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The Week In Numbers: Keppel Corporation Sinks On Oil

The slump in demand for oil rigs crimped profits at Keppel Corporation (SGX: BN4). The conglomerate reported a 38% drop in top-line revenues and an even bigger fall in bottom-line profits. Looking into its crystal-ball, Keppel said the failure to reach an agreement at a meeting of oil producers in Doha would add to oil-price volatility.

Staying with black gold, a strike by oil workers in Kuwait earlier this week sent crude prices higher. They jumped more than 3%, after the industrial dispute nearly halved the country’s crude production. But a subsequent resolution to the dispute saw oil prices fall again. So the question is this: How is it possible that a country that only produces 2.8 million barrels a day have such a disproportionate impact on prices? Is the imbalance between supply and demand a lot less than we are being led to believe?

Singapore reported its worst Non-oil Domestic Export (NODX) figures for nearly three years. NODX fell 15.6%, which was worse than market forecasts. Experts reckon that the weak export numbers now could weigh on Singapore’s economic growth for the first three months of the year.

Meanwhile, the Singapore dollar shook off last week’s losses. The fall came on the back of the Monetary Authority Singapore’s decision to adopt a neutral stance for the local currency. But a subsