Anwar denies financial interest in listed firms

Port Dickson MP encourages Bursa Malaysia and SC to take action against individuals manipulating the stock market

by SHAZNI ONG / graphic by MZUKRI

OPPOSITION leader and PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (picture) has refuted having any financial interest in companies listed on Bursa Malaysia and advised investors not to invest based on rumours.

The clarification from the Port Dickson MP came after several companies saw active trading and price gains recently due to political development in the country.

Stocks of Advanced Synergy Bhd (ASB), MUI Industries Bhd and Pan Malaysia Holdings Bhd were actively traded in the past few trading days ahead of his audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong scheduled for today.

“I want to stress that I have no financial interest whatsoever in these stocks. I want to take this opportunity to remind all investors to invest carefully and not to invest based on rumours.

“It is an unfortunate reflection of the state of our economy that such rumours can move markets,” he said in a statement yesterday.

Anwar also encouraged Bursa Malaysia and the Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) to take action against any individuals manipulating the stock market via malicious political rumours.

At press time, both Bursa and SC have yet to issue statements in response to what has been said by Anwar.

ASB fell six sen or 22.6% to 20.5 sen in active trade yesterday after hitting a nine-year high of 30 sen last Friday, while MUI Industries fell 2.5 sen or 17.86% to 11.5 sen on the release of the statement.

Pan Malaysia Holdings, meanwhile, fell four sen or 21.6% to 14.5 sen in active trade. The benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI closed 11.9 point or 0.78% lower at 1,518 points yesterday as trading volume stood at 5.95 billion securities traded.

The former deputy prime minister and finance minister also did not list out any stocks to back up his call on the matter.

Anwar is expected to submit proof of the “strong, convincing” majority of MPs said to be supporting him in his bid to unseat the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government when he meets the King today.

On Sept 23, Anwar said at a press conference that he had enough backing in the Dewan Rakyat to effectively end the PN administration led by current Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

He, however, did not disclose the number of MPs or who they were, but instead, said the King should be the first to be briefed on the matter.

“Normally, when there is a potential shift or new developments on the political front, traders will look for stocks that are related, either via a proxy (son or daughter or relation with links to the potential leader).

“Most of the time, the exact leader will not have a stake in the counter, hence, it is hard to trace from that point. Hence, the ‘related stocks’ could be via a proxy that I mentioned earlier,” an analyst told The Malaysian Reserve who spoke on strict anonymity.

ASB added 4.5 sen to close at 26.5 sen last Friday, while Pan Malaysia Holdings gained four sen to 18.5 sen, but MUI Industries closed flat at 14 sen on increased trading volumes.

“Sometimes, it is just a matter of linkage. Nothing more than that and traders like this kind of info as it could spur trading actions on that particular stock,” the analyst added.