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发表于 2008-10-24 04:08:42 AM |显示全部楼层

BHP keeps faith in China's demand



Wednesday October 22, 2008, 9:30 am






BHP Billiton says growth in China has softened but it remains confident that the country's economic development will continue to drive demand for commodities.

The big miner says iron ore production increased by 15 per cent in the September quarter compared to the same time a year ago.

Shipments reached record levels.

Petroleum production also rose 15 per cent during the quarter.

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发表于 2008-10-24 04:10:52 AM |显示全部楼层

FOREIGN OWNERSHIP OF S. KOREAN STOCKS DECLINES



Thursday October 23, 2008, 5:47 pm




EOUL, Oct 23 Asia Pulse - Foreign ownership of South Korea's listedstocks has continued to fall this year as they reduce exposure toemerging markets amid a global credit turmoil, the stock marketoperator said Thursday.
S
As of Tuesday, foreign investors held 178.9 trillion won (US$126.2 billion) worth of stocks listed on the main bourse, or 29.46 per cent of the total market value, according to the Korea Exchange. The ratio was down 2.93 percentage points from the end of December.

Foreign ownership of local shares has been on the downturn since peaking at 41.98 per cent in 2004, said the bourse operator. The ratio fell to 39.7 per cent in 2005 and 37.22 per cent in 2006.

It said foreign investors have been cutting their investments in emerging stock markets in the face of a global credit crunch, spurred by the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis.

The country's key stock index, the KOSPI, has fallen almost 40 per cent this year mainly due to heavy foreign selling.

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发表于 2008-10-24 04:12:34 AM |显示全部楼层

SEOUL TO PUSH INTER-KOREAN PROJECTS IF PYONGYANG DENUCLEARIZES



Thursday October 23, 2008, 3:47 pm




SEOUL, Oct. 23 Asia Pulse - Seoul will prioritize inter-Korean economic programs if Pyongyang agrees to fully denuclearize, a top South Korean official said Thursday.

"The government will aggressively press ahead with measures aimed at expanding inter-Korean economic cooperation if further progress is made on the North Korean nuclear issue," Unification Minister Kim Ha-joong said during an annual parliamentary audit of his office.

Kim said prerequisites would include "the complete disabling of nuclear facilities."

If Pyongyang cooperates, the minister said South Korea will start by implementing programs included in the Oct. 4 summit declaration, an inter-Korean agreement reached under the Roh Moo-hyun administration in 2007.

Noting that Washington removed North Korea from its terrorism blacklist last week, Kim also vowed further activity at the Kaesong industrial complex if the disablement is fulfilled as promised.

The South Korea-funded complex lies just north of the Demilitarized Zone.

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发表于 2008-10-24 04:14:00 AM |显示全部楼层

SAMSUNG C&T POSTS 25 PCT DROP IN Q3 NET PROFIT



Thursday October 23, 2008, 5:47 pm




SEOUL, Oct. 23 Asia Pulse - Samsung C&T Corp. (KSE: 000830), a South Korean construction and trading company, said Thursday that its net profit dropped 25 per cent on-year in the third quarter.

Net income came to 75.4 billion won (US$53.6 million) in the July-September period, compared with 100.7 billion won a year ago, Samsung C&T said in a regulatory filing.

Sales rose 46.2 per cent to 3.33 trillion won during the same period and operating profit more than doubled to 121 billion won.

Shares of Samsung C&T plunged 6.71 per cent to 38,900 won as of 2:24 p.m. on the Seoul bourse.

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发表于 2008-10-24 04:15:51 AM |显示全部楼层

Cathay denies British Airways takeover rumours



Thursday October 23, 2008, 4:42 pm




HONG KONG (AFP) - Hong Kong carrier Cathay Pacific on Thursday denied market rumours that it was planning a takeover of British Airways.

"These rumours are unfounded. We have no plans to buy British Airways," a Cathay spokeswoman said in a brief statement.

London-listed shares of BA rose on Wednesday on speculation that the firm was a takeover target.

BA is in merger talks with Spanish national carrier Iberia, but company president Willie Walsh said in an interview in early October the move would take longer than expected due to the downturn in the aviation sector.

Cathay said last week its passenger numbers had dropped in September due to the global financial crisis, its first fall since 1993.

