Economy to grow: poll
Nearly two-thirds of respondents said that the US economy would keep growing this year, a survey by the Washington-based National Association for Business Economics found. The survey results, which were to be released yesterday, also showed that, compared with the association’s previous survey in October last year, a smaller proportion of economists said companies’ sales were rising and fewer expected profit growth to increase. Corporate investments in new equipment has also cooled, the survey showed.
EU economy ‘OK’: banker
Central bank President Klaas Knot said that Europe’s economy was “very much okay,” despite worries over trade, slowing growth and uncertainty over Brexit. Speaking on Dutch television on Sunday, Knot, who also sits on the European Central Bank’s governing council, said subdued inflation was troubling, but it was “premature” to talk about a possible recession. Knot, usually viewed as one of the more hawkish members of the governing board, said the bloc would see “a few quarters of slightly lower growth, and that’s mostly due to foreign trade.”
Growth rebound tipped
Economic growth, which last year weakened to a three-year low, would rebound this year, boosted by spending for elections in May and helped by moderating prices, Secretary of Economic Planning Ernesto Pernia said. “With the declining inflation, domestic demand will strengthen,” Pernia said in an interview on Friday last week. Hitting the low-end of the 7 percent to 8 percent growth target this year would be “good enough” and can be done, he said. The nation’s GDP expanded 6.2 percent last year.
Tesco to cut jobs
Tesco PLC is to cut about 15,000 jobs and close meat, fish and delicatessen counters, the Mail on Sunday reported, citing unidentified industry sources. The retailer would also overhaul in-store bakeries and replace staff canteens with vending machines, the newspaper said. The plans are expected to affect the majority of Tesco’s 732 larger stores, the report said. A spokesman for Tesco told the Mail on Sunday that the company was always looking at ways to run its business more simply and efficiently.
Varo bid explored
The family of Hong Kong billionaire Henry Cheng (鄭家純), which controls a real-estate and jewelry empire, is exploring a bid for European fuel supplier Varo Energy BV, people with knowledge of the matter said. The companies have held talks about a deal that could value Varo Energy, backed by investors including Carlyle Group LP, at about 2 billion euros (US$2.3 billion) including debt, the people said. No final agreements have been reached, the people said.
LafargeHolcim gets boost
LafargeHolcim Ltd’s listed Philippines unit soared the most in more than a decade, after people with knowledge of the matter said the cement giant is exploring options for its business in the country. LafargeHolcim is weighing options for Holcim Philippines Inc, including a potential sale, the people said. The seller might seek to value the Philippines assets at about US$2.5 billion, although some suitors have indicated they think the business is worth less, the people said.
From India to China to the US, automakers cannot make vehicles — not that no one wants any, but because a more than US$450 billion industry for semiconductors got blindsided. How did both sides end up here? Over the past two weeks, automakers across the world have bemoaned the shortage of chips. Germany’s Audi, owned by Volkswagen AG, would delay making some of its high-end vehicles because of what chief executive officer Markus Duesmann called a “massive” shortfall in an interview with the Financial Times. The firm has furloughed more than 10,000 workers and reined in production. That is a further blow
MOBILE SMART: The Dimensity 1200 is 22 percent better in terms of performance than its predecessor, and 25 percent more power-efficient, the handset chip designer said MediaTek Inc (聯發科) yesterday unveiled its premium 5G processors — the Dimensity 1200 and Dimensity 1100 — as it vies for a larger slice of the world’s rapidly growing 5G smartphone market. Manufactured using Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (台積電) 6-nanometer process technology, the Dimensity 1200 processor performs 22 percent better than the previous generation Dimensity 1000+ processor, and is 25 percent more power-efficient, MediaTek said. Chinese smartphone brands Xiaomi Corp (小米) and Realme Mobile Telecommunications (Shenzhen) Co (銳爾覓移動通信) are to be the first adopters of the latest Dimensity chips, the companies said during a virtual media briefing. Xiaomi plans to equip its first
‘BROAD RANGE’: The US Department of Commerce intends to deny a significant number of license requests for exports to Huawei, an industry association said US President Donald Trump’s administration notified Huawei Technologies Co (華為) suppliers, including chipmaker Intel Corp, that it is revoking certain licenses to sell to the Chinese company and intends to reject dozens of other applications to supply the telecommunications firm, people familiar with the matter told reporters. The action — likely the last against Huawei under Trump — is the latest in a long-running effort to weaken the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker, which Washington sees as a national security threat. The notices came amid a flurry of US efforts against China in the final days of Trump’s administration. US president-elect Joe
Answering to a reported request by Germany to help address a chip shortage in its auto industry, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) yesterday said that it was in talks with domestic chip suppliers. Foreign media over the weekend reported that German Minister of Economic Affairs Peter Altmaier had sent a request to Taipei to ask Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) to cooperate more closely with German automakers to provide microchips and sensors, to bridge a shortage that has emerged over the past few months. The MOEA said that it had not yet received the request and could therefore not elaborate