Posted Date: June 25, 2020

Malaysian Rating Corporation Berhad (MARC) held its 24th Annual General Meeting (AGM), themed "Driving a Sustainable Capital Market in Challenging Times", via virtual streaming on June 24, 2020.

"MARC's consolidated revenue for 2019 improved by 11.6% to RM16.6 million as rated corporate issuances showed healthy increases in both value and volume during the year, and consolidated profit before taxes recovered strongly to RM5.7 million in 2019," said MARC Chairman Datuk Azizan Haji Abd Rahman in his review of the company's results for the financial year ended 31 December 2019. He added that for 2019, MARC continued to maintain a strong portfolio of corporate bond issuers, having assigned 22 new ratings with a total programme size of RM25.74 billion, with 107 rating reaffirmations.

As at December 31, 2019, MARC has completed 831 ratings since its inception, amounting to RM553.2 billion in issuance value.

MARC'S bond and sukuk ratings improved in terms of both rating accuracy as well as rating stability in 2019, reaching their highest levels in 19 years. Over the 1998-2019 period, the one-year rating accuracy ratio improved to 69.4% (from 68.6% in 2018), while the long-term rating stability rate improved to 86.8% (from 86.3% in 2018). The long-term rating accuracy ratio measures MARC's effectiveness in predicting defaults, while the long-term average rating stability rate evaluates the frequency and magnitude of rating changes over the period of 1998-2019. The methodology used to compute the rating performance matrix is consistent with global rating agency best practices.

Another noteworthy achievement was MARC being awarded Malaysia's Rating Agency of the Year 2019 at Hong Kong-based The Asset magazine's Triple A Awards, for the second consecutive year. MARC was also recognised by Global Islamic Finance Awards (GIFA) for its commitment in keeping pace with market innovation in Islamic finance and providing robust credit analysis, where MARC was named Best Islamic Rating Agency in 2019 for the fifth time.

Datuk Azizan added that as the COVID-19 pandemic has sharply contracted every economic sector and impacted all social divides, and with the government stimulus packages in place, MARC expects that for the year 2020, the economy will face a slow recovery to pre-COVID levels, with an expected contraction in real GDP and private investments which would impact corporates' appetite to raise funds. Against this backdrop, MARC estimates the total gross issuance of corporate bonds in 2020 to moderate to circa RM80.0 billion to RM90.0 billion

In his closing remarks, Datuk Azizan said, "MARC, having laid the necessary steps to capture the initial wave in ensuring a sustainable domestic capital market and under the new leadership of our Group Chief Executive Officer Datuk Jamaludin Nasir, will come out of the COVID-19 pandemic stronger and more focused in delivering relevant products and services for the capital market."

The company's shareholders reviewed and adopted the financial statements and the Board of Directors declared a special, and first and final dividend of 5 sen and 15 sen per share respectively for the financial year ended December 31, 2019.

Lalitha Sivanesan, +603-2717 2953/ lalitha@marc.com.my;
Nurfarain Mohd Dom, +603-2717 2925/ farah@marc.com.my