The airline said in its company newsletter earlier this month it had been "hit hard" by the economic downturn, with a significant drop in the number of first and business class travellers.

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发表于 2008-10-24 04:18:02 AM |显示全部楼层

Hong Kong banks to buy back mini-bonds at market value



Friday October 17, 2008, 6:47 pm




HONG KONG (AFP) - Hong Kong banks on Friday agreed to buy back controversial "mini-bonds" linked to failed US investment house Lehman Brothers at market value, an industry spokesman said.

The extraordinary move came as regulators in the southern Chinese financial hub said they had referred 24 cases of possible mis-selling of the investment products to the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC).

Despite the banks' decision to back the government proposal, which has been criticised for contradicting the territory's laissez-faire economic policy, it remained unclear whether disgruntled investors would accept it.

"The task force... announced that the distributor banks involved have agreed to the buy-back proposal made by the (Hong Kong government) regarding the Lehman Brothers mini-bonds," the Hong Kong Association of Banks said in a statement.

"By accepting the government's proposal, the banks are offering assistance to mini-bond holders in this extraordinary market situation," the statement added.

The association had appointed accounting firm Ernst & Young to try and assess the bonds' market value, the statement said, but did not provide a timetable for when the issue would be resolved.

Thousands of investors have held protests across the territory in the past few weeks claiming the banks mis-sold the mini-bonds as risk-free investments, and lured vulnerable citizens into using up their life-savings.

In fact, the mini-bonds are complex financial products linked to a bundle of derivatives backed by Lehman's, and their value plummeted after the revered bank collapsed in September as a result of the turmoil in the global banking industry.

Investors here are estimated to have put 12.7 billion dollars (1.63 billion US) into the products.

It is not clear if the investors will accept the banks' proposals. Some had previously rejected the government's proposal, saying they should receive a full refund rather than the inevitably-reduced market-value sum.

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), the territory's de facto central bank, said Friday it had received more than 12,000 complaints about the bonds and was referring 24 cases to the SFC.

"The HKMA is satisfied that there are adequate justifications for referring them immediately to the SFC, which is the authority ultimately responsible for deciding whether a bank has been guilty of misconduct," a statement said.

"The SFC will review the evidence and will consult with the HKMA in determining what sanction, if any, is to be imposed."

The SFC could issue a public reprimand, fine the bank or suspend the seller's licence, the SFC said in a statement.

The HKMA said it had formally opened investigations into another 95 complaints and was seeking more information on 783 more.

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发表于 2008-10-24 04:20:39 AM |显示全部楼层

KAOHSIUNG MAYOR TOUTS CITY'S ATTRACTIONS IN HONG KONG



Tuesday October 21, 2008, 10:47 am




HONG KONG, Oct 21 Asia Pulse - Kaohsiung City Mayor Chen Chu promoted tourism in the southern Taiwan port city Monday at a news conference in Hong Kong co-sponsored by the Kaohsiung city government and Taiwan's largest carrier China Airlines (CAL) (TAIEX:2610).

"Kaohsiung City aims to attract more tourists from Hong Kong, Singapore and Japan through a series of especially designed activities for 2008 -- the year designated by the city to promote tourism," Chen told the news conference.

The city government is collaborating with CAL and the Kaohsiung Visitors Association in hosting the promotional program to attract tourists from Hong Kong, effective immediately through the end of the year.

Chen expressed the hope that more Hong Kong people could take time to visit Kaohsiung in depth and enjoy its delicious food and historic and cultural sites.

She said Hong Kong people are particularly welcome to spend weekends in Kaohsiung City due to the relatively short distance between the two cities.

Currently, Hong Kong is the second largest source of tourists to Taiwan, she noted.

At the head of a 22-member group of city officials and private business representatives, Chen was visiting Hong Kong in her capacity as mayor for the first time.

She praised Hong Kong's impressive progress and transformation in recent years and called for more frequent two-way exchanges.

The Kaohsiung mayor was slated to return to Taiwan later Monday.

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发表于 2008-10-24 05:12:10 AM |显示全部楼层

Citic Pacific shares plummet as foreign exchange bet revealed


Tuesday October 21, 2008, 6:15 pm




HONG KONG (AFP) - Hong Kong banks on Friday agreed to buy backcontroversial "mini-bonds" linked to failed US investment house LehmanBrothers at market value, an industry spokesman said.

