Wednesday, August 24th, 2016

 

‘Voices under the rubble’ after quake hits Italy; at least 73 dead

'Voices under the rubble' after quake hits Italy; at least 73 dead

ACCUMOLI, Italy (Aug 24): A powerful earthquake devastated a string of mountain towns in central Italy on Wednesday, trapping residents under rubble, killing at least 73 people and leaving thousands homeless.

The quake struck in the early hours of the morning when most residents were asleep, razing homes and buckling roads in a cluster of communities some 140 km (85 miles) east of Rome. It was powerful enough to be felt in Bologna to the north and Naples to the south, each more than 220 km from the epicentre.

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Source: The Edge Markets


US stocks mostly fall as oil shares pressured

NEW YORK, Aug 24 — Wall Street stocks mostly fell early today as petroleum-linked shares were under pressure ahead of a US oil inventory report. ExxonMobil and Schlumberger were among the oilfield equities to dip after data late yesterday from… Source: The Malay Mail Online


China takes aggressive steps to fend off banking, financial risks

China takes aggressive steps to fend off banking, financial risks

BEIJING/SHANGHAI/HONG KONG (Aug 24): China took aggressive steps on Wednesday to head off signs of growing risks in its financial and banking system, unveiling detailed rules to curb an unruly peer-to-peer (P2P) lending sector and intervening in its money markets.

In the past year, Chinese policymakers have been moving levers to try to keep credit growing at a reasonable pace to underpin the economy, while addressing vulnerable aspects of the financial and banking system.

Source: The Edge Markets


U.S. existing home sales decline, prices still strong

U.S. existing home sales decline, prices still strong

WASHINGTON (Aug 24): U.S. home resales fell more than expected in July after four straight months of strong gains, as a lack of inventory limited choice for buyers, but further gains in prices suggested the housing market remained on solid ground.

The National Association of Realtors said on Wednesday existing home sales declined 3.2% to an annual rate of 5.39 million units last month.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast sales slipping 0.4% to a 5.51 million-unit pace in July. Home resales were down 1.6% from a year ago.

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Source: The Edge Markets


Hap Seng Plantations, Perisai, Hibiscus, IJM, Panasonic, Protasco, Parkson and Can-One

Hap Seng Plantations, Perisai, Hibiscus, IJM, Panasonic, Protasco, Parkson and Can-One

KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 24): Based on corporate announcements and news flow today, companies that may be in focus tomorrow (Thursday, Aug 25) could include: Hap Seng Plantations Holdings Bhd, Perisai Petroleum Teknologi Bhd, Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd, IJM Corp Bhd, Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd, Protasco Bhd, Parkson Holdings Bhd and Can-One Bhd.

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Source: The Edge Markets


Viacom said to rethink resistance to US$12 bil debt downgrade

Viacom said to rethink resistance to US$12 bil debt downgrade

(Aug 24): Viacom Inc is grappling with a stark choice: standing aside as the ratings drop on its US$12 billion in debt — or taking dramatic steps like cutting its dividend or selling off assets.

Executives are looking for signals from the company’s revamped board on whether to take measures to avoid a ratings downgrade, a person familiar with the matter said. Allowing a downgrade of its bonds, which are rated two notches above junk, would give Viacom flexibility to keep paying its current dividend, though its borrowing costs could be higher.

Source: The Edge Markets


European equities mainly rise on German GDP

LONDON, Aug 24 — European stock markets mostly rose today, shrugging off a largely downbeat session in Asia, with sentiment partly lifted by German economic growth data. Strong foreign trade and buoyant consumption drove Germany’s economy,… Source: The Malay Mail Online


France’s DCNS says India submarine data leak may be ‘economic warfare’

France's DCNS says India submarine data leak may be 'economic warfare'

SYDNEY/PARIS (Aug 24): French naval contractor DCNS said on Wednesday that it may have been the victim of “economic warfare”, after secrets about its Scorpene submarines being built in India were leaked.

India opened an investigation after The Australian newspaper published documents relating to the submarine’s combat capabilities, raising concerns over another major contract with Australia.

The leak contains more than 22,000 pages outlining the details of six submarines that DCNS has designed for the Indian Navy.

Source: The Edge Markets


UK banks approve fewest mortgages since Jan 2015, consumer credit growth strong

UK banks approve fewest mortgages since Jan 2015, consumer credit growth strong

LONDON (Aug 24): The number of mortgages approved by British banks fell to its lowest in a year in the month, following Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, but robust credit growth added to signs that the decision has had little impact on consumers so far.

British banks approved 37,662 mortgages for house purchases last month, down from 39,763 in June and 19% lower than in July 2015, the British Bankers’ Association said.

Source: The Edge Markets


Saudi Arabia holds China market share lead on record oil output

RIYADH, Aug 24 — Saudi Arabia kept its spot as China’s biggest oil supplier for the first seven months this year after pumping record output in July, even as Russia threatens to overtake the kingdom in their contest for sales to the world’s… Source: The Malay Mail Online