Sports News Updates

Ranji: Agarwal's triple ton lights up Karnataka's chances

Friday, November 3 2017

Ranji: Agarwal's triple ton lights up Karnataka's chances

Ranji: Agarwal's triple ton lights up Karnataka's chances Ranji: Agarwal's triple ton lights up Karnataka's chances Source : Last Updated: Fri, Nov 03, 2017 21:17 hrs Pune: Karnataka batsman Mayank Agarwal's maiden First Class triple century was the lone highlight of the third day's action of the Ranji Trophy round four as the tourists found them in a commanding position against Maharashtra here on Friday. Agarwal, who was unbeaten on 219 on Thursday, notched up an unbeaten 304 off 494 balls that included 28 fours and four sixes to guide Karnataka to 628/5 declared at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium here. The 26-year-old Agarwal had put on 259 for the opening wicket with R Samarth (129) on the second day before joining forces with Karun Nair to add 279. Nair, who was not out on 56 overnight, struck a century of his own, finishing with 116. Maharashtra, in reply, ended the day on 135/4 with Ruturaj Dasharath Gaikwad and Rahul Tripathi on the crease. In another Group A fixure, Uttar Pradesh piled up 224 runs in their second innings at stumps after bowling Delhi out for 269. With a crucial first innings lead in the bag, UP need to keep their composure and end up on the winning side eventually, unlike their first and third matches this season. Akshdeep Nath, unbeaten on 110, and Rinku Singh (64) played two crucial knocks for their team after the first three wickets had fallen with just two runs on the board. Skipper Suresh Raina, though, failed yet again and fell for a personal score of 16. In Group B, Saurashtra rode on India star Cheteshwar Pujara's double century to score a mammoth 553 runs in their first innings before bowling out Jharkhand for 270. Mayank Agarwal become third player from Karnataka to score triple century in Ranji trophy... — Broken Cricket (@BrokenCricket) November 3, 2017 Welcome to the 300’s club Mayank Agarwal Big up yourself, you beauty!! pic.twitter.com/nuAsT4mpXm — K L Rahul (@klrahul11) November 3, 2017 Ishank Jaggi high scored with 114 runs and Ishan Kishan smashed a half-century (59), but none of their fellow batsmen held on to help the team avoid following on. After being asked to follow-on, Jharkhand's opener Md Nazim Siddiqui, with nothing to lose, started explosively and completed his half-century at a strike rate of over 150. However, with only one day of the play left, it's highly unlikely that Saurashtra will let this one slip away and will hope to bowl Jharkhand out as soon as possible. In Group C, Mumbai had gained a healthy first innings lead against Odisha, thanks to Prithvi Shaw's century and then a brilliant team effort to dismiss the hosts for 145. Subsequently, in their second innings, Siddharth Lad's century ensured Mumbai give Odisha a mammoth total of 413 to chase. Ajinkya Rahane, though, fell for a duck in the second innings. In reply, Odisha had added 93 runs by the end of day's play for the loss of four wickets. They still need 320 more runs on the final day to win the match. In Group D, pacer Ashoke Dinda's five-wicket haul helped hosts Bengal bundle Himachal Pradesh for 206 in their first innings in reply to Bengal's 419. In their second essay, HP are 207/2 at the end of the day's play as the match looks to be heading for a tame draw. Stay updated on the go with Sify Live Scores App. Click here to download it for your device SEARCH

