Market

Ola to oncrease 100,000 scooter chargers in India
Asia, Market

Ola to oncrease 100,000 scooter chargers in India

MUMBAI – As Indian ride-hailing startup Ola the company launches two wheeler charging points nationwide, to 100,000 to accommodate the company’s scooter slated for launch.The Ola Hypercharger Network will start out with a first-year push to install 5,000 charging stations in 100 cities -- "more than double the existing charging infrastructure in the country," the company says.Plans are for 100,000-plus charging points in 400 cities in five years. They will be compatible with Ola two-wheeler products, including the Ola Scooter due out in the coming months.Backed by Japan's SoftBank Group, Ola offers a ride-hailing app serving mostly India. In 2020, it announced the acquisition of Dutch manufacturer Etergo with the aim of building electric two-wheelers. Talent hailing from General Motors an...
Turning COVID-19 corner, Volkswagen’s profit falls less than feared
China, Market, World

Turning COVID-19 corner, Volkswagen’s profit falls less than feared

FRANKFURT: Volkswagen reported on Friday (Jan 22) that its 2020 profit almost halved due to the impact of the pandemic, but a rebound in premium car sales in China and stronger deliveries in the fourth quarter helped keep the world's largest carmaker in the black. The group said full-year operating profit, excluding costs related to its diesel emissions scandal, came in at €10 billion (US$12.2 billion), compared with 19.3 billion in 2019. Analysts had expected a full-year 2020 operating profit of €4.8 billion, according to Refinitiv Eikon data. Net cash flow at its automotive division was around €6 billion and car deliveries picked up towards the end of the year, the German group said in a statement. "The deliveries to customers of the Volkswagen Group continued to recover strongly...
The big short: GameStop effect puts global bets worth billions at risk
Market, World

The big short: GameStop effect puts global bets worth billions at risk

LONDON: Global bets worth billions of dollars could be at risk as amateur share traders challenge the bearish positions of influential funds, inflating stock valuations and leaving the professionals looking at potentially hefty losses. Gone are the days when bruised retail investors fled after prominent hedge funds bet against a stock - the GameStop effect is rippling across US markets and spreading to Europe. Shares of the 20 small-cap Russell 2000 index companies with the biggest bearish bets against them have risen 60 per cent on average so far this year, easily outperforming the rest of the market, a Reuters analysis of Refinitiv data shows. Similarly, the best performers in Britain this week have been companies such as Pearson and Cineworld, in which investors also have sizeabl...
Oil rises on stimulus optimism, demand recovery hopes
China, Market, World

Oil rises on stimulus optimism, demand recovery hopes

The silhouette of an oil pump is seen at sunset. Oil rose on Wednesday on expectations that U.S. President Joe Biden's administration will deliver massive stimulus spending that will lift fuel demand and enact policies that will tighten crude supply. Brent crude was up 40 cents at $56.30 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude settled 26 cents, or 0.5%, higher at $53.24 per barrel. U.S. President Joe Biden, who was inaugurated on Wednesday, is expected to take measures to curb the U.S. oil industry, including re-entering the Paris climate accord, cancelling a permit for the Keystone XL crude oil pipeline and pausing arctic drilling. "I think the Biden administration on day one is making it clear that there's a new sheriff in town and we're going to go back to policies that a...
South Korea needs more babies and immigrants
Asia, China, Market, Singapore, World

South Korea needs more babies and immigrants

South Korea greeted the new year by recording its first annual population decline. Unfortunately, the go-to solutions are meeting some practical challenges in the COVID-19 era. Headcount dwindled slightly to 51.8 million last year, the Ministry of Interior and Safety said Sunday. The retreat was the product of a 10.6% slide in births, coupled with a 3.1% increase in deaths. South Korea now joins neighboring Japan in suffering an actual fall in population, as opposed to the diminishing rates of growth that characterized past years. The ministry called for “fundamental changes,” national news agency Yonhap reported, without offering details. South Korea’s demographic challenges partly stem from family-planning measures imposed by military-backed administrations in the 1960s, which aimed to...
Commentary: How Tencent, that other Chinese Big Tech giant, is beating a path to a trillion dollars
Asia, China, Market, Singapore, World

