Wednesday, January 31st, 2018


Boeing forecasts sharp rise in profit, jet output in 2018

NEW YORK, Jan 31 ― Boeing Co today forecast full-year profit well above Wall Street estimates as it looks forward to its busiest year ever for plane deliveries, sending its shares up more than 5 per cent. The world’s biggest planemaker said it…

US Fed rate decision due as Yellen’s tenure concludes

WASHINGTON, Jan 31 ― The Federal Reserve concludes its first meeting of 2018 today, with markets convinced the central bank will leave the benchmark interest rate untouched but nonetheless watching for signals of increases ahead. The two-day…

Boeing set to lead Wall Street higher after two-day slump

NEW YORK, Jan 31 ― US stocks were set to gain today, after two days of steep losses, boosted by a controversy-free State of the Union speech by President Donald Trump and a rise in Boeing’s shares. Boeing posted quarterly results that beat…

Coincheck falsely explained security to customers, says industry group head

TOKYO, Jan 31 ― Japanese Coincheck made false explanations to customers about its security system before suffering one of the world’s biggest cyber heists, the head of a major cryptocurrency industry group said today. If similar problems had…

Global stocks eye second best start to a year on record

LONDON, Jan 31 ― World stocks pulled out of a two-day dive and were eyeing their second best start to a year ever today, while the dollar came under renewed pressure ahead of the Federal Reserve’s first meeting of the year. A controversy-free…

Ericsson rings up huge losses in 2017

STOCKHOLM: Swedish telecoms giant Ericsson said Wednesday that it rang up huge losses last year as network competition, restructuring costs and investment in lightning-fast 5G technology pushed it deeply into the red.

The news sent Ericsson's share price tumbling nearly nine percent on the Stockholm stock exchange in early trading, in a flat market.

Ericsson said in a statement it booked net loss of 35.1 billion kronor (3.6 billion euros, US$4.4 billion) in 2017, compared with profit of 1.9 billion kronor the year before.

The group also booked an underlying or operating loss of 38.1 billion kronor last year after profit of 6.3 billion kronor in 2016, while revenues dropped by 10% to 201.3 billion kronor, the statement said.

“The focus during 2017 has been on reshaping overall strategy and on improving company structure and performance,” explained chief executive Borje Ekholm.

“2017 was also the year when 5G went from vision to real business opportunities while we at the same time had good traction for our 4G portfolio,” he continued.

“We are fully committed to our plans and our targets and expect to see tangible results of our turnaround in 2018.”

Below target

In the fourth quarter alone, Ericsson's net loss widened to 18.9 billion kronor from a loss of 1.6 billion kronor a year earlier, while sales slumped by 12% to 57.2 billion kronor.

“The fourth quarter was in line with our overall expectation, with gradual improving performance in networks and continued significant losses in digital services. The result is however far below our long-term ambition,” CEO Ekholm said.

Earlier this month, Ericsson had announced that writedowns of 14.2 billion kronor would be booked in the fourth quarter, originating mainly from goodwill from investments made a decade ago.

Investors fled after the earnings report was published.

“When I look at the order book there's not a lot of meat on the bone in there … I'm surprised the (share price) fall is so steep, but it's an automated-traded share,” Jonas Olavi of Alfred Berg investment bank told financial daily Dagens Industri online.

“Ericsson needs to turn over every rock in the search for new sources of income,” Mikael Tornwall, telecoms expert for daily Svenska Dagbladet, said.

Ericsson said it had reduced the number of its employees and external workforce by 10,000 during the fourth quarter, part of its restructuring plan aimed at cost savings of 10 billion kronor by mid-2018. — AFP

USD1 = RM3.90

Fujifilm to cut 10,000 jobs at subsidiary amid Xerox takeover

TOKYO: Japanese technology firm Fujifilm on Wednesday announced 10,000 job cuts by March 2020 at its Fuji Xerox subsidiary, which it said was facing an “increasingly severe” market environment.

In a major shake-up, Fujifilm also announced it would be combining Fuji Xerox with US giant Xerox, bringing both companies under its umbrella to create what it said was the world's largest “document solutions company” by revenue.

As part of a cost-cutting package that it hopes will save 50 billion yen (RM1.793 billion), Fujifilm announced “personnel reductions of 10,000 people domestically and overseas” at Fuji Xerox.

Founded in 1934, Fujifilm became synonymous with the photography business but has since expanded into cosmetics and medical equipment.

Fuji Xerox, which manufactures printers and copiers for offices mainly in Asia and the Oceania regions, employs around 46,000 people in total.

“It is expected that this combination will generate a large number of synergies,” said Fujifilm in a statement, with Fuji Xerox mainly doing business in Japan and Asia and Xerox in the US and Europe.

Xerox had faced a revolt from two major shareholders, Carl Icahn and Darwin Deason, who between them control 15 percent of the company.

They recently published a joint letter urging the company to consider selling itself and calling for the immediate replacement of its CEO.

The restructuring will have an impact on Fujifilm's operating income, the firm said, revising down its forecasts for the current fiscal year to 130 million yen from 185 million yen.

Net profit however was forecast to rise to 140 million yen from 125 million yen due to one-off gains from sales of investment securities. — AFP

Nintendo raises profit forecast on strong Switch sales

TOKYO, Jan 31 ― Nintendo raised its annual net profit forecast by more than 40 per cent today after its popular Switch console flew off the shelves during the holiday season, fuelled by a cheaper yen. The Kyoto-based video game giant said it…

Dollar set for biggest monthly loss in nearly two years as outlook weakens

LONDON, Jan 31 ― The dollar fell by a quarter of a per cent today, putting it on track for its biggest monthly drop in nearly two years as US President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address failed to offer any comfort to ailing dollar…

H&M to open fewer stores in 2018 as online shift hurts

STOCKHOLM, Jan 31 ― Fashion retailer H&M said today it would open far fewer stores in 2018 as it responds to the shift to shopping online and announced plans to launch a new outlet to sell external brands alongside its own ranges. Following…