Thu, Dec 09, 2010 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

SEMICONDUCTORS

TI lowers forecast range

Texas Instruments Inc (TI), whose chips are used in everything from cellphones to cars, has slightly lowered the high end of its fourth-quarter earnings and revenue forecast. TI vice president Ron Slaymaker said on a conference call on Tuesday that demand for chips for laptops, hard disk drives and televisions had been weak, while chips for video games and smart phones were in strong demand. TI now expects net income of US$0.61 to US$0.65 per share in the current quarter. It earlier predicted US$0.59 to US$0.67 per share. It also expects revenue of between US$3.43 billion and US$3.57 billion. Analysts are looking for about US$3.5 billion on average.

ECONOMY

IMF welcomes Irish budget

The IMF on Tuesday welcomed the Irish parliament’s approval of next year’s budget, which meets EU and IMF requirements to secure an 85 billion euro (US$112.3 billion) international bailout loan for the country. “We welcome approval of the 2011 budget ... This is a clear sign of Ireland’s strong commitment to tackle its problems and harness the impressive growth potential of this open and dynamic economy,” the Washington-based IMF said in a statement. Ireland on Tuesday announced an annual budget that includes 6 billion euros in savings via tax hikes and spending cuts, aimed at slashing its public deficit from about 32 percent of GDP this year to 9.4 percent next year.

TRADE

German exports slide

Germany’s Federal Statistical Office yesterday said that exports dropped 1.1 percent on the month in October — giving up some of the ground they gained the previous month. The agency said that Germany — the world’s second--biggest exporter after China — exported 86.8 billion euros in goods and services worth in October. The decline followed a strong 3 percent gain in September. In year-on-year terms, exports were up 19.8 percent. Imports were up 0.3 percent on the month and 21 percent year-on-year in October at 72.6 billion euros.

BANKING

BOA agrees to settle

Bank of America Corp (BOA) will pay US$137 million to settle allegations by authorities that it defrauded buyers of municipal bond derivatives. On Tuesday, the US Department of Justice said the bank would pay restitution to federal and state agencies as part of its admission of bid--rigging and other anti--competitive practices in selling municipal bond derivatives to various state agencies, municipalities, school districts and nonprofits. The settlement is the latest in a far-reaching, industrywide probe that dates to 2007 of the municipal bond derivatives market.

INTERNET

Amazon plans cloud books

Amazon will make its Kindle electronic books available for reading on Web browsers beginning early next year, with people’s digital collections saved in the Internet “cloud.” Amazon executives on Tuesday showed off “Kindle for the Web” at a Google press event introducing a new, swifter version of the California technology giant’s Chrome software for navigating the Internet. Kindle for the Web will be launched early next year and the application will be available in a Google Web Store that made its debut on Tuesday. Kindle books will be accessible through any standard browser, which will enable new features such as being able to do Internet searches on words highlighted in digital works.

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