The extraordinary move came as regulators in the southern Chinesefinancial hub said they had referred 24 cases of possible mis-sellingof the investment products to the Securities and Futures Commission(SFC).

Despite the banks' decision to back the government proposal, which hasbeen criticised for contradicting the territory's laissez-faireeconomic policy, it remained unclear whether disgruntled investorswould accept it.

"The task force... announced that the distributor banks involved haveagreed to the buy-back proposal made by the (Hong Kong government)regarding the Lehman Brothers mini-bonds," the Hong Kong Association ofBanks said in a statement.

"By accepting the government's proposal, the banks are offeringassistance to mini-bond holders in this extraordinary marketsituation," the statement added.

The association had appointed accounting firm Ernst & Young to tryand assess the bonds' market value, the statement said, but did notprovide a timetable for when the issue would be resolved.

Thousands of investors have held protests across the territory in thepast few weeks claiming the banks mis-sold the mini-bonds as risk-freeinvestments, and lured vulnerable citizens into using up theirlife-savings.

In fact, the mini-bonds are complex financial products linked to abundle of derivatives backed by Lehman's, and their value plummetedafter the revered bank collapsed in September as a result of theturmoil in the global banking industry.

Investors here are estimated to have put 12.7 billion dollars (1.63 billion US) into the products.

It is not clear if the investors will accept the banks' proposals. Somehad previously rejected the government's proposal, saying they shouldreceive a full refund rather than the inevitably-reduced market-valuesum.

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), the territory's de factocentral bank, said Friday it had received more than 12,000 complaintsabout the bonds and was referring 24 cases to the SFC.

"The HKMA is satisfied that there are adequate justifications forreferring them immediately to the SFC, which is the authorityultimately responsible for deciding whether a bank has been guilty ofmisconduct," a statement said.

"The SFC will review the evidence and will consult with the HKMA in determining what sanction, if any, is to be imposed."

The SFC could issue a public reprimand, fine the bank or suspend the seller's licence, the SFC said in a statement.

The HKMA said it had formally opened investigations into another 95 complaints and was seeking more information on 783 more.

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发表于 2008-10-27 03:02:40 AM |显示全部楼层

Cyanide scare prompts Japan meat recall


26.10.2008 11.57pm



A Japanese meat processing company says it is recalling millions of sausages and pizzas after the poisonous chemical cyanide was found in water at one of its plants.

The company says tests have revealed cyanide levels at a factory near Tokyo to be up to three times the government recommended limit.

The firm says it is investigating whether its products have been contaminated.

This latest scare comes just days after two Japanese manufacturers withdrew instant noodles from sale after insecticide was found in them.

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发表于 2008-10-27 03:06:16 AM |显示全部楼层

China slams artefact auction plans


Posted Sun Oct 26, 2008 12:47am AEDT


There has been an angry response in China to the planned auction of two Qing dynasty artefacts, dating back to the 18th century.

Auction house Christies says the artworks, the heads of a rabbit and a mouse from the collection of the late French fashion designer Yves St-Laurent, are to go on sale next February.

China says the pieces were stolen by French and British troops from the Old Summer Palace in Beijing and is refusing to enter the bidding process.

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发表于 2008-10-27 03:09:13 AM |显示全部楼层
Two Koreas agree to hold military talks: Seoul

Posted Sat Oct 25, 2008 9:46pm AEDT



North and South Korea have agreed to hold talks next week to discuss improving military hotlines between the two nations, the South Korean defence ministry said.
"The South and the North agreed to hold working-level military talks at 10:00am (local time) on Monday," the ministry said in a press statement.
"The two sides will discuss the issue of improving military telecommunication lines and other issues to be raised by each side," it said.
The meeting will occur in an area jointly managed by the sides in the western part of their border border, through which a cross-border railway runs.
The two Koreas currently have nine military hotlines, one of which is out of service due to technical problems, Yonhap news agency said.
Inter-Korean military talks on October 2, held after months of frosty relations, ended without progress.
The North threatened at the talks to evict all South Koreans from a joint industrial estate at the North's Kaesong City unless Seoul stopped defector groups spreading cross-border propaganda leaflets.
North Korea has cut off almost all forms of official dialogue with the South since the conservative government of President Lee Myung-Bak took office in February and adopted a hardline stance against the North.
North Korea often turns such military talks into a propaganda session.

