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NPL ratio at end-June up at 13.45% Non-performing loans (NPLs) at rural and cooperative banks rose 12 percent in the second quarter of 2014 from the year-earlier level, with the NPL ratio also up as of end-June, the central bank said on Wednesday. The central bank did not give a…

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US CEOs:

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WASHINGTON, D.C.: Chief executives of major US companies are slightly less optimistic about the economy than three months ago and plan to cut capital spending next year, according to a survey published on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila). The Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of leading companies, said its Economic…

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The stock market is showing early signs of the so-called “Santa Claus rally,” advancing for the third straight day on Wednesday. The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) gained 0.22 percent or 16.52 points to close at 7,360.75, pulling back from an intraday high of 7,372. The broader All Shares…

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THE Philippines was recently cited as the country with the highest insurance penetration rate in Asia by a landscape study commissioned by the Munich Re Foundation in 2013. Simply put, this means that one in every five Filipinos is protected by microinsurance. This penetration ratio also tells us that the…

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Investor interest remains strong in two of the government’s biggest public-private partnership (PPP) projects, namely the upcoming bidding for the Laguna Lakeshore Expressway Dike (LLED) and next year’s rebid of the Cavite-Laguna Expressway (Calax) project, according to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH). Twenty-four companies who have bought…

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Property giant Ayala Land Inc. (ALI) has offered to buy Anglo Philippine Holdings Corp.’s 15.79 percent stake in North Triangle Depot Commercial Corp. (NTDCC), owner and operator of TriNoma, for P1.26 billion. Anglo said it has accepted ALI’s offer. In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, ALI said the…

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World

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SYDNEY: A 7.4 magnitude earthquake struck 255 kilometers southwest of Tonga early on Friday, according to the US Geological Survey. The quake, at a depth of 171 kilometers, sparked a tsunami alert although no damage is expected, according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center. AFP

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BY AFP AMMAN: World powers urged Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to commit to peace, but warned on Thursday that if he fails to negotiate a political transition they would boost their backing of the opposition. The stark warning came from a meeting of the Friends of Syria group, which held…

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BY AFP ISTANBUL: Syria’s main opposition National Coalition opened a fresh round of talks in Istanbul on Thursday, where dissidents will discuss a US-Russian proposal to bring rebels and regime officials to the negotiating table. During their three-day meeting, the coalition is also expected to choose a new president, discuss…

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BY AFP TEHRAN: A new report by the United Nation’s atomic watchdog validates Iran’s progress in its “peaceful” nuclear activities despite international sanctions, the country’s envoy to the agency said on Thursday. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report said Iran had accelerated the installation of advanced uranium enrichment equipment…

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BY AFP JERUSALEM: Israel’s government is divided on the issue of peace with the Palestinians, its top negotiator and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni said on Thursday ahead of a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry. “There are ideological differences at the heart of the government,” Livni told public…

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BY AFP WASHINGTON: The United States formally said for the first time on Wednesday that it had killed radical Yemeni-American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and three other US citizens in antiterror strikes abroad. The acknowledgement that Washington targeted Awlaki in Yemen in September 2011 and that the three others were not…

Today's Breaking News

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Banking giant JPMorgan Chase has reached a tentative agreement to pay a record $13 billion fine to the Justice Department to settle probes into its residential mortgage-backed securities, US media reported. Citing sources familiar with the decision, The Wall Street Journal newspaper reported in its online edition Saturday that the…

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Six days after the the magnitude 7.2 earthquake that shook Central Visayas last Tuesday morning, massive aftershocks continued to jolt the region, particularly in the province of Bohol, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) on Monday. In its bulletin, Phivolcs said the magnitude-5.4 aftershock occurred at…

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Boko Haram gunmen dressed in military uniform on Sunday killed 19 people near the Nigerian border with Cameroon in the restive northeast where the Islamists have carried out deadly attacks, residents and a survivor said. The motorcycle-riding gunmen armed with Kalashnikovs blocked the highway near the town of Logumani, 30…

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A new cyclone is expected to enter the country within 24 to 48 hours, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Monday. In an interview, PAGASA weather forecaster Jori Loiz said the typhoon with international name “Francisco” might enter the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) in Tuesday.…

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Syrian peace talks can only be held if a “credible opposition” takes part, an international envoy said Sunday, as a truck bombing in the war-ravaged country killed more than 40 people. Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi told reporters in Cairo the talks would be held on November 23, but UN-Arab…

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Mati Hari birthplace gutted by fire THE HAGUE – A fire in the Netherlands has gutted the birthplace of exotic dancer and World War I spy Mata Hari, Dutch media said on Sunday. One man reportedly died in the blaze that broke out Saturday evening in the Frisian city of…