World Business Quick Take


Tue, Jul 16, 2013 - Page 15


Apple to investigate death

Apple Inc said it would “fully investigate and cooperate with authorities” after media reports that a woman in China died after using an iPhone that was being recharged. A 23-year-old flight attendant died on Friday after picking up her iPhone 5 to answer a call, Xinhua news agency reported, citing Internet reports. Xinhua cited a post by a user of a microblogging service saying that the family “didn’t ask for compensation from Apple, and that it only hopes people will pay attention, nothing more.” The phone, which was bought in December last year, had already been handed over to police, Xinhua reported. “We are deeply saddened to learn of this tragic incident and offer our condolences to the Ma family,” Apple said in the e-mailed statement yesterday.


Nissan relaunches Datsun

Nissan has launched a new Datsun model in India three decades after shelving the brand that helped win Western acceptance of Japanese autos. The company hopes bringing back the brand that built its US business will fuel growth in emerging markets with a new generation of car buyers. The reimagined Datsun — a five-seat hatchback — will go on sale next year for under 400,000 rupees (about US$6,700). It is designed to appeal to aspirational middle-class strivers, or as its English-language Web site describes the car: the “badge of the risers.” However, the Datsun will be entering the market at a tough time. Sales of passenger cars fell 10 percent in the second quarter due to an economic slowdown and high interest rates that make car loans less affordable.


Singapore home sales up

Singapore’s home sales last month rose for a second month to the highest since a March record, as Moody’s Investors Service cut its outlook for the city-state’s banking system on concern that borrowing costs may climb. Home sales rose 24 percent to 1,806 units last month from a revised 1,459 units in May, the Urban Redevelopment Authority said on its Web site yesterday, the highest since 2,793 units in March. Moody’s said the rapid loan growth and rising property prices in the city-state add more risk to credit quality.


BOK picks female deputy

The Bank of Korea (BOK) promoted Suh Young-kyung to become the first female deputy governor in the central bank’s 63-year history as Governor Kim Choong Soo pushes diversity in a male-dominated institution. Suh, 50, currently director for financial markets, will be responsible for research and economic statistics, the central bank said in an e-mailed statement in Seoul yesterday. President Park Geun-hye’s rise to become the nation’s first female head of state in February underscored the potential for more women to take key policymaking roles. While Suh becomes one of five deputy governors, she will not be a member of the committee which sets interest rates.


UK’s SThree restructuring

British recruitment company SThree PLC said it would restructure its property portfolio to reduce costs by about £8 million (US$12.09 million) per year. The company said the restructuring, which would also include support functions, was expected to help save £3 million in the second half of the year and reduce its annualized cost base by £8 million per year. Gross profit fell to £94 million pounds for the six months ended May 26, from £99.9 million a year earlier.