The daily business briefing: February 13, 2017
Verizon brings back unlimited data, world stocks rise as "Trump trades" resume, and more
Verizon brings back unlimited data
Verizon will start selling unlimited wireless data plans again on Monday, reintroducing an option it discontinued in 2011. The move comes as Verizon fights back against rival carriers Sprint and T-Mobile U.S., which have been eroding Verizon's consumer growth with their own aggressive unlimited data plans. AT&T last year also started offering unlimited data to customers who also signed up for its DirecTV satellite service. Verizon's growth slowed in 2016, compared to the previous year.
World stocks rise as 'Trump trades' resume
Global stocks rose on Monday in a resumption of so-called "Trump trades" as investors bet that President Trump's promise to announce plans for tax cuts would give the economy and corporate profits a boost. European stocks rose for the fifth straight trading day, and Asian stocks hit one-and-a-half-year highs, following the lead of the main U.S. indexes, which set records Friday. "This is another sign that, for now, the Trump trade is still on," said Kathleen Brooks, research director at City Index in London. "It also suggests that even with the controversy Trump has caused since he took office, financial markets are still willing to give him the benefit of the doubt."
Samsung chief faces second questioning on South Korea scandal
Samsung chief Lee Jae-yong on Monday faced a second round of questions in connection with South Korea's political corruption scandal. Prosecutors are expected to make a decision on whether to file charges against Lee based on the meeting. Samsung is suspected of giving donations to non-profit foundations run by disgraced President Park Geun-hye's closest confidante in exchange for political favors. A court decided there was insufficient evidence to justify arresting Lee after he and other Samsung executives were questioned in January. "I will once again tell the truth," Lee said on Monday.
Swiss voters reject plan to end tax breaks
Swiss voters on Sunday rejected a proposal to end tax breaks for foreign companies. Proponents said the reforms were necessary to bring the country's practices in line with international standards. The government argued that it could keep corporate tax rates low enough to be competitive while eliminating special treatment for many multinational corporations. The plan was rejected by 59 percent of voters in the referendum, raising fears that key trading partners might retaliate if the country does not come up with a revised reform package quickly.
Anti-Trump protests break out in Mexico
Thousands of people in more than a dozen Mexican cities on Sunday protested against President Trump, criticizing the U.S. leader for insulting Mexican immigrants, threatening their economy, and accusing their own president, Enrique Pena Nieto, of failing to stand up to him. In an extraordinary show of unity, people from across the country turned out waving Mexican flags, carrying signs in English and Spanish, and hoisting pinatas resembling Trump bearing pro-Mexico slogans. "He's such a bad man and he shouldn't act the way he does," said one marcher, 62-year-old Jorge Ruiz.