Global stocks mostly higher…Heineken to cut staff 10%
BEIJING (AP) – Global stock markets are mostly higher today after Wall Street broke a six-day winning streak. In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London rose 0.3 and the CAC 40 in Paris added 0.1%. The Dax in Frankfurt slipped 0.3%. In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index closed 1.4% higher, while the Nikkei added 0.2%. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong gained 1.9% and the Kospi in Seoul gained 0.5%. U.S. futures are higher.
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – San Francisco-based business software maker Salesforce says it will let most of its employees work remotely even after the pandemic, at least for part of the week. Other tech companies, including Facebook and Twitter, have made similar announcements. Salesforce, which is the city’s largest private employer, said Tuesday that it will let most of its employers continue to work from home for part or all of the week. Some workers whose jobs require them to be in a physical office will continue to go in to work. Salesforce said it made the decision based on feedback from employees.
UNDATED (AP) – Quaker Oats says it’s renaming its Aunt Jemima brand pancake mix and syrup. The products will continue to be sold until June and the new packaging will be changed over to Pearl Milling Company. Quaker Oats announced last June that it would retire the Aunt Jemima brand, saying the character’s origins are “based on a racial stereotype.” The smiling Aunt Jemima logo was inspired by the 19th century “mammy” minstrel character. Pearl Milling Company was founded in Missouri in 1888 and was the originator of self-rising pancake mix.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) – Dutch beer brewer Heineken says it plans to cut 8,000 staff, nearly 10% of its global workforce, as part of a cost-cutting reorganization. The decision comes after a pandemic-dominated year that saw it sink to a net loss of 204 million euros ($248 million). Heineken says it sold 8% less beer than in 2019 as bars and pubs around the world closed during coronavirus lockdowns. Revenue fell nearly 17% to 23.8 billion euros. CEO Dolf van den Brink describes 2020 as “a year of unprecedented disruption and transition” for the brewer.
TOKYO (AP) – Toyota has reported a 50% jump in its October to December profit, underlining a solid recovery at the Japanese automaker from the damage of the coronavirus pandemic. Toyota Motor Corp. says its fiscal third quarter profit totaled $8 billion. Although business operations are still suffering because of the pandemic, cost cuts and other efforts including online marketing campaigns helped boost its bottom line. Toyota expects to sell 7.6 million vehicles globally for the fiscal year through March. That’s down from nearly 9 million vehicles the previous fiscal year, but better than the earlier forecast for 7.5 million vehicles.