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发表于 2008-10-27 03:12:12 AM |显示全部楼层

Obama supporters caught between cynicism and optimism


By North America correspondent Kim Landers

Posted Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:00pm AEDT


Updated Fri Oct 24, 2008 1:57pm AEDT





Opinion polls show Senator Obama is on track to become America's first black president. (Reuters: Brian Snyder)


African American voters in the United States could help Democratic nominee Barack Obama win over states that have been Republican strongholds.
A new survey shows huge support among black voters for the Democratic Party, not surprisingly because it's the first major party to field an African American nominee.
With opinion polls showing Senator Obama is on track to become America's first black president, African American voters are bouncing between hope and doubt.
Kevin Carrington is an Obama supporter who took his three kids to a rally in Leesburg, Virginia.
He says it was a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the man who could well be the next president of the United States.
"I'm confident, but I'm cautious, you don't let down your guard until it's done ... and then we'll make things happen," he said.
Dazzerine Williams gave her children a day off school to attend the rally.
She'd never been to a political event before and she was cautiously confident Barack Obama will win the White House.
"I feel in my heart he will ... it's an emotional moment ... I never thought I would see something like this," she said.

Uncharted territoryTodd Shaw is an assistant professor of political science and African American studies at the University of South Carolina.
He says there is both a cynicism and an optimism among African Americans.
"African Americans still feel this is very much uncharted territory ... it is still out there and it's still a hypothesis to be tested," he said.
David Bositis is the senior political analyst at the Joint Centre for Political and Economic Studies in Washington.
He studies black voter patterns and he says Senator Obama is set to break a record that has stood since 1968.
"I expect he's going to the break the record of Lyndon Johnson - North Carolina, Virginia, Ohio, Indiana and Missouri," he said.
Already there are signs of the increased African American turnout in states like Georgia, where about 35 per cent of people who are voting early are black.

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发表于 2008-10-27 03:16:32 AM |显示全部楼层
England adopts compulsory sex education

Posted Fri Oct 24, 2008 2:24pm AEDT





The move is designed to try to combat teenage pregnancy rates in the UK - the highest in Europe. (ABC TV)


Sex education classes are to be compulsory in all schools across England for the first time under new laws announced overnight.
The lessons are currently mandatory for students from the age of 11 but from 2010 children as young as five years old will be taught some of the basics of anatomy and relationships.
The move is designed to try to combat teenage pregnancy rates in the UK, which are the highest in Europe.
At Holmleigh primary school in Hackney, East London, Margaret Boateng teaches her grade two class reading, writing, arithmetic and reproduction - the UK's fourth "R".
Kevin Ward is the principal of Holmleigh primary school. He welcomes the Government's move to make sex and drugs education compulsory for all primary and secondary students in Britain.
"They learn the proper names for body parts, including the sex parts, that they can comfortably use the correct terminology," he said.
Mr Ward says while some parents are comfortable teaching their children sex education, others are not, and the school environment can provide a safe, anonymous space for children to ask questions.
"In some homes, no doubt parents do feel confident that they can tell their children the facts and that they can do that without feeling uncomfortable," he said.
"We can provide and environment in which children do get the correct information. We can also create an environment where they can ask questions.
"They can ask them anonymously if they want, you know we have a question box. It's a very safe environment."
The UK Government argues that discussions about sex and relationships are important in schools and should begin as early as 5 years old.
The controversial new initiative is aimed at bringing down the number of teenage pregnancies, which is higher in Britain than anywhere else in Europe - 50,000 of them under the age of 18, or more than four per cent.

'Undermining parents'But Norman Wells of the Family Education Trust, a Christian group, says sex education for five year olds is not the answer.
"You're removing discretion from schools. You're undermining parents," he said.
"And effectively what you're doing is taking parents out of the driving seat and putting the state in their place."
Outside the Holmleigh Primary School, parents whose children are already being taught about the birds and the bees at 7 had mixed thoughts about lowering that age to 5.
"Simple things are okay but sex education for the children under 5 years old, I think they are quite young for this," one parent said.
"Most kids, they are never going to know what they're talking about at that age, or even things of that type of nature. So I think it's a bit too soon," another parent said.
Schools will not be allowed to opt out of the new laws that will come into force across England in 2010 but the Government is promising separate guidance for faith schools, which might find the new curriculum at odds with their spiritual beliefs.

