Hungary Trends – The week in business and finance
Budapest, March 26 (MTI) – See below MTI’s main business and financial news from the previous week:
GROUPAMA COMPLETES SALE OF 3 PC OTP STAKE, RAISING HUF 64.4 BN
France’s Groupama sold 8,260,000 shares of OTP Bank, Hungary’s biggest commercial lender, in an institutional private placement. The sale of the 3 percent stake generated about 64.4 billion forints (EUR 207.5m). Groupama still holds about 5 percent of OTP.
MOL BOARD TO PROPOSE 8-FOR-1 STOCK SPLIT
The board of Hungarian oil and gas company MOL will propose an 8-for-1 stock split to shareholders at an annual general meeting on April 13, the AGM agenda showed. The effective date of the stock split would be September 1, 2017.
RICHTER BOARD PROPOSES HUF 106-PER-SHARE DIVIDEND
The board of Hungarian drugmaker Gedeon Richter will propose to shareholders payment of a HUF 106-per-share dividend on last year’s earnings at a general meeting on April 26, the AGM agenda showed. The dividend payment comes to about 19.8 billion forints (EUR 63.8m).
ZF HUNGARIA INVESTS HUF 31 BN TO BROADEN PRODUCT PALETTE
German-owned automotive industry supplier ZF Hungaria will invest 31 billion forints (EUR 99.9m) at its plant in Eger (N Hungary) to add eight-speed transmissions to the production line. The company was awarded a 6.7 billion forints (EUR 21.5m) government grant for the investment which will create 770 jobs.
HUNGARY GROSS WAGES CLIMB 10 PC IN JANUARY
The average gross wage in Hungary rose 10 percent year on year to 273,822 forint (EUR 882.497) in January, the Central Statistical Office said. Wages have been boosted by higher minimum wages as well as pay rises in the social services, healthcare and cultural sectors.
HUNGARY C/A SURPLUS CLIMBS TO EUR 5.524 BN IN 2016
Hungary’s current account surplus rose to 5.524 billion euros last year from 3.693 billion euros in 2015 on a bigger trade surplus, data released by the National Bank of Hungary showed. The capital account surplus narrowed to 569 million euros from 5.144 billion euros as EU transfers plunged to 1.058 billion euros from 5.273 billion euros.
BUDAPEST BANK AFTER-TAX PROFIT FALLS TO HUF 13 BN ON LOWER INTEREST REVENUE
After-tax profit of state-owned Budapest Bank fell 11 percent to 13.1 billion forints (EUR 42.2m) last year as interest revenue declined and the retail loan portfolio contracted, a bank official said. New outlays, to both retail and corporate clients, were up, while provisions for loan losses declined, said Viktor Toth, who heads the corporate division.
LAWMAKERS CUT HOME CONSTRUCTION RED TAPE FURTHER
Parliament approved legislation that broadens the scope of non-commercial properties that do not require permits to build or expand. At present, owners may build or add on to residential properties up to 300sqm by filing a “simple notification”. The law raises the threshold to properties over 300sqm.
NATIONAL COMPETITIVENESS COUNCIL HOLDS INAUGURAL MEETING
Hungary’s National Competitiveness Council, a body of business leaders and experts established to make recommendations to the government, held its inaugural meeting. Economy Minister Mihály Varga, who is also a member of the council, said the body had discussed ways to boost competitiveness in the short term.