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Asia-Pacific News Australasia

  • *Plans to cut some middle& senior management roles in Hong Kong. SYDNEY/ SHANGHAI, March 17- Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd plans to cut the cost of middle and senior management roles at its Hong Kong head office by 30 percent, according to an internal memo a day after the airline reported its first annual loss since 2008.. The Hong Kong flag carrier earlier this week...

  • *Asia ex- Japan set for best week since July. SINGAPORE, March 17- Asian stocks advanced on Friday, set for their best week since July, while the dollar continued the slide that began after the Federal Reserve indicated it was unlikely to speed up monetary tightening. The dollar was steady at 113.32 yen but is on track to post a 1.2 percent loss for the week.

  • *Asia ex- Japan set for best week since September. SINGAPORE, March 17- Asian stocks crawled higher in early trade on Friday, set for its best week since September, while the dollar continued the slide that began after the Federal Reserve indicated it was unlikely to speed up monetary tightening. The dollar was steady at 113.32 yen but is on track to post a 1.2 percent...

  • SINGAPORE/ WASHINGTON, March 16- The Federal Reserve's return to higher interest rates could lend a hand to beleaguered counterparts in Japan and Europe and signal the end of a long cycle of monetary stimulus across Asia, as central banks from Beijing to Ankara to London reacted on Thursday to the U.S. policy change. That same reason prompted central banks in...

  • Slightly more stocks rose on the New York Stock Exchange than fell. The U.K. FTSE 100 rose 0.6 percent and closed at a record high. Investors had been nervous about Wednesday's Dutch election, worried that victories for nationalist parties there and in other elections on the continent later this year could eventually lead to the breakup of the European Union.

  • LONDON, March 16- World stock indexes surged to record highs on Thursday while the dollar traded close to a one-month low after the Federal Reserve hiked U.S. interest rates but signalled no pick-up in the pace of tightening. Markets also reacted positively after Dutch centre-right Prime Minister Mark Rutte fought off a challenge by anti-immigration, anti-...

  • KUALA LUMPUR, March 16- Malaysia stood by its decision to bar "Beauty and the Beast" from cinemas without a "gay moment" being cut as the worldwide rollout of the Walt Disney movie began on Thursday. "The film has not been and will not be cut for Malaysia," Disney said in a statement. Asked it Malaysia would change its mind on its demand for the cut, Censorship Board chairman...

  • *Monetary easing in Asia could now be just for emergencies. SINGAPORE, March 16- The long cycle of falling interest rates in Asia could be over after the U.S. Federal Reserve's third rate rise in 15 months was followed quickly by monetary tightening in the world's second-biggest economy, China.

  • CANBERRA, Australia— An Australian court on Thursday fined gambling company Tabcorp a record 45 million Australian dollars for failing to comply with anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing obligations. The Federal Court approved a settlement reached between the Sydney- based company and regulator AUSTRAC after finding Tabcorp...

  • *Singapore may become first Asian bourse with split share system. *Boldest move in years could help make Singapore a tech hub. Singapore could by the end of this year implement a split share system that allows entrepreneurs to retain control even with minority stakes, by giving some shares more weight.

  • *Dollar lower across the board in Asia, weakness could be lengthy. SYDNEY, March 16- The dollar nursed painful losses in Asia on Thursday while sovereign bonds savoured their biggest rally in nine months after the Federal Reserve hiked interest rates, as expected, but signalled no pick-up in the pace of tightening. The sigh of relief was heard across Asia as...

  • CANBERRA, Australia— Australia will put 2 billion Australian dollars into expanding a hydroelectric project in its latest measure to avoid looming gas and electricity shortages across the nation's densely populated southeast, the government said Thursday. A bitterly partisan political debate over Australia's energy security has intensified in the...

  • KEEPING SCORE: Tokyo's Nikkei 225 index was flat at 19,578.06 while the Shanghai Composite gained 0.6 percent to 3,262.90. Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1.2 percent to 24,084.14 and Seoul's Kospi rose 0.5 percent to 2,144.37. Benchmarks in New Zealand, Taiwan and Singapore gained while Malaysia fell.

  • *Dollar lower across the board in Asia, weakness could be lengthy. SYDNEY, March 16- The dollar nursed sharp losses in Asia on Thursday while sovereign bonds savoured their biggest rally in nine months after the Federal Reserve hiked interest rates, as expected, but signalled no pick-up in the pace of tightening. The sigh of relief was heard across Asia as investors...

  • Traders also said that bargain buyers helped support the grains after declines on Tuesday pushed corn to its lowest since Feb. 1 and wheat to its lowest since Feb. 8. CBOT May soybeans dropped 1-1/ 4 cents to close at $9.98 a bushel. The National Oilseed Processors Association said its members crushed a smaller-than-expected 142.792 million bushels of soybeans...

  • Wheat notched the biggest gain, with the most-active Chicago Board of Trade soft red winter wheat contract rising nearly 1 percent after bottoming out at its lowest since Feb. 8. At 10:42 a.m. CDT, CBOT May soft red winter wheat was up 4 cents at $4.34-1/ 2 a bushel. CBOT May soybeans were 1-3/ 4 cents higher at $10.01 a bushel.

  • Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange climbed 0.8 percent to $5,866 a tonne by 1100 GMT, adding to small gains from the previous session. Shanghai Futures Exchange copper closed 0.7 percent firmer at 47,670 yuan a tonne. "Dollar weakness seems to be giving support to metals today while supply disruptions in copper are persisting," said Xiao Fu, head of...

  • SYDNEY— An Australian woman suffered burns to her face after her battery-operated headphones exploded during a flight from Beijing to Melbourne, Australian air safety investigators said Wednesday. The woman, whose name was not released, fell asleep on the plane while wearing the headphones and awoke to a loud explosion about two hours into the flight, the...

  • SYDNEY, March 15- The co-founder of Australian software firm Atlassian Corp Plc said on Tuesday he was close to meeting a self-imposed one-week deadline of getting political and financial support for a plan to use batteries from Tesla Inc to bridge an electricity supply gap in South Australia. Mike Cannon-Brookes and Tesla boss Elon Musk have become...

  • *Australia faces gas shortage despite exports soaring. SYDNEY, March 15- Australia's top gas producers, led by ExxonMobil Corp and Royal Dutch Shell, agreed to boost supply to the country's domestic market to help avert an energy shortage following crisis talks with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. Australia's power supply problems made international...