Genting gives ex-Jewish leisure escapade Borscht Belt hotel in upstate New York high-end gambling makeover

empire resorts genting catskills casinoEmpire Resorts Inc., controlled by Lim Kok Thay, chairman of Genting Bhd. is gambling big: He is opening the Resorts World Catskills, a $1.2 billion casino, hotel and entertainment complex at the site of the old tourist destination for tens of thousands of New Yorkers, primarily Jews.

From the 1920s to the late 1960s, the New Yorkers seeking an from the clatter and chaos of city life would find solace in the area popularly known as the “Borscht Belt,” for the sunbathing, swimming, dining, dancing and more.

But by the 1970s, the vacationers who had packed the bungalows and hotels abandoned the Borscht Belt. The place fell in ruins.

But on Feb 8, the Catskill Mountains will get its own gambling den.

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HSR bidding down to two-horse race: where are the others?

 

hsr kuala lumpur

China and Japan are the only two countries left in the race to win the bidding for the massive high-speed rail transportation project that will link Kuala Lumpur to Singapore, said the klhighspeedrail.com portal.

However, the question we may ask is whether the other competitors seem to have simply accepted the fact that they are out of the race?

While most sources are pointing to Japan as the leading party in the bidding.

The Today Online portal in Singapore said Japan Rail, Japan Bank for International Cooperation and NEC Japan are the companies that are leading the bidding from Japan.

It also said it had been previously reported that Hong Kong’s MTR Corporation was also interested in partnering with China Railway Corporation to bid for a contract.

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Yellen stops short of saying markets are in a bubble

janet yellen

Outgoing Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said U.S. stocks and commercial real estate charges are on the high side but stopped short of saying the markets are in a bubble.

“Well, I don’t want to say too high. But I do want to say high,” Yellen said on CBS’s “Sunday Morning” in an interview recorded Friday as she prepared to leave the central bank. “Price-earnings ratios are near the high end of their historical ranges.”

Commercial real estate prices are now “quite high relative to rents,” Yellen said. “Now, is that a bubble or is it too high? And there it’s very hard to tell. But it is a source of some concern that asset valuations are so high.”

Yellen, 71, stepped down as Fed leader on Saturday after one term after President Donald Trump opted to replace her with Republican Jerome Powell, who’s been a Fed governor since 2012.

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Azira, the latest residential product from Sime Darby Prop to fulfill the key needs

sime-darby
The latest residential product from Sime Darby Property launched in Bandar Bukit Raja (BBR), Klang – Azira has received positive response from the public with over 70 per cent take-up rate recorded in just one weekend.
The Star reported that the residential comprises 111 units of 20’ x 75’ double-storey link homes with built-up areas ranging from 1,901sq ft to 2,275sq ft. It comes with four bedrooms and four bathrooms.
A continuation and evolution of the earlier BBR homes, Azira boasts a contemporary modern tropical design that includes large openings with wide picture windows that help improve ventilation.
Offering freehold ownership, Azira’s prices start from RM678,888 (before bumiputera discount), which completion is expected on January 2020.
Sime Darby Property chief operating officer Datuk Wan Hashimi Albakri said, “The encouraging take-up rate for Azira is achieved by staying true to our strategy of offering the right products at the right time, location and price, to fulfil the needs of homebuyers.

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Setia Alam starter homes sold out on the first day of its launch

setia alam
All allocated units of Careya terraced houses which is the first of S P Setia Bhd’s Starter Homes series in its 2,525-acre Setia Alam township were sold out on the day it was launched, said the developer in a statement on Feb 1.
According to The Edge Property, buyers had queued up at the launch venue as early as the night before the project was unveiled on Wednesday (Jan 31), it added.
“With only two parcels allocated for the Starter Homes series in Setia Alam, these limited editions homes were well received as expected,” said S P Setia.
Careya comprises 93 units of 20ft by 65ft 2-storey terraced homes with built-ups from 1,677 sq ft that are designed to maximise usable space.
Every home comes with an eight-foot backyard prepped for future renovation and extension works as foundation and slabs have been laid; in the interim, it serves as a drying area.

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Naza TTDI sees opportunities for year ahead

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Naza TTDI Sdn Bhd, the property arm of Naza Group, achieved sales of RM815 million last year, which marked its best performance ever in five years.

The Edge reported that this year, it is targeting lower sales of RM745 million amid overall weak consumer sentiments.

