Forint Report: Monday

The forint was trading at 299.09 to the euro late Monday on the interbank forex market, up from 300.21 late Friday and 300.24 late Sunday. Also at 300.24 to the euro early Monday, the forint moved between 298.91, a four-day high, and 300.29. It reached a 13-month high at 297.25 last Wednesday intraday. It ended last week 0.73% up after a gain of 0.76% over the previous week.

BUX Report: Monday

The Budapest Stock Exchangeʼs main BUX index finished up 0.41% at 20,045.92 Monday, after falling 1.12% on Friday from an almost four-year high. It is up 20.51% from year-end, after losing 10.40% last year. Over last week, it added 3.84% after rising 3.00% in the previous week.

Ministry drafts anti-corruption bill

Hungary’s justice ministry today published a draft bill on its website aimed at amending several penal laws, which would in turn increase the efficiency of jurisdiction in corruption cases, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

Report: Hungarian firms unaware of FCPA

Only a small number of Hungarian companies are aware of the potential consequences in the event that they violated the guidelines of the U.S.-adopted Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), as the U.S. regulation can have Hungarian relevance, Szecskay Attorneys at Law said today in a press release.

Official: PM acted before receiving Tarsoly’s letter

Although Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán did receive a letter from Csaba Tarsoly, CEO of the now insolvent brokerage Quaestor, a government spokesman said the letter was not received until March 9, the same day on which Tarsoly briefed the central bank about the situation. Orbán reportedly instructed the ministries to pull out off brokerages on February 25.

ECONOMY

Lenders allowed to close some FX swap contracts with MNB before maturity

The National Bank of Hungary on Monday said it will allow lenders to close, before maturity, a certain part of FX swap contracts related to the mandatory conversion of retail FX loans into forints, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

BUSINESS

Canning company winds up HUF 434 mln investment

Hungary-based canning company Gloster Zöldség-Gyümölcs Feldolgozó és Kereskedelmi, located in Máriapócs, in eastern Hungary, has built a new warehouse and office building as well as purchased labeling machinery and a conveyor system for a total of HUF 434 mln, the company told Hungarian news agency MTI today.

ECONOMY

Varga presents Prize for Successful Business

National Economy Minister Mihály Varga presented the Prize for Successful Business, a monthly acknowledgement, to three Hungarian companies at a ceremony today, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

ECONOMY

Szeged to welcome HUF 2.5 bln incubator

The local council and the University of Szeged, in southeastern Hungary, are planning to establish a HUF 2.5 bln business incubator in the science park adjacent to a European Union-funded superlaser center, city mayor László Botka said today according to Hungarian news agency MTI.

POLITICS

Jobbik MP: Nobody trusts Orbán in the East

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s Eastern Opening Policy raises questions of credibility, given that the prime minister’s opinion on eastern countries was the opposite of what it is now, prior to his winning the 2010 elections, radical far-right Jobbik MP Márton Gyöngyösi (pictured) told Hungarian online daily 444.hu today.

BUSINESS

Report: Brokerage scandals could help foreign institutions

In the event that the Hungarian government introduces strict regulations on Hungarian banks and brokerages, domestic institutions will become less competitive in the European Union market and Hungarian investors could turn en masse to cheaper foreign service providers, Hungarian investment firm Equilor told Hungarian daily Napi Gazdaság today.

BUSINESS

Jalsovszky law firm welcomes competition lawyer

Competition lawyer Dr. Bálint Bassola (pictured) was appointed leader of the competition group at Hungarian law firm Jalsovcsky Ügyvédi Iroda in mid-March, the firm said in a press release.

ECONOMY

Szijjártó opens Hungarian trading house in Chile

Hungaryʼs Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó opened a Hungarian trading house in Santiago de Chile on Friday, the minister told Hungarian news agency MTI by phone early this morning following talks with Chileʼs Foreign Affairs Minister Heraldo Munoz and with Chilean businessmen.

ECONOMY

Easter boosts egg consumption

Egg consumption is expected to double during the upcoming Easter holiday, while prices are predicted to remain 4-5% lower as compared to last year at HUF 35-40 apiece, Péter Földi, the head of the Poultry Products Council, told Hungarian news agency MTI this morning.

ECONOMY

Tarsoly put in pre-trial detention

A Budapest court yesterday placed Quaestor CEO Csaba Tarsoly and two other suspects, involved in the recent Quaestor brokerage scandal, in pre-trial detention for 30 days, Hungarian state-owned television M1 reported late yesterday.

BUSINESS

WIS Holding inaugurates sawmill

Hungary-based real estate developer WIS Holding inaugurated a sawmill supported with a HUF 981 mln state and European Union grant in Miskolc on Friday, Hungarian news agency MTI reported. 

POLITICS

Varga holds talks with Chinese tourism agency chief

Hungary’s economy minister Mihály Varga held negotiations with China National Tourism Administration chief Li Jinzao during a tourism conference in Budapest on March 25-26, the National Economy Ministry said. 

POLITICS

Foreign minister extends term of commissioner for tasks related to Russian embargo

Foreign minister Péter Szijjártó has extended the term of Gyula Budai as ministerial commissioner for measures related to the Russian embargo by at most six months, starting March 22, an official document published on Friday shows. 

BUSINESS

CIB Group 2014 losses drop despite provisioning for refunds

CIB Group, the Hungarian unit of Italyʼs Intesa Sanpaolo banking group, had after-tax losses of HUF 104.1 bln in 2014, down from HUF 136.7 bln in 2013, audited consolidated IFRS figures of the bank, sent to MTI on Friday show.

BUSINESS

Exports to China, US to boost output of Kecskemét Mercedes plant further

The Mercedes-Benz plant at Kecskemét, central Hungary, will raise its output further this year, mainly thanks to increasing exports to China and the United States, plant manager Thomas Geiger said in an interview with Hungarian news agency MTI on Friday. 

BUSINESS

Arab Business Club magazine features Hungary

The Arab Business Club, a private investment promotion organisation based in Dubai, is dedicating the June issue of its monthly magazine to Hungary, chairman Hamdan Mohamed Al Murshidi (pictured) said at a press conference in Budapest on Friday. 

POLITICS

LMP bill could freeze officialsʼ bank accounts

Hungary’s green party, LMP (Politics can be different), says it will propose a bill today that would freeze the bank accounts of any officials who can be shown to have obtained early information of problems at the now-insolvent Quaestor investment house, party co-president András Schiffer (pictured) said, according to a report in online daily origo.hu yesterday. 

POLITICS

DK would restrict Sunday hunting

In measure to mock the recently introduced Sunday closures law, which restricts retailers from opening on Sundays, opposition Democratic Coalition (DK) is planning to hand in a bill proposal to restrict hunting on Sundays, Hungarian online daily hvg.hu said yesterday. 

BUSINESS

Dreher winds up warehouse investment

Hungarian beer-maker Dreher Breweries, a unit of SABMiller, inaugurated new warehouse space worth HUF 447 mln at its base in Budapest on Friday, saying it expected to recoup the investment on the two warehouses, with a combined area of 4,400 sqm, in the following year. 

OPINION

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