Due to a technical problem on Wednesday Jan
16, we are upgrading the news management system by a Canadian
software company, which will be
completed in coming days.
It has taken longer than
anticipated. That is one of the drawbacks of outsourcing. C'est
la vie - even Google News updating falls behind at times!
We expect to have our upgraded
news system on stream on Wednesday.
News Headlines to Jan 16 2008
Today's News Links
Tuesday's stories and links from Jan 17 2008
Markets News Tuesday;
Bears run rampant in Europe and Asia-Pacific - Gold and Oil prices
The bears have been
rampant in markets across Asia-Pacific and Europe on Tuesday
following a grim day of red ink on Monday.
The US markets were
closed yesterday for the Martin Luther King holiday and some
analysts say that the Dow may fall by up to 700 points when trading
opens later Tuesday.
Bloomberg says that more than half of the world's biggest stock indexes
fell into a bear market as mounting concern about a
US recession dragged down banking and retail
shares across Asia, Europe and Latin America.
The MSCI World Index's 3% decline
yesterday, the steepest since 2002, left benchmarks
in France, Mexico, Italy and 35 other countries at
least 20% below their recent highs. Declines
today turned Indonesia, India, the Philippines,
Taiwan and Thailand into bear markets as well.
Wall Street Journal says today that Bank of China Ltd. appears
increasingly likely to report a large write-down on its investments
in US mortgage securities, illustrating the broadening reach of the
global financial downturn -- and how one of China's biggest lenders
was less astute at avoiding the problem than it initially thought.
The Journal says that
analysts estimate that the state-owned lender, traditionally the
most international of the country's big banks, may have to write off
a quarter of the nearly $8 billion it holds in securities backed by
subprime mortgages. While that still would leave the bank profitable
for last year, it would be far larger than the $322 million the
lender said it had set aside for such losses when it announced
third-quarter results, the last time it publicly addressed the
The possible subprime
losses also raise questions about transparency at China's banks,
which list shares for international investors in Hong Kong and
domestically in Shanghai -- and which are among the biggest banks in
the world by some measures.
Analysts said they can
make only educated guesses at how much money Bank of China's
subprime investments lost last year because China's rules don't
require it to disclose the total until April, when it announces full
results for 2007.
Asia-Pacific stocks fell sharply today following Monday's
sessions when fears of a US recession spread across the region.
The MSCI Asia Pacific
Index, which tracks more than 1,050 regional stocks, slid 6.7% and
the Nikkei 225 in Japan dropped 5.7%, its lowest level since
September, 2005. Shares in Hong Kong plunged 8%, while falling
stocks in India prompted a halt to trading at the Bombay Stock
Exchange. The Sensex 30 index is down 8.18%, making the 2-day plunge
a massive 15%.
In South Korea, the
Kospi Composite tumbled 4% after a 3% drop Monday. In Australia, the
S&P/ASX 200 fell 7.1% - the largest daily percentage fall since
In Europe Monday, the Dow Jones 600
fell over 5%, the biggest fall
since the 9/11 terrorist attack.
Germany's Dax closed down almost 7%; the FTSE 100 almost 5% and France's
CAC 40 over 6%.
Spain's IBEX 35 index plunged 7.54% -
its worst fall since 1987, placing Ibex-35, Spain's benchmark index, at 12,625
points. This is the first time since 2006 that the market closed below the
13,000 points. It had reached a historic high two months ago at 15,945 points.
In Dublin, the ISEQ index lost almost 4%.
Tuesday, the Dow Jones 600 has fallen almost 4% as has the FTSE 100.
Germany's DAX has plunged almost 5% making the 2-day tumble 12%.
In Dublin, the
ISEQ has fallen 3% to 6,074.
National benchmarks - Europe
Irish Share Prices
AIB Daily Report
Bank of Ireland Daily Report
The euro is trading at
$1.4400 and at £0.7406.
currency updates, check the right-hand
column of the
Finfacts home page.
Crude oil for March delivery is trading on the
Mercantile Exchange (Nymex)
at $86.44 per barrel, down $412 overnight. In London, Brent is
trading on the
International Commodities Exchange at $85.32 down $2.19 cents.
The oil price has been
under pressure because of recession fears.
The spot price of gold
is at $855.80 per ounce, down $26.10 overnight in New York.