“We will focus on sales from the Met 1 component located in KL Metropolis; an en-bloc office tower; TTDI Sentralis, a mixed-use development located in Shah Alam and from the soon to be launched TTDI Ayana residential development at Kwasa Damansara,” said its executive director and chief operating officer Datuk Idzham Mohd Hashim in a statement on Feb 2.

Nevertheless, Naza TTDI is upbeat for the future as it has RM1 billion worth of unbilled sales that will help it stay ahead.

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Auto stocks to benefit from strong Ringgit

nissan jukebox

Automotive stocks will remain bullish if the ringgit recovery against US dollar maintained   its momentum, The Star reported.

These stocks could add on to picks up if buyers feel better about the economy and thus increase spending on first-class things.

Recently, Grant Thornton’s quarterly business survey reported that business leaders in Malaysia saw their confidence rising by 6 per cent in the fourth-quarter of 2017 which is a positive recovery from  36 per cent a year ago.

The survey revealed that 58 per cent of business owners are anticipating an increase in profits which is up to 46 percentage points from the third-quarter of last year.

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Higher iPhone prices, plan to return cash to shareholders support Apple share price

iphone x

NEW YORK, — Stronger iPhone prices and hints by Apple Inc yesterday that it could return more than half of its US$285 billion (RM1.11 trillion) in cash to shareholders eased concerns among investors, even as the world’s biggest technology company gave a disappointing revenue outlook for the current quarter.

Apple also reported it sold fewer iPhones over the holiday quarter than Wall Street had expected.

But the revenue outlook for the first three months of 2018 “was not as bad as some feared,” said Jun Zhang of Rosenblatt Securities Inc. Apple’s comments about plans for its US$163 billion in net cash helped boost shares 3.3 per cent to US$173.48 in after-the-bell trading.

“Over time, we are trying to target a capital structure that is approximately net neutral. We will have approximately the same level of cash and debt on the balance sheet,” Apple’s chief financial officer, Luca Maestri, told Reuters in an interview.

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Malaysian business confidence rose to 6pc, says Grant Thornton

Grant Thornton

The optimism level of Malaysian business confidence has risen to 6 per cent which is a major improvement compared to a year ago at -36 per cent, according to the International Business Report (IBR) by Grant Thornton, reported by The Star.

The quarterly business survey which covered 2,500 businesses in 36 economies showed the ASEAN region’s optimism level was performing at its best at 58 per cent, the highest since 2011. The survey revealed that high levels of confidence are driven particularly by surges in Indonesia for 100 per cent, as well as the Philippines at 86 per cent, where optimism has risen by 12 percentage points (12pp) and 6pp. The report stated that the global business optimism is at a positive level too, being at its highest level ever at 58 per cent.

Grant Thornton Malaysia Country Managing Partner Datuk NK Jasani said in the statement that optimism level in Malaysia has boomed, which is at the highest since 2014, despite being the lowest level among ASEAN countries. “In the country, the signs of confidence can be seen as the survey revealed that 62 per centbusiness owners are expecting an increase in revenues up to 22pp from the third-quarter (Q3) in 2017. “Also, 44 per cent of business owners are expecting an increase in exports for the year ahead which is up to 10pp from the same period, which is the highest in ASEAN,” said Jasani. The Managing Partner also said that 58 per cent of business partners are expecting an increase in profits, up to 46pp from Q3 in 2017 and 30 per cent of business owners are looking to increase in selling prices, up to 14 pp from the same period.

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Bond market is expected to remain strong in 2018, amounting up to RM90b – RM100b, says RAM Ratings

ram ratings

The bond market is expected to remain robust this year, with RM90 billion to RM100 billion of gross corporate bond issuance to take place, said RAM Rating Services Bhd (RAM Ratings) in a report by The Star on Jan 25, 2018.

“The strong corporate bond issuance is driven by a healthy pipeline of issuances from the financial institutions and infrastructure, as well as utility sectors which have traditionally issued the largest share of the market’s corporate bonds,” said RAM Ratings Services Bhd Head of Research Kristina Fong.

The latest RAM’s Bond Market Monthly stated that in 2017, the gross issuance of corporate bonds hit a record high of RM124.9 billion, surpassing its expectation of RM105 billion to RM115 billion.

“The robust issuance in 2017 was supported by both sub-segments of the corporate bond market – quasi-government and private, which posted double-digit year-over-year rates of 46.1 per cent and 45.6 per cent respectively,” it said.

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