Sun, Apr 02, 2017 - Page 14 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

Semiconductors

Toshiba attracts large bids

Google and Amazon.com Inc joined a list of potential buyers eyeing Toshiba Corp’s lucrative memorychip business as the Japanese conglomerate seeks bidders to cover huge losses, the Yomiuri Shimbun said yesterday. Toshiba has reportedly completed the first round of bidding for the business, seen as key for the cash-strapped company to turn itself around. About 10 foreign companies and funds tendered bids, the daily said, quoting unnamed sources. The two US tech giants are expected to use Toshiba’s memory chips for their cloud services, it said. Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), which last year acquired Japanese electronics maker Sharp Corp, has apparently bid more than ¥2 trillion (US$18 billion), it added.

FINANCE

Lisbon sells bank to US firm

Portugal is selling the remnants of a bankrupt bank, Novo Banco, to US equity firm Lone Star Funds for 1 billion euros (US$1.06 billion). Its Central Bank on Friday announced that the Dallas, Texas-based fund is to buy 75 percent of the bank, while the remaining 25 percent would be sold later. The 1 billion euros are to be spent on recapitalizing Novo Banco, the so-called “good” bank salvaged from the 2014 bankruptcy of major lender Banco Espirito Santo, meaning that other Portuguese banks and its treasury would not yet — and might never — get back the 4.9 billion euros they lent to Novo Banco.

DATA SECURITY

McDonald’s confirms leak

McDonald’s Canada said on Friday that hackers stole the personal data of about 95,000 jobseekers from the fast food chain’s recruitment Web site over the past three years. The data were from people who had sought work with the company since March 2014. The Web portal targeted in the attack, which has been shut down, collected candidates’ names, addresses, e-mails, telephone numbers, employment histories and other relevant data, the company said in a statement. There were no signs so far that the stolen information had been misused, the company said, and apologized to those affected.

TOURISM

Iceland hikes tourism tax

Tourists keen to explore Iceland’s natural beauty are to pay more from next year, after Reykjavik on Friday announced a tax hike on the sector, which has exploded in recent years. The nation announced the end of an 11 percent reduced rate of value-added sales tax, saying it would make a typical holiday there about 4 percent more expensive. Tax on hotels, campsites, travel agent services, pools, spas and others would rise to the regular rate, which was itself reduced to 22.5 percent.

MACROECONOMICS

Spain credit outlook raised

Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC on Friday raised its outlook on Spain’s sovereign credit rating to “positive,” saying it believed the nation’s strong economic performance would continue over the next two years. The firm left the debt rating unchanged at “BBB+,” but said it could raise it within the next 24 months “if economic performance and budgetary consolidation continue in line with our expectations.” It predicts the Spanish economy would grow by 2.5 percentage points this year and 2.1 percentage points next year after expanding by 3.2 percentage points last year.

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