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Asia Top News and Analysis Malaysia

  • BANGKOK, Oct 11- Year-to-date stock index gains in Thailand and the Philippines that are double those on broad Asian and world indexes suggest the easy money may already have been made in Southeast Asia.

  • HONG KONG/ SINGAPORE, Oct 10- Pan-Asian insurer AIA Group Ltd has agreed to buy ING's Malaysian insurance unit and is expected to pay $1.5 billion to $1.7 billion, handing the Dutch financial services firm its first deal in a nine-month drive to sell off Asian assets.

  • BANGKOK, Oct 10- Singapore shares fell to a near one-month low while most other Southeast Asian stocks also ended lower on Wednesday as flagging global economic growth triggered selling in blue-chip stocks, including Keppel Corp. Oil rig builder Keppel Corp led among battered large-cap stocks, sliding 1.4 percent.

  • HONG KONG/ SINGAPORE, Oct 10- AIA Group Ltd. AIA was in the lead to buy both the Malaysian and Thai units of ING, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters in early September. However, ING is now bundling the Thai unit with its much larger Japan and Hong Kong operations and selling that group to another suitor, the sources said.

  • KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10- The founders of Malaysia's AirAsia Bhd, Tony Fernandes and Kamarudin Meranun, are set to kick off an initial public offering spree in 2013 with three listings worth more than $500 million.

  • *Australia's Lynas says plant opening will be delayed. KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10- A Malaysian court has kept on hold a licence granted to Lynas Corp Ltd's controversial rare earth plant, delaying until next month a decision on whether to consider judicial reviews aimed at permanently blocking production.

  • *Newcrest Mining slips 1.3 percent as bullion weakens. MELBOURNE, Oct 10- Australian shares pulled back from 14- month highs on Wednesday as lower growth forecasts for China and other regional economies by the International Monetary Fund wiped off gains made by miners on higher iron ore prices.

  • SINGAPORE/ BEIJING, Oct 10- Asia's top refiner, China's Sinopec, has started work to build Southeast Asia's largest oil storage terminal at the Batam free trade zone in Indonesia, the company and industry sources said, in an $850- million investment aimed to boost petroleum trading.

  • MELBOURNE, Oct 10- Australian shares slipped 0.3 percent on Wednesday, pulling back from 14- month highs after the IMF cut its growth forecasts for a second time, sending shares around most of the region lower. climbed 6 percent to $117.20 a tonne, its highest since Aug. 1, according to data provider Steel Index, taking gains to 12.5 percent over the past two days.

  • Kenanga Research downgraded Malaysia's telecommunication sector to' neutral' from' overweight' as it believes the sector's near-term catalysts have been essentially priced in. It downgraded DiGi.COM Bhd, Malaysia's third largest mobile phone operator by market value, to' market perform' from' outperform' and kept the target price of 5.20 ringgit.

  • AmInvestment Bank raised its target price on state power firm Tenaga Nasional Bhd to 8.15 ringgit per share from 7.95 on expectations of stronger earnings for the next two years. AmInvestment kept its' buy' call on Tenaga due to expected lower capacity costs from winning a tender to build a 3 billion ringgit power plant in the northern Malaysian state of Penang.

  • Structural steel construction company Eversendai Corp Bhd. is confident of securing contracts worth 500 mln rgt in Malaysia within the next few months, says executive chairman and group managing director AK Nathan. "We will bring the experience we have gained overseas into the country and perhaps change the contruction approach itself.

  • Following is a list of events in Malaysia as well as news company-related and market news which could have an influence on the local market. *The Look East Policy- A New Dimension Conference at Grand Mahkota Foyer, Lower Ground, Istana Hotel, Jalan Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur at 830 am.

  • MELBOURNE, Oct 10- Australian shares fell 0.4 percent on Wednesday, with some of the biggest declines recorded by gold miners after bullion prices headed lower offshore. eased 0.6 percent to 3,882.8 after U.S. stocks fell on increasing worries about third-quarter earnings and the International Monetary Fund warned on global growth.

  • MELBOURNE, Oct 10- Australian shares may ease from 14- month highs on Wednesday after U.S. stocks fell on concerns over third-quarter earnings, although energy companies may be boosted by a sharp rise in oil prices. *Energy companies such as Woodside Petroleum.

  • VIENNA, Oct 9- Austrian rubber and plastic products maker Semperit Holding AG has increased its stake in Malaysian medical glove maker Latexx Partners Bhd.

  • SINGAPORE/ BEIJING, Oct 9- China's Sinopec has started work to build Southeast Asia's largest oil storage terminal at Indonesia's Batam Free Trade Zone, industry sources said on Tuesday. Industry sources said the project was originally planned as a joint-venture between the Chinese refiner and OilTanking, a unit of the privately held Marquard& Bahls.

  • *Fifteen firms, consortium bid for Cyprus offshore blocks. NICOSIA, Oct 9- Cyprus is close to short-listing companies bidding for offshore oil and gas contracts in the energy-rich east Mediterranean, officials said on Tuesday.

  • VIENNA, Oct 9- Austrian rubber and plastic products maker Semperit Holding AG has increased its stake in Malaysian medical glove maker Latexx Partners Bhd.

  • BANGKOK, Oct 9- Stocks in Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines edged lower on Tuesday amid broad-based sell-off in regional large caps such as Metropolitan Bank& Trust Co. and Siam Cement Pcl as concerns about global growth dented investor sentiment. Late selling erased most of morning gains in Malaysia.