Sun, Apr 14, 2019 - Page 15 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

INTERNET

Idealo files Google suit

Berlin-based Idealo GmbH, a German price comparison platform, on Friday said it has filed a suit against Alphabet Inc’s Google search business over allegations that it has abused its dominant position by favoring its own price comparison service in search results. Idealo said it had submitted the complaint to the state court in Berlin. Idealo said its suit is based on a 2017 decision by the European Commission to fine Google 2.42 billion euros (US$2.74 billion at the current exchange rate) for giving unfair advantage to its own comparison shopping service.

PHARMACEUTICALS

Merck to buy Versum

German chemicals and pharmaceuticals giant Merck KgaA on Friday said that it had signed a 5.8 billion euro deal to buy Arizona-based Versum Materials Inc, which supplies chemicals, gases and equipment for semiconductor manufacturing. With sales of about 1.2 billion euros last year and 2,300 employees across Asia and North America, Versum would be integrated into Merck’s “performance materials” division, it said.

AUTOMOTIVE

Chinese sales decline

China’s auto sales fell again last month, but the contraction was smaller than in recent months, an industry group reported on Friday. Sales of sports utility vehicles, sedans and minivans in the industry’s biggest global market fell 6.9 percent from a year earlier to just over 2 million, the China Association of Auto Manufacturers said. It was the ninth straight month of declines, but an improvement over the 17.5 percent contraction in January and February.

INDIA

Growth target outlined

Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikanta Das said the expansion of the world’s fastest-growing major economy needs to pick up to about 8 percent to deal with poverty and other challenges. While the past few years’ average growth of about 7.5 percent was impressive, “the expectation is India can be better,” Das said at an IMF event in Washington on Friday. The nation is expected to post real economic growth of 7.2 percent in the 2019-2020 fiscal year.

BANKING

JPMorgan profits rise

JPMorgan Chase & Co on Friday reported higher first-quarter profits, pointing to a still-solid US economy reflected in more lending and better profit margins on loans. Earnings at the biggest US bank by assets were US$9.2 billion, up 5.4 percent from the first quarter of last year. Revenue was US$29.9 billion, up 4.7 percent. A strong performance in the consumer and community banking division — the biggest segment by revenue — was the driver of higher earnings compared with a year earlier.

INTERNET

Executives to leave Facebook

Netflix Inc CEO Reed Hastings is to depart Facebook Inc’s board of directors at the end of next month. Neither Hastings nor businessman and political figure Erskine Bowles, who have been on the board since 2011, would be nominated for re-election at an annual shareholders meeting on May 30, Facebook said in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday.

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