SM Prime Opens Fourth Mall in Bulacan

SM Prime Holdings Inc. (PSE: SMPH) continues to expand in Northern Luzon as it opens its newest mall in Bulacan, SM Center Pulilan, this Friday, December 1. Serving as the company’s 66th mall in the Philippines, this latest mall-destination adds 27,000 square meters (sqm) in gross floor area (GFA), bringing SM Prime’s total GFA to 8 million sqm in the country.

Opening with 80% of space lease-awarded, SM Center Pulilan has three-level retail and dining floors including some of the well-loved SM brands such as SM Hypermarket, Watsons, Ace Hardware, SM Appliance, Simply Shoes, Miniso, Surplus and BDO.

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PhilWeb Receives Green Light to Offer E-Gaming System Service

PhilWeb Corp. (PSE: WEB) has received a letter from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR), allowing it to offer its services as an electronic gaming system service provider to the first 16 PAGCOR-licensed gaming sites for electronic games, subject to inspection and testing by PAGCOR.

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Globe Inks PhP7B Term Loan with Land Bank of the Philippines

Globe Telecom Inc. (PSE: GLO) signed a 7-year PhP7 billion term loan facility with Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP). The loan shall be used to finance the company’s capital expenditures.

Globe’s revised capital expenditure guidance for 2017 is $850 million, of which majority will be invested in data-related projects. As of end-September 2017, the company spent approximately PhP36.8 billion or $731 million in capital expenditures wherein 84% is data-related, in line with efforts to improve data network capacity and coverage. This exemplifies the company’s continuous commitment to support the data needs of Globe customers and allow them to enjoy the digital lifestyle.

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LRWC Subsidiary ABLGI Executes OLSA with BDO

Leisure & Resorts World Corporation’s (PSE: LR) wholly-owned subsidiary AB Leisure Global Inc. (ABLGI), as borrower, executed an Omnibus Loan and Security Agreement (OLSA) of PhP2.5 billion with BDO Unibank Inc. (PSE: BDO) – Trust and Investment Group as Security Trustee and the company, LRWC, as Surety.

The OLSA was executed to fund the acquisition of parcels of land for its planned Resort development.

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MB Approves Sanctions on Metrobank

The Monetary Board (MB) approved the imposition of sanctions on Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company (MBTC, PSE: MBT) in connection with the examination conducted by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) relating to the PhP1.75 billion fraud allegedly perpetrated by one of its officers.

In determining the appropriateness of the sanctions, the MB took into consideration MBTC’s strong financial condition and immediate corrective actions to contain further financial damage. Together with medium- to long-term initiatives that will serve to improve governance, controls, and compliance, the MB re-affirms the safety and soundness of MBTC.

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MacroAsia Declares Cash Dividends

MacroAsia Catering Services Inc. (MACS), 67% owned by MacroAsia Corp. (PSE: MAC) and 33% owned by Singapore Airport Terminal Services (SATS), in its regular board meeting on 28 November 2017, has declared PhP70 million cash dividend. The dividends are payable on December 19, 2017. MacroAsia’s share in this dividend declaration is PhP46.9 million.

MACS, based principally in Manila, is a dominant provider of airline catering in the Ninoy International Airport (NAIA) and the Manila Domestic Airport (MDA).

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Strong Domestic and External Demand Propel Business Confidence for Q4 2017

Business outlook on the economy turned more upbeat for the fourth quarter of 2017 (Q$ 2017), with the overall confidence index (CI) rising to 43.3% from 37.9% for Q3 2017, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP). This means that the number of optimists increased and continued to be greater than the number of pessimists during the quarter. This quarter’s confidence level is also higher compared to its year-ago level. The confidence index is computed as the percentage of firms that answered in the affirmative less the percentage of firms that answered in the negative with respect to their views on a given indicator.

Respondents cited the following factors behind their more buoyant outlook during the fourth quarter:  (a) expected increase  in orders and consumer purchases during the Christmas holidays, (b) increasing number and expansion of businesses, (c) higher disbursements for the government’s infrastructure and other development projects, (d) favorable macroeconomic conditions in the country, particularly manageable inflation and low interest rates, and (e) expansion of export markets and stronger demand for Philippine products.

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Foreign Portfolio Investments Result in Net Outflows in October 2017

Foreign portfolio investments registered in October 2017 reached $1.4 billion, higher by 6.8% than the $1.3 billion recorded the previous month, according to data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP). This may be attributed to investor optimism arising from the anticipated approval of the tax reform program of the government. However, the figure is lower compared to the $1.6 billion a year ago.

About 89.8% of investments registered during the month were in PSE-listed securities (pertaining mainly to holding firms, property companies, mining, banks, and food, beverage and tobacco companies); 10.1% went to Peso government securities (GS), while the 0.1% balance to other Peso debt instruments (OPDIs) and Peso time deposits (PTDs). Transactions in the following instruments resulted in net outflows: PSE-listed securities – $513 million; Peso GS – $47 million; and PTDs – $4 million; while transactions in OPDIs yielded net inflows of $1 million.

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