05262016Thu
Last update: Thu, 26 May 2016 11pm

Global Business & Economy

World - Global Business & Economy

US existing-home sales surge in June, prices hit record WASHINGTON: Sales of existing homes in the US surged in June to their highest level in more than eight years and prices hit a record high, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday.Sales of previously owned homes rose to an annual rate of 5.49 million units, a gain of 3.2 percent from the slightly downwardly revised May level, the NAR reported.June's heated sales pace was the strongest since February 2007, before the economy entered the Great Recession.It came in well above analysts' consensus estimate of a 0.9 percent increase month-over-month.Year-over-year, existing-home sales were up 9.6 percent.The combination of rising demand and a limited supply helped to push the median sales price above the July 2006 peak to a record high, NAR said.The spring buying season has been the strongest since the downturn, said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist."Buyers have come back in force, leading to the strongest past two months ...

World - Global Business & Economy

South African inflation edges up ahead of rate decision JOHANNESBURG: South Africa's annual inflation rate rose slightly to 4.7 percent in June, official data showed Wednesday, ahead of a central bank decision that could see interest rates increase for the first time in a year.The 0.1 percent rise in inflation from the previous month was largely driven by the housing and utilities sectors.Nedbank, one of the country's largest lenders, said the 4.7 percent figure was lower than market expectations of 5.0 percent.It predicted inflation ...

World - Global Business & Economy

Interest rate cuts 'on table' as inflation stays soft SYDNEY: Further interest rates cuts remain "on the table", Australia's central bank chief said Wednesday, as new official data showed that Australian consumer prices rose 0.7 percent in the three months to June, keeping annual inflation subdued.Reserve Bank of Australia governor Glenn Stevens said weak economic growth had seen the cash rate decline to "very low levels"."The question of whether they might be reduced further remains, as I have said before, on the table," Stevens ...

World - Global Business & Economy

Singapore freezes accounts linked to probe of Malaysia's 1MDB SINGAPORE: Singapore police on Wednesday confirmed they had frozen two bank accounts as part of an investigation into possible money-laundering offences related to troubled Malaysian state investment firm 1MDB.The company is under investigation by Malaysian authorities following reports of irregularities including fund transfers allegedly involving Prime Minister Najib Razak, who has strongly denied any wrongdoing."We understand that the Malaysian authorities have launched investigations into certain matters related to 1MDB," the Singapore Police Force (SPF), which ...

World - Global Business & Economy

Nigeria to export 348,000 bpd of Qua Iboe crude oil in Sept LONDON: Nigeria will export 348,000 barrels per day of Qua Iboe crude oil in September, lower than the 368,000 bpd initially planned for August, according to a provisional loading programme. The exports will come in 11 cargoes, compared with the 12 planned for August. Qua Iboe has been in high demand over the past month, largely due to buying by Indian refiners. Copyright Reuters, 2015 ...

World - Global Business & Economy

China's FDI up 8.pc in January-June on M&A: govt BEIJING: Foreign investment into China rose 8.0 percent in the first half of this year as mergers and acquisitions by overseas companies more than quadrupled in value, the commerce ministry said Tuesday. Foreign direct investment (FDI), which excludes financial sectors, totalled $68.41 billion in January-June , the ministry said. "Both the proportion and the transaction value of foreign mergers and acquisitions increased sharply," it said in a statement. It gave the value of M&A activity ...

World - Global Business & Economy

Taiwan June export orders fall for 3rd month, China demand slumps TAIPEI: Taiwan's export orders fell for a third straight month in June on weak demand from China and other emerging markets in a worrying sign for global technology demand. Last year, strong demand for Apple's iPhone helped power Taiwan's exports, a factor that is missing now. June exports contracted 5.8 percent, roughly in line with a median 5.62 percent fall forecast by economists in a Reuters poll. In May, exports dropped 5.9 percent, the fastest ...