Dhaka, Jun 16 (UNB)-Walkar, a footwear brand of RFL Group, opened its 50th outlet in Tangail district recently.
Numerous stylish shoes including casual shoes, kid’s shoes, sports shoes and sandals for all classes of people are available at the outlet.
RN Paul, Managing Director of RFL Group, inaugurated the outlet on old jail road of Sadar upazila.
Addressing the inauguration program, RN Paul said “The main feature of Walkar is to give the highest quality products for the customers. We are trying to bring the different kinds of footwear considering the demand of all classes of people. As part of the initiative, we are opening new outlets across the country.”
Kamrul Hasan, Chief Operating Officer, Mainul Hasasn, Brand Manager and Shahjahan Sanny, Retail Manager of Walkar Footwear were present at the programme among others.
San Francisco, Jun 16 (AP/UNB) — A glitch stalled checkout lines at Target stores worldwide Saturday, exasperating shoppers and potentially eating into sales at a prime time for retailers, the day before Father's Day.
The roughly two-hour outage periodically prevented Target's cashiers from scanning merchandise or processing transactions as long lines formed in some stores. Self-checkout registers, usually the speediest of options, also weren't working at times.
Target temporarily closed some of its stores, including one in San Francisco, rather than risk aggravating shoppers.
"Our technology team worked quickly to identify and fix the issue, and we apologize for the inconvenience and frustration this caused for our guests," Target said in a Saturday statement.
Before the company figured out was wrong, a Target employee was warning customers that they might not be able to check out as they entered a San Francisco store early Saturday afternoon. Sales were being completed after intermittent delays during the half hour an AP reporter observed the lines at the store.
But some shoppers posting on their Twitter accounts Saturday painted a different picture as they vented about excruciatingly long lines but expressed sympathy for the Target employees trying to cope with the situation.
The meltdown hit Target at the worst time for a mass-market merchant, given Saturdays are typically one of the busiest shopping days of the week.
Target has been vexed by technology before, most notably in 2013 when malware installed in its checkout system resulted in a data heist that exposed personal information in more than 40 million credit and debit card accounts. That debacle triggered lawsuits and eventually led to the departure of its CEO, Gregg Steinhafel.
The Minneapolis company said customers caught in up the checkout slowdown have no reason to worry.
"After an initial but thorough review, we can confirm that this was not a data breach or security-related issue, and no guest information was compromised at any time," Target said.
Seoul, Jun 15 (AP/UNB) — The blasts detonated far from the bustling megacities of Asia, but the attack this week on two tankers in the strategic Strait of Hormuz hits at the heart of the region's oil import-dependent economies.
While the violence only directly jolted two countries in the region — one of the targeted ships was operated by a Tokyo-based company, a nearby South Korean-operated vessel helped rescue sailors — it will unnerve major economies throughout Asia.
Officials, analysts and media commentators on Friday hammered home the importance of the Strait of Hormuz for Asia, calling it a crucial lifeline, and there was deep interest in more details about the still-sketchy attack and what the United States and Iran would do in the aftermath.
In the end, whether Asia shrugs it off, as some analysts predict, or its economies shudder as a result, the attack highlights the widespread worries over an extreme reliance on a single strip of water for the oil that fuels much of the region's shared progress.
Here is a look at how Asia is handling rising tensions in a faraway but economically crucial area, compiled by AP reporters from around the world:
WHY ASIA WORRIES
The oil, of course.
Japan, South Korea and China don't have enough of it; the Middle East does, and much of it flows through the narrow Strait of Hormuz.
This could make Asia vulnerable to supply disruptions from U.S.-Iran tensions or violence in the strait.
The attack comes months after Iran threatened to shut down the strait to retaliate against U.S. economic sanctions, which tightened in April when the Trump administration decided to end sanctions exemptions for the five biggest importers of Iranian oil, which included China and U.S. allies South Korea and Japan.
Japan is the world's fourth-largest consumer of oil — after the United States, China and India — and relies on the Middle East for 80% of its crude oil supply. The 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster led to a dramatic reduction in Japanese nuclear power generation and increased imports of natural gas, crude oil, fuel oil and coal.
In an effort to comply with Washington, Japan says it no longer imports oil from Iran. Officials also say Japanese oil companies are abiding by the embargo because they don't want to be sanctioned. But Japan still gets oil from other Middle East nations using the Strait of Hormuz for transport.
South Korea, the world's fifth largest importer of crude oil, also depends on the Middle East for the vast majority of its supplies.
Last month, South Korea halted its Iranian oil imports as its waivers from U.S. sanctions on Teheran expired, and it has reportedly tried to increase oil imports from other countries such as Qatar and the United States.
China, the world's largest importer of Iranian oil, "understands its growth model is vulnerable to a lack of energy sovereignty," according to market analyst Kyle Rodda of IG, an online trading provider, and has been working over the last several years to diversify its suppliers. That includes looking to Southeast Asia and, increasingly, some oil-producing nations in Africa.
THE GEOGRAPHY AND THE POLITICS
Asia and the Middle East are linked by a flow of oil, much of it coming by sea and dependent on the Strait of Hormuz, which is the passage between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman.
Iran threatened to close the strait in April. It also appears poised to break a 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, an accord that U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from last year. The deal saw Tehran agree to limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of crippling sanctions.
For both Japan and South Korea, there is extreme political unease to go along with the economic worries stirred by the violence in the strait.
Both nations want to nurture their relationship with Washington, a major trading partner and military protector. But they also need to keep their economies humming, which requires an easing of tension between Washington and Tehran.
Japan's conservative prime minister, Shinzo Abe, was in Tehran, looking to do just that, when the attack happened.
His limitations in settling the simmering animosity, however, were highlighted by both the timing of the attack and a comment by Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who told Abe that he had nothing to say to Trump.
In Japan, the world's third largest economy, the tanker attack was front-page news.
The Nikkei newspaper, Japan's major business daily, said that if mines are planted in the Strait of Hormuz, "oil trade will be paralyzed." The Tokyo Shimbun newspaper called the Strait of Hormuz Japan's "lifeline."
Although the Japanese economy and industry minister has said there will be no immediate effect on stable energy supplies, the Tokyo Shimbun noted "a possibility that Japanese people's lives will be affected."
South Korea, worried about Middle East instability, has worked to diversify its crude sources since the energy crises of the 1970s and 1980s.
Analysts said it's highly unlikely that Iran would follow through on its threat to close the strait. That's because a closure could also disrupt Iran's exports to China, which has been working with Russia to build pipelines and other infrastructure that would transport oil and gas into China.
For Japan, the attack in the Strait of Hormuz does not represent an imminent threat to Tokyo's oil supply, said Paul Sheldon, chief geopolitical adviser at S&P Global Platts Analytics.
"Our sense is that it's not a crisis yet," he said of the tensions.
Seoul, meanwhile, will likely be able to withstand a modest jump in oil prices unless there's a full-blown military confrontation, Seo Sang-young, an analyst from Seoul-based Kiwoom Securities, said.
"The rise in crude prices could hurt areas like the airlines, chemicals and shipping, but it could also actually benefit some businesses, such as energy companies (including refineries) that produce and export fuel products like gasoline," said Seo, pointing to the diversity of South Korea's industrial lineup. South Korea's shipbuilding industry could also benefit as the rise in oil prices could further boost the growing demand for liquefied natural gas, or LNG, which means more orders for giant tankers that transport such gas.
Tokyo, June 14 (AP/UNB) — Asian shares were mixed Friday as investors weighed a variety of factors, including suspected attacks on two oil tankers in the strategic Strait of Hormuz and lingering worries about trade conflict between the U.S. and China.
Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 edged up 0.2% to 21,076.11 in morning trading. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 recouped earlier losses to be little changed at 6,543.10. South Korea's Kospi lost nearly 0.2% to 2,099.49. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was little changed but inched down less than 0.1% to 27,294.71. The Shanghai Composite was also little changed but a tad higher at 2,910.74.
Gains in energy and internet companies helped drive stocks broadly higher on Wall Street overnight, snapping a two-day losing streak for the market in an otherwise choppy week of trading.
Investors have been searching for direction as they cautiously await any new developments on the global trade war between the U.S. and China. Any continued escalations could crimp global economic growth and halt what is poised to be the longest economic expansion in U.S. history.
The market is also looking ahead to next week's meeting of policyholders of the U.S. Federal Reserve. Last week, Fed Chair Jerome Powell set off a market rally after he signaled that the central bank is willing to cut interest rates to help stabilize the economy if the trade war between Washington and Beijing starts to crimp growth.
The S&P 500 index rose 11.80 points, or 0.4%, to 2,891.64. The benchmark index has been seesawing this week, opening strong on Monday, and then falling for two straight days before reversing course again on Thursday. The uneven week follows the index's best week of 2019.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 101.94 points, or 0.4%, to 26,106.77. The Nasdaq composite added 44.41 points, or 0.6%, to 7,837.13. The Russell 2000 index of small company stocks climbed 16.01 points, or 1.1%, to 1,535.80.
The suspected attacks in the Strait of Hormuz come amid heightened tensions between the United States and Iran. One third of all oil traded by sea, which amounts to 20% of oil traded worldwide, passes through the strait. The U.S. blamed Iran in what it called a campaign of "escalating tensions" in a region crucial to global energy supplies.
Economists Nicholas Mapa and Prakash Sakpal said in their report for ING that the market tone for the day was "wait and watch."
"Setting the mixed tone for markets today, escalation of geopolitical tensions in the Gulf region counters the positive investor sentiment from rising expectations of the U.S. Fed easing," the report said.
Benchmark U.S. crude dipped 29 cents to $51.99. It rose 2.2% to settle at $52.28 a barrel Thursday. Brent crude oil, the international standard, fell 8 cents to $61.23 a barrel.
The dollar fell to 108.32 Japanese yen from 108.44 yen on Thursday. The euro weakened to $1.1278 from $1.1294.
Dhaka, June 12 (UNB) - A three-day long gold fair will be held at Dhaka’s Hotel InterContinental between June 23-25 following the government’s offer to legalize undeclared gold.
Bangladesh Jewellers Samity or Bajus General Secretary Dilip Kumar Agarwala announced it to the media at a discussion meeting at the Officers’ Club, Dhaka.
Dilip noted that earlier there were no rules and regulations relating to gold in the country. On behalf of Bajus, he thanked the government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for bringing in the legal framework within which they can now operate with a certain confidence.
“If the government supports us then we can have a positive role in the Gross Domestic Products (GDP) of the country’s economy. We want to build a modern jewellery institution to compete in international markets,” he also said.
“Fix duty on gold observing neighbouring countries,” he urged the government.
Dilip Kumar also added, “We will organise gold fair on June 23 to 25 in Dhaka. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal will inaugurate the fair. It will open from 10am to 5pm. Besides, the fair will be held on June 23 and 24 in divisional cities.”
“A vested quarter discouraged traders to attend the fair and said that if you attend it, you may face problems later. However, don’t be afraid. National Board of Revenue (NBR) has assured us that there will be no hassle. So I urge all gold traders to take part in the fair,” he also added.
However, in a notification on May 28, 2019, the NBR said that if any trader wants to disclose their undeclared stock of gold, they will have to pay Tk1,000 per bhori (each bhori or 11.664 grams.