Sat, Nov 09, 2019 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

AUTOMAKERS

Honda profit declines

Honda Motor Co recorded a 6.7 percent decline in profit last quarter as vehicle sales slipped and an unfavorable exchange rate hurt earnings at the Japanese automaker. Its fiscal second-quarter profit totaled ¥196.5 billion (US$1.8 billion), down from ¥210.7 billion the previous year. Quarterly sales declined 2.9 percent to ¥3.7 trillion as auto sales declined in the US, Japan, the rest of Asia and Europe. Higher income tax expenses also hurt results, Honda said. The Tokyo-based company lowered its full-year profit forecast through March next year to ¥575 billion from the ¥645 billion given in August and below the ¥610 billion earned the previous fiscal year.

TRADE

Juncker expects no tariffs

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker yesterday said that he believes the US will not impose new tariffs on imported European vehicles in the next few days. In an interview with the Suddeutsche Zeitung, Juncker said he was “fully informed” on the issue and that US President Donald Trump “will not do it.” He told the German newspaper that “Trump will criticize a little, but there will not be tariffs on cars.” Trump is due to decide by the middle of this month whether to impose the supplemental tariffs on vehicles built in EU countries.

INVESTMENT

Apple eyes green bonds

Apple Inc is joining Europe’s market for green bonds with one of the largest-ever corporate issues of “environmentally friendly” debt in the region, a source said. The California-based iPhone maker was poised to sell 2 billion euros (US$2.2 billion) of six and 12-year bonds, said a person familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because they were not authorized to speak about it. The company would use the proceeds to reduce its carbon footprint, along with greener materials in its products and resource conservation, the source said.

RETAILERS

Gap CEO to step down

Gap on Thursday announced that chief executive officer Art Peck is stepping down as the company struggles to turn around a long-standing sales slump. The San Francisco-based retailer also lowered its earnings outlook for the year as sales at Gap, Banana Republic and Old Navy fell in the most recent quarter. The company’s stock tumbled 7 percent to US$16.75 in after-hours trading following the announcement. The shares were trading at about US$41 when Peck took the CEO spot in early 2015. Effective immediately, Robert Fisher, Gap’s non-executive chairman of the board, would serve as president and CEO on an interim basis, the company said. Fisher is the son of Gap cofounders Donald and Doris Fisher.

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND

Cup tax announced

The nation is to impose a so-called latte levy on disposable coffee cups by 2021 in a bid to change habits and cut the environmental impact from the use of single-use plastics, Minister for Climate Action Richard Bruton said on Wednesday. The government hopes the proposed levy of up to 0.25 euros per cup would encourage coffee drinkers to instead carry reusable “Keep Cups” that already allow people to claim discounts at some coffee shops. “One of the things we clearly have to do is cut down on single-use disposables and the most obvious one of those is disposable cups,” Bruton told broadcaster RTE. Up to 200 million single-use coffee cups are thrown away every year by the nation’s 4.9 million people, a report found last year.

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