Thursday, January 8, 2009

Daily news - 8 Jan

CapitaLand shares retreat on rights rumour
CapitaLand shares shed 8.2 per cent on market speculation that it is planning a rights issue. Responding to queries, the group issued this statement: “In response to various media and analyst queries that CapitaLand is planning a rights issue, CapitaLand wishes to state that we will not comment on such market rumour or speculation. CapitaLand regularly receives and reviews various proposals of a business, financing or other nature. It is CapitaLand's disclosure policy to make the appropriate announcements if and when required, in accordance with the SGX-ST Listing Rules.” This follows a Dow Jones news report saying that the group is considering a rights issue to raise capital, but there has been no definite decision, quoting a “person familiar with the situation”.

Delong to post full-year loss on demand slump
Delong Holdings, which put hundreds of workers on unpaid leave last October and shut several furnaces in China, yesterday said it will be reporting a loss for the full year ended Dec 31, 2008. The profit warning came as the global financial crisis hit China's steel demand in the latter half of 2008. The Singapore-listed Chinese steel company said given the slower demand, the group had moved decisively in October 2008 to scale down production at four of its smaller blast furnaces to reduce costs. The four furnances account for about 30 per cent of the group's annual production. 'However, higher raw material prices coupled with the writedown of inventory to net realisable value in 4Q2008, offset the cost savings and contributed to the group's FY2008 loss,' it said in a statement to the Singapore Exchange. Delong's board assured shareholders that despite the tighter operating environment, it has sufficient financial resources to meet its working capital requirements. 'The group has existing secured and unsecured credit facilities with various domestic and foreign financial institutions which can be called upon if any such need arises,' Delong said. As at end-September 2008, Delong's cash and cash equivalent stood at S$139.49 million, down from S$291.16 million a year earlier. Delong said yesterday that it remains confident about the long-term potential of China's steel industry.

Noble Group says shipping unit insured for oil spill claims
Noble Group Ltd, a Hong Kong-based commodity supplier whose shipping unit is being sued in California after an oil spill, says the business is insured for such claims. The suit includes claims for clean-up costs and damages to natural resources, Noble said yesterday in an e-mailed response to Bloomberg queries. The unit is insured for any civil liability arising out of the incident, the company said, without specifying an amount. The state of California on Tuesday filed a suit against unit Fleet Management, which operated the 900-foot Cosco Busan that struck a bridge support in San Francisco Bay in November 2007. Noble already faces charges in the US that it falsified documents to cover up its role in the ensuing oil spill that killed marine life, disrupted fishing and closed beaches.

Source: Kim Eng

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