Commentary: How Tencent, that other Chinese Big Tech giant, is beating a path to a trillion dollars

Tencent looks set to grow to a US$1 trillion market capitalisation given its diversified revenue sources, its strong growth strategy premised on e-sports and live-streaming, says IMD Business School’s Mark Greeven. SINGAPORE: Tencent is poised to join the trillion dollar club. After a whopping 11 per cent rally in stock price and an equally whopping tumble of about 5 per cent last week, the question is whether we are seeing the global tech bubble expanding to Asia. Certainly, the Hong Kong market generally was in a positive mood on the day of the 115 per cent jump. And over this past year, Tencent’s stock price has risen by 85 per cent in value. Nevertheless, a trillion dollars is a lot of money. Amazon, Apple and Microsoft are all well into their first trillion-dollar market cap...
Public transport satisfaction dips in 2020, MRT safety scores largest improvement: Survey
Market, Singapore, World

Public transport satisfaction dips in 2020, MRT safety scores largest improvement: Survey

SINGAPORE: Overall satisfaction with public transport dipped in 2020, with MRT safety and security scoring the largest increase, the Public Transport Council (PTC) said on Friday (Feb 7). The percentage of people who said they were satisfied with public transport was 97.6 per cent, lower than the high of 99.4 per cent in 2019. According to PTC, percentage satisfaction levels are measured based on the proportion of respondents whose overall satisfaction rating for public transport services was 6 and above on a 10-point scale. Satisfaction with public transport, bus, and MRT services over the past 5 years. (Graphic: Public Transport Council While the proportion of satisfied commuters dropped in 2020, the mean satisfaction score remained at 7.8 for the second consecutive year, due to ...
Asia shares pare losses as China GDP pips forecasts
Asia, China, Market, World

Asia shares pare losses as China GDP pips forecasts

Asian share markets retreated from highs on Monday as disappointing news on U.S. consumer spending tempered risk sentiment ahead of a closely-watched reading on the health of the Chinese economy. SYDNEY: Asian share markets pared early losses on Monday as data confirmed China's economy had bounced back last quarter as factory output jumped, helping offset recent disappointing news on U.S. consumer spending. Chinese blue chips edged up 0.4per cent after the economy was reported to have grown 6.5per cent in the fourth quarter, on a year earlier, topping forecasts of 6.1per cent. Industrial production for December also beat estimates, though retail sales missed the mark. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan trimmed losses and were off 0.2per cent, having hit a st...
Market is at ‘speculative peak’ as Reddit traders fuel GameStop, money manager says
Market, World

Market is at ‘speculative peak’ as Reddit traders fuel GameStop, money manager says

Speculation in the stock market is soaring. Retail investors have been piling into equities at a rapid rate in the new year, building on 2020's rush and squeezing short sellers in stocks such as GameStop, up a staggering 685% for the month as of Tuesday's closing bell. The GameStop frenzy even caught the attention of billionaires CEOs Chamath Palihapitiya and Elon Musk. Both referenced the action Tuesday on Twitter, with Palihapitiya saying he made an options bet on the stock and Musk sharing a link to r/wallstreetbets, a Reddit page popular with traders. Also Tuesday, the hedge fund Melvin Capital closed out its short position after taking a huge loss, the manager of the fund told CNBC's Andrew Ross Sorkin. Shares of other popular names including Apple have also been seesawing this we...
Shares rally, retail surge drives silver to 8-year high
Asia, Market, World

Shares rally, retail surge drives silver to 8-year high

LONDON: Global shares bounced and silver markets surged on Monday (Feb 1) as retail investors expanded their social media-fuelled battle with Wall Street to drive the precious metal to an eight-year high. Stock markets were roiled last week after a spike in retail demand to buy the stocks most bet against by hedge funds drove huge gains in companies such as GameStop, and prompted fresh concern that COVID-19 monetary and fiscal support measures were fuelling a market bubble. With chatrooms abuzz with talk that silver was the new target, silver-exposed stocks, funds and coins jumped, helping push spot silver up more than 11 per cent, before gains were trimmed and it last traded up around 9 per cent. The bullish spirit helped London-listed miners post strong gains, including one of mor...