Wednesday, March 8th, 2017

 

Malaysia aims to be among world’s top five furniture exporters by 2022

Malaysia aims to be among world's top five furniture exporters by 2022

KUALA LUMPUR (March 8): Malaysia is targeting to be among the world’s top five furniture exporters in the next five years, according to Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Seri Mah Siew Keong.

“Malaysia is currently the eighth largest furniture exporter now, so hopefully in the next five years we can be in the top five,” he told reporters at the sidelines of the 23rd Malaysian International Furniture Fair.

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Maybank now offers up to one year maternity leave

Maybank now offers up to one year maternity leave

KUALA LUMPUR (March 8): Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) is offering extended maternity leave of up to 365 days, with variable pay, for eligible female employees within the group, with immediate effect.

This means that on top of the existing 90-day maternity leave with full pay, the new policy allows an employee to apply for an additional maternity leave period for three months with half-pay, and a further six months with no pay.

The new policy was announced at the group’s International Women’s Day celebration today, said Maybank in a statement.

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US private employers step up hiring; productivity sluggish

US private employers step up hiring; productivity sluggish

WASHINGTON (March 8): Hiring by US private employers surged in February, pointing to underlying strength in the economy that could encourage the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates next week.

The ADP National Employment Report showed on Wednesday that private payrolls grew by 298,000 jobs last month, well above economists’ expectations for a gain of 190,000. January’s private payrolls gains were revised up to 261,000 from 246,000.

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Iskandar Waterfront Holdings reveals ‘back door’ listing plan

KUALA LUMPUR, March 8 — Iskandar Waterfront Holdings Sdn Bhd, controlled by Malaysian property tycoon Lim Kang Hoo, has offered to buy Iskandar Waterfront City Berhad (IWC) in a “back door” listing of one of the country’s biggest property…


Wall St flat as investors eye Friday’s jobs report

Wall St flat as investors eye Friday's jobs report

NEW YORK (March 8): US stocks were little changed on Wednesday as investors focused on Friday’s crucial nonfarm payrolls report after a better-than-expected private hiring report strengthened chances of a rate increase next week.

Financial stocks rose after the ADP National Employment report showed that the US private sector added 298,000 jobs last month, blowing past economists’ average estimate of 190,000.

The S&P 500 financial index rose 1.14 percent, led by gains in Bank of America, Citigroup and Wells Fargo.

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Wall Street flat as investors eye Friday jobs report

NEW YORK, March 8 — US stocks were little changed today as investors focused on Friday’s crucial nonfarm payrolls report after a better-than-expected private hiring report strengthened chances of a rate increase next week. Financial stocks…


Trump to meet with business leaders on infrastructure

Trump to meet with business leaders on infrastructure

WASHINGTON (March 8): President Donald Trump plans to meet with a group of infrastructure business leaders at the White House on Wednesday, a person briefed on the meeting said.

During his presidential campaign, Trump said he would push for a US$1 trillion infrastructure programme to rebuild roads, bridges, airports and other public works projects.

Elon Musk, who heads Tesla Inc and Space X, will take part in a meeting with Trump and business leaders Wednesday on the administration’s plans to boost infrastructure spending, a White House official told Reuters.

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US insurer AIG to set up EU subsidiary in Luxembourg

US insurer AIG to set up EU subsidiary in Luxembourg

LONDON (March 8): US insurer AIG plans to set up a European Union subsidiary in Luxembourg, the biggest financial services firm so far to announce plans to establish an EU hub as a response to Britain’s decision to leave the regional bloc.

Several other insurers have said they are looking to set up new centres in the EU if Britain loses access to Europe’s single market as a result of Brexit, but few have announced firm plans.

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UK budget speech steadies sterling, boosts building firms

UK budget speech steadies sterling, boosts building firms

LONDON (March 8): Britain’s 2017 budget gave some meagre support on Wednesday to domestic stock and currency markets suffering from nerves over its plans to leave the European Union and the fallout for increasingly hard-pressed consumers.

While finance minister Philip Hammond announced a rise in official growth forecasts for this year and cut predicted rates of public debt from November estimates, it was not enough to turn either the pound or the FTSE index positive on the day.

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Barclays to close mortgage centre in Wales, cutting jobs

Barclays to close mortgage centre in Wales, cutting jobs

LONDON (March 8): Barclays Plc is to close a mortgage centre in Cardiff, Wales, with the loss of more than 180 jobs, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said on Wednesday, as the bank continues a major restructuring to cut costs.

The employees at the centre were told about the job losses on Wednesday, sources familiar with the cuts told Reuters.

A spokesman for Barclays confirmed the closure, but said only 60 jobs would be cut, while 144 people would be offered the chance to relocate to Liverpool and Leeds.