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发表于 2008-10-27 03:19:14 AM |显示全部楼层

World banks poised to act amid recession fears


Posted 5 hours 18 minutes ago
Updated 5 hours 7 minutes ago





Central banks are likely to launch new coordinated emergency action this week to calm panic in financial markets, which could be rocked further by data pointing to global recession.
The US Federal Reserve is expected to cut rates sharply following share selloffs and currency collapses in developed economies and the emerging markets of Asia and Latin America.
Advance third-quarter US economic growth data due on Thursday is expected to show a 0.5 per cent contraction in gross domestic product after 2.8 per cent growth the previous quarter.
"Increasingly, the signs point to a deep and synchronised global recession," JPMorgan economist Bruce Kasman said.
"It is still too early to accurately gauge the depth of the downturn, as the outlook depends on how well policy actions contain the financial crisis."
The likelihood of the Fed slashing interest rates by 50 basis points stood at 74 per cent on Sunday and at 26 per cent for a cut of 75 basis points to 0.75 per cent.
Asian and European leaders closed ranks over the weekend to bolster confidence among investors facing the worst financial crisis in 80 years.

'Whipping boy'The Australian dollar suffered its biggest sell-off since it was floated in 1983 over the weekend.
The dollar closed down in US trade at $US61.78 cents, down 4.5 US cents on Friday night's close, and 37 per cent from the high of $US98.49 cents it reached three months ago.
London's Financial Times says the Aussie has become a whipping boy, after noting the currency was once the darling of the foreign exchange market.
But the drop is not all bad news, with economists stating it will provide a much-needed boost to exports amid a slowing domestic economy.
Commsec chief equities economist Craig James says the weaker dollar is not something we should fear in Australia.

'Volatile currency'Foreign exchange analysts said extreme currency volatility, which included moves of 10 per cent on some big rates on Friday alone, could see the Group of Seven or 20 top central banks intervening soon to stabilise world markets.
But other analysts say the moves are little more than an unwinding - albeit a violent one - of the excessive currency and investment imbalances built up over the last decade of historically low global interest rates.
The US dollar surged to two-year peaks versus a basket of currencies after dismal European economic data reinforced investor fears of a global recession.
The yen soared to multi-year highs versus the dollar and euro on the ensuing risk aversion, while at its low on Friday the British pound suffered its biggest one-day percentage drop against the US currency since 1992.

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发表于 2008-10-27 03:22:00 AM |显示全部楼层

Obama camp denies inaugural speech written
Posted 7 hours 53 minutes ago
Updated 7 hours 48 minutes ago



Barack Obama's camp has denied he had a draft inaugural address prepared, in a bid to head off Republican accusations of arrogance and hubris 10 days before the election.
The strong statement came after the New York Times said in a report that the head of Senator Obama's transition team had already written a draft address, which was immediately seized upon by the campaign of Republican John McCain.
"While this charge is completely false and there is no draft of an inaugural address for Senator Obama, the last thing we need is a candidate like John McCain who just plans on rereading George Bush's," Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton said.
Earlier, in a campaign swing through the western swing state of New Mexico, Senator McCain accused Senator Obama of overconfidence, returning to a theme he has hit several times during a campaign in which he branded his foe "the world's biggest celebrity."
"Senator Obama's inaugural address is already written," Senator McCain told a crowd of around 2,000 people at Mesilla's historic plaza.
"I'm not making it up. A lot of voters are undecided but he's decided for them."
"I want him to save that manuscript for his inaugural address and donate it to the Smithsonian Museum. And they can put it right next to the Chicago paper that said 'Dewey defeats Truman.'
"There's still 10 days left - maybe he'll have written the State of the Union address before this thing is finished. I may be old-fashioned about these things, but I prefer to let the voters weigh in.
"What America needs now is someone who will finish the race before starting the victory lap. Someone who will fight to the end."
Presidential candidates habitually plan their transitions to power long before the election.
Though election day is on November 4, the next president does not officially take office until January 20, 2009, after delivering his inaugural address in front of the US Capitol.
The Times reported that the head of Senator Obama's transition team, John Podesta, had written an inaugural address for the next president which had already been published in book form.
But the idea that Senator Obama, a published author who writes the majority of his major speeches himself, would use a speech written by an aide months ago seems far fetched.

