Manufacturing sector grows
The key manufacturing sector last month continued to grow at an above-average rate, as the effects of back-to-back hurricanes over the summer receded, according to an industry survey released on Friday. Output spiked and employment remains strong to produce “a really strong report” on the sector, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said. The ISM’s purchasing managers’ index slowed to 58.2 percent from 58.7 in October. Any reading above 50 indicates growth in the sector.
Funds wary of megacap tech
The hedge-fund love affair with megacap tech might still be raging, but it looks like actively managed mutual funds have grown less fond of the group. “Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Google [FAAMG] were five of the six stocks with the largest declines in fund positioning last quarter,” Goldman Sachs Group Inc said in a note. All told, large-cap mutual funds reduced exposure to the so-called FAAMG cohort, according to data compiled by Goldman Sachs as of Sept. 30, but information technology shares at large still make up most of their holdings.
Government mulls stake sale
The country plans to sell a minority stake in a state-owned telecommunications provider and hold an auction for a fourth industry operator. The government of the oil-rich west African country has received several expressions of interest from local and foreign investors in the new telecommunications license, state-owned news agency Angop said on Friday, citing Minister of Telecommunications Jose Carvalho da Rocha.
Ukraine assistance withheld
The bloc on Friday said it is withholding 600 million euros (US$713.84 million) in financial assistance to Ukraine because it has not made enough progress on a wide-ranging program of reforms demanded by the bloc. The bloc has already paid out 1.2 billion euros in low-interest loans to Ukraine since 2015. However, the money is conditional on Kiev implementing reforms aimed at tackling rampant corruption, modernizing the economy and strengthening democratic structures.
Two Uber executives quit
Two of Uber Technologies Inc’s most senior remaining security executives on Friday resigned and another took medical leave after chief executive officer Dara Khosrowshahi criticized past practices, a source familiar with the situation said. Uber last week said it fired chief security officer Joe Sullivan over his role in last year’s data breach.
Alibaba talking to SenseTime
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (阿里巴巴) is in discussions to invest about 1.5 billion yuan (US$227 million) and become the largest backer of Chinese facial recognition start-up SenseTime Group Ltd (商湯科技), a person familiar with the matter said. Alibaba is keen on owning a sizable stake, but has no interest in exerting control over the artificial intelligence start-up, the person said. SenseTime, which says it is valued at more than US$2 billion, is incorporated in Hong Kong, but operates mainly in China.
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
A Bollywood actor’s face tattooed on his arm, Sandeep Bacche’s devotion shocks few in India where stars enjoy semi-divine status, but even there the hallowed silver screen might be losing its shine to streaming services and pandemic fears. “Whenever things get better and theaters begin operations, I will watch three movies a day for sure just as a way to celebrate,” said the Mumbai rickshaw driver, who is recovering from the virus himself. However, others might not join the party. With cinemas shut for months due to a COVID-19 lockdown, and little prospect they will reopen soon, frustrated Bollywood producers have turned to