Sun, Sep 09, 2007 - Page 11 News List

Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ ELECTRONICS

Compal to sell Himax shares

Compal Electronics Inc (仁寶電腦), the world's second-largest maker of notebook computers, plans to sell 3.42 million shares in Himax Technologies Inc (奇景光電). Compal's board approved the plan on Friday, the company said in a filing to the Taiwan Stock Exchange. The sale may be valued at NT$509 million (US$15.4 million) based on Compal's planned asking minimum price of NT$149 per share, the company said. Compal may book a loss as much as NT$206.9 million from the planned sale, the company said in the filing. Himax, based in Tainan, designs semiconductors used in flat-panel displays. Its US depositary shares trade on the NASDAQ stock market.

■ INVESTMENT

China to boost outflows

China will adjust its financial policies to fund domestic companies and financial institutions' outbound investment and increase foreign-exchange outflows, People's Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan (周小川) said. "China's financial policies to support companies to invest abroad are not sufficient, and the central bank is vigorously working on it," Zhou said yesterday at an investment forum in Xiamen City. "More adjustment will be made to the current foreign-exchange policies that encourage currency inflows, while limiting outflows," Zhou said, adding that his bank would further develop the foreign-exchange market to help companies hedge currency risks and simplify procedures for companies investing outside China.

■ TELECOMS

Glitch snags BlackBerry mail

A software glitch shut down e-mail service for some BlackBerry users on Friday, and delays were still being felt hours after the problem was fixed. Research in Motion Ltd, the Waterloo, Ontario-based company that makes the ubiquitous mobile device, said no e-mails were lost in the shutdown on Friday that affected an unspecified number of customers in North America who subscribe to the BlackBerry Internet Service. Phone service and text messaging were unaffected. The company did not provide an estimate of when service would return to normal and did not specify the software problem.

■ CREDIT

US reviews rating agencies

US federal regulators said on Friday they were reviewing the role credit-rating agencies played in the mortgage debacle for borrowers with weak credit. The Securities and Exchange Commission "has begun a review of credit rating agency policies and procedures," SEC spokesman John Nester said on Friday. That review, he said, would include what ratings mean and whether conflicts of interest were created if rating agencies gave advice to issuers of mortgage debt and originators.

■ BEVERAGES

New Gatorade launched

Pepsi is offering a new low-calorie version of Gatorade in an effort to keep customers who have strayed from the sports drink in search of lower-calorie drinks. PepsiCo, the second-biggest US soft drink company, said in July that its sales of carbonated soft drinks fell 4 percent in the second quarter while non-carbonated drinks grew 3 percent. G2, PepsiCo said, will have 25 calories per 225g serving and is the first new Gatorade product since the original drink was introduced in 1967. The original lemon-lime Gatorade has 50 calories per serving. Purchase, New York-based PepsiCo said it would distribute G2 starting in December.

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