(U.K.) It all began in 1778 and now Debenhams has named 22 of the 50 stores it plans to close as part of a p lan by new owners to revive the department store chain: The retailer says the store closures will start next year and 1,200 staff will be affected by the first phase after lenders took control by providing £200- million In funding #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – Apr.28: Stores in Canterbury, Guildford, Wolverhampton and Kirkcaldy are among those earmarked for closure: Earlier this month lenders to Debenhams took control in a deal which wiped out the investments of shareholders BBC News reported.

Once the 50 store closures are complete Debenhams will have around 116 stores in the UK: Debenhams also reported results for the 26 weeks to March. Sales at its UK stores fell 7.4%, which it blamed on fewer shoppers heading to the High Street.

Debenhams stores to close in 2020

Source: Debenhams

Debenhams is the UK’s biggest department store chain and its origins can be traced back to 1778 and a drapers store in central London: However, industry experts said the retailer expanded the number of its stores at the wrong time – in the 2000s when customers were switching to online sales…..The expansion left the company with debts and expensive leases……………The firm’s financial situation deteriorated and last month Debenhams agreed a deal with its lenders, who provided £200m of fresh funding………Those lenders then took control of Debenhams earlier this month by buying it out of administration………..That deal wiped out the investments of shareholders, including the stake of Mike Ashley, the founder of Sports Direct…………Mr Ashley had wanted to buy Debenhams and become chief executive, but his approaches were turned down.

What does Debenhams say about its other stores?

The new owners have now announced their store closure programme under a process known as a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA), which also allows them to renegotiate rents at stores that remain open.

Of the department stores which remain open, 39 will stick to their current rental rates for the duration of their leases.

For the other stores the company is aiming to secure rental reductions of between 25% and 50%.

Terry Duddy, Debenhams executive chairman, said: “Debenhams has a clear strategy and a bright future, but in order for the business to prosper, we need to restructure the group’s store portfolio and its balance sheet, which are not appropriate for today’s much changed retail environment.

“Our priority is to save as many stores and as many jobs as we can, while making the business fit for the future.”

Debenhams is just one of many High Street chains to run into trouble in recent years.

The collapse of BHS in 2016 resulted in more than 160 stores closing, and House of Fraser has been shutting stores after being bought out of administration last year.

Marks and Spencer is in the process of closing 100 stores by 2020.

Debenhams opening in WolverhamptonCrowds gathered in October 2017 when Debenhams opened in Wolverhampton’s Mander Centre

Which places have been hit hardest by the cuts?

In October 2017, locals in Wolverhampton queued up for Debenhams’ grand opening in their city’s refurbished Mander shopping centre.

Today, less than 18 months later, it was on the list of stores to shut by 2020.

Debenhams became a replacement anchor tenant for the Mander Centre following BHS’ demise. Now it will shut up shop too.

Debenhams’ arrival at the refurbished shopping centre came a decade after it set its sights on the West Midlands city.

An attempt in 2006 to set up in a £300m mall was eventually sunk by the global financial crisis.

For Wolverhampton it is another blow for a city centre that has been at the mercy of changes in retail all over the country, with the loss of the likes of BHS and Woolworths.

Will Debenhams’ landlords fight back?

Rob Young, business reporter

The plan to shut 22 stores and reduce the rent bill on dozens more is likely to prove contentious.

Many of those stores could see reductions of 50% – that will be extremely painful for landlords.

They are being asked to back the move. But we can expect many of them to come out fighting. After a series of these restructurings on the high street, commercial landlords have had enough.

The use of so-called company voluntary arrangements is increasingly controversial.

Landlords argue other creditors do not take their fair share of the pain. Three-quarters of the retailer’s creditors will have to approve the plan.

People close to the process say it’s by no means a done deal.

#AceFinanceDesk report …………..Published: April.28: 2019:

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(WASHINGTON) JUST IN: US Economy Grows by 3.2% in the first quarter and posted best growth in four years according Bureau of Economic Analysis said in its initial read of the economy Trump advisor Kevin Hassett says GDP growth ‘absolutely’ sustainable this year, could go higher #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – Apr.26: The U.S. economy grew at a faster pace than expected in the first quarter and posted its best growth to start a year in four years: Q1/ GDP expanded by 3.2% in the first quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis said in its initial read of the economy for that period: Economists polled by Dow Jones expected the U.S. economy increased by 2.5% in the first quarter. It was the first time since 2015 that first-quarter GDP topped 3%.

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“The upside beat was helped by net trade (exports jumped while imports contracted sharply) and inventories which combined contributed almost 170 bps of the rise,” wrote Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group. “Personal spending though, the biggest component was up just 1.2%, two tenths more than expected as an increase in spending on services and nondurable goods offset a decline in spending on durable goods.”