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发表于 2008-10-27 05:24:51 AM |显示全部楼层

Kidney transplant money trail leads to Aust, HK


Posted 10 hours 7 minutes ago



Indian investigative agencies have found the money trail in a multimillion-dollar kidney transplant racket leading to Hong Kong and Australia.

It is understood they will ask Australian authorities for help in the probe.

The alleged kingpin and his associates are accused of performing more than 500 kidney transplant surgeries over a decade by procuring organs for paltry sums of money from poor people and transplanting them into wealthy recipients.

India's Enforcement Directorate has received the permission of a Delhi court to follow the trail of part of the $US100 million ($161 million) the group is suspected of amassing.

It is said to involve offshore properties and bank accounts, including in Australia.

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发表于 2008-10-27 05:29:36 AM |显示全部楼层

World banks poised to act amid recession fears
Posted 5 hours 18 minutes ago
Updated 5 hours 7 minutes ago




Central banks are likely to launch new coordinated emergency action this week to calm panic in financial markets, which could be rocked further by data pointing to global recession.

The US Federal Reserve is expected to cut rates sharply following share selloffs and currency collapses in developed economies and the emerging markets of Asia and Latin America.

Advance third-quarter US economic growth data due on Thursday is expected to show a 0.5 per cent contraction in gross domestic product after 2.8 per cent growth the previous quarter.

"Increasingly, the signs point to a deep and synchronised global recession," JPMorgan economist Bruce Kasman said.

"It is still too early to accurately gauge the depth of the downturn, as the outlook depends on how well policy actions contain the financial crisis."

The likelihood of the Fed slashing interest rates by 50 basis points stood at 74 per cent on Sunday and at 26 per cent for a cut of 75 basis points to 0.75 per cent.

Asian and European leaders closed ranks over the weekend to bolster confidence among investors facing the worst financial crisis in 80 years.


'Whipping boy'

The Australian dollar suffered its biggest sell-off since it was floated in 1983 over the weekend.

The dollar closed down in US trade at $US61.78 cents, down 4.5 US cents on Friday night's close, and 37 per cent from the high of $US98.49 cents it reached three months ago.

London's Financial Times says the Aussie has become a whipping boy, after noting the currency was once the darling of the foreign exchange market.

But the drop is not all bad news, with economists stating it will provide a much-needed boost to exports amid a slowing domestic economy.

Commsec chief equities economist Craig James says the weaker dollar is not something we should fear in Australia.


'Volatile currency'

Foreign exchange analysts said extreme currency volatility, which included moves of 10 per cent on some big rates on Friday alone, could see the Group of Seven or 20 top central banks intervening soon to stabilise world markets.

But other analysts say the moves are little more than an unwinding - albeit a violent one - of the excessive currency and investment imbalances built up over the last decade of historically low global interest rates.

The US dollar surged to two-year peaks versus a basket of currencies after dismal European economic data reinforced investor fears of a global recession.

The yen soared to multi-year highs versus the dollar and euro on the ensuing risk aversion, while at its low on Friday the British pound suffered its biggest one-day percentage drop against the US currency since 1992.

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发表于 2008-10-27 05:33:11 AM |显示全部楼层
I guarantee you, I'll win: McCain

By Washington Correspondent Kim Landers and wires



Posted 1 hour 9 minutes ago





I'll win: John McCain (Reuters TV)


