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  • Tokyo stocks firm on strong corporate earnings

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Tokyo stocks firmed Friday on strong corporate earnings, but investors refrained from chasing prices higher amid a strengthening yen. The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average ended up 68.17 points, or 0.39 percent, from Thursday at 17

    January 30, 2015 03:19 pm JST
  • Taiwan growth

    4Q economic slowdown as lower oil prices hurt exports

    TAIPEI -- Taiwan's economic growth expanded at its lowest rate in five quarters as falling oil prices hurt the exports of petrochemical products and domestic demand weakened. The island's fourth quarter gross domestic product grew 3.17% year-on

    January 30, 2015 03:02 pm JST
  • Dollar slips to upper 117 yen zone on weak Japan inflation data

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- The U.S. dollar slid to the upper 117 yen range in Tokyo on Friday morning as traders deemed Japan's lackluster December inflation data insufficient to push the Bank of Japan toward further quantitative easing and underpin the U.S.

    January 30, 2015 01:20 pm JST
  • Political connections key

    Japan's Itochu and Thailand's CP navigate minefield to seal Citic deal

    TOKYO -- Japanese trading house Itochu and Thailand's Charoen Pokphand, best known for its food and retail businesses, have announced plans to effectively invest 1.2 trillion yen ($10.1 billion) in Citic, one of China's most powerful state-owned fin

    January 30, 2015 01:00 pm JST
  • Central Group invests in Europe

    Thai conglomerate pursues 'old school' expansion in Europe

    BANGKOK -- Ubiquitous in Thailand, leading retail chain Central Group has joined the modest ranks of Thai companies venturing abroad, opening stores in China, Vietnam, Indonesia and, soon, Malaysia. Across Asia, its footprint showcases familiar feat

    January 30, 2015 01:00 pm JST
  • Ruble collapse

    Russian travelers shun Southeast Asia as currency crisis bites

    PATTAYA -- It is Friday night in the heart of Pattaya, the famous and colorful Thai beachside resort town that became an irresistible lure for Russian tourists during the energy boom that followed the 2008 global financial crisis. But on the cit

    January 30, 2015 01:00 pm JST
  • Itsuo Toshima

    The crisis in Greece -- good news for China?

    Europe will never let Greece leave the eurozone without a fight. The reason? Geopolitical risk. The Balkan Peninsula is in a key strategic position -- the eastern gateway to the Mediterranean for Asian nations. "China is busy buying airports and

    January 30, 2015 01:00 pm JST
  • South Korea's extremist concerns

    Islamic State group draws increased interest from youth

    TOKYO -- The Islamic State group in the Middle East is drawing increased attention in South Korea amid the prolonged hostage crisis involving two Japanese nationals. The hostage drama illustrates that no nation is immune from the threat of the e

    January 30, 2015 01:00 pm JST
  • Regulators fret over frothy stocks

    Market jitters grow over when, how China's central bank will loosen

    HONG KONG -- There is a hot debate going on among China's financial market watchers over a likely loosening of the country's monetary policy. The consensus is that the People's Bank of China, the central bank, will expand the money supply in the nea

    January 30, 2015 01:00 pm JST
  • Spelunking to the opera

    Cavelike performance hall wows Taiwan

    TAIPEI -- A project that upends the conventions of architecture is nearing completion in Taiwan. The structure of the Taichung Metropolitan Opera House, in the city it is named for, resembles a cave. Rather than pillars or beams, the building fe

    January 30, 2015 01:00 pm JST
  • Tokyo stocks firm in morning on Wall St. gains while Japan data mixed

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Tokyo stocks firmed Friday morning after Wall Street shares rose, but gains were limited as mixed data clouded the economic picture in Japan. The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average gained 111.10 points, or 0.63 percent, from Thursda

    January 30, 2015 11:53 am JST
  • Japan set to secure nonpermanent seat on U.N. Security Council

    NEW YORK (Kyodo) -- Japan is ensured of a nonpermanent seat on the U.N. Security Council as the Asia Pacific group comprising 54 countries decided at a meeting Thursday to endorse Tokyo as their candidate for an election in October. The two-year

    January 30, 2015 11:38 am JST
  • Japan's industrial output up 1.0% in Dec.

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Japan's industrial output rose a seasonally adjusted 1.0 percent in December from the previous month, government data showed Friday, signaling the economy may have started to recover slowly following last year's consumption tax hike

    January 30, 2015 11:06 am JST
  • Dollar trades in lower 118 yen zone in early Tokyo deals

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- The U.S. dollar traded in the lower 118 yen range in Tokyo early Friday morning, maintaining its gains from overnight in New York. At 9 a.m., the dollar fetched 118.27-28 yen compared with 118.23-33 yen in New York and 117.69-72

    January 30, 2015 09:43 am JST
  • Tokyo stocks start firm after Wall St. gains, Japan jobs data

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Tokyo stocks opened higher Friday on the heels of U.S. share gains and following data showing Japan's labor market improved in December. In the first 15 minutes of trading, the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average rose 169.15 points,

    January 30, 2015 09:38 am JST
  • Japan's Dec. jobless rate improves to 3.4%

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Japan's unemployment rate improved to 3.4 percent in December from 3.5 percent the previous month, the government said Friday. Separate data showed the nation's job availability improved for the third straight month. The ratio o

    January 30, 2015 09:32 am JST
  • Japan's December consumer prices up 2.5% on year

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Japan's consumer prices rose 2.5 percent in December from a year earlier for the 19th straight monthly gain, the government said Friday. The core consumer price index, which excludes volatile fresh food prices, stood at 103.2 ag

    January 30, 2015 09:22 am JST
  • E-commerce giant

    Clash with Chinese authorities casts shadow on Alibaba

    SHANGHAI -- Chinese authorities are stepping up criticism of Alibaba for failing to crack down on sales of poor-quality and counterfeit products on its websites, a development that is raising doubts about the company's operations. The Chinese e-

    January 30, 2015 05:05 am JST
  • Not yet the bottom of the barrel?

    Speculators jump into crude oil market

    TOKYO -- Investors the world over are pouring money into the crude oil market as the commodity's price continues to tumble. International trading of U.S. oil futures contracts has climbed about 20% from the level seen at the end of November, whi

    January 30, 2015 05:02 am JST
  • Refocusing operations

    Toshiba to exit foreign TV sales, license brand

    TOKYO -- Toshiba said Thursday that it will stop developing and selling televisions overseas. In March, the Japanese electronics maker will begin licensing the Toshiba brand to Taiwan's Compal Electronics in North America. Compal will handle eve

    January 30, 2015 04:58 am JST