Piaget slows in China
Luxury Swiss watchmaker Piaget SA said its sales in China may grow by less than 10 percent this year — which would be the slowest in eight years — as Chinese consumers take advantage of the stronger yuan to travel abroad to buy premium goods. Piaget, which makes the US$53,000 Altiplano Skeleton 1200S, is also tempering the pace of store openings in China, Piaget’s Asia-Pacific president Dimitri Gouten said on Saturday in Shanghai. Sales may lag behind the double-digit growth rates since in 2005, he said. The watchmaker, which is owned by Cie. Financiere Richemont SA, has 20 boutiques in China and 50 around the world.
Morgan Stanley settles suits
Morgan Stanley said it settled lawsuits brought by investors over two structured investment vehicles called Cheyne and Rhinebridge. The investors, led by Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank and King County, Washington, also agreed to drop their claims against Moody’s Investors Service Inc and Standard & Poor’s, the investors said in a notice filed on Friday in a US federal court in Manhattan. The plaintiffs claimed the defendants gave the vehicles inflated ratings in two separate suits filed in federal courts in Manhattan in 2008 and 2009.
Chevron unit resumes output
Chevron Corp has resumed operations on Friday in a unit at its refinery in Richmond in California’s Bay Area that was shut down after a massive fire last year. Company officials said that crews had begun feeding crude oil through the unit knocked out by the fire on Aug. 6 last year. Chevron chief financial officer Patricia Yarrington said the unit is expected to be fully operational during the second quarter.