$48 per barrel in the original Budget. Although it is still higher than the lower band of i Capital’s forecast of US$20-40 per barrel, this revised assumption is much more realistic. i Capital does not expect any more downward revisions; even if there are, they would be minor.

The revised Budget contained tax relief and other measures that would reduce government revenue but increase government expenditures. However, the target for 2016’s fiscal deficit is maintained at 3.1% of GDP. Though not clearly specified, government development expenditures are expected to be drastically cut to achieve the target.

Instead of sacrificing the nation’s development, the government could save hundreds of million Ringgit by taking serious measures to get rid of the stark wastage and mismanagement of public money that have been revealed year after year in the Auditor General’s Report in various government departments and public institutions. In fact, addressing the wastage and mismanagement of public resources would be a more productive exercise because the impact would be wider and more long lasting than tinkering with the annual Budget.

The Malaysian government should take heed that the plunge in oil price would not be a temporary phenomenon because oil price is expected to stay low for many, many years to come. It is time to think of long-term structural remedies.
Stock Selections
Corporate News
Non-Publication Dates

The weekly print edition of
i Capital is not published in the following 6 days in 2016.

  • 04/02/2016
  • 11/02/2016
  • 05/05/2016
  • 07/07/2016
  • 15/09/2016
  • 22/12/2016

However, www.icapital.biz will be updated as usual during the non-publication weeks.