Oil prices extend losses in Asia

SINGAPORE (AFP): World oil prices extended losses in Asia Tuesday on weak economic data from top energy consumer China and realisation that a hoped for deal among producers to cut output would not happen. Prices had been given a boost late last month by speculation that Russia and members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries would reach agreement to slash output in the oversupplied petroleum market. But the upward momentum hit a snag after traders became increasingly sceptical about such a deal, and the latest news that manufacturing activity in China contracted at its fastest pace in more than three years in January dealt a further blow to sentiment.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for delivery in March was down 50 cents, or 1.58 percent, at $31.12 and Brent crude for April dipped 45 cents, or 1.31 percent, to $33.79 a barrel by 0320 GMT. Both contracts settled lower on Monday.

The rise in oil prices last month “was based on shaky foundations, namely hopes that Russia and OPEC would agree to cut output,” Capital Economics said in a market commentary.

Dollar slips after dim US, China data

NEW YORK (AFP): The dollar weakened Monday after disappointing China and US economic data added to worries about slowing global growth. Sliding down from gains on Friday, the dollar traded at $1.0893 per euro and 120.96 yen. China set off new alarm bells over global growth. Official data showed Chinese manufacturing shrank at its fastest pace in more than three years in January, the sixth straight month of contraction in the world's number-two economy. In the United States, consumer spending, the main driver of the US economy, was flat in December, the Commerce Department reported, and manufacturing contracted for the fourth straight month in January, according to the Institute for Supply Management's purchasing managers index.

"While these (US) reports only serve to solidify our view that the Fed will forgo raising interest rates in March, for the time being the focus is on easier monetary policies and weakness abroad," said Kathy Lien of BK Asset Management.

The Federal Reserve has indicated it would raise its benchmark interest rate by a quarter percentage point four times this year, but futures markets are pricing in only one or two hikes after January's financial market turbulence.

Federal Reserve Vice Chair Stanley Fischer, in a speech Monday, warned the market turmoil could hit the US economy.

"If these developments lead to a persistent tightening of financial conditions, they could signal a slowing in the global economy that could affect growth and inflation in the United States," Fischer said.

"Fischer subtly backed off his prior estimation that four rate hikes this year were in the ballpark," said Ryan Sweet of Moody's Analytics.

Solid measures stressed for

relief to LPG consumers

ISLAMABAD (APP): All Pakistan Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) distributors association has underlined the need for taking solid measures to maintain the gas prices at affordable level for masses. "The association has worked out a summary spelling out an approach to offset shocks in LPG market and maintain the commodity's price at affordable range for the consumers throughout the year, LPG Distributors Association's chairman Irfan Khokar told APP. He said the summery prepared following extensive consultations with all stakeholders was providing for regulating LPG prices by the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) and would revise its prices periodically, keeping in view relevant factors.

However, he added, prices of domestic cylinders would be uniform at affordable level for the consumers who mostly belonged to the underdeveloped areas of the country and used the LPG as main fuel for cooking.

He said the LPG demand exceed as domestic sector was not supplied with smooth gas supply in peak winter season, thus, he added the government should put matters of LPG market in order and extend relief to consumers.

He was of the view that import should be encouraged to ensure its stocks at adequate level, thus policymakers should revive matters on this front as well.

He was of the view the OGRA which had fallen short of playing its role, and masses had to suffer at the hands of the unethical business forces in LPG market.

Thus, he added, there was a need for the concerned authorities to make effective measures to prevent unjustified raise in LPG prices as consumers are already grappling to make ends meet.

Shahab Rizvi elected as OICCI president

Karachi (PR): Mr. Shahab Rizvi, Country President and Chief Executive Officer, Novartis Pharma (Pakistan) Limited has been elected as the President of the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OICCI) for the year 2016. This was announced at the 156th Annual General Meeting of the OICCI held at the Chamber on Monday, February 1, 2016. Mr. Khalid Mansoor, Chief Executive Officer, Hub Power Company Limited was elected as the Vice President. The other elected members of the OICCI Managing Committee for 2016 are as follows: Aftab Husain, Kimihide Ando, Marek Andrzej Minkiewicz, Nauman Ansari, Nadeem Lodhi, Omar Yaqoob Sheikh, Sami Ahmed, Zehra Naqvi.

Samsung Electronics unveils concept of TV’s Future

LAHORE (PR): Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. has announced its CES 2016 Booth, for the first time, features a “Future TV Zone” - an interactive showcase of the most forward thinking TV concepts the company has ever produced. The “Future TV Zone” is focused around Modular display technology, which allows for multiple screens in various shapes and sizes to join together to create an entirely customizable TV based on consumers’ lifestyle and the content they want to watch. “At CES 2016, Samsung is going all out to demonstrate the innovation that matters most to consumers, and offer a tantalizing vision of the future of TV,” said Hyun Suk Kim, President of Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics.

“We believe the possibilities for innovation in TV are truly endless, and in the years to come, customers will experience ever greater choice and control, as the current barriers around screen size, shape and versatility are overcome. I invite attendees to visit Samsung CES booth, and witness the future of TV for themselves.”

The “Future TV Zone” includes two design concepts that highlight the capabilities and possibilities of customization. One of the concepts features the world’s largest SUHD TV, a 170-inch display that utilizes the Modular display technology together. Samsung has created the ultimate life-sized video experience, to give the illusion of being inside the video.

To highlight the transformability of this technology, the transformable TV can change its shape based on the content it’s displaying. Whether users are watching the big game, a high action blockbuster, or the evening news, the transformable TV can retain different ratios to best fit the content on the screen. The TV can jump from a 16:9 screen ratio to a 21:9 screen, simply by splitting the screen into two parts and reassembling on the sides when you decide to watch a wide screen video like a movie.

Samsung’s Future TV Zone will be open during CES’ regular exhibition hours, from January 6-9 at the Booth #11906, in Tech East, LVCC, Central Hall.

About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. inspires the world and shapes the future with transformative ideas and technologies that redefine the worlds of TVs, smartphones, wearable devices, tablets, cameras, digital appliances, printers, medical equipment, network systems, and semiconductor and LED solutions. We are also leading in the Internet of Things space with the open platform SmartThings, our broad range of smart devices, and through proactive cross-industry collaboration. We employ 319,000 people across 84 countries with annual sales of US $196 billion. To discover more, and for the latest news, feature articles and press material, please visit the Samsung Newsroom atnews.samsung.com.


For Further Information:

Syed Fakhir Ali