Sat, Jul 12, 2014 - Page 15 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

ENERGY

IEA cuts oil demand forecast

The International Energy Agency (IEA) yesterday cut its forecast for this year’s oil demand to 92.7 million barrels a day due to weaker than expected global economic growth. The revised forecast shows a drop of 130,000 barrels a day from the agency’s prediction a month ago. It reflects the “growing realization that macroeconomic conditions, although still likely to strengthen in the second half of the year, will probably now do so at a less dramatic pace than previously forecast,” the agency said. On the supply side, members of OPEC pumped out 40,000 barrels a day less in last month to 30.03 million on a daily basis, with decline in Iraqi output partly offset by small increases from Saudi Arabia, Iran, Nigeria and Angola.

MACROECONOMICS

Malaysian interest rates up

Malaysia’s central bank on Thursday raised its benchmark interest rate for the first time in three years to curb inflation and household debt as economic growth picks up. Bank Negara Malaysia said it raised its overnight policy rate, used by banks to set lending rates, by a quarter percentage point, to 3.25 percent. The rate was last raised in May 2011. The central bank said the economy, which grew 6.2 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, is expected to remain on a steady growth path. It said inflation, which rose to 3.2 percent in May, is above average but contained.

INNOVATION

LG presents roll-up TV

LG Display Co has shown an 18-inch flexible display that can be rolled into the shape of a thin cylinder. The South Korean display panel maker said yesterday the display has a resolution of 1,200 pixels by 810 pixels and maintains its function when it is rolled up. While that resolution would fall within the range of high-definition, images on the display would not look as sharp as the latest flat displays that boast ultra-high definition. LG touted its technology as a significant advance, allowing the company to produce TVs that are larger than 50 inches diagonally and can be rolled up. LG said the technology would make large TVs portable.

ELECTRONICS

World Cup boosts TV sales

Sales of flat-panel televisions across Southeast Asia rose sharply in May as demand soared in the soccer-crazy region ahead of the World Cup, a report said on Thursday. Nearly 957,000 units were sold across Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, a 15 percent jump compared with the average sales volume in February-April, global market research firm GfK said. TV sales in Thailand showed the sharpest increase, followed by Vietnam and Singapore, according to GfK.

INTERNET

Amazon launches storage

Amazon on Thursday launched an online service for collaborating on work projects in a challenge to tech titan Google. Zocalo is being billed as a secure, managed venue for storing, sharing and amassing feedback on documents, spreadsheets, presentations, Web page, and other digital tools typically used to get modern-day jobs done. The service has a monthly fee of US$5 per user and comes with 200 gigabytes of data storage. It will compete with a suite of Google Docs software and also challenge companies such as Dropbox which provide online storage for documents, photos and other digital belongings.

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