Lehman sees dollar drop
Lehman Brothers Holdings said the dollar will fall after the Federal Reserve's decision to raise its target interest rate by a quarter point from 1 percent. The firm cut its forecast for the dollar versus Canada's currency. "Expectations of higher US interest rates cannot serve as a source of support for the dollar for-ever," Jim McCormick, Lehman's head of global currency research in Lon-don, wrote in the firm's weekly report on currency strategy. "Although rising US interest-rate expecta-tions have been a source of support for the dollar in advance of the first rate hike, the historical relation-ship has eventually broken down." Lehman reiterated its May 27 recommenda-tions to sell the dollar versus the currencies of Japan, Switzerland and Canada.
Strikers seize building
Up to 2,000 striking workers occupied the headquarters of the Citigroup-owned KorAm Bank yesterday, crippling the lender's operations as the strike entered its eighth day. Customers have withdrawn about 1.91 trillion won (US$1.65 billion) from the mid-size lender this week, the government's Financial Supervisory Service said yesterday. On Thursday alone, the bank's deposits fell by 271.8 billion won to 28.82 trillion won. KorAm's 2,500 unionized workers began the strike last Friday, demanding a wage hike and job guarantees in the wake of a takeover by US-based Citigroup earlier this year.
Black sues over sale
Conrad Black sued Hollin-ger International in a US court on Thursday, demand-ing that the company hold a shareholder vote on its proposed sale of the British Daily and Sunday Tele-graph newspapers, his holding company said in a statement. Black's holding company, Hollinger Inc, took the dispute to Dela-ware Chancery Court, the company said in a state-ment. Black is seeking to force Hollinger Interna-tional to hold a shareholder vote on its June 22 deal to sell its most valuable asset, the Telegraph Group, to the Barclay brothers for about US$1.33 billion. The lawsuit is the latest round in a seven-month dispute between Hollinger International and Black.
■ South Korea
Seoul to boost construction
South Korea's government said it will spend an extra 2 trillion won (US$1.7 billion) on roads, homes and bridges to stem a slowdown in the construction industry, which accounts for about a fifth of Asia's third-largest economy. Part of the money will come from the 4.5 trillion won extra budget the government announced last month, the Ministry of Construction and Transpor-tation said in a statement. Construction orders fell for a fifth straight month in May, sliding 24 percent from a year earlier, a government report showed earlier this week. That was the biggest drop in 14 months.
Softbank mulls C&W bid
Internet investor Softbank Corp is in talks with Britain's Cable and Wireless to purchase its Japanese unit, the Asahi newspaper said yesterday. Softbank reportedly aims to strengthen its Internet-based telecommunications services through the purchase. Softbank was expected to pay about ?10 billion (US$92 million) for Cable and Wireless IDC, which has about 40,000 corporate clients in Japan.
FORCED LABOR: Customs officials have seized a 11.8 tonne shipment of products made from human hair on suspicion they were produced by people facing human rights abuses Federal authorities in New York City on Wednesday seized a shipment of weaves and other beauty accessories suspected to be made out of human hair taken from people locked inside a Chinese internment camp. US Customs and Border Protection (CPB) officials said that 11.8 tonnes of hair products worth an estimated US$800,000 were in the shipment. “The production of these goods constitutes a very serious human rights violation, and the detention order is intended to send a clear and direct message to all entities seeking to do business with the United States that illicit and inhumane practices will not be tolerated in
JUST QUESTIONS: Expelled reporter Ai Kezhu said that every member of Southeast Television had complied with the law and had not appeared on any talk shows Two Chinese reporters yesterday left Taiwan after the government revoked their accreditation and ordered them to leave amid a probe into allegations that several Chinese media outlets have set up studios and produced political talk shows in Taiwan. The two reporters — Ai Kezhu (艾珂竹) and Lu Qiang (盧薔) — worked for Fujian Province-based Southeast Television and arrived in Taiwan in December last year. The Mainland Affairs Council has launched an investigation after local media reported that Chinese broadcasters — including China Central Television, Southeast Television and FJTV — had set up studios in Taipei and produced political talk shows. Council Deputy Minister
UPTICK IN NUMBERS: The Taipei deputy mayor said the city has services to assist new immigrants, but has established an office specifically to help those from Hong Kong The Taiwan-Hong Kong Services and Exchanges Office today officially opens, where it is to provide humanitarian assistance to Hong Kongers, after Beijing yesterday passed a controversial national security law for the territory. President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) expressed dismay over China’s passage of the law, saying that Beijing has broken its pledge to allow Hong Kong to maintain a high degree of autonomy for at least 50 years following its handover from the UK. “I feel extremely disappointed [about the law’s passage], which means China did not keep its promise to Hong Kong,” Tsai said in Taipei. Beijing’s “broken promise” also
PROBE LAUNCHED: An officer who served as a supervisor in the drill died in an apparent suicide after the accident, which was caused by unexpected waves Two marines who were on Friday injured in a military exercise in the waters off Kaohsiung passed away yesterday, Navy Command said. The marines — surnamed Tsai (蔡), 26, and a sergeant surnamed Chen (陳), 36 — were in a seven-member Marine Corps team that encountered rough seas during a simulated response to enemy forces landing on Taiwan. Their rubber craft overturned in waters off Taoziyuan (桃子園) beach in Zuoying District (左營), injuring four of the marines. They were rushed to hospital, where three of them — Tsai, Chen and a 34-year-old sergeant — were taken to an intensive care unit