Fri, Oct 29, 2010 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

AUTOMOBILES

Nissan recalls vehicles

Nissan said yesterday it is recalling 2.14 million vehicles in the US, Japan, Europe and Asia, including the popular March and Mycra subcompacts, for an ignition problem that may stall the engine. No accidents have been reported that are suspected of being related to the defect, according to Yokohama-based Nissan Motor Co. A problem was found in an ignition-system part called the relay for vehicles produced from 2003 through 2006, including small cars like the March, Cube and Note, and about a dozen other models, such as the -Tiida sedan, Titan pickup and Infiniti QX56 luxury model.

SOUTH KOREA

Exports help double surplus

The nation’s current account surplus almost doubled last month compared to August on robust exports of ships and other key products, the central bank said yesterday. The surplus was US$4.06 billion last month compared to a revised US$2.19 billion the previous month. The figure was widely expected to bolster the won, which has risen steadily against the dollar this year despite repeated government intervention on the currency markets. In the January--September period, the surplus totaled US$23.73 billion, surpassing the central bank’s full-year target.

CHEMICALS

Bayer misses forecasts

German chemical company Bayer, maker of aspirin, said yesterday that its third--quarter net profit gained 12.4 percent to 280 million euros (US$386 million), well below analyst expectations. Bayer said it had taken 436 million euros in provisions for US court cases, including 386 million euros to settle legal action involving its Crop Science division in connection with genetically modified rice. Meanwhile, Bayer’s sales gained 16.1 percent to 8.58 billion euros in the three-month period, while core earnings before special items gained 10.5 percent to 1.66 billion euros.

CHEMICALS

Profits quintuple at BASF

German chemical group BASF said yesterday that strong demand worldwide pushed its third quarter net profit five times higher than in the same period a year earlier to 1.25 billion euros. The results confirmed a preliminary release last week, when BASF said sales had jumped by 23 percent to 15.8 billion euros amid a rebound in global economic activity. Sales in almost all of the group’s sectors increased in the third quarter, with the exception of agricultural solutions, it said.

ELECTRONICS

LG Q3 profit plunges 99%

LG Electronics said yesterday third-quarter net profit plunged 99 percent year-on-year, because of growing losses in its handset business and weak US and European demand for consumer electronics. The South Korean company, the world’s third-largest handset maker after Nokia and Samsung Electronics, posted a net profit of 7.57 billion won (US$6.7 million) in the July-to-September period, from 911.3 billion won a year earlier. It incurred an operating loss of 185.18 billion won compared to an 851 billion won profit a year earlier.

ELECTRONICS

NEC back in black

Japanese electronics maker NEC Corp said yesterday it returned to the black in the latest quarter after cutting costs and slashing its stake in a money-losing chip business. Net profit for the July-to-September quarter was ¥16.1 billion (US$200 million), reversing from a net loss of ¥9.8 billion a year earlier.

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