Special dividend lifts Tasek share price

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KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 5): Tasek Corp Bhd advanced 20 sen or 1.18% to RM17.20 after the cement maker declared a special dividend of 50 sen. The dividend was despite lower third quarter net profit compared to a year earlier.

At 9:56am, Tasek saw some 10,000 shares changed hands. It was the third-largest gainer across the local bourse.

For comparison, the FBM KLCI fell 7.77 points or 0.4% to 1,839.48.

Yesterday, Tasek declared a special dividend of 50 sen in conjuction with the company’s 50th anniversary.

The stock will trade ex-dividend this November 17, according to Tasek's announcement to Bursa Malaysia.

In a separate statement to the bourse, Tasek said net profit dipped to RM21.47 million in the third quarter ended September 30, 2014 (3QFY14) from RM23.12 million a year earlier.

Revenue, however, grew to RM148.68 million from RM143.93 million.

Today, CIMB Investment Bank Bhd analyst Sharizan Rosely said in a report although Tasek's annualised 9MFY14 core net profit was 102% of the research firm's forecast, “we deem it broadly in line as we expect intensified price competition and sustained cost pressures in 4Q.”

“Based on our industry checks, the general expectation for overall cement demand growth is circa 4% in 2014 compared to 5% to 6% in 2013,” Sharizan said.  
 
Sharizan noted that the main positive was the special interim single-tier dividend of 50 sen.

CIMB is maintaining its “hold” rating on Tasek shares but with a higher target price of RM16.85. This compares to RM15.30 previously.