Forint Report: Tuesday

The forint was trading at 300.38 to the euro late Tuesday on the interbank forex market, down from 299.35 late Monday. At 299.39 to the euro early Tuesday, the forint moved between 298.67 after a four-day high at 298.48 Monday intraday, and 300.52. It reached a 13-month high at 297.25 last Wednesday intraday.

BUX Report: Tuesday

The Budapest Stock Exchangeʼs main BUX index finished down 1.78% at 19,689.16 Tuesday, further away from an almost four-year closing high last Thursday, after rising 0.41% Monday. It is up 18.37% from year-end, after losing 10.40% last year. A global downturn prompted investors to take profits in end-quarter book-squaring in Budapest, too.

Alföldi Tej to buy FrieslandCampinaʼs plant

Dutch-owned FrieslandCampina Hungária, which also produces Hungary’s well-known sweet Pöttyös Túró Rudi, is selling its Debrecen-based plant (pictured) to Hungarian Alföldi Tej, Hungarian online daily index.hu reported citing data from the Competition Office (GVH).

Wizz Air to fly to Bologna, Glasgow

Hungarian low-cost airlines Wizz Air is offering two new destinations from Budapest, Hungary, flying to Bologna, Italy and Glasgow, Scotland, as of June 5 and June 13, respectively, the airlines said today in a press release.

MNB: Number of bank cards issued drops

The number of bank cards issued in Hungary saw a 1% drop to 8,876,780 last year, with debit cards accounting for 84% and credit cards accounting for 16% of that total, according to data published by the National Bank of Hungary today.

ECONOMY

Amendment on brokerages approved

In the wake of recent brokerage scandals, the Hungarian Parliament today approved amendments to legislation that broadens the scope of liability assigned to brokerages, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

ECONOMY

MET acquisition of GDF Suez gas business cleared

Hungaryʼs Competition Office (GVH) today it approved the acquisition of the gas business of GDF Suez Energia Holding Hungary by MET Magyarország, GVH said according to Hungarian news agency MTI.

BUSINESS

ÁKK sells HUF 50 bln of three-month bills

The Government Debt Management Agency (ÁKK) sold HUF 50 bln of discount three-month T-bills at auction on Tuesday, in line with the original offer. Yields rose. Primary dealers bid for HUF 89.9 bln of the securities which expire on July 8.

BUSINESS

Eston Internatial expands portfolio by 57,000 sqm

Eston International’s portfolio has expanded by 57,000 sqm as a result of exclusively contracting with CPI Property Group’s three office buildings: Gateway Irodaház, Balance Irodaház and BOP, Eston said today in a press release.

BUSINESS

Appeals court rejects CIB leasing unitʼs contract defense

The Budapest Municipal Court of Appeals on Tuesday upheld a first-instance ruling rejecting a contract defense by the property leasing unit of CIB Bank, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

ECONOMY

Mall traffic drops dramatically on Sunday closures

Visitor numbers to shopping malls containing cinemas have more than halved due to the recently approved bill restricting retailers from opening on Sundays, Judit Balatoni, secretary general of Hungarian Malls Association, told Hungarian economic daily Napi Gazdaság today.

BUSINESS

Police raid Győr football stadium

Both the park and stadium complex of Győr’s football team have been taken over by the Hungarian police investgating the Quaestor brokerage scandal, attorney general Tibor Ibolya told Hungarian state-owned M1 TV channel late yesterday, according to online daily origo.hu.

ECONOMY

KSH: Hungary’s PPI falls 3.2% in February

Industrial producer prices in Hungary were down by a year-on-year 3.2% in February from the same month a year earlier, with domestic prices falling by 4.7% and export prices dropping by 2.3%, the Central Statistics Office (KSH) said today.

BUSINESS

MOL completes TVK squeeze-out

Hungarian oil and gas company MOL has completed a squeeze-out for shares of TVK petrochemicals company, MOL said early today.

ECONOMY

MNB: Hungary’s Maastricht debt falls to 76.9% at end-2014

Hungaryʼs gross consolidated general government debt, calculated at nominal value, in line with Maastricht methodology, reached 76.9% of GDP at the end of 2014, down from 77.3% a year earlier, a second reading of data published by the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) today reveals.

ECONOMY

MNB: Stronger forint reduces FX lending stock in February

Lending stock of Hungarian banks fell in February from the previous month as the stronger forint reduced the value of FX loans, fresh data from the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) show.

POLITICS

PM promises to reveal brokerage-government ties

The government intends to inform the public by Thursday on the nature of state institutions’ financial ties with brokerages, Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in response to a Socialist MP’s query yesterday.

ECONOMY

Hungary-Slovakia foreign ministers discuss interconnector, infrastructure cooperation

A Hungarian-Slovak gas pipeline is still in test mode, but the two countriesʼ governments are making all possible efforts to put the interconnector into a commercial operation as quickly as possible, foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said after discussions with Miroslav Lajcak, his Slovak counterpart, in Budapest yesterday. 

POLITICS

Orbán to hold talks in Kazakhstan

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán will hold talks in Kazakhstan on Tuesday, the prime ministerʼs press chief said. Orbán will meet with Nursultan Nazarbayev, the president, and Karim Massimov, the prime minister, as well as with business leaders, Bertalan Havasi said. 

ECONOMY

Easter holiday set to lift retail sales HUF 60 bln

Retail sales in the run-up to the Easter holiday are expected to rise by about the same amount as last year, HUF 60 bln, according to the National Retail Association (OKSZ). 

ECONOMY

Rogán: PM sends letter to Tarsoly

According to ruling Fidesz caucus leader Antal Rogán, Hungaryʼs Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has sent a letter of two sentences to currently insolvent Quaestor brokerageʼs CEO Csaba Tarsoly, in reaction to the CEOʼs letter, which he reportedly sent to Orbán to ask for the PMʼs help with sorting out matters at the brokerage, Hungarian online daily origo.hu reported late yesterday. 

BUDAPEST

Greek footballers injured in fatal crash

Three football players on the Greek national team were injured in a car accident that caused a fatality early yesterday when traveling to Budapest Airport to depart to Italy where they play in clubs. Vangelis Moras and Panajotis Tahcidis, players for Verona, and Jannis Fetfacidis of Chievo were traveling by a taxi that crashed into another car. 

OPINION

Loopholes and Taxation: Overseeing a Fairer European Union

Companies should pay a fair share of taxes on the money they earn, and governments should not favor certain businesses by giving them advantages not available to others. This sounds straightforward, but the reality is not.

ECONOMY

Forint firms on interbank market

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.

ECONOMY

BUX up on global mood

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.

expert opinion

Loopholes and Taxation: Overseeing a Fairer European Union

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