US Republican presidential nominee John McCain says he can guarantee a win in next week's election, but says the result will be very close.
Senator McCain, who has been trailing Democratic rival Barack Obama by more than 10 points in some national and state polls, said his campaign was "doing fine" with the polls nine days away.
"Those polls have consistently shown me much farther behind then we actually are," he said. "We're doing fine.
"We've closed in the last week and if we continue this close in the next week you're going to be up very late on election night.
"I guarantee you that two weeks from now you'll see that this has been a very close race and I guarantee you I'm going to win it."
"We are very competitive in those areas [key states] and we're going to have to just get out our vote and work very hard over the next nine days."
Later Senator McCain addressed a rally at the University of North Iowa on a swing through the midwestern state where Senator Obama enjoys a near 12-point lead according to an average on realclearpolitics.com.
As he is expected to do throughout the remainder of the campaign, Senator McCain relentlessly rammed home his contention that Senator Obama is a closet socialist hellbent on raising taxes on ordinary Americans.
The 72-year-old former Navy pilot also struck a defiant stance as he told supporters he relished the election fight.
"I'm not afraid of the fight - I'm ready for it," he stated.
He also repeated his claim - angrily denied by the Obama camp - that the Democratic nominee had already begun drafting his inauguration speech.
"What America needs now is someone who'll finish the race before starting the victory lap, not for himself but for his country," he said.
Earlier Senator McCain had issued a robust defense of running mate Sarah Palin after reports of bitter infighting within the campaign.
Asked on NBC TV's Meet the Press if he wanted to defend the Alaska Governor, who has been blamed for his sagging poll numbers, Senator McCain replied: "I don't defend her -- I praise her. She needs no defence."
"She's a role model for millions and millions of Americans," he added. "She's just what Washington needs."
Senator McCain dismissed a furore over the revelation the Republican National Committee had spent $US150,000 on clothes for Ms Palin since her nomination, seeming to contradict her image as an ordinary "hockey mom."
"Look, she lives a frugal life," Senator McCain said. "She and her family are not wealthy," adding that some of the money would be returned.
Senator McCain also again distanced himself from President George W Bush, acknowledging that while he shared Republican philosophy he had frequently gone against the party on issues like Iraq, spending and climate change.
When shown a clip from a 2005 interview where he stated he had "agreed with (Bush) far more than I've disagreed," Senator McCain replied: "I know how it is on this show, and you show various segments and comments that we make thousands of, and I understand that, but the fact is I am not George Bush.
"Do we share a common philosophy of the Republican Party? Of course, but I've stood up against my party and I've got the scars to prove it."
Senator Obama played to vast crowds in New Mexico and Nevada Saturday before heading to Colorado, another battleground state.
In another blow to the Republican campaign, The Anchorage Daily News, the biggest newspaper in Palin's home state, endorsed Senator 0Obama, saying he "truly promises fundamental change in Washington."
Senator McCain is desperate to stop Obama from making a clean sweep of western states Nevada, Colorado and New Mexico which could give the Democrat breathing room as he chases key battlegrounds in the east.
National polls have Senator Obama up anywhere from four to 14 percentage points and with a solid lead in most battleground states, but some surveys show Senator McCain has made up some ground in Ohio, Florida and must-win Pennsylvania.

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发表于 2008-10-27 05:35:13 AM |显示全部楼层

S Korean project 'killed birds, destroyed wetlands'


Posted 9 hours 27 minutes ago



An environmental report on a large South Korean land reclamation project says it has destroyed wetlands, killed migratory birds and pushed endangered species toward extinction.

The report has been prepared by Birds Korea and the Australasian Wader Studies Group.

It says the Saemangeum land reclamation, completed in 2006 on the west coast, covers about 400 square kilometres, removing one of the largest feeding grounds on the Yellow Sea for hundreds of thousands of migratory birds.

The study says that within the reclaimed area there has been a decline of 137,000 shorebirds and declines in 19 of the most numerous species in the past two years.

Migratory birds travelling between Russia and Alaska in the north to New Zealand and Australia in the south congregate for often their only refuelling stop at Yellow Sea tidal flats to feast on shellfish and other food.

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发表于 2008-10-27 05:38:52 AM |显示全部楼层

Man charged after death of Chinese couple in Britain: police
Posted Sun Oct 26, 2008 10:00am AEDT



A 30-year-old man has been charged with the murder of two Chinese graduates whose bodies were found in their flat in Britain, police said Saturday.

Guang Hui Cao, a Chinese national, was arrested Thursday in connection with the murders of Xi Zhou and Zhen Xing Yang, both 25, found dead on August 9 in their flat in the city of Newcastle, north-east England.

The suspect will make his first court appearance Monday, Northumbria Police said.

Two other men, also Chinese nationals, who were arrested in connection with the killing have been released on bail pending further inquiries.

Another 14 people, also Chinese, were arrested on suspicion of burglary and immigration offences but have been bailed
.

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