(Bloomberg) — ByteDance Ltd., the Chinese owner of video-sharing app TikTok, is planning to make Singapore its beachhead for the rest of Asia as part of its global expansion, according to people familiar with the matter.The Beijing-based company is looking to spend several billion dollars and add hundreds of jobs over the next three years in the city-state, where it has applied for a license to operate a digital bank, said the people, who asked not to be identified because of confidentiality. The investment would come at a crucial time as the technology firm is forced to sell TikTok operations in the U.S. under pressure by the Trump administration.ByteDance, the world’s most richly valued startup, is plowing ahead with plans to take its social media services deeper into Asia after setbacks in India and the U.K. as well as the U.S. The internet phenomenon controlled by billionaire Zhang Yiming has … Read the rest

The need for businesses to keep up continuity during the pandemic forced them to rapidly change their ways of working.

However, in order to ensure their ongoing growth, a longer-term approach to cultural transformation is needed.

By taking the opportunity to rebuild their company culture now, businesses can attract and retain much-needed talent, while setting themselves up for future success.

Focus on continuous improvement

The last six months have brought on significant changes to the working world, from the physical set up of offices to the services that businesses offer. By taking on board the lessons they have learned during the coronavirus outbreak and assessing areas of their organisation where improvements can still be made, businesses can rebuild their company cultures to be stronger than ever before.

Seek employee feedback

The rise of remote working during the coronavirus crisis has seen many employees benefitting from an improved work-life balance and … Read the rest

While many of us have never heard of fluorspar, the global market for the now critical mineral jumped 5.5% in 2018 and is poised to gain even more ground in 2020.

IndexBox published “World Fluorspar – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends, and Insights,” which shows fluorspar as a $1.6 billion market in 2018. Also, in 2018, the U.S. government declared fluorspar (also known as fluorite) and other minerals as strategic and critical materials.

Mining and resource companies have taken note of the opportunity. Leaders in this group include prominent miners DuPont (NYSE:DD), United Company RUSAL Plc (RUAL.ME), and Arkema S.A. (OTC: ARKAY).

Junior miner Ares Strategic Mining Ltd. is a resource company looking at bringing active domestic US Fluorspar into production within twelve months’ time. Ares Strategic Mining’s (TSXV: ARS) (OTC: ARSMF) recently acquired Lost Sheep Fluorspar Project is located in the Spor Mountain area, Juab County, Utah, approximately 133 … Read the rest

Good morning.

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla told CEOs assembled by Fortune and McKinsey yesterday that there is a “more than 60% chance” his company will know by the end of October whether its vaccine works. Pfizer has already vaccinated some 26,000 people in its Phase III trials, and company modeling shows the results should be in by the end of next month.

Bourla spoke on the day he and CEOs of other pharma companies published full page ads in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal pledging not to deploy a vaccine until scientific studies were complete—an effort to show vaccine timing will be driven by science, not politics. Bourla acknowledged that the late October date, coming right before the election, created the perception of political involvement, which could undermine confidence in the vaccine. “I feel that every day. Many times, I thought, ‘if it could just be a … Read the rest

(Bloomberg) — Hong Kong’s police force said it arrested 15 people in connection to last month’s surge in shares of Next Digital Ltd., the media company owned by vocal government critic Jimmy Lai.The arrests were made on suspicion of the use of illegal funds and conspiracy to defraud, Chung Wing-man, chief superintendent of the narcotics bureau, told reporters at a Thursday briefing. The people, who made a combined profit of about HK$38 million ($4.9 million), traded a high volume of Next Digital shares and the police have reason to doubt their source of income, Chung said.Police said one of the people had links to organized crime, and six were unemployed.The news marked the latest twist in a drama that has captivated the financial hub since Lai was held last month under Hong Kong’s controversial National Security Law. Next Digital soared more than 1,000% in a span of two days in … Read the rest

Today, the Business for Peace Foundation has announced the 2020 Oslo Business for Peace Award winners.

The Honourees are: Marc Benioff, (pictured) Founder, Chair and CEO of Salesforce; James Mwangi, Chairman and CEO of Equity Group Holdings and Felicitas “Joji” Bautista Pantoja, Co-Founder and CEO of Coffee for Peace.

The Oslo Business for Peace Award is given annually to business leaders, as individuals, for their outstanding businessworthy accomplishments; leaders who apply their business energy ethically and responsibly, creating stronger economic and societal value.

An independent Award Committee of Nobel Laureates in Peace and Economics has selected the three outstanding leaders to receive the Award this year. This is following a global nomination process through Business for Peace’s partners: International Chamber of Commerce, Principles for Responsible Investment, United Nations Development Program and United Nations Global Compact. Past winners include Paul Polman, Ouided Bouchamaoui, Richard Branson and Durreen Shahnaz. The 2020 winners … Read the rest

Stocks fell sharply on Tuesday as technology shares were under pressure once again following their worst selloff in more than five months last week.

The Dow Jones Industrials hurtled lower 632.42 points, or 2.3%, to 27,500.89.

The S&P 500 faltered 95.12 points, or 2.8%, to 3,331.84.

The NASDAQ Composite fainted 465.44 points, or 4.1%, to 10,857.69. Tuesday’s drop put the tech-heavy NASDAQ down 10% over the past three sessions. In that time, the composite has fallen from a record into a correction on and intraday and closing basis.

Facebook and Amazon were both down more than 4% Microsoft tumbled 5.4%, and Apple slid 6.7%. Netflix closed 1.8% lower and Alphabet lost 3.6%. Zoom Video fell by 5.1%. The S&P 500 tech sector dropped 4.6% and closed Tuesday’s session more than 11% below an all-time high set on Sept. 2.

Shares of Softbank dropped 7% on Monday in Japan as it … Read the rest

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China’s best bet for a domestic semiconductor maker could become the latest target in the Trump Administration’s trade war with Beijing.

On Saturday, Reuters reported the White House is considering adding Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC) to the Commerce Department’s so-called entity list, a blacklist of companies that U.S. suppliers require special permission to work with.

“The Company is in complete shock and perplexity to the news. Nevertheless, SMIC is open to sincere and transparent communication with the U.S. Government agencies in hope of resolving potential misunderstandings,” SMIC said in a statement Saturday.

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On Monday, the Chinese chipmaker’s Hong Kong-listed shares tumbled 22%, wiping out $4 billion in value. Shares … Read the rest

(Bloomberg) — Nasdaq 100 futures advanced Wednesday while S&P 500 contracts inched higher as investors took a breather from a rout in U.S. technology shares and factored in a report that a Covid-19 vaccine trial was paused.Nasdaq 100 futures gained 1.6% as of 10:20 a.m. in London, after reversing an earlier slide of 1.1%. Contracts on the S&P 500 climbed 0.7%. Shares in exchange-traded funds that track the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 indexes had turned sharply lower after AstraZeneca Plc has put on hold a study testing a Covid-19 vaccine. The company’s shares were down 0.9% in London.“During the cash market open we had pretty broad bleeding across all the growth sectors so it’s possible that some traders, especially CTAs, thought there was too much contagion and wanted to take the other side,” said Max Gokhman, Pacific Life Fund Advisors’ head of asset allocation, referring to commodity trading advisors. … Read the rest

Up to £3.5bn in Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme payments may have been claimed fraudulently or paid out in error, the government has said.

HM Revenue and Customs told MPs on the Public Accounts Committee it estimates that 5-10% of furlough cash has been wrongly awarded.

Latest data shows the programme has cost the government £35.4bn so far.

The scheme has paid 80% of the wages of workers placed on leave since March, up to a maximum of £2,500 a month.

Speaking to MPs on Monday, HMRC’s permanent secretary, Jim Harra, said: “We have made an assumption for the purposes of our planning that the error and fraud rate in this scheme could be between 5% and 10%.

“That will range from deliberate fraud through to error.”

The Public Accounts Committee estimates that a total of £30bn in tax was lost in 2019 due to taxpayer error and fraud.

Both HM … Read the rest