Bhopal gang-rape: Five police officers suspended, CM Chouhan orders probe

Friday, November 3 2017

Bhopal gang-rape: Five police officers suspended, CM Chouhan orders probe

Bhopal gang-rape: Five police officers suspended, CM Chouhan orders probe Bhopal gang-rape: Five police officers suspended, CM Chouhan orders probe Source : Last Updated: Fri, Nov 03, 2017 22:00 hrs Bhopal : Five Madhya Pradesh police officers were on Friday suspended for dilly-dallying over registering an FIR on the complaint of a 19-year-old woman who was allegedly gang-raped by four men in the state capital on Tuesday, a senior police officer said. The action followed a recommendation to this effect in a report submitted by Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) Sudhir Lad on the incident and the role of police personnel, who allegedly failed to act on the young woman's complaint. Taking serious note of the gang rape of the teen, whose parents are police personnel, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Friday held a meeting with senior police officers and ordered action against the errant officers. Chouhan also ordered formation of a special investigation team (SIT) to probe the incident. The team will be headed by DIG Lad. Inspector General of Police (Law and Order) Makrand Deuskar told the media: "Officer In-charge of MP Nagar Police Station Sanjay Singh Bais, Habibganj Police Station In-charge Ravindra Yadav and In-charge of GRP Police Station of Habibgaj Railway Station Mohit Saxena have been suspended on charges of dereliction of duty." Two Sub Inspectors of MP Nagar and GRP police stations had also been suspended, and the Superintendent of Police of MP Nagar area attached to the police headquarters, Deuskar said. The victim, whose parents are police personnel themselves and posted in another city, was returning from coaching classes late on Tuesday evening when she was accosted by four inebriated persons near the Habibganj Railway Station who raped her for three hours. Two city police stations kept dilly-dallying over registering of the FIR, saying the place of occurrence did not fall within their area. Finally, the case was registered two days after the incident. Two of the accused have been arrested. The Congress on Friday launched a scathing attack on Chief Minister Chouhan over the gang rape and the subsequent delay in lodging of the FIR. Raising questions over the law and order situation as well as the relevance of "women empowerment" under the Bharatiya Janata Party rule in the state, the party leaders wondered how campaigns like "Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao" would succeed in Madhya Pradesh. Pointing out that it took two days to lodge the FIR, they said the role of police was at best "callous" and "irresponsible". They held a demonstration at the local Habibganj Police Station, under whose jurisdiction the incident took place. In a sarcastic remark, Congress leader and Leader of Opposition in state assembly Ajay Singh said: "Our Chief Minister claims that Madhya Pradesh is ahead of even America, but when it comes to women empowerment the claim stands exposed in the state capital." In a statement, state Secretary of the Communist Party of India Badal Saroj said: "When the Chief Minister and ministers were busy watching a mega event that involved investment in crores, the daughter of a police couple was raped between two police station areas in the state capital and it took her two days to lodge a complaint. It's shameful." SEARCH talking point on sify news Latest Features

Amarinder Singh directs Punjab police to check misuse of social media

Friday, November 3 2017

Amarinder Singh directs Punjab police to check misuse of social media

Amarinder Singh directs Punjab police to check misuse of social media Amarinder Singh directs Punjab police to check misuse of social media 23:47 hrs [India] November 3 (ANI): In an attempt to curb the menace of increasing evil activities on social media, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Friday directed the state police to monitor social media activities. A statement issued by the Punjab's Chief Minister Office said, "CM Singh issued strict directions to the state police and intelligence agencies to go all out to counter the increasing misuse of social media to spread hate campaigns." The chief minister has also ordered to take up stern steps to break the nexus between terrorists and gangsters, as well as between gangsters and jail staff, to prevent use of prisons by gangsters to carry out their nefarious operations. Keeping in mind the increase in recovery of mobile phones and sim cards from jail and some gangsters operating from prisons, the Chief Minister has ordered strict monitoring of jails and directed the Home Department to take immediate steps to fill vacancies in the state prisons. "There was a need to instill in these gangsters a fear of the law to ensure that the state's peace and harmony is maintained at all costs," Singh said. These directions were forwarded at a high-level meeting, chaired by the Chief Minister, to review the law and order situation in the state, which was attended by senior police and administrative officials. The Chief Minister who had also expressed his concern over the recent killing of a Hindu Shiv Sena leader in Amritsar ordered the police to expedite the investigation in the case. The police officials assured Captain Amarinder that the culprits, who had already been identified, would be caught soon. Captain Amarinder also instructed the security agencies to adopt effective measures to counter the online hate campaign by Pakistan's ISI and the communal tirade being launched by a section of the hardline Hindus against the Sikh community and vice versa. He gave the security forces a free hand to tackle any threat to the state's peace and harmony, saying no violation of the law would be tolerated. All such attempts should be dealt with an iron hand, the Chief Minister directed the state police, adding that while the law and order situation in Punjab had seen a marked improvement in the past eight months, there was need to tighten the belt further to ensure that people in the state live in an atmosphere of peace, with fear of any kind. Among the top police officials who attended the meeting were DGP Suresh Arora and DGP Intelligence Dinkar Gupta, DGP Law and Order H S Dhillon, DGP Administration M K Tewari, DGP Jails IPS Sahota, ADGP Crime Pramod Kumar, IG Personnel V Neerja, IGP Crime Shashi Prabha, ADGP Chief STF H S Sidhu. Besides Advisor to CM Lt. Gen. (Retd) T S Shergil, Media Advisor to CM Raveen Thukral, CS Karan Avtar Singh, ACS (Home)N S Kalsi, CPS CM Suresh Kumar, PS CM Tejveer Singh were also present in the meeting. (ANI) SEARCH talking point on sify news Latest Features

