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Toyota to launch two hybrid cars in China this year SHANGHAI: Toyota Motor Corp, the world's largest automaker by sales volume, plans to launch two hybrid cars in China this year as part of efforts to launch vehicles that will help to reduce pollution in the country. The gasoline-electric hybrid cars, called Levin Hev and Corolla, will be launched in China in the second half of the year, the Japanese company said on Sunday on the eve of the Shanghai autoshow. Toyota's joint venture with Guangzhou Automobile Group will make the Levin Hev, while its joint venture with FAW Group will manufacture the Corolla. China has been the world's largest car market since 2009, with sales rising 6.9 percent to 23.5 million vehicles in 2014, the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers said in January. Copyright Reuters, 2015

Sri Lanka central bank head cleared of direct role in suspect bond deal COLOMBO: A panel set up to investigate a suspect auction of Sri Lankan government bonds said on Sunday that it had cleared the central bank chief of any direct role, while calling for tighter supervision of the government's borrowing office. Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran has taken a voluntary leave of absence while awaiting the outcome of the probe into the Feb. 27 auction. The government raised more than 10 billion rupees ($75.2 million) from ...

Chairman Piech's grip on VW weakened by row with CEO BERLIN/HAMBURG: Volkswagen Chairman Ferdinand Piech's iron grip on the German carmaker has been severely weakened following a dramatic confrontation with senior board members last week that nearly resulted in a push to oust him, sources told Reuters. Piech, patriarch of the family that founded Volkswagen and a dominant figure at the automaker for more than two decades, triggered a leadership crisis at the Wolfsburg-based firm by criticising Chief Executive Martin Winterkorn in a magazine article ...

Tesla struggling to electrify China car market SHANGHAI: Serial entrepreneur Elon Musk has launched spacecraft into orbit, but popularising his Tesla electric cars in China is proving to be tougher than rocket science.PayPal billionaire Musk -- co-founder and chief executive officer of Tesla as well as chief of rocket maker SpaceX -- visited China last month, and admitted sales in the world's largest auto market were below expectations."China is the only place on Earth that we have excess inventory," Musk told Chinese ...

Saudi giant SABIC Q1 net profit down 39 percent RIYADH: Saudi petrochemicals giant SABIC on Sunday posted a 39 percent decline in net profits in the first quarter of 2015 compared with a year ago before global oil prices plunged.SABIC, the largest publicly traded firm in the Gulf, reported net profit of 3.93 billion riyals ($1.05 billion) for the three months ending March 31.That compared with a net profit of 6.44 billion riyals in the same quarter a year earlier.The drop in oil prices ...

China cuts bank reserve ratio requirement as growth slows BEIJING: China's central bank announced Sunday it would cut the level of funds that commercial banks must hold in reserve by one percentage point, the second such move this year to boost lending.The move, effective Monday, comes days after the world's second largest economy reported its worst quarterly growth figure for six years.In a statement on its website, the People's Bank of China (PBoC) said it will give an additional one-percentage-point RRR cut to banks ...

Vivendi shareholders grant long-term investors double voting rights PARIS: Vivendi shareholders rejected a resolution to deny long-term investors double voting rights at the group's general assembly in Paris on Friday, a move that critics say primarily benefits company chairman Vincent Bollore.The shareholder vote denied activist asset management group PhiTrust the two-thirds majority required to block application of a French law granting double voting power to investors whose holdings date back more than two years.The provisions were introduced by the so-called Florange law passed ...


Index Closing Chg%
Arrow DJIA 18,080.14 0.12
Arrow Nasdaq 5,092.09 0.71
Arrow S&P 2,117.69 0.23
Arrow FTSE 7,070.70 0.24
Arrow DAX 11,810.85 0.74
Arrow CAC-40 5,201.45 0.44
Arrow Nikkei 20,020.04 0.83
Arrow H.Seng 28,060.98 0.84
Arrow Sensex 27,437.94 1.07

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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.586 bln
Exports $1.932 bln
Imports $3.518 bln
WeeklyApril 16, 2015
Reserves $16.818 bln