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Kalbe Farma Falls to Two-Week Low on Weak Rupiah: Jakarta Mover

PT Kalbe Farma, Indonesia’s largest drugmaker, fell to a two-week low in Jakarta equity trading after the company’s chief financial officer said the weakening rupiah will drive up costs.

The shares dropped 1.4 percent to close at 1,400 rupiah, the lowest level since July 10. The benchmark Jakarta Composite Index declined 0.9 percent. The currency impact will be felt in three-to-four months, Kalbe’s CFO Vidjongtius said in a mobile-phone text message today.

The rupiah’s decline to a four-year low versus the dollar this week will erode profit margins of companies such as Kalbe which sources 90 percent of its raw materials overseas, Christandi Rheza Mihardja, analyst at PT Sinarmas Sekuritas, said by phone today.

“In the short-term, the rupiah exchange rate is the main concern for the company,” Mihardja said.

Kalbe Farma shares have jumped 32 percent this year, outpacing the 8.3 percent rise in the Jakarta Composite. A government plan to introduce a nationwide health-care insurance program has boosted sentiment in the pharmaceutical industry, Adrian Joezer, an analyst at PT Mandiri Sekuritas said in a note on July 9.

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