Fri, Oct 03, 2014 - Page 15 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

MEDICAL DEVICES

Philips to appeal ruling

Royal Philips NV says it is to book a US$467 million charge in the third quarter after losing a patent lawsuit to smaller US competitor Masimo Corp. Masimo sued in 2009, saying Philips’ healthcare division had used its patented technology to build machines that measure the amount of oxygen in a patient’s blood without requiring a sample. A jury at the US District Court for Delaware sided with Masimo on Wednesday, rejecting Philips’ arguments that the patents involved were “obvious” and should never have been granted. Philips’ CEO Frans van Houten said yesterday that the company would appeal the decision.

AUTOMAKERS

US sales best in eight years

US auto sales in the third quarter were the best in eight years, but mixed September results from leading automakers on Wednesday indicated the industry’s torrid summer pace is slowing. Industry sales last month rose 9 percent, to 1.24 million vehicles, according to research firm Autodata. The annualized sales rate slowed to 16.4 million, Autodata said, above last year’s 15.4 million, but well below the 17.5 million pace in August. General Motors Co, Chrysler Group, Toyota Motor Corp, Honda Motor Co, Nissan Motor Co and Hyundai Motor Co all reported year-to-year sales gains on Wednesday, but Ford Motor Co said sales fell slightly from a year ago.

CURRENCY

Cuba to print more pesos

Cuba’s central bank head is giving details about the elimination of a special currency, saying that the shift would require putting more pesos into circulation and issuing higher-denomination bills. Elimination of the stronger currency is one of the toughest challenges facing Cuba’s struggling socialist economy, forcing officials to eliminate a distorted double set of prices for many goods without spawning inflation. The convertible peso is worth about US$1, or 24 local pesos. The highest denomination local bill is 100 pesos. The state news agency reported on Wednesday that Central Bank president Ernesto Medina said consumer prices would not change.

STOCK MARKET

Order error due to ‘fat finger’

Hundreds of billions of dollars worth of stock orders in some of Japan’s biggest firms had to be canceled on Wednesday, officials said, possibly the result of a “fat finger” error. Over-the-counter orders were placed for shares in 42 companies worth dozens of trillions of yen (hundreds of billions of US dollars) in the morning, but were later canceled, an official at the Japan Securities Dealers Association said. The biggest order was for 1.96 billion Toyota shares, but the trades were canceled before being placed, an association official said. Other canceled orders included shares in Japan’s biggest bank, Mitsubushi UFJ, brokerage giant Nomura Holdings and camera maker Canon.

BANKING

Bank CEO named chairman

Bank of America chief executive Brian Moynihan has been named chairman, effective immediately. The lender said on Wednesday that its board of directors elected Moynihan to succeed Charles Holiday Jr. Moynihan has been chief executive of the Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank since January 2010. Like its competitors, Bank of America is still dealing with the fallout from the financial crisis that began in 2007 and the subsequent collapse of the housing market. In August, it agreed to pay a record US$16.65 billion settlement for its role in selling shoddy mortgage bonds.

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