Police set up green corridor to shift NTPC blast victims

Friday, November 3 2017

Police set up green corridor to shift NTPC blast victims

Police set up green corridor to shift NTPC blast victims Police set up green corridor to shift NTPC blast victims 23:48 hrs [India] November 3 (ANI): The Lucknow Police had set up a green corridor to shift three persons to AIIMS, Delhi who got critically injured in the boiler explosion in National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC) Raebareli. Via green corridor the victims were taken to the Lucknow's Chaudhary Charan Singh international airport to fly them to Delhi's All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) via special aircraft. At least 32 people were killed and several were injured after a boiler exploded on Wednesday, November 2 at a state-run NTPC plant in Raebareli, Uttar Pardesh. Two days after the horrific incident took place in Raebareli, NTPC chairman Gurdeep Singh on Friday said a committee has been formed to probe the Unchahar power plant explosion and the report will be submitted in the next 30 days. (ANI) SEARCH talking point on sify news Latest Features

Rs 10,000 Crore MoU signed between Govt of India & Patanjali

Friday, November 3 2017

Rs 10,000 Crore MoU signed between Govt of India & Patanjali

Rs 10,000 Crore MoU signed between Govt of India & Patanjali Rs 10,000 Crore MoU signed between Govt of India & Patanjali 23:48 hrs [India] November 3 (ANI): A memorandum of understanding (MoU) of Rs 10, 000 Crore was signed between the Government of India (GoI) and Patanjali on Friday at the World Food India 2017. The MoU was signed by Managing Director of Patanjali, Acharya Balkrishna and Harsimrat Kaur Badal, the Union Cabinet Minister of Food Processing in the Government of India. Speaking to ANI, Acharya Balkrishna said, "World Food India 2017 is a great initiative. This will generate new opportunities. This event will help people." "In our country there are lots of issues and adulteration in food is one of them. Duplicity is more dangerous than adulteration. Even foods not been processed in one of the issue. Hope steps will be taken up to deal with these issues", he added. Meanwhile, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, the Union Cabinet Minister of Food Processing also asserted, " This event that has brought together stakeholders from all food value chains to collaborate the increase in food processing in India." "Since food processing sector is the largest employment generator so youngsters of our country will get access to employment. Besides generating revenue this will help in the development of the country," she added. The World Food India 2017 organised at Delhi's Vigyan Bhawan was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier in the day. The three day-long event, organised by the Ministry of Food Processing Industries, is set to host a congregation of global investors and business leaders of major food companies from November 3 to 5 in New Delhi. Earlier in October, Patanjali climbed from 45th place last year to 19th this year, in the Forbes magazine's Annual India Rich List 2017.(ANI) SEARCH talking point on sify news Latest Features

