BNM: M'sian Economy To Experience Moderate Growth In 2019


ECONOMY | The Malaysian economy will continue to experience moderate growth this year, supported mainly by external demand and resilience in private consumption among others, says Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor Datuk Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus.

She said exports, which rose to RM836.4 billion in 2018 from RM807 billion recorded in 2017, would also continue to be the growth driver for 2019.

However, she acknowledged the downside risks the country faced, namely uncertainty coming from the ongoing trade tensions between the US and China, the impact of US tax cuts and also from the European Union.

Nor Shamsiah told reporters this after announcing Malaysia’s 2018 full year gross domestic product and fourth quarter results here today.


Terbitan Nota Senior AS$300 Juta RHB Bank Terlebih Langgan Lebih 6 Kali

FOTO KREDIT: CustomerServiceDirectory

PERBANKAN | Terbitan nota tidak bercagar senior lima tahun dalam nilai nomina AS$300 juta (AS$1=RM4.06) RHB Bank Bhd yang dilancarkan pada Selasa, terlebih langganan lebih enam kali.

Dalam kenyataan pada 13 FEB 2019, bank itu berkata nilai perolehan pada panduan harga akhir melebihi AS$1.8 bilion, menandakan paras terlebih langgan sebanyak lebih enam kali menerusi 114 akaun.

"Permintaan yang kukuh itu membolehkan RHB Bank mengetatkan panduan kepada 128 mata asas berbanding Perbendaharaan AS lima tahun pada pulangan 3.766 peratus setahun, yang mewakili sebaran kredit paling ketat dalam terbitan Asia Tenggara/Asia Selatan pada 2019," katanya.

Menurut bank itu, nota tidak bercagar senior - yang diberikan penarafan A3 oleh Moody's Investors Service Inc - adalah terbitan ketiga program nota jangka sederhana RM5 bilion euro yang dilaksanakan pada 23 September 2014.

Ia juga adalah terbitan penanda aras awam dolar AS pertama oleh institusi kewangan Malaysia sejak April 2017.

"Terbitan itu dijangka selesai pada 19 Februari 2019 dan akan disenaraikan di Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Ltd dan Labuan International Financial Exchange Inc," katanya dan menambah keuntungan daripada terbitan itu akan digunakan oleh RHB Bank untuk tujuan modal kerja am.


RESEARCHERS: Blue Light From Phones And Tablets Can Speed Up Blindness


It's best not to stare at your phone screens in the dark

Researchers from the University of Toledo say long periods of time exposed to blue light, the kind phones, tablets and televisions give off, can damage vision and generate poisonous molecules in the eye's light-sensitive cells. 

The researchers suggest this could accelerate macular degeneration and other eye diseases.

Their findings were published on July 5 in Scientific Reports.

In the study, the researchers exposed living cells to various types of light. They found that exposure to blue light triggers "reactions that generate poisonous chemical molecules in photoreceptor cells," the cells in our retina that respond to light.  

The group was aiming to understand how cells respond to everyday blue light exposure from devices like phones and TVs, according to a release.

"If you look at the amount of light coming out of your cell phone, it's not great but it seems tolerable," said Dr. Payton in a release. 

"Some cell phone companies are adding blue-light filters to the screens, and I think that is a good idea."

Eye disease such as macular degeneration is caused by the deterioration of light-sensitive cells in the retina. 

This disease is age-related and can cause blindness. Currently, 11 million people in the US have some sort of macular degeneration, according to a report published on Brightfocus Foundation, a nonprofit organization that supports research. The patient number will likely double by 2050.

Dr. Ajith Karunarathne, one of the researchers and an assistant professor at the University of Toledo, told the Guardian that people should wear sunglasses that can filter both UV and blue light outside and avoid browsing on smartphones, laptops and similar gadgets in the dark.

Some other options to protect your eyes include wearing glasses with amber or orange-colored lenses that can block out blue light.

Dr. Karunarathne didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. 



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