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Asian shares slip as China says economy slowed further

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Asian shares were mostly lower on Tuesday (17 January) after China reported its economy expanded at a 3 percent pace last year, less than half 2021′s rate.

Tokyo advanced while most other regional markets declined. Investors are watching to see if Japan’s central bank will alter its longstanding policy of keeping its key interest rate at minus 0.1 percent when it wraps up a policy meeting on Wednesday.

US futures fell after markets on Wall Street were closed Monday for a holiday, while oil prices were mixed.

The Chinese economy is gradually reviving after antivirus controls and a real estate slump dragged on growth last year. Restrictions that kept millions of people at home have been lifted, but a surge in Covid-19 infections is keeping consumers cautious about travel, shopping and dining out.

Data reported Tuesday showed growth of the world’s second-largest economy slid to 2.9 percent over a year earlier in December from the previous months 3.9 percent.

The government has begun to soften a crackdown on technology industries and to roll out more support for private businesses and the property sector, seeking to spur a recovery.

“The good news is that there are now signs of stabilization, as policy support doled out towards the end of 2022 is showing up in the relative resilience of infrastructure investment and credit growth,” Louise Loo of Oxford Economics said in a research note.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen was set to meet with her Chinese counterpart in Switzerland on Wednesday. Yellen and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He plan to discuss economic developments between the U.S. and China at a time of persisting tensions over trade and technology.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index lost 1 percent to 21,528.84 and the Shanghai Composite index edged 0.3 percent lower to 3,219.68. In Seoul, the Kospi declined 0.5 percent, to 2,388.35. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gave up 0.2 percent to 7,376.70.

Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index gained 1.2 percent to 26,137.15. Bangkok’s benchmark was nearly unchanged.

On Monday, European markets gained after Germany reported inflation cooled in December. The DAX in Frankfurt gained 0.3 percent to 15,134.04 and the CAC 40 in Paris also added 0.3 percent to 7,043.31. Britain’s FTSE 100 edged 0.2 percent higher to 7,860.07.

The year has begun with optimism that cooling inflation could lead the Federal Reserve to ease off soon on sharp interest rate hikes that slow the economy and risk causing a recession. They also hurt investment prices.

Slowing segments of the U.S. economy and still-high inflation are dragging on profits for companies, which are one of the main levers that set stock prices. Friday marked the first big day for companies in the S&P 500 to show how they fared during the final three months of 2022, with a bevy of banks at the head of the line.

One big worry on Wall Street is that S&P 500 companies may report a drop in profits for the fourth quarter from a year earlier.

If the economy does fall into a recession, as many investors expect, sharper drops for profits may be set for 2023. That’s why the forecasts for upcoming earnings that CEOs give this reporting season may be even more important than their latest results.

In other trading Tuesday, U.S. benchmark crude oil lost 53 cents to $79.33 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It gained $1.47 to $79.86 per barrel on Monday.

Brent crude, the pricing standard for international trading, picked up 24 cents to $84.70 per barrel in London.

The dollar was trading at 128.70 Japanese yen, up from 128.53 yen. The euro rose to $1.0830 from $1.0822.

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PM Sheikh Hasina Hails Bangladesh as a Role Model for Global Peace

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina declared today that Bangladesh has become a role model in global peacekeeping, urging for the cessation of ongoing wars and advocating for dialogue to resolve conflicts, redirecting funds from arms races to human welfare.

“Bangladesh is a dependable name in the efforts of protecting peace and safety alongside establishing global peace. We are acknowledged by all and have become a role model on the global stage,” she stated.

The Prime Minister made these remarks while addressing an event at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) marking the International Day of UN Peacekeepers 2024.

She noted that 6,092 Bangladeshi peacekeepers, including 493 women, are serving with distinction in 13 UN peacekeeping missions.

“Our peacekeepers are working with fame and glory,” she said, adding that heads of state and government where Bangladeshi peacekeepers are deployed have highly praised their efforts.

“I feel really proud hearing the appreciation,” she continued.

Sheikh Hasina emphasized that Bangladesh follows the ideals of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in its pursuit of global peace.

“We are actively participating in other international forums alongside the UN peacekeeping missions to establish global peace,” she said.

She recalled that Bangladesh’s “Culture of Peace” proposal was unanimously adopted by the UN in 1999, leading to the declaration of the year 2000 as the “International Year of the Culture of Peace.”

The Prime Minister highlighted Bangabandhu’s role as an envoy of peace and a voice for the oppressed, which earned him the “Joliot Curie Peace Medal” on May 23, 1973.

Sheikh Hasina commended Bangladeshi peacekeepers for their dedication to protecting civilians, human rights, and establishing peace globally, noting that they have shared Bangladeshi culture and language with the communities they serve.

“The people of those countries have given you untold love and affection,” she said.

“Overall, our professionalism, efficiency, and commitment in establishing global peace have set an example for others,” she continued, urging peacekeepers to continue their efforts to enhance Bangladesh’s reputation further.

She paid tribute to the 168 Bangladeshi peacekeepers who lost their lives and the 266 who were severely injured in the line of duty.

Chief of Army Staff General S M Shafiuddin Ahmed, Senior Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen, and United Nations Resident Coordinator Gwyn Lewis also spoke at the event. The program began with a minute of silence to honor the fallen peacekeepers.

A video documentary showcasing the achievements of Bangladeshi peacekeepers in UN missions was screened, and the Prime Minister handed out awards to three injured peacekeepers.

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Takaful Insurance reveals their Dividends, Q1 Financials

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One of the Listed companies, Takaful Islami Insurance Co. Limited has recommended 10% Cash Dividend for the year ended December 31, 2023.

In terms of financial performance, The Company has also reported EPS  of Tk. 1.47 for the year ended December 31, 2023. NAV per share of Tk. 19.18.

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the company will be held on August 10, through the digital platform. The record date for this has been fixed at June 27.

Q1 Financials: The company’s earnings per share (EPS) was Tk 0.38 paisa in Q1 of the current financial year (January – March 24). EPS was Tk 0.37 paisa during the same period last year. As of March 31, 2024, at the end of the first quarter of the fiscal year, the company’s net asset value (NAV) per share stood at Tk 19.26.

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DSE Dips Again

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Dhaka Stock Exchange DSE, Bourse on the third working day of the week, 28th May, ended with a drop in Indices and Turnover from the previous working session. This information is known from DSE sources.

442 crore 72 lakh taka shares were traded on this day. 65 crore 39 lakh less tradings were done in DSE today compared to the previous workday, 27th May , Shares worth Tk 506 crores 12 lakh shares were traded last time, Monday

The benchmark DSEX lost 31.63 points or 5,278 The Shariah-based index DSES dropped 7.63 points or 1,152, and the blue-chip index DS30 decreased by 13.92 points or 1,886.

Of the issues traded, 92 advanced, 265 declined and 37 remained unchanged.

Global Heavy Chemicals Limited ranked top gainer on DSE, the share price increased by Tk 2.30 paisa or 9.70 percent. On this day, the share was last traded at Tk 26.00 paisa.

National Life Insurance Company Limited ranked top loser on the DSE, the share price dropped by Tk 3.20 paisa or 3 percent. On this day, the share was last traded at Tk 103.60 paisa.

DSE topped on trade is IFIC Bank PLC 21 crore 39 lakh takas of company shares have been traded.

A total of 38 companies’ shares were traded in the Block on Dhaka Stock Exchange. A total of 2 crore 9 lakh 42 thousand 4 shares of the companies were traded. The financial value of which is 41 crore 34 lakh taka

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