Sat, Aug 26, 2017 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take



Budget surplus reported

The nation notched up a record budget surplus in the first half of the year, official figures showed yesterday. All levels of government — federal, regional and municipal — took in a combined 18.3 billion euros (US$21.6 billion) more than they spent, data from federal statistics authority Destatis showed. Government revenue from taxes, social contributions and other sources amounted to 724 billion euros, a 4.3 percent increase on the same period last year. Spending grew at the same pace, adding 4.3 percent to reach 705 billion euros. With GDP in the first half of the year at 1.6 trillion euros, the budget surplus stood at about 1.1 percent of GDP.


Consumer prices rise

Consumer prices rose for the seventh straight month last month, chiefly due to energy costs, government data showed yesterday. After stripping out the volatile cost of fresh food, the inflation rate came in at 0.5 percent, in line with market expectations, according to the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Excluding fresh food and energy, prices edged up just 0.1 percent last month. The figures are still way off the Bank of Japan’s inflation target of 2 percent — which is seen as crucial to conquering Japan’s long struggle to slay deflation.


Flyadeal to start operations

Saudi Arabia’s new budget carrier Flyadeal on Thursday said it would start flying next month, as the kingdom seeks to expand air services to boost tourism in an overhaul of its oil-dependent economy. Flyadeal, a subsidiary of the state-owned Saudi Arabian Airlines Corp, is to operate a fleet of eight Airbus A320ceo aircraft and initially fly domestic routes before expanding in the Middle East. The airline said it would commence operations on the Saudi National Day on Sept. 23, with the entire fleet expected to be delivered by the middle of next year.


Spotify, Warner ink deal

Spotify Ltd signed a new global agreement with Warner Music Group, giving the online-music pioneer long-term deals with all three major record labels as it prepares to go public. Warner Music announced the deal on Thursday via social media. Terms were not disclosed. Spotify, the biggest on-demand streaming service with more than 60 million paying subscribers, plans to skip a traditional share sale and list directly on the New York Stock Exchange late this year or early next year, people familiar with the matter said. Vivendi SA’s Universal Music Group and Sony Corp’s music division signed new accords with Spotify earlier this year.


US charges managers

US authorities have charged two managers at French bank Societe Generale with taking part in a scheme to manipulate the global US dollar LIBOR benchmark interest rate. Danielle Sindzingre, 54, the bank’s former global head of treasury, and her subordinate Muriel Bescond, 49, its former head of treasury in Paris, were accused in an indictment filed in a New York federal court of submitting false information about the rates at which the bank was able to borrow money. The two defendants are not in the US and John Marzulli, a spokesman for US prosecutors in Brooklyn, declined to comment on whether or when they might be extradited.

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