Mon, Sep 11, 2017 - Page 14 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

BANKING

Forced divestment unlikely

Australian banks are likely to get out of their wealth-management businesses without the need for government to force divestment, according to the head of a parliamentary banking inquiry. “You will see over time banks will get out of their wealth management businesses because it is an area that has caused them problems and it’s a relatively small proportion of their business,” ruling Liberal Party lawmaker David Coleman told Sky News Australia yesterday. “I’m not sure I would support forced divestment.”

EGYPT

Inflation eased last month

The nation’s inflation eased last month, signaling that the surge in prices that followed the government’s latest round of subsidy cuts may have peaked. The annual rate for urban areas dropped to 31.9 percent from 33 percent in July, according to data released yesterday by the official statistics agency. Prices rose 1.1 percent on the month, compared with 3.2 percent in July, a month after fuel and utility prices were raised.

TRADE

HK-ASEAN pact ready

Hong Kong and ASEAN will sign a free-trade agreement (FTA) and a related investment agreement in November, according to a statement issued by the territory’s government on Saturday. The agreements are comprehensive in scope and would give the territory greater access to the ASEAN markets, create new business opportunities and enhance trade and investment flows, according to Hong Kong Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau (邱騰華). The trade negotiations between Hong Kong and ASEAN started in July 2014 and were completed in July this year.

FOREIGN RESERVES

China sees more gains

China’s foreign-exchange reserves posted a seventh straight gain last month as the yuan rose in its best monthly performance in at least a decade. The stockpile climbed US$11 billion to US$3.09 trillion, the People’s Bank of China said on Thursday. The figure is compared with a US$3.1 trillion estimate in a Bloomberg survey. Reserves denominated in the IMF reserve currency known as Special Drawing Rights were at SDR 2.19 trillion, little changed from July.

INVESTMENT

MIT portfolio gains 14.3%

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) posted an investment gain of 14.3 percent in fiscal 2017 as the endowment’s value reached US$14.8 billion. The school’s investment management company oversees a total of US$23.3 billion of endowment, retirement and operating funds, according to a statement on Friday. MIT, based in Cambridge, posted a gain of 0.8 percent last year. Its endowment is the sixth-largest in higher education in the US, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The value of the fund increased 12.1 percent in the 12 months through June 30.

INVESTMENT

CVC eyes Middle East

CVC Capital Partners is considering its first investment in the Middle East as Europe’s largest private equity firm works to expand its business into new areas. The London-based buyout firm has considered potential targets including United Arab Emirates-based shisha maker Al Fakher Tobacco Trading as well as education companies, people familiar with the matter said. It was also considering a bid for a stake in Emaar Properties PJSC’s entertainment division.

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