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Sat, Feb 19, 2005 - Page 12 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ Macroeconomics

China's production slows

China's production rose in January at the slowest pace in three years after the government clamped down on investment to help cool inflation and ease power shortages. Output rose 8.9 percent from a year earlier after climbing 14.4 percent in December, the Beijing-based National Bureau of Statistics said yesterday on its Web site. The figures were adjusted to allow for changes in the number of working days caused by the weeklong Lunar New Year holiday falling in different months. Economic growth reached an eight-year high of 9.5 percent last year. Exports jumped 33 percent to a record US$63.8 billion in December and retail sales climbed 15 percent, the biggest gain in seven months. On an unadjusted basis, China's industrial production rose 20.9 percent last month to 484 billion yuan (US$58 billion), the statistics bureau said.

■ Electronics

Nvidia doubles Q4 profit

Nvidia Corp, the world's biggest maker of computer-graphics chips, said fourth-quarter profit doubled and sales increased as consumers bought equipment to play the newest video games on personal computers. The shares rose in extended trading. Net income rose to US$48 million, or US$0.27 a share, from US$24.2 million, or US$0.14, a year earlier, the Santa Clara, California-based company said in a statement. Sales in the quarter ended Jan. 30 rose 20 percent to US$566.5 million from US$472.1 million. Stronger-than-expected demand for chips used to produce computer-game graphics cards helped Nvidia increase its market share and led the company to raise its sales forecast on Feb. 1.

■ Banking

NYT to buy About.com

New York Times Co, the third largest US newspaper publisher, will buy Primedia Inc's About.com consumer-information Web site for US$410 million in cash to boost its presence on the Internet. The acquisition is expected to be completed late this quarter or early in the second quarter, The New York Times said yesterday in a statement. The New York-based company said the purchase is likely to boost earnings in 2007. Buying About.com will more than double the current 13 million people each month who visit New York Times-affiliated Web sites, the newspaper company said. The New York Times will put new content on About.com, which currently draws about 22 million visitors a month, the newspaper publisher said. The purchase price reflects a multiple of more than 10 times About.com's revenue for last year, The New York Times said.

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