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Japan tax hike takes toll on auto sales TOKYO: Japanese auto sales dropped 11.4 percent in April from a year ago, an industry group said Thursday, highlighting the impact of a sales tax rise which sparked a mad dash to stores ahead of the levy hike.The drop marked the first fall in eight months, with sales of new cars, trucks and buses totalling 188,864 vehicles, the Japan Automobile Dealers Association said, although sales of thrifty mini-vehicles hit a record high.The Japanese auto market -- the world's third largest behind China and the United States -- had been enjoying double-digit sales increases in recent months as shoppers snapped up big-ticket items before the April 1 tax rise to 8.0 percent from 5.0 percent.The tax rise was Japan's first in 17 years, a move seen as key to taming its huge national debt but one which aggravated fears that a drop in consumer spending would dent the economy.Japan still saw ...

Sony warns of deeper loss as it exits PC business TOKYO: Sony on Thursday warned it would report a bigger-than-expected annual loss, blaming costs tied to its exit from the personal computer business, as the once-mighty firm undergoes a painful restructuring.The Japanese electronics giant said it would book a 130 billion yen net loss ($1.27 billion) in the latest fiscal year to March, while it slashed its operating earnings outlook.The figure is worse than a 110 billion yen net loss forecast just three months ago, ...
US chip giant Intel to pump $6bn into Israel: minister JERUSALEM: US computer chip giant Intel is to invest close to $6 billion in upgrading its Israeli production facilities, Israeli Economy Minister Naftali Bennett said on Thursday."Intel chose to set up its most advanced production line in Israel in the face of tough competition," Bennett told public radio. "It's an investment of billions of shekels... in Israeli hi-tech," he added. Facebook comments by Bennett, which were reposted by Intel Israel on its website, put the ...
Rolls-Royce warns over marine division LONDON: Britain's Rolls-Royce warned Thursday over profits at its marine unit, sending its share price sliding, and repeated that the engine maker's earnings and revenues would flatten this year.The firm said in a trading update that production problems at the division would spark an exceptional charge of £30 million ($51 million, 36 million euros).Profit and sales at the group's marine arm will be down 10 percent this year, hit by the one-off charge and lower ...
Ford begins production of Transit vans in Missouri DETROIT: Ford Motor Co on Wednesday formally marked the end of a profitable half-century run for its E-Series commercial van, trumpeting the start of North American production of the replacement Transit van at its Kansas City assembly plant.E-Series vans, known for years as the Ford Econoline, account for 46 percent of the U.S. market of full-size commercial vans.In the last several years, Ford has made a $1.1 billion investment and hired 2,000 workers at the ...
Microsoft sets Xbox launch for China SAN FRANCISCO: Microsoft said Wednesday it would launch the Xbox One in China in September, the first game console to be announced after Beijing lifted a ban on the devices."Today marks a monumental day for Xbox, as together with our partner BesTV New Media Co., we announced we will bring Xbox One to China in September of this year," said Yusuf Mehdi, vice president at Microsoft for the Xbox division."This is a historic moment in ...
‘Priority investors’ drawn into UK uproar over Royal Mail privatisation LONDON: Major global investors including BlackRock, JP Morgan, and Standard Life were drawn into a British political battle on Wednesday over their profits from a Royal Mail sell-off criticised for short-changing taxpayers.Shares in Royal Mail have soared as much as 87 percent above the 330 pence per share Britain sold a 60 percent stake for in October. This has offered quick profits for big banks and City investors and drawn flak from trade unions and ...


Index Closing Chg%
Arrow DJIA 16,351.38 1.82
Arrow Nasdaq 4,749.98 2.46
Arrow S&P 1,948.86 1.83
Arrow FTSE 6,083.31 0.41
Arrow DAX 10,048.05 0.32
Arrow CAC-40 4,554.92 0.30
Arrow Nikkei 18,095.40 0.39
Arrow H.Seng 20,934.94 1.18
Arrow Sensex 25,453.56 0.95

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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $62.649bn
Per Cap Income $1,512
GDP Growth 4.24%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.378 bln
Exports $2.016 bln
Imports $4.394 bln
WeeklyAugust 27, 2015
Reserves $18.509 bln