Oil prices rise on expected extension of output cuts

Wednesday, November 1 2017

Oil prices rise on expected extension of output cuts

Oil hits highest since mid-2015 as OPEC sticks to supply deal Oil hits highest since mid-2015 as OPEC sticks to supply deal Wed, Nov 01, 2017 15:42 hrs By Amanda Cooper LONDON (Reuters) - Oil rose to its highest since mid-2015 on Wednesday as data showed OPEC has significantly improved compliance with its pledged supply cuts and Russia is also widely expected to keep to the deal. Brent crude futures were up 59 cents at $61.53 per barrel at 0905 GMT, having hit a session peak of $61.70 earlier, the highest since July 2015. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was at $55.12 a barrel, up 74 cents. The oil price gained 7 percent in October, marking the fourth consecutive month of gains. "The bulls have it and momentum is strong," Saxo Bank senior manager Ole Hansen said. "We know how oil can easily run ahead of what is fundamentally justified and we've seen that in both directions in the last couple of years," he said. "We really need to see demand growth pick up even more strongly than what is currently expected for the bullish outlook for to be maintained." Optimism has been fuelled by an effort this year lead by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Russia and other producers to hold back about 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) in oil production to tighten markets. OPEC's October output fell by 80,000 bpd to 32.78 million bpd, putting adherence to its pledged supply curbs at 92 percent, up from September's 86 percent. Analysts and traders expect Russia to stick to its agreement to curb its oil output by 300,000 bpd from 11.247 million bpd reached in October 2016. Saudi Arabia and Russia are considering extending the agreement to potentially cover all of next year. Should participants after that return to full capacity and U.S. output also grow, a supply glut could return. "We could rapidly ... go from a predicted deficit of around 260,000 barrels to a surplus of close to 1.5 million barrels. Prices would undoubtedly collapse," said Matt Stanley, a fuel broker at Freight Investor Services. Another factor will be U.S. output, which has risen by almost 13 percent since mid-2016 to 9.5 million bpd. "U.S. crude oil production is 410,000 bpd below the April 2015 peak of 9.62 million bpd. We expect production to surpass this level before year-end," Barclays bank said. (Additional reporting by Henning Gloystein in SINAGPORE; Editing by Louise Heavens) SEARCH

Exclusive: Exxon exit deals blow to Pakistan plans for LNG imports

Friday, November 3 2017

Exclusive: Exxon exit deals blow to Pakistan plans for LNG imports

Exclusive: Exxon exit deals blow to Pakistan plans for LNG imports Exclusive: Exxon exit deals blow to Pakistan plans for LNG imports Fri, Nov 03, 2017 23:43 hrs By Drazen Jorgic and Oleg Vukmanovic ISLAMABAD/LONDON (Reuters) - Exxon Mobil has pulled out of a major project in Pakistan, in a potential blow to plans to boost imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) after years of winter shortages. Differences among the six-member group behind the project in Port Qasim in Karachi mean French oil major Total and Japan's Mitsubishi may also quit and join a rival scheme, government officials and industry sources told Reuters. A senior Pakistani government official put the chances of success for the project, set to be Pakistan's third and biggest by import capacity, at 10-20 percent due to the disagreements. A highly-developed pipeline grid, extensive industrial demand and the biggest natural gas-powered vehicle fleet in Asia after China and Iran make Pakistan an easy fit for LNG and official estimates show imports could jump fivefold to 30 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) by 2022. The new project would include a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU), where LNG will be converted back into gas for feeding into the country's grid. Qatar Petroleum, the world's biggest LNG producer, Turkish developer Global Energy Infrastructure Limited (GEIL) and Norway's Hoegh LNG, which will provide the FSRU, are the other partners. While Exxon has pulled out, the U.S. company was now negotiating to join a separate project, Hasil Bizenjo, Pakistan's Maritime Affairs minister in charge of ports, said. "They are thinking to build a new terminal in Port Qasim," Bizenjo told Reuters in the Pakistan capital Islamabad, adding that Mitsubishi and Total were also in talks about taking stakes in another consortium. Exxon was pulling out because it had "issues with partners", particularly the developer, GEIL, one energy official said. Exxon's move leaves in doubt a multi-billion dollar deal Qatar has already struck with GEIL for the sale of up to 2.3 million tonnes of LNG annually over 20-years. Exxon Mobil, Total and GEIL declined to comment, while a Mitsubishi spokesman said that the Japanese company has been continuing its talks with partners over the project. Qatar Petroleum did not respond to requests for comment. NEW INVESTORS? LNG imports have transformed Pakistan's energy map since the country's first import facility was introduced in 2015. If the second LNG terminal proceeds without glitches the South Asian nation will not suffer winter gas shortages for the first time in more than 10 years, energy officials say, in a likely boost for Prime Minister Shahid Abbasi's ruling party before the next general elections, due in mid-2018. Government officials and industry sources said talks are underway to bring new players into the project, including Swiss trading house Vitol, which declined to comment. Rival traders Trafigura and Gunvor are already developing LNG projects in Pakistan, betting the country will account for a rising share of future profits and LNG trade. Pakistan plans to add its second LNG import terminal by the end of this year, but private companies have proposed building six more largely around Port Qasim. (Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic; Editing by Veronica Brown and Alexander Smith) SEARCH