Exports rose 3.7% in the first quarter, while imports decreased by 3.7%. Economic growth also got a lift from strong investments in intellectual property products. Those investments expanded by 8.6%………………..Disposable personal income increased by 3%, while prices increased by 1.3% when excluding food and energy. Overall prices climbed by 0.8% in the first quarter.

Friday’s data was the first look at how the economy fared during the longest government shutdown in history: The federal government ceased operations for 35 days between late December and Jan. 25 amid a standoff between the Trump administration and congressional leaders over funding for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Investors were closely watching out for the report as they looked for more confirmation that a recession may not be in the cards over the short term:

The report “helps offset fears of slowing global growth,” said Alec Young, managing director of global market research at FTSE Russell: “At a time of lingering U.S.-Chinese trade uncertainty and weak economic data everywhere from Germany to Korea to Japan, strong U.S. data acts as an insurance policy against further global economic weakness. And with inflation still subdued, it’s too early to start worrying about Fed rate hikes again.”

Trump advisor Kevin Hassett says 3.2% GDP growth ‘absolutely’ sustainable this year, could go higher: “This is really blockbuster news and suggests that the risks on the upside are very high for GDP this year,” says Kevin Hassett, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.

#AceFinanceDesk report ………..Published: April.26: 2019:

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(TEHRAN, Iran.) JUST IN: Stockmarket reaches an all time high on Sunday as TEDPIX crossed the 195,000 points according to Financial Tribune reported #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AFNews – Apr.14: Tehran Stock Market Scales New Highs: Stocks hit all-time closing highs on Sunday encouraged by the previous day’s landmark point when the benchmark index TEDPIX crossed the 195,000 points after more than six months: TEDPIX rose 0.45% helping the market end the second day of the week on a high note.

The Tehran market opened Sunday trading when many investors were expecting a correction as a selloff by shareholders: This mindset caused the market to shed more than 1,200 points in early trading but fundamental factors supporting the market helped reverse the bearish trend later in the day.

#AceFinanceDesk report ……………financialtribune.com/node/97449 https://t.me/fintribune/4857

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(SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.) JUST IN: Johnson Publishing, the company formerly behind magazines such as Ebony and Jet, has filed for bankruptcy: The petition was filed Tuesday afternoon in US Bankruptcy Court in Chicago #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – Apr.11: Johnson Publishing Company currently consists of an extensive archive of about 4 million images and 10,000 video assets from its former magazines and a cosmetics business, Fashion Fair Cosmetics: The company’s founder, Johnson H. Johnson, died in 2005. ……………..Johnson Publishing Company previously described itself as the world’s largest African-American-owned and -operated publishing company.

In 2016, it sold Ebony and Jet, its two hallmark magazines and stalwarts within the black community, to Clear View Group: Jet magazine stopped publishing a print edition in June 2014, opting to release only a digital version.

#AceFinanceDesk report …………CNN.Com/ Published:

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(WASHINGTON) US Wants to put tariffs on $11.2 billion worth of EU goods — from airplanes to Gouda ch eese and olives — to offset what it says are unfair European subsidies for plane maker Airbus after they had in 2004 complained to the WTO, which sets the rules for trade and settles disputes just as the EU e conomy is slowing sharply #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – Apr.10: While the size of the tariffs is small compared with the hundreds of billions the U.S. and China are taxing in their trade war, it suggests a breakdown in talks with the European Union over trade at a time when the economy is already slowing sharply: The U.S. and EU have been negotiating since last year about how to avoid tariffs that President Donald Trump has wanted to impose to reduce a trade deficit with countries like Germany……………..But experts warn that tariffs lead to higher consumer prices in countries that impose them and can hurt overall economic growth……………..The U.S. Trade Representative’s office released late Monday a list of EU products it would tax in anticipation of a ruling by the World Trade Organization this summer.

The U.S. had in 2004 complained to the WTO, which sets the rules for trade and settles disputes, that the EU was providing unfair support to Airbus: The WTO ruled in May last year that the EU had in fact provided some illegal subsidies to Airbus, hurting U.S. manufacturer Boeing.

The U.S. expects the WTO will say this summer that it can take countermeasures to offset the EU subsidies. It will now start a consultation with industry representatives on the list of EU goods it wants to tax so that it can have a ready list: “ The EU has taken advantage of the U.S. on trade for many years…………It will soon stop!” Trump tweeted Tuesday.

