ECONOMY

BSE trading holidays at end of 2014

The last trading day of the year on the Budapest Stock Exchange's prompt and derivatives sections will be December 30 while trading on the commodity exchange has stopped for the year from December 22, Hungarian news agency MTI reported today.

POLITICS

Bencsik: Conference focuses on Orbán's ouster

A conference that included former Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány and American charge d'affaires André Goodfriend discussed the possibility of encouraging Fidesz to replace Hungary’s prime minister, András Bencsik, editor-in-chief of the government-friendly Hungarian weekly Demokrata, said on his Facebook page yesterday.

BUSINESS

MKB acquisition falls under EC scrutiny

The European Commission is set to review the transfer of ownership rights of MKB Bank from the state of Hungary to the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) in order to ensure that it complies with European Union law, Reuters reported on Friday.

BUSINESS

MNB withdraws license of another savings cooperative

The National Bank of Hungary (MNB) on Friday said it withdrew the license of Magyar Vidék credit cooperative at the lender's request. A general meeting of the savings cooperative decided in October to wind up without a legal successor. 

ECONOMY

Hungary-Slovakia gas interconnector to be delayed

Launching the commercial operation of an interconnector between the gas networks of Hungary and Slovakia could be delayed due to technical problems and a certification holdup on the Hungarian side, Slovak gas transit company Eustream reported on Friday. 

BUSINESS

Széchenyi Bank depositors to get HUF 3.7 bln from state compensation fund

A total of HUF 3.7 bln will be paid to depositors of the failed Széchenyi Bank from a compensation fund established by the state, National Economy Ministry state secretary Gábor Orbán said at a press briefing on Friday. The compensation will be paid to about 100 depositors, mostly private individuals and SMEs, by mid-January, Orbán said.

BUSINESS

Fewer people employed at banks

The number of people working in Hungarian banks and credit institutions fell by a further 500 or 1.3%, to just over 38,000, in the year ending in September, Hungarian business daily Világgazdaság reported on Friday, citing data from the National Bank of Hungary (MNB). In the last five years, total headcount in the sector is said to be down by 2,000 employees.

ECONOMY

TVK buys power plant from ÉMÁSZ

Hungarian chemical company TVK, a subsidiary of oil and gas company MOL, announced Friday that it agreed to buy 74% of power plant TVK-ERŐMŰ in northern Hungary from regional power distributor ÉMÁSZ. TVK's holding in the power plant will grow to 100%, as it already owns a 26% stake, TVK announced on the website of the Budapest Stock Exchange.


BUSINESS

Central bank takes over for MKB board

Experts chosen by the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) took over the tasks of the board of MKB Bank and will cooperate with members of the management, central bank deputy governor Ádám Balog said at a press briefing on Friday, adding that decisions on further changes to staff at the bank will not be necessary for the time being.

ECONOMY

Forint dives again on interbank market

The forint was trading at 316.36 to the euro late Thursday on the interbank forex market, down from 314.55 late Thurssday. At 314.84 to the euro early Friday, the forint moved between 313.28 and 317.01, another almost three-year low.

ECONOMY

BUX follows European peers belatedly

The Budapest Stock Exchange's main BUX index finished up 1.13% at 16,382.70 Friday, after sinking 0.33% Thursday. It is down 11.75% from the end of last year, after it rose 2.15% in 2013. The Budapest parquet followed European peers up with a one day delay in a buy-into-loss pattern, while the deputy governor of the central bank said recent falls of the Hungarian currency "do not cause any particular problems."

POLITICS

President returns unprofitable supermarkets amendment to lawmakers

Hungarian President János Áder declined to sign an amendment that would essentially keep major supermarket chains that are unprofitable for two years in a row staying in business, Hungarian news agency MTI reported today. The president reportedly said the legislation as written goes against EU regulations and returned it to legislators.

ECONOMY

Investment agency signs cooperation agreement with automotive industry association

Hungary's Grand Automotive Coalition, a professional association representing the interests of carmakers, dealers and mechanics, has signed a cooperation agreement with the Hungarian Investment Promotion Agency (HIPA), HIPA said today.


ECONOMY

Századvég expects 2.6% GDP growth in 2015

Századvég, a group best known for their research arm, which is closely affiliated with ruling Fidesz party, expects Hungary's economy to grow 2.6% next year, Hungarian news agency MTI reported today.

ECONOMY

Social forum fails to reach agreement on pay raises

The National Economic and Social Council, a broad social forum, failed to reach an agreement on next year's wages at a meeting today, Hungarian news agency MTI reported. The talks broke down after the government failed to respond to unions' request to discuss other demands as a condition to a wage agreement.

BUSINESS

Magyar Posta inaugurates HUF 5.1 bln letter sorting line

Magyar Posta, Hungary's state-owned postal company inaugurated, a HUF 5.1 bln letter sorting line at its Budaörs base on the outskirts of Budapest, the post office reported today.

BUSINESS

GVH fines numismatic company for deceptive advertising

The Hungarian Competition Office (GVH) fined the Coin Art Institute Commerce and Services Company for HUF 10 mln due to misleading consumers, GVH reported today.

ECONOMY

Lázár to involve international help for Paks

Hungary is planning to bring together an international panel of experts to consult on the upgrade of the Paks nuclear power plant, Cabinet Chief János Lázár said today.

ECONOMY

Origo: Gov’t can lift Sunday closure for some

According to the recently approved law restricting retailers from opening on Sundays and during the night, the Hungarian government has the power to allow certain shops to be exempted from the mandatory closure, Hungarian online daily Origo reported today, adding that, the exact regulations on the basis of the exemption will become public in the first quarter of 2015.

POLITICS

Gov’t exempts Főgáz acquisition from GVH scrunity

The Hungarian government declared its acquisition of 49.8% of the shares of Budapest gas distributor Főgáz via state-owned Hungarian Development Bank (MFB) from state-owned Hungarian Electricity Work's (MVM) as being “strategically important for the national economy”, so the sale is exempt from review by the Competition Office (GVH).

expert opinion

Torture, Justice and the American Way

Torture, Justice and the American Way

by Joseph Marguiles

The MarkNews