MF Global to pay US$1.3bn
Failed brokerage MF Global is to pay US$1.2 billion in restitution plus a US$100 million penalty to resolve charges it took money from customer accounts as it collapsed in 2011, US regulators said on Monday. The Commodities Futures Trading Commission, which sued MF Global and some employees over the October 2011 collapse, said a federal consent order issued on the case would “ensure customers recover their losses sustained when MF Global failed.” The payments arise out of charges that MF Global raided customer accounts for more than US$1 billion as the brokerage was collapsing due in part to bad bets on European sovereign debt.
FDI into China rises
Foreign direct investment (FDI) into China rose 5.77 percent year-on-year to US$97 billion in the first 10 months of the year, the Chinese Ministry of Commerce said yesterday. For last month alone, FDI increased 1.24 percent to US$8.42 billion, the ministry said. The ministry in a statement that in the first 10 months, “investment in China from the 10 Asian countries and regions, the EU and the US maintained rather fast growth.” Investment from the EU jumped 22.3 percent year-on-year to US$6.4 billion during the January-to-October period, while that from the US increased 12.4 percent to US$3.04 billion.
Keep rate unchanged: KDI
The nation’s state think tank yesterday said the country should keep its key interest rate unchanged at 2.5 percent for the next six months. In its biannual economic outlook, the Korea Development Institute (KDI) also suggested the government should continue with a stimulant fiscal policy. KDI revised upward by 0.2 percentage points its economic growth forecast for this year to 2.8 percent and by 0.1 percentage point to 3.7 percent for next year.
Share sale raises US$304m
The government raised NZ$365 million (US$304 million) from the sale of shares in Air New Zealand Ltd, completing the third of four planned asset sales before next year’s election. The government sold 221 million shares at NZ$1.65 apiece, reducing its stake in the national carrier to 53 percent from 73 percent, Minister of Finance Bill English said in a statement. Air New Zealand shares last traded on Friday, at NZ$1.65.
PayPal in Uber app deal
PayPal, the online payment service that succeeded by wedding itself to EBay Inc, is moving into more modern marketplaces through a deal with car-service company Uber Technologies Inc. Users of Uber’s popular mobile-booking application were to be able to pay with PayPal starting yesterday in the US, France, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands, Paypal president David Marcus said in an interview. Riders who use PayPal before Nov. 28 are to receive US$15 toward their next trip.
Blackstone’s Leung leaves
Blackstone Group’s Antony Leung (梁錦松) is leaving his role as Greater China chairman to lead a Hong Kong-based property conglomerate, the private equity firm said yesterday. Leung, Hong Kong’s former financial secretary, will become the group chief executive officer for Hong Kong-based property conglomerate the Nan Fung Group (南豐), starting in February next year. He is also to retain an advisory role at Blackstone.