The U.S. move, while following international trade rules, appears to reflect broader U.S. frustration at the slow pace of talks on trade with the EU: Trump in June last year imposed tariffs of 25% on steel imports and 10% on imported aluminum from the EU in a move that seems aimed at helping the U.S. industry but has also raised costs for many businesses that import these products.

The EU responded with tariffs on about 2.8 billion euros’ worth ($3.4 billion) of U.S. steel, agricultural and other products, from Harley Davidson bikes to orange juice: The U.S. and EU have since July been in talks to scale back the tariffs, with Trump holding out the bigger threat of slapping tariffs on European cars — a huge industry in the region — should the negotiations not yield a result. U.S. officials have repeatedly expressed frustration at the slow pace of the talks.

The EU responded Tuesday to the U.S.’s latest call for new tariffs by noting that it was based on its own estimate, not anything it had been awarded by the WTO. It also said the EU is preparing its own retaliation based on a separate WTO case, in which U.S.-based Boeing was found to have received illegal support from the state of Washington. It did not say how big that retaliation might be.

The U.S. attempt to tax Airbus jets comes just as Boeing is facing broad challenges over the global grounding of its 737 Max airliners amid concerns that technical problems could have contributed to two crashes in five months: Tariffs on European airplanes could in theory help Boeing and hurt Airbus, whose shares were down 1.7% on Tuesday on a day when stock markets were mostly higher.

The U.S. announcement also comes as China’s prime minister meets top European Union officials to discuss thorny issues, including trade.

#AceFinanceDesk report ………………..USA – Voice of America http://bit.ly/2Vw9a8Y – via Ace Newsroom Live http://bit.ly/2Io2YMK

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(PARIS, France.) Societe Generale plans to cut 1,600 jobs, mainly at its corporate and investment banking ar m, in an attempt to boost profits after a poor performance last year, France’s third-largest bank sa id on Tuesday #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AFNews – Apr.10: Societe Generale plans to cut 1,600 jobs, mainly at its corporate and investment banking arm, in an attempt to boost profits after a poor performance last year, France’s third-largest bank said on Tuesday.

Reuters: Top News https://reut.rs/2P6KfGV – Via Ace Newsroom Live https://t.me/acenewsdaily/60957

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(BRUSSELS) EU Growth Slowing as finance ministers and central bank governors of the Group of 20 (G20) major economies are to meet in Washington on April 11-12 to discuss the main challenges to the world economy #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – Apr.09: The European Union will tell a meeting of finance leaders from the world’s 20 biggest economies next week that they must all tackle the root causes of global trade tensions because they are putting global growth at risk, an EU document showed: “Current trade tensions put the ongoing expansion at risk and are therefore a source of concern,” a joint position paper agreed by EU finance ministers on Saturday said.

The United States and China are engaged in intense negotiations to end a months-long trade war that has rattled global markets: Hopes of a resolution soared after both sides expressed optimism following talks in Beijing last week.

The International Monetary Fund said in its April World Economic Outlook this week that an escalation of the U.S.-China trade war could reduce U.S. growth by up to 0.6 percent and China’s by up to 1.5 percent: “The international community has to tackle the root causes of the ongoing trade tensions by ensuring a level playing field for open and free trade in goods and services, investment and intellectual property rights,” the joint EU statement said………….The United States is also in talks with the European Union on a trade deal after imposing tariffs on European steel and aluminum last year and threatening to impose tariffs on European cars.

“We reaffirm our commitment to keep the global economy open as well as rules-based, to support an inclusive multilateral trading system with the World Trade Organization (WTO) at its center and to keep international economic cooperation on track,” the EU said: Washington has reservations about the WTO which it believes is unable to tackle modern trade challenges and issues such as intellectual property theft………………The EU believes the WTO is the best way to deal with trade disputes but that it should be reformed to address U.S. and its own concerns.

#AceFinanceDesk report ………..Reuters.Com/ Reporting by Jan Strupczewski; Editing by Mark Potter

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(TOKYO, Japan.) Toyota Motor Corp: Will Share 23,740 Hybrid Vehicle Patents For Free and offer to supply competitors with components including motors, power converters and batteries used in its lower-emissions vehicles… as global industry shifts towards fully electric cars and even more sales #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – Apr.09: The pledge by one of the world’s biggest automakers to share its closely guarded patents, the second time it has opened up a technology, is aimed at driving industry uptake of hybrids and fending off the challenge of all-battery electric vehicles (EVs): Toyota said it would grant licenses on nearly 24,000 patents on technologies used in its Prius, the world’s first mass-produced “green” car, and offer to supply competitors with components including motors, power converters and batteries used in its lower-emissions vehicles… Reuters reported.
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Toyota’s move to unlock its patents underlines its belief that hybrids are an effective alternative to all-battery EVs, given a fuel efficiency roughly double that of gasoline cars, lower cost and that they do not need charging infrastructure: Toyota vehicles account for more than 80 percent of the global hybrid vehicle market. “Toyota has realised that they made a mistake by protecting their hybrid technology for years………..This prevented diffusion” said Janet Lewis, head of Asia transportation research at Macquarie Securities.

“Toyota on its own can’t get key technology accepted, but if other companies use it, that offers the best chance of expansion,” she added: The article notes statistics from LMC Automotive that hybrid vehicles “account for around 3 percent of all vehicles sold globally, eclipsing the roughly 1.5 percent share of all-battery EVs.” Shigeki Terashi, Executive Vice President of Toyota, said, “we believe that now is the time for cooperation.”

#AceFinanceDesk report …………….Published: April.09: 2019:

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JUST IN: Russia came ahead of the U.S. in terms of supplying liquefied natural gas (LNG) to European and Asian markets in 2018, the International Group of Liquefied Natural Gas Importers (GIIGNL) said on Monday in its annual report according to SputnikInt – @AceFinanceNews

#AFNEWS – Apr.01: Russia came ahead of the United States in terms of supplying liquefied natural gas (LNG) to European and Asian markets in 2018, the International Group of Liquefied Natural Gas Importers (GIIGNL) said on Monday in its annual report.

LNG exports from Russia to Europe amounted to 4.43 million tonnes, while exports from the United States to Europe stood at 2.7 million tonnes, according to the non-profit group, whose aim is to promote the development of LNG-related activities, including purchasing and importing.
Russia was also ahead of the United States in Asia’s LNG market last year — Russian imported 12.86 tonnes of LNG to Asia, while the United States imported 10.73 million tonnes. Australia, Qatar and Malaysia were the top three exporters of LNG to Asia with 66.54 million, 56.78 million and 24.66 million tonnes, respectively.”
#AceTelegramDesk report ………Published: April 01, 2019 at 06:53AM: Read More: https://t.me/acenewsdaily/54092

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(USA) ISM REPORT: U.S. manufacturing activity rebounded a bit more than expected in March, according to an industry report released on Monday, as production, new orders and hiring all picked up as Apple shares turn lower in early trading after cutting iPhone prices in China by nearly 6% #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – Apr.01: The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said its index of national factory activity rose to 55.3 from 54.2 in February, which had marked the lowest level since November 2016. The reading was slightly above expectations of 54.5 from a Reuters poll of 69 economists.

A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the manufacturing sector and a reading below 50 indicates contraction.

The employment index rose to 57.5 from 52.3 a month earlier. Expectations called for a reading of 52.4.

The new orders index rose to 57.4 from 55.5 in February. The prices paid index rose to 54.3, indicating that prices producers are paying for materials rose for the first time since December.

Production also picked up, with that index at ticking up to 55.8 from 54.8 the month before.

Construction spending hits 9-month high

U.S. construction spending increased for a third straight month in February, boosted by gains in both private and public construction projects, offering some good news on the economy following a string of weak reports.

The Commerce Department said on Monday construction spending rose 1.0 percent to a nine-month high after an upwardly revised 2.5 percent surge in January.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast construction spending falling 0.2 percent in February after a previously reported 1.3 percent jump in January.

Construction spending increased 1.1 percent on a year-on-year basis in February.

In February, spending on private construction projects rose 0.2 percent after vaulting 1.5 percent in January. Investment in private residential projects increased 0.7 percent, rising for a third straight month.

The strong gains are despite a sluggish housing market, which has been held back by higher mortgage rates, expensive building materials as well as land and labor shortages. But there are signs of green shoots emerging in the housing market as mortgage rates have declined from last year’s lofty levels.

Spending on private nonresidential structures, which includes manufacturing and power plants, fell 0.5 percent in February after jumping 1.1 percent in January.

Investment in public construction projects rose 3.6 percent in February after accelerating 5.7 percent in the prior month.

Spending on federal government construction projects rose 0.9 percent to the highest level since October 2017, after soaring 5.7 percent in January.

Investment in state and local government construction projects rose 3.8 percent after surging 5.7 in January.

ISM manufacturing index hits 55.3 in March, construction spending up 1% in February https://t.co/0COWy6gvpZ— CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) April 1, 2019 via Ace Newsroom Live http://bitly.com/2CMyuQX

Apple shares turn lower in early trading after cutting iPhone prices in China by nearly 6% https://t.co/yKCRlMyjET pic.twitter.com/9zSJsOsUGA— CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) April 1, 2019 via Ace Newsroom Live http://bitly.com/2uFINBE

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