Lufthansa crew strike
Germany’s Lufthansa yesterday said it was working on an emergency plan, but would still need to cancel numerous outgoing flights from Frankfurt and Duesseldorf airports due to a cabin crew strike. The airline said it would still be able to offer at least eight of its long-haul flights from Frankfurt after the strike starts at 2pm. It has also reserved 2,500 hotel rooms in the city. The UFO union said earlier this week its members would go on strike for a week, starting yesterday, if its demands were not met.
AstraZeneca to buy ZS
AstraZeneca PLC, the UK’s second-largest drugmaker, yesterday agreed to buy ZS Pharma Inc of California for US$2.7 billion in cash to gain a potential blockbuster medicine for a deadly condition. ZS Pharma holders will get US$90 per share, London-based AstraZeneca said in a statement. ZS’s board agreed to the transaction.
Industrial output drops 1.1%
Industrial production unexpectedly dropped in September as a slowdown in China and other emerging markets took its toll. Output, adjusted for seasonal swings and inflation, fell 1.1 percent from August, when it declined a revised 0.6 percent, data from the Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy showed yesterday. Industrial production fell 0.3 percent in the third quarter from the previous period as manufacturing output dropped. In September, factory production declined 1.4 percent from the previous month.
ArcelorMittal profit falls 29%
ArcelorMittal SA’s third-quarter profit fell 29 percent on a rout in steel prices amid record Chinese exports. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) declined to US$1.35 billion from US$1.9 billion a year earlier, the world’s largest steelmaker said yesterday. The company reduced its full-year EBITDA forecast to US$5.2 billion to US$5.4 billion from US$6 billion to US$7 billion. ArcelorMittal’s earnings from its iron ore mines has dropped after a glut weighed on prices.
Auto sales rise 11.3%
Passenger-vehicle sales increased at the fastest pace in seven months after the government cut a tax on car purchases to boost sagging demand in the world’s largest auto market. Retail deliveries of cars, SUVs and multipurpose vehicles rose 11.3 percent to 1.85 million units last month, the biggest monthly gain since March, according to the China Passenger Car Association. Retail sales through October gained 6.4 percent to 16.2 million units.
Ad-blockers hurt Facebook
Facebook Inc on Thursday warned investors in a regulatory filing that its revenue could be adversely affected by technology that blocks advertisements. Ad-blocking tools, which people use to screen out marketing messages, have occasionally affected Facebook’s revenue, especially on desktop computers, the company said in a quarterly filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
Allianz profit down 15%
Allianz SE, Europe’s biggest insurer, yesterday said third-quarter profit dropped 15 percent as earnings at its property and casualty and asset management units declined. Net income fell to 1.36 billion euros (US$1.48 billion) from 1.61 billion euros a year earlier.
Polytronics Technology Corp (聚鼎科技) yesterday announced that it is buying Henkel AG’s thermal clad dielectric material (TCLAD) business division for US$26 million as the Taiwanese firm aims to improve its technology, product portfolio and revenue performance. Polytronics, headquartered in the Hsinchu Science Park (新竹科學園區), is a supplier of protection components and heat dissipation materials. The firm entered the metallic heat-dissipation substrate market in 2007 and developed a unique solventless production process. Its board of directors approved signing an agreement with Henkel to acquire the German chemical firm’s TCLAD division in the US. The purchase includes all assets and business interests, including equipment,
SIZE MATTERS: Medium-sized hotels that do not have the support of parent groups are more vulnerable and are forced to take action, a REPro Knight Frank researcher said About 50 hotels across Taiwan are seeking to exit the market as they succumb to the bleak business outlook amid international travel restrictions imposed to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Yomi Hotel (優美飯店) on Minsheng E Road, Sec 1, in Taipei is seeking to transfer ownership with an asking price of NT$950 million (US$32.15 million) and a pledge for a lease contract that guarantees a 3 percent return. The budget hotel, with room rates that start from NT$1,400 per night, maintains normal operations, but has been struggling since March, when the government placed restrictions on inbound and outbound travel. Occupancy rates for hotels in
With the US dollar expected to weaken in the next 12 months due to near-zero interest rates, investors should consider purchasing US corporate bonds, Standard Chartered Bank Taiwan Ltd (渣打台灣銀行) said on Thursday. The bank said that the US Federal Reserve since last month has been buying bonds issued by US companies to curb default rates. The US dollar is forecast to be weaker against the pound, the euro and the yen, as well as the Canadian dollar, the Swedish krona and the Swiss franc, as the greenback lacks high investment returns after the Fed in March slashed the benchmark interest rate
‘SENSITIVE MARKETS’: The previously unannounced project would involve the company handing over control of data to a third party to sidestep privacy concerns Google has abandoned plans to offer a major new cloud service in China and other politically sensitive countries due in part to concerns over geopolitical tensions and the COVID-19 pandemic, two employees familiar with the matter said, revealing the challenges for US tech giants to secure business in those markets. In May, the search giant shut down the initiative, known as “Isolated Region” and which sought to address nations’ desires to control data within their borders, the employees said. The action was considered a “massive strategy shift,” said one of the employees, who added that Isolated Region had involved hundreds of employees