Temporary vice-captain to be chosen for England ahead of Ashes Test

Friday, November 3 2017

Temporary vice-captain to be chosen for England ahead of Ashes Test

Temporary vice-captain to be chosen for England ahead of Ashes Test Temporary vice-captain to be chosen for England ahead of Ashes Test Fri, Nov 03, 2017 23:47 hrs [U.K.], November 3 (ANI): A temporary vice-captain for the England team will be appointed before the first Ashes Test in Brisbane, confirmed captain Joe Root. Ben Stokes, the Test vice-captain, is missing the Ashes tour. The Test is slated to be held at the Gabba from November 23, following wild street brawl incident in Bristol last month which allegedly inflicted bodily harm on a man. Alastair Cook, Root's predecessor as captain and Stuart Broad, England's T20 captain for brief time, are believed to be the frontrunners of the deputy captain role. Captain Root said the appointment of vice-captain will be done before the Gabba series after discussions with the team management. "Over next few days, myself and the management will have a chat and it will be sorted by the First Test," Root was quoted, as saying by the Independent over vice-captaincy. "I don't think it makes a massive difference to me on the field. I have some senior players around me who have been fantastic throughout the summer," the right-handed batsman added. England, however, have suffered two injury blows prior to their first warm-up match, ahead of the upcoming Ashes series, with paceman Steven Finn and all-rounder Moeen Ali all set to undergo scans. Despite the setback, Root has asked his team to be ruthless right from the start of this Ashes tour. "We want to be as ruthless as we can and start the tour as we mean to go on," he said. As of August 2015, England holds the Ashes, having won three of the five Tests in the 2015 Ashes series. Australia and England have won 32 series each and five series have been drawn.(ANI) SEARCH

Exclusive: McKinsey worked with S.African firm after learning of Gupta links - sources

Friday, November 3 2017

Exclusive: McKinsey worked with S.African firm after learning of Gupta links - sources

