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Kuala Lumpur : Weaker consumer sentiment impacts retail sector - Q1 2014

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Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) has widened its 2014 economic growth forecast from 5%-5.5% to 4.5%-5.5% to reflect heightened global uncertainties. BNM maintained the Overnight Policy Rate (OPR) at 3.0% as global economic and financial uncertainties remain a risk to Malaysia’s economic growth. Following an upward adjustment in the electricity tariff with effect from January 2014, headline inflation increased to 3.4% in January 2014 compared to 3.2% in December 2013. Inflation in 2014 is expected at around 3-4% although the inflation rate would be closer to 4% if government subsidies for sugar, fuel and energy are reduced further.

Q1 witnessed a strong growth in real estate investment volume. There were four major identified deals worth RM1.13bn. The largest transaction was the sale of Platinum Sentral at RM750m, which was to be injected into Quill Capita Trust. Another focus of investment activity is at TRX where it is understood that offers for joint-ventures are being considered for various portions of Phase 1 of the mega project which is expected to start construction soon.

Source : DTZ (Groupe UGL)