Exports shrink by 6.0pc in H1
Merchandise shipments fell by 5.84 per cent during the first half of the current fiscal year, as export earnings continue to witness downtrend in recent months. Total export earnings from July to December of FY 2019-20 reached $19.30 billion against $20.49 billion fetched during the same period of the last fiscal. The income also fell short of the target by 12.77 per cent set for the period, according to the latest data of the state-run Export Promotion Bureau (EPB). The single-month export earnings in December 2019, however, edged up by 2.89 per cent to $3.52 billion. Earnings from woven garments fell by 7.28 per cent to $7.81 billion in the first six months of this fiscal, the EPB figures show. Proceeds from knitwear exports during the period also fell by 5.16 per cent to nearly $8.20 billion. Woven and knitwear brought in $8.43 billion and $8.65 billion respectively in July-December period of last fiscal. Earnings from other key sectors also fell during the first half of the fiscal, compared with the year-earlier period. The EPB data showed earnings from home textile stood at $370.1 million, down 9.5 per cent from $408.94 million. Earnings from home textiles also fell short of the target by 14.59 per cent. Jute and jute goods exports during the period, however, climbed by 21.55 per cent to $511.73 million from $421.02 million. Agro-products like vegetables, fruits and spice exports stood at $523.90 million, recording a 1.21 per cent growth. Pharmaceuticals exports grew by 5.71 per cent to $73.69 million. Frozen and live fish exports hauled $290.5 million in the first six months of this fiscal, registering a 7.7 per cent negative growth. Exports of engineering products fell by 2.35 per cent to $168.04 million from $172.08 million.
BB asks Committee for fresh Report
A Central Bank committee has been reassigned to prepare a fresh report on single-digit interest rates on both lending and deposit after reviewing the overall banking situation. It has also been asked to submit the report to the governor within 10 working days from the date of reassignment, officials said. On December 31, 2019, the committee was asked to prepare the report applying their knowhow, practical knowledge and ability within the timeframe. The seven-member committee, led by BB deputy governor SM Moniruzzaman, was formed on December 01 to find ways to cut down industrial lending rates to a single digit. But the panel now finds ways to bring down the interest rates on both lending and deposit at 9.0 per cent and 6.0 per cent respectively from April 01, 2020. On December 30, finance minister AHM Mustafa Kamal told reporters that the single-digit interest rate on all loans, excepting credit cards, will take effect from April 01.
Bottled LPG prices go up by 20pc abruptly
Retail prices of liquefied petroleum gas, or LPG, shot up by 20 per cent this week, the highest level in years. Each cylinder weighing 12 kilogramme was selling at Tk 1,200, up by Tk 200. Privately-owned LPG importers and marketers increased the price as energy prices surged in the global market in the wake of killing of top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani in Iraq on Friday, a senior official of an LPG firm told the FE on Sunday. He feared that the LPG price in the domestic market would spiral further with the uptrend in oil, gas and other energy prices in the international market. Indian LPG companies, however, raised only Rs19 per 14.2 kg LPG cylinder to Tk 714 from Rs 695 this week, Indian media reported. State-owned LP Gas Ltd., a subsidiary of the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation, however, is selling a 12 kg LPG cylinder at its previously fixed rate at Tk 700, said a senior corporation official. Market insiders said LPG consumption in the country has seen a four-fold jump over the past three years riding on its increased use in households, commercial entities and vehicles. Currently over 1.0 million tonnes of LPG are consumed annually, which was around 250,000 tonnes in 2015. Bangladesh consumed around 650,000 tonnes of LPG in 2017, up from around 400,000 tonnes in 2016, market players said. Favourable Government policy, duty waiver on the import of LPG and its machinery and crackdown on illegal gas connections have helped boom in LPG use across the country.
KPCL tops Turnover Chart
Top 10 traded stocks contributed 29 per cent in market turnover featured by Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) on Sunday. On the day, the turnover on the DSE declined 24 per cent to close at Tk 2.92 billion as majority number of listed securities witnessed price correction. Khulna Power Company Limited topped the turnover chart featuring a value of Tk 190.7 million and captured 6.50 per cent of the market turnover. On the day of witnessing price correction by large cap companies, the share price of KPCL rose 3.66 per cent and closed at Tk 53.10 each. Of other nine top traded companies, the share prices of five companies advanced marginally on the DSE. LafargeHolcim Bangladesh featured a turnover of Tk 103.60 million and grabbed 3.54 per cent of the market turnover on Sunday. The company’s share price advanced 0.54 per cent to close at Tk 36.80 each. National Tubes contributed 3.14 per cent in market turnover after featuring a value of Tk 91.80 million.
Country likely to earn over $20b Remittance this year
The country is likely to earn more than US$20 billion remittance in the current year thanks to cash incentive benefits provided by the Government to migrant workers, according to the expatriates’ welfare ministry. The number of overseas jobs will also increase this year, it projected. Salim Reza, secretary to the expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment (EWOE) ministry, on Sunday said inward remittance stood at more than US$18 billion in 2019 which was 16.2 per cent higher than that of 2018. So, they hope remittance earnings will cross $20 billion this calendar year. Bangladesh sent 701,000 workers abroad with jobs in 2019. Of them, 111,000 were women workers. Among the workers, 44 per cent was skilled and 22 per cent semi-skilled. Addressing the press briefing, Imran Ahmad, minister for EWOE, said they would be able to send more than 750,000 workers this year.
Dhaka Bank Limited inks deal with National Housing Finance and Investments Limited
Managing Director (Current Charge) of Dhaka Bank Limited Emranul Huq and Managing Director of National Housing Finance and Investments Limited (NHFIL) Md. Khalilur Rahman exchanged documents after signing an agreement on behalf of their respective organisations in the capital recently. Under the agreement, the bank will provide online Cash Management Services to the NHFIL.
DU Business Faculty wins CFA Institute Research Challenge
CFA Society Bangladesh announced that a team from Faculty of Business Studies, the University of Dhaka, has won the local final of the CFA Institute Research Challenge 2019-20 and now advances to the Asia Pacific Regional final to be held in Seoul, South Korea, where the team will compete against universities from Asia Pacific countries, said a statement. The local competition started on October 05, 2019 and 103 teams from 27 universities/institutes around the country participated in this competition. From there top 10 teams were selected for the equity research report round and based on their performance top five teams proceeded to the local final.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|DSEX||4,400.14036||↓ 59.15076||↓ 1.33 %|
|↓ 233.92||↓ 0.81 %|
|FTSE100||7,622.40||↑ 18.10||↑ 0.24 %|
|Nikkei 225||23,179.14||↓ 477.48||↓ 2.02 %|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 64.57 ||↑ 1.52||↑ 2.41%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 70.60 ||↑ 2.00||↑ 2.92 %|
|Gold Spot||$ 1,577.85||↑ 25.65||↑ 1.65 %|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.2666|
|GBP 1||BDT 108.843|
|EUR 1||BDT 92.8839|
|INR 1||BDT 1.15819|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<