Wed, Dec 06, 2017 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

SHIPPING

FedEx, UPS up on tax hopes

FedEx Corp and United Parcel Service Inc (UPS) yesterday surged the most in more than a year on expectations that they will reap particularly big gains from the tax overhaul package making its way through the US Congress. Shipping companies like FedEx and UPS, as well as airlines and railroads, are especially well-positioned to benefit from a provision allowing them to expense capital equipment immediately, instead of over time. FedEx jumped 4.7 percent to US$241.63 at 1:31pm in New York after soaring as much as 5.3 percent, its biggest intraday gain since September last year. UPS gained as much as 4 percent, the most intraday gain since July 2015.

UNITED KINGDOM

New car registrations down

New car registrations dropped 5 percent in the year to date, putting them on track for the first annual fall since 2011, hit by weaker consumer confidence and uncertainty over the future of diesel, an industry body said yesterday. Sales slumped 11.2 percent last month to 163,541 cars, according to data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, with demand falling among business, fleet and individual buyers. Diesel has been particularly hit this year, with registrations declining 16.1 percent between January and last month, while gasoline rose 3.1 percent in the same period.

RETAIL

FamilyMart mulls HK sale

FamilyMart Uny Holdings Co, Japan’s second-largest convenience store operator, is considering a sale of its Hong Kong retail business, people with knowledge of the matter said. It is seeking to fetch close to US$100 million from any sale, one of the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. Deliberations are at an early stage, and Tokyo-based FamilyMart Uny could decide to keep the business, the people said. In Hong Kong, FamilyMart Uny runs department stores targeting the territory’s affluent middle class. Sales in Hong Kong’s supermarket industry fell 0.1 percent in the first 10 months of the year, lagging the 1.2 percent gain in the territory’s overall retail industry, government statistics show.

TECHNOLOGY

Tencent shares decline

Shares of Chinese tech giant Tencent Holdings Ltd (騰訊) yesterday fell for the fourth time in five sessions as angst over US technology stocks returned, widening the spread between its share price and analysts’ price targets to an unprecedented 19 percent. This is after US$55 billion in value was wiped out from its Nov. 21 high through Friday with global investors cashing in some of this year’s best equity performers. However, of the 40 stock watchers surveyed by Bloomberg, 98 percent maintain a “buy” rating on Tencent — that is the highest proportion ever.

AUSTRALIA

Interest rates unchanged

The central bank yesterday left interest rates at a record low, sparing the country a rude shock ahead of Christmas, as wage growth stagnates and household debt rises. The Reserve Bank slashed rates by 300 basis points to 1.5 percent between November 2011 and August last year. The decision to stand pat came a day before the release of July-to-September economic growth data, with economists forecasting 0.8 percent expansion quarter-on-quarter, lifting the annual rate to 3.1 percent. The Australian dollar edged up to 76.40 US cents after the announcement,from 76.30 US cents before.

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