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HSBC may have to choose between China and the West

London (CNN Business)UK economic output shrank by 20.4% in the second quarter of 2020, the worst quarterly slump on record, pushing the country into the deepest recession of any major global economy.

This crash in GDP in the April-June period is the worst since quarterly records began in 1955 and follows a 2.2% contraction in the first quarter. Industries most exposed to government lockdown measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic — services, production and construction — saw record drops.
“Today’s figures confirm that hard times are here,” UK finance minister Rishi Sunak said in a statement. “Hundreds of thousands of people have already lost their jobs, and sadly in the coming months many more will. But while there are difficult choices to be made ahead, we will get through this, and I can assure people that nobody will be left without hope or opportunity.”

    Compared with the end of 2019, UK economic output fell by a cumulative 22.1% in the first six months of 2020, a worse outcome than Germany, France and Italy, and double the 10.6% fall recorded in the United States, the Office for National Statistics said. The UK economy has shed 730,000 jobs since the coronavirus pandemic shuttered businesses in March, with the young, the old and the self-employed bearing the brunt of the unemployment crisis.
    This is a developing story and will be updated.

    Capital & Counties Properties H1 Loss Widens; Defers Dividend Decision

    Capital & Counties Properties Plc or CAPCO (CAPC.L) reported Wednesday that its first half loss attributable to owners of the parent was 440.7 million pounds, wider than loss of 87.2 million pounds in the year-ago period. Basic loss per share was 51.7 pence, compared to loss of 10.2 pence a year ago.

    Underlying earnings per share were 0.3 pence, compared to 0.5 pence last year.

    Revenue from continuing operations declined to 38.1 million pounds from 40.1 million pounds last year. Net rental income from continuing operations fell to 18.1 million pounds from last year’s 31.0 million pounds.

    CAPCO said its board of directors has deferred the dividend decision for 2020 until the end of the year.

    Moderna, U.S. in Covid-19 Vaccine Deal for Up to $1.5 Billion

    Moderna Inc. reached a deal with the U.S. to manufacture and distribute 100 million doses of its experimental vaccine for Covid-19, in a pact valued up to $1.5 billion, the company said Tuesday.

    “I’m pleased to announce we’ve reached an agreement with Moderna to manufacture and deliver 100m doses of the coronavirus vaccine candidate,” President Donald Trump said at a White House briefing. “We’re on track to rapidly produce 100 million doses as soon as the vaccine is approved.”

    It’s the latest in a string of supply deals reached to stockpile the most advanced vaccines in testing.

    Moderna shares gained 8.5% to $74.80 in late trading in New York.

    Applied Industrial Technologies Q4 Sales Down 18.4% On Organic Basis

    Applied Industrial Technologies (AIT) reported fourth quarter non-GAAP adjusted net income of $31.1 million, or $0.80 per share. On average, five analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report profit per share of $0.68, for the quarter. Analysts’ estimates typically exclude special items.

    Net sales for the quarter decreased 17.9% to $725.1 million from $882.7 million in the prior year. Sales decreased 18.4% on an organic basis. Analysts expected revenue of $739.39 million for the quarter.

    The company projects first quarter sales to decline 17% to 18% year-over-year on an
    organic basis.

    GEA Q2 Profit Rises; Revenue Down 6.6% – Quick Facts

    GEA (GEAGF.PK,GEAGY.PK) reported second quarter profit of 45.2 million euros, an increase of 78.1 percent from prior year. Earnings per share from continuing operations was 0.25 euros compared to 0.15 euros. EBITDA before restructuring measures rose by 26.2 percent to 140.4 million euros.

    Second quarter revenue was 1.165 billion euros, down 6.6 percent on previous year. Order intake was 1.034 billion euros, down 9.8 percent from last year, largely as a result of the pandemic. ROCE (return on capital employed) rose to 14.8 percent from 10.5 percent.

    GEA increased, in part, its outlook for the 2020 financial year. The Group still expects revenue to be slightly lower. The Group now expects EBITDA before restructuring measures to come in at minimum the upper end of the previous range of 430 million euros to 480 million euros. GEA projects ROCE will now be within a corridor of 12.0 to 14.0 percent rather than the former one of 9.0 to 11.0 percent.

    “After a very good first quarter, the decreases in order intake and revenue were expected given the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The second half of 2020 is set to remain challenging. We have raised our forecast for 2020 in part and remain confident that we will reach our medium-term financial targets,” said Stefan Klebert, CEO.

    Answering your vehicle-related queries

    To buy a Tiago or not

    Abhishek Ballaney: I currently own a Maruti Suzuki Celerio but am looking to buy a Tata Tiago. Please let me know if this is a sound decision?

    The Tata Tiago is a good replacement for your Maruti Suzuki Celerio. Some interior parts in the Tiago are of better quality, it has more features, and the sound system is one of the best in its segment. Do keep in mind that its engine performance and efficiency won’t be as good as the Maruti’s, but that aside, the Tiago is a very likeable package.

    Looking to upgrade

    Kamatchi Mayilvahanan: I currently own a 2004 Hyundai Santro and am looking to upgrade to a premium hatchback or compact SUV. I want a car that is safe, reliable and low on maintenance. I have a budget of ₹15 lakh and drive roughly 20km a week, though I am keen to take the new car on long drives. The car will primarily be used by me and my parents. Please advise.

    With a budget of ₹15 lakh, you could consider the 1.5-litre petrol variants of the Kia Seltos or even the Hyundai Creta. If you want something a bit more compact yet premium, the Mahindra XUV300 petrol might just convince you. It is safe, offers decent performance, is adequately spacious and it will easily fit into your budget. Alternatively, you could consider the Tata Nexon.