Exclusive: McKinsey worked with S.African firm after learning of Gupta links - sources Exclusive: McKinsey worked with S.African firm after learning of Gupta links - sources Fri, Nov 03, 2017 21:06 hrs By Joe Brock and Ed Cropley JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Global consultancy McKinsey worked with a firm in South Africa for four months after learning it was controlled by the Gupta brothers, business friends of President Jacob Zuma accused of corruption, four sources familiar with the deal said. Their comments contradict media statements by McKinsey that it ceased work with the firm, local consultancy Trillian, in March 2016 -- after due diligence by external consultants showed the links to the Gupta family, accused by South Africa's anti-corruption watchdog of siphoning public funds. McKinsey, which says it never signed a separate contract with Trillian, also ignored warnings by senior staff in South Africa not to partner Trillian in a deal to advise state utility Eskom which is being investigated for fraud, the sources said. The senior staff were troubled by Eskom's demand that Trillian must be involved in the deal despite having little experience. It then took a year for McKinsey to act on calls for an internal inquiry into the relationship with Trillian, the sources said. Two of McKinsey's global directors -- Europe-based Pal Erik Sjatil and Africa chief Georges Desvaux -- and South African office head Saf Yeboah-Amankwah told concerned partners the situation was "under control", three former McKinsey employees said. Six sources with direct knowledge of the matter -- four former McKinsey employees and two current employees -- said there was no investigation until July 2017. McKinsey declined to comment on this allegation. Sjatil and Desvaux were on McKinsey's Shareholder Council, its highest leadership body. Sjatil, Desvaux and Yeboah-Amankwah declined to comment for this story. Eskom, McKinsey and Trillian have denied wrongdoing. The sources' disclosures are the first indication that McKinsey's work with Trillian on the 1.6 billion rand ($113 million) contract to turn around Eskom continued until July of that year -- when Eskom cancelled the deal. Asked about the sources' comments, McKinsey told Reuters by email on Thursday: "McKinsey never had a supplier development partnership with Trillian. We terminated our discussions in March 2016 and notified the client and Trillian." HOPES FOR A "SOLUTION" Eskom had told McKinsey it must use Trillian as a partner to secure the "turnaround" contract under a black empowerment programme, but by July it had become clear that McKinsey would not sign a formal contract with it. Four people involved in the contract with Eskom said McKinsey's work with Trillian continued until then, with one saying "the team hoped a solution could be found right up until Eskom cut ties." McKinsey and Trillian had wanted to extend their advisory partnership at Eskom for four years in a deal that could earn them $700 million, according to documents setting out the firms' cooperation plans seen by Reuters. Sources at McKinsey confirmed the documents' authenticity. Asked about the documents, a McKinsey spokesman did not deny they were genuine. McKinsey said in its email to Reuters that Eskom knew Trillian would not be McKinsey's partner and added: "Any questions about why Trillian remained at Eskom (after March 2016) and what they did, should be directed to Eskom. The disclosures are likely to form part of an investigation launched by South Africa's parliamentary committee on public enterprises into whether McKinsey knowingly let funds from Eskom be diverted to a Gupta-linked company as a way of securing the deal, a source close to the committee said. Trillian was owned at the time by Salim Essa, a business partner of the Guptas and of the president's son, Duduzane Zuma. McKinsey's global risk committee, a vetting body, gave the partnership with Trillian initial approval, pending due diligence, but senior managers in Johannesburg did not inform the committee fully about how Trillian hid its ownership and why costs for Eskom were unusually high, three former partners said. In the end, McKinsey launched a full internal investigation into its handling of the partnership with Trillian in July this year, after local media published a letter from a senior McKinsey manager dated Feb. 16, 2016 asking Eskom to pay Trillian as a McKinsey subcontractor. McKinsey said the letter "inaccurately characterised" the relationship with Trillian. The manager has since left the firm. McKinsey said on Oct. 17 the preliminary findings of the inquiry, approved by global head Dominic Barton, found "violations of our professional standards" but did not uncover any corruption. In its email on Thursday, McKinsey did not comment directly on the timing of its internal inquiry, directing Reuters instead to its Oct. 17 statement. ($1 = 14.1047 rand)

Long lines for iPhone X help push Apple shares to record high

Friday, November 3 2017

Long lines for iPhone X help push Apple shares to record high

Apple's iPhone X hits the spot as long queues return from Sydney to Shanghai Apple's iPhone X hits the spot as long queues return from Sydney to Shanghai 14:44 hrs By Tom Westbrook and Pei Li SYDNEY/BEIJING (Reuters) - Long, snaking lines formed outside Apple Inc stores in Asia early on Friday as fans flocked to buy the new iPhone X, a turnout that contrasts with the more lacklustre launches for the past two iterations of the premium smartphone. Strong initial demand underscores Apple's upbeat sales forecast for the year-end holiday shopping season, provided just hours before iPhone X sales began. In Australia, around 400 people queued outside Apple's flagship store in central Sydney to pay A$1,579 ($1,218) for the 10th-anniversary model, a glass-and-stainless-steel device that Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook billed as "the biggest leap forward since the original iPhone." Just 30 people turned up for the September release of the iPhone 8, an incremental update of the iPhone 7. "It's beautiful bro, what a feeling, I'm excited," builder Bishoy Behman, 18, told Reuters after picking up two iPhone X as the first in line. He said he camped outside the store for a week before paying to improve his place in the queue overnight. The iPhone X comes a decade after the original iPhone, the product that powered Apple's rise to become the world's biggest technology company with a market capitalisation of $868 billion. The firm opened pre-orders on Oct. 27 and has said demand was "off the charts." The handset features an edge-to-edge display designed for deeper colour rendition and an innovative camera for face-recognition identification. Analysts have expressed concern that supply issues might stop Apple satisfying early demand. The camera, for instance, has never before been manufactured in the volume Apple demands. Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri told Reuters on Thursday that Apple was "quite happy" with how manufacturing of the iPhone X was progressing. "Production is growing every week, and that's very, very important during a ramp period," he said. QUICK PROFIT In Apple's Omotesando store in Tokyo, some 550 people were waiting in a line stretching to around 600 metres. "I'm going home, and after having a rest, I'd like to have fun (with the phone)," said first-in-line Yamaura, a 21-year-old college student who spent six days in the queue. In Singapore, two tourists from Thailand - which is not an initial launch market - were the first to receive pre-ordered phones at a flagship store in the Orchard shopping district. Arbitrage traders were also in line in an attempt to take advantage of the strong demand. In Hong Kong, some buyers quickly resold iPhone X handsets for a profit, but the resale premium eased as waiting times fell and supply concerns eased. Newly purchased iPhone X were reselling for HK$11,800 ($1,512) soon after sales began, but the price quickly fell to HK$10,300, a trader told Reuters. In mainland China - where Hong Kong traders often sell newly purchased goods - the anniversary model's starting price is 8,388 yuan ($1,267). K Yip in Hong Kong told Reuters his chain of small telecoms shops bought around 500 iPhone Xs for resale, mostly to mainland Chinese, but said the iPhone buzz was not as frenzied as before. China iPhone sales have sagged in recent years as consumers switch to cheaper phones, while China becoming a launch market has hit demand for Hong Kong handsets. "People in China can just go online to order, so there's less demand (in Hong Kong)," Yip said. Zhou Ying, a Beijing-based iPhone trader since 2010, echoed the sentiment. "It is getting harder and harder for us to scalp iPhones. It is not the same as before," Zhou said, adding she bought two at a premium of 300 yuan and hoped to make several hundred yuan in profit through resale. Lines also started to form outside Apple's New York City stores on Thursday evening, with a salesperson at one shop in the Upper West Side telling Reuters about 20 people had queued up so far. The most immediately noticeable change to the iPhone X from previous models is the removal of the physical home button and fingerprint sensor formerly used for unlocking. Instead, the iPhone X is unlocked with a so-called Face ID system, in which the user looks into a depth-sensing camera. "I thought not having a home button would be an adjustment, but the new gestures are easy to learn and very natural," IT worker Greg Johnson told Reuters after testing his new phone in Sydney. ($1 = 1.2960 Australian dollars) ($1 = 7.8022 Hong Kong dollars) ($1 = 6.6183 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Tom Westbrook in SYDNEY and Pei Li in BEIJING; Additional reporting by Angela Moon, Teppei Kasai, Will Ziebell, Carmel Yang and Bobby Yip; Writing by Jane Wardell; Editing by Stephen Coates and Christopher Cushing) SEARCH

Punjab National Bank, Union Bank bad loan growth slows but provisions weigh

Friday, November 3 2017

Punjab National Bank, Union Bank bad loan growth slows but provisions weigh

Punjab National Bank, Union Bank bad loan growth slows but provisions weigh Punjab National Bank, Union Bank bad loan growth slows but provisions weigh 22:06 hrs By Mohi Narayan and Devidutta Tripathy NEW DELHI/MUMBAI (Reuters) - Two of India's big state banks saw the pace of bad loan growth slow in the second-quarter, but steep provisions for defaulters in bankruptcy proceedings mean profits will stay under pressure until at least March. Punjab National Bank (PNB), the second-biggest state lender, reported a better-than-expected second quarter profit on Friday of 5.61 billion rupees, with additions to bad loans 42 percent less than the first quarter. Union Bank of India, the sixth-biggest state lender, reported a surprise 15.31 billion-rupee loss in the three months to Sept. 30, mainly due to front-loading of provisions for bankruptcy cases but additional bad loans dropped 40 percent on the previous quarter. Uco Bank, a smaller state-run lender that also reported second-quarter results, saw its net loss widening to 6.23 billion rupees. State-run lenders account for the bulk of India's 9.5 trillion rupees in soured bank loans as of June. The surge in bad loans has choked new lending in an economy which needs more investment to help spur growth. The central bank has ordered commercial lenders to take 12 of the biggest loan defaulters, accounting for about a quarter of the sector's non-performing loans, to bankruptcy proceedings. It has ordered nearly 30 more firms to be pushed to bankruptcy if other forms of debt resolution do not work out by mid-December. A $32 billion recapitalisation plan announced by the Indian government last month has given a lifeline to the 21 state-run banks, whose profitability is lower than the private lenders but they have higher capital requirements due to bigger loan books. Sunil Mehta, chief executive of New Delhi-based PNB, said the recapitalisation announcement "boosted the morale" of bankers and said the bank would boost credit growth. Ram Sangapure, a PNB executive director, said the bank aimed to increase loans at 11 percent in the full year to end-March, up from the 8.3 percent rise in domestic loans in the second quarter. Union Bank Chief Executive Rajkiran Rai G said his bank would aim for loan growth of 10 percent in the 2017/2018 fiscal year. He said higher provisions would be a drag in this and the next quarter but saw a return to profitability from March. The Reserve Bank of India has asked lenders to make minimum 50 percent provisioning by March on loans to firms in bankruptcy. PNB said it was ahead of requirements. For 65 billion rupees in bad debts held by 20 of the firms that could face bankruptcy proceedings from December, much of the provisioning has yet to be done, officials said. Union Bank has 74 billion rupees in loans to companies in bankruptcy and 47 billion rupees to those in the second list, CEO Rai said, adding they have 55 percent provision cover for the first list of loans and 30 percent for the second. ($1 = 64.5950 Indian rupees) (Additional reporting by Samantha Kareen Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Edmund Blair) SEARCH

AIG's $836 million reserve boost surprises investors; shares sink

Friday, November 3 2017

AIG's $836 million reserve boost surprises investors; shares sink

AIG's $836 million reserve boost surprises investors; shares sink AIG's $836 million reserve boost surprises investors; shares sink 22:06 hrs By Suzanne Barlyn (Reuters) - American International Group Inc shares sank 4.5 percent on Friday as investors reacted to a surprise $836 million boost to the insurance giant's reserves, related to prior-year accident claims. AIG posted a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss on Thursday as the insurer booked huge catastrophe losses from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. The storms coincided with AIG's review of reserves across various U.S. and European lines, leading to the $836 million charge. The New York-based company is one of the largest U.S. commercial insurers. Hefty losses from claims occurring in prior years have been an ongoing issue for AIG, which boosted reserves by $5.6 billion for similar reasons in February and $3.6 billion in 2015. The development on Thursday caught analysts and investors off guard. "It wasn't in my earnings estimate that they were going to have that reserve charge," said Sandler O'Neill analyst Paul Newsome. Shares were down 4.5 percent at $62 in morning trading. The charge also signals that AIG's efforts in recent years to improve its underwriting were inadequate because it stems from policies the company wrote in 2016 and 2017, Newsome said. AIG conducts quarterly reviews of reserves for its various lines. The company increased the number of those reviews during the second quarter. "[T]his was our first chance to really view the 2016 accident year where we made many changes to our underwriting processes and tools," AIG Chief Executive Brian Duperreault said during a call with analysts on Friday. "The 2016 accident year is still very green, but we saw greater-than-expected claim emergence this quarter and decided to be more cautious on the 2016 and 2017 accident years,” Duperreault said. AIG is putting changes into place to reduce the volatility of its performance, which include pursuing double-digit rate increases and bolstering reinsurance, executives told analysts on a call on Friday. The insurer is also establishing specialized units for some businesses that are now spread throughout the company, including Lexington Insurance Company, its specialty lines insurer. The move will improve consistency and results, executives said. (Reporting by Suzanne Barlyn; Editing by Bernadette Baum) SEARCH