German orders expand
German factory orders grew more than anticipated in December last year in the latest sign that Europe’s largest economy could get through the winter without seeing a slump. Demand increased 3.2 percent from the previous month, more than the 2 percent rise analysts had predicted in a Bloomberg survey. The jump was due to large orders, without which there would have been a 0.6 percent decline, the statistics office said yesterday. Still, German output shrank 0.2 percent in the final quarter of last year. However, business surveys by S&P Global pointed to an improving situation at the beginning of this year, as supply-chain bottlenecks eased and cost pressures cooled.
Dell to cut 6,650 jobs
Dell Technologies Inc would eliminate about 6,650 jobs, or about 5 percent of its global workforce, hurt by falling demand for its personal computers, Bloomberg News reported yesterday. The company is experiencing market conditions that “continue to erode with an uncertain future,” co-chief operating officer Jeff Clarke wrote in a memo to employees, the report said. The previous cost-cutting measures, including a pause on hiring and limits on travel, are no longer enough, Clarke said. The department reorganizations and job cuts are an opportunity to drive efficiency, a company spokesperson said.
Manufacturers make peace
The boards of French automaker Renault SA and Japanese partner Nissan Motor Co have approved a major overhaul of their rocky alliance following months of negotiations, the companies said yesterday. The automakers said that they “rebalanced” their relationship, with Renault reducing its stake from 43.4 percent to 15 percent, the same size as Nissan’s share of its French counterpart. The agreement includes Nissan taking a stake of up to 15 percent in Renault’s electric vehicle venture Ampere. The companies also announced joint projects in Europe, India and Latin America.
Rate hikes hit UK lending
Mortgage lending is expected to grow at its slowest rate in more than a decade amid Britain’s rising interest rates and falling house prices, a report by EY published yesterday showed. Demand for mortgages is set to increase just 0.4 percent this year, down from 4.1 percent last year, EY said. That is due to a toxic mix of rising borrowing costs, inflation-squeezed incomes and house prices that are falling, but still very high by historical standards. The last time lending for home-buyers was this slow was 2011 in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. Growth in mortgage lending could pick up next year, reaching 1.4 percent, it said.
Carlyle names new CEO
Carlyle Group Inc has chosen former Goldman Sachs Group Inc copresident Harvey Schwartz to be its next chief executive officer, in the private equity firm’s latest attempt to resolve a long-running succession challenge. Schwartz, 58, takes over for co-founder Bill Conway, 73, who has been serving as interim chief executive officer since Kewsong Lee resigned in August last year after a power struggle. Washington-based Carlyle is planning to announce Schwartz’s appointment as soon as this week, people familiar with the matter said. In choosing Schwartz, the board has signaled it is seeking an executive best known for management skills, they said.
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