Sat, Jun 23, 2018 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

MALAYSIA

Central bank head appointed

An official who probed the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal, which helped topple the corruption-plagued former regime, has been appointed as the new central bank governor, the government said yesterday. Nor Shamsiah Mohamad Yunus is returning to Bank Negara Malaysia to take up the top job almost two years after leaving her post as deputy governor, a spokesman for Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said. Former Bank Negara Malaysia governor Muhammad Ibrahim quit earlier this month after claims emerged that the institution helped former prime minister Najib Razak’s regime by purchasing government land in a bid to cover debts racked up by 1MDB.

CRYPTOCURRENCIES

Miner stole power: Xinhua

Chinese police have seized more than 200 computers used to mine the cryptocurrencies bitcoin and ethereum after a man tried to swindle the electricity company to avoid the bills he faced to power his operation, Xinhua news agency said yesterday. A man surnamed Ma (馬) allegedly stole 150,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity in more than a month, Xinhua said, adding that his daily power bill was more than 6,000 yuan (US$924). Police uncovered his scam when they found the electricity meter for the cryptocurrency mining operation had been short-circuited, “which was likely an attempt to dodge the power bill,” the news agency said.

FRANCE

Private growth tops forecast

The private-sector economy expanded at a quicker-than-expected pace this month as stronger services growth outweighed a further slowdown in manufacturing. A composite purchasing managers’ index by IHS Markit Ltd climbed to 55.6, from 54.2 last month, beating the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey for an unchanged reading. Services firms were supported by increases in new work. However, the manufacturing sector faced a “number of headwinds” this month, Markit Economics director Paul Smith said. Those included delivery delays and rising price pressures for metals, with some respondents saying that higher tariffs had an inflationary impact.

MEXICO

Falling peso leads to hike

The Bank of Mexico on Thursday raised its key interest rate to 7.75 percent, citing a drop in the peso and uncertainty over upcoming elections and trade negotiations with the US. The 0.25 percentage point hike was largely expected by markets after the peso crossed the threshold of 20 to the US dollar earlier this month. The central bank said in a statement that the factors behind the volatility included a lack of progress in efforts to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement with the US and Canada, as well as uncertainty regarding July 1 elections.

ELECTRONICS

Sharp aims to raise billions

Sharp Corp aims to raise as much as ¥216.2 billion (US$1.96 billion) in a public share sale, with the proceeds to be used to purchase preferred stock and on research and development, the Osaka, Japan-based company said yesterday. Sharp’s share price has declined 7.3 percent since it registered to sell the shares on June 5. Sharp is well into a turnaround since Foxconn Technology Group (富士康) bought the company in 2016 and injected money for capital investment. Sharp is using the bulk of the proceeds to buy back 200,000 preferred shares and retire the stock, it said, adding that the remainder is to be used on capital expenditure and research.

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