Temasek cuts SingTel stake
Singaporean investment firm Temasek said yesterday it would cut its stake in SingTel from 54.4 percent to 51.9 percent by selling 400 million shares in the local telecoms giant. Temasek’s sale of SingTel shares came a day after it was reported to be sounding out potential buyers for its 18 percent stake in British bank Standard Chartered, worth ￡6 billion (US$9.7 billion).
New Nook tablets launched
Barnes & Noble is rolling out two new versions of its Nook tablet. The company said yesterday that its new Nook HD would come in two sizes, one with a 7-inch screen (measured diagonally), starting at US$199, and one with a new 9-inch screen, called the Nook HD+, starting at US$269. Barnes & Noble is also increasing the services the Nook offers, adding a video purchase and rental service.
Consumer confidence falls
Consumer confidence slipped 2 points this month from last month amid gloom over rising unemployment and a yawning budget gap, the national statistics office said yesterday. The consumer confidence index fell to 85 points from 87 in July and 90 in June, figures released by INSEE showed. Labor Minister Michel Sapin also said unemployment had breached the symbolic 3 million mark to about 10 percent.
Consumer confidence rises
Consumer confidence jumped this month to the highest level since February, bolstered by a brighter hiring outlook. The Conference Board said on Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index rose to 70.3. That is up from 61.3 last month, which was revised higher. And it is the highest reading since February, when the economy added 259,000 jobs. The reading is still below the healthy 90 level.
Industrial production drops
Industrial production unexpectedly declined for the first time in four months last month as companies reduced output of electronics. Manufacturing fell 2.2 percent from a year earlier after a revised 2.5 percent gain in July, the Economic Development Board said yesterday. Electronics production declined 7.3 percent from a year earlier last month, while pharmaceutical output rose 13.6 percent. Chemicals increased 6.6 percent, the report showed.
Google Maps goes diving
Google late on Tuesday began letting users of its online mapping service take virtual scuba dives to explore precious living reefs being surveyed by scientists. The first underwater panoramic images were added to Google Maps with the help of Catlin Seaview Survey scientific expedition. A small team of Catlin divers used a special camera to capture panoramic imagery woven together at Google Maps and in a special Street View online gallery to let people swim along without getting wet.
Yahoo replaces CFO
Yahoo is bringing in a new chief financial officer (CFO) as recently hired Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer prepares to share her vision for turning around the troubled Internet company. Software industry veteran Ken Goldman will replace Tim Morse as Yahoo’s CFO in a reshuffling announced on Tuesday. The 63-year-old Goldman is leaving computer security software specialist Fortinet Inc to become Yahoo’s CFO on Oct. 22.