Axon inaugurates HUF 1.5 bln plant in Kecskemét

The Hungarian subsidiary of French cable manufacturer Axon Cable yesterday inaugurated a HUF 1.5 bln factory in Kecskemét, central Hungary, national news agency MTI reported today.

Zwack proposes HUF 1,200 per-share dividend

The management of Zwack Unicum, Hungaryʼs best-known spirits manufacturer, will propose to shareholders the payment of a HUF 1,200-per-share dividend for the 2014/15 fiscal year at an AGM on June 25, according to the invitation for the meeting, Hungarian news agency MTI reported today, adding that the dividend fund amounts to HUF 2.44 bln.

MNB: 90% of banks commit to increased lending

Roughly 90% of banks in Hungary said they are willing to increase their lending activity, chiefly among SMEs, in response to the Hungarian government reiterating statements that the extraordinary tax on the banking sector would be lowered in favor of banks lending more.

EC finds Altus contract in order

The European Commission officially informed the Hungarian government that everything is in order with the contract awarded to Altus, a company owned by current leader of the Democratic Coalition opposition party Ferenc Gyurcsány, to assess European Union-financed development projects from 2014 to 2020, Cabinet Chief János Lázár said yesterday.

RBI books €21 mln first-quarter loss in Hungary

Austriaʼs Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI) booked a €21 mln loss at its Hungarian business in the first quarter, narrowing fromln a €33 mln loss in the base period, an earnings report published yesterday reveals. Net interest income fell 17% to €36 mln as the result of less interest income from derivatives and securities as well as lower interest rates, RBI said. 

ECONOMY

Hungarian-Albanian joint economic cooperation committee meets in Tirana

The Hungarian-Albanian Joint Economic Cooperation Committee met yesterday in Tirana in order to discuss ways to boost trade and investment, Hungarian news agency MTI reported, adding that the meeting was the second, following a meeting in 2013.

ECONOMY

Hungary GDP per capita two-thirds of E28 average, adjusted for purchasing power

Hungaryʼs GDP per capita, adjusted for purchasing power, was 66% of the average for all 28 European Union member states in 2013, a report released by Eurostat yesterday reveals.

BUSINESS

Schafer-Oesterle to build HUF 500 mln hall at base

German car interior manufacturer Schafer-Oesterle yesterday signed a contract on the construction of a HUF 500 mln production hall at its base in Bonyhád, southwestern Hungary, national news agency MTI reported. 

BUSINESS

Kun-Mediator clients seek Quaestor-like compensation

Hungarians who lost money invested with Kun-Mediator, a travel agency that also provided clients with unlicensed investor services and has gone insolvent, are asking Hungaryʼs Prime Minister Viktor Orbán for compensation similar that clients of the failed boutique brokerage Quaestor received, their counsel István Dobrossy said yesterday.

ECONOMY

European Court general advocate: Hungary fuel rules may be stricter than EUʼs

European Union law does not exclude Hungarian authorities from establishing supplementary regulations on vehicle fuel that go beyond EU norms for safety reasons, a general advocate of the European Court said yesterday. 

ECONOMY

Lázár: Overcharged Főgáz clients to be compensated

The government will propose compensation for customers of gas distributor Főgáz who were overcharged, cabinet chief János Lázár said at a weekly press conference yesterday. Főgáz "cheated " customers by installing unnecessarily large gas metres in blocks of flats, raising the price of basic service, Lázár said. 

ECONOMY

General government deficit comes close to 70% of full-year target in April

Hungaryʼs cashflow-based general government deficit, excluding local councils, reached HUF 609.8 bln at the end of April, the National Economy Ministry said in a second reading of data yesterday. The deficit reached 69.5% of the HUF 877.4 bln full-year target, the ministry confirmed in the report. 

ECONOMY

Forint eases further versus the euro on interbank market

The forint was trading at 307.33 to the euro late Thursday on the interbank forex market, down from 307.04 late Wednesday. At 307.05 to the euro early Thursday, the forint moved between 306.11 and 307.76 after a one-week high at 303.96 Tuesday intraday, and after another more than two-month low within a week at 309.68 Monday intraday.

ECONOMY

BUX further down, OTP weighs

The Budapest Stock Exchangeʼs main BUX index finished down 0.21% at 22,185.55 Thursday, after sliding 0.46% Wednesday. It is up 33.37% from year-end, after losing 10.40% last year. OTP dragged down the Budapest parquet while other shares picked up towards close following a slight turnaround in euro area markets.

ECONOMY

Hungarian banks unanimously commit to boosting lending activity

The Hungarian Banking Association has compiled and presented to the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) local banksʼ commitment to boosting their lending activity, the central bank said today.

BUSINESS

Daimler Hungary base increases output by one-third

The Hungarian unit of German carmaker Daimler in Kecskemét, central Hungary, increased output by more than one-third to 150,000 cars last year, managing director of Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Hungary Thomas Geier said today at a press conference held jointly with importer Mercedes-Benz Hungária.

BUSINESS

MFB sees HUF 2.5 bln pre-tax profit last year

Hungarian state-owned Hungarian Development Bank (MFB) saw a pre-tax profit of HUF 2.5 bln last year, CEO Csaba Nagy said today.

ECONOMY

Gyulai: Orbán confuses immigrants with refugees

Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has been confusing immigrants with refugees since February, Gábor Gyulai of the Hungarian Helsinki Committee told Hungarian online daily origo.hu, in response to the Prime Minister’s speech on Tuesday in the European Parliament.

ECONOMY

Paks port to be developed for HUF 2.5 bln

The Paks port on the Danube, near Hungaryʼs sole nuclear power plant, is expected to undergo developments worth HUF 2.5 bln, largely supported with European Union funds, Tamás Németh, managing director of the company that owns the port, said yesterday.

ECONOMY

Swedish Chamber of Commerce awards Hungarian-developed disinfectant

Hungarian-developed disinfectant Solumium, was awarded the Grand Prize by the Swedish Chamber of Commerce in Hungary in 2015, the chamber told Hungarian news agency MTI today.

ECONOMY

ÁKK sells HUF 52 bln of securities at auction, slightly over plan

The Government Debt Management Agency (ÁKK) sold a combined HUF 52 bln of securities at auction today, slightly more than planned.

ECONOMY

Govʼt submits family bankruptcy protection bill

Hungary’s Christian Democrat Party (KDNP), which is in coalition with the ruling Fidesz party, yesterday submitted a bill to Parliament that would protect families with debts from bankruptcy, Hungarian news agency MTI reported today.

ECONOMY

MNB fines three financial institutions HUF 7.5 mln

The National Bank of Hungary (MNB) fined MKB Bank HUF 4 mln, Aegon Magyarország Hitel HUF 1 mln and UCB Ingatlanhitel HUF 2.5 mln on charges of missing the deadline for sending a portion of their foreign currency loan settlement letters to customers, the central bank told Hungarian news agency MTI today.

ECONOMY

Bill would amend state debt threshold, could eliminate ad agencies

Hungary’s National Economy Minister Mihály Varga yesterday submitted a bill to Parliament that would amend a rule on a nominal state debt threshold to prevent negative consequences for economic growth, Hungarian news agency MTI reported. The bill was submitted after the Fiscal Council noted that the governmentʼs 2016 budget draft failed to comply with the rule and the recommendation was to amend or scrap it.

ECONOMY

KSH: Gross wages up 4.9% in March

Average gross wages in Hungary saw a year-on-year rise of 4.9%, reaching HUF 247,917 in March, with net wages rising at the same pace to reach HUF 162,387, the Central Statistics Office (KSH) said today in a first release of data.

expert opinion

Property market performs better with remnants of the crisis still present

Property market performs better with remnants of crisis still present

by Sándor Habóczky and Tamás Balogh at Schoenherr Hetényi Attorneys at Law

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