Sun, Sep 13, 2015 - Page 15 News List

Business News Quick Take



Federal deficit down 50%

The federal government ran up a much smaller budget deficit last month than a year ago, remaining on track to record the smallest annual deficit in eight years. The Treasury Department on Friday said that the deficit totaled US$64.4 billion last month, a drop of 50 percent from the same month a year ago. Much of that improvement reflected quirks in timing related to the calendar. Through the first 11 months of this budget year ending on Sept. 30, the deficit is running 10 percent below last year’s level. The Congressional Budget Office is forecasting that the deficit for the full year will drop to US$426 billion, down 11.8 percent from the previous year as a stronger economy brings in more tax revenue.


Airbnb acquires Vamo

Airbnb Inc, the peer-to-peer accommodation platform, has acquired the trip-planning tool Vamo for an undisclosed amount. Under the deal, Airbnb will take on the staff and technology of Vamo, but will shut down by Oct. 1 the tool that uses Big Data to help travelers find deals for multi-destination trips. California-based Airbnb, which allows property dwellers and owners to rent a room or entire home, has about 40 million users worldwide. Traditional hotel chains see Airbnb as a rival and accuse it of helping people avoid taxes and of hosting illegal hotels on its Web site.


Marvell shares plunge 16%

Marvell Technology Group Ltd shares plunged the sharpest in almost 13 years on Friday, after disclosing an internal investigation of its accounting and reporting weakening demand for personal computer parts. The chipmaker’s shares dropped 16 percent to close at US$8.84 in New York, the biggest single-day decline since October 2002. The stock has tumbled 39 percent this year. The investigation is focusing on whether revenue was recognized earlier than it should have been and whether senior management “set an appropriate tone for an effective control environment,” the company said in a statement.


GoDaddy wins Oscars suit

GoDaddy Inc prevailed in a cybersquatting lawsuit brought by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which accused the Internet domain registrar of illegally profiting off its trademarks, including for the Oscar telecasts. In a 129-page decision on Thursday, US District Judge Andre Birotte in Los Angeles said the Academy failed to show that GoDaddy acted in bad faith by letting customers purchase 293 domain names such as,, and Birotte ruled after a four-day, non-jury trial early last month.


New taxes unveiled

The government has unveiled a host of new taxes to boost revenues hit by a plunge in the price of oil, a key export. On Thursday, Minister of Commerce Bekhti Belaib met with the head of the IMF’s mission in the country, Jean Francois Dauphin, to discuss the crisis. The new budget announced by the government on Wednesday raises taxes on diesel, 3G Internet and electricity consumption. It also raises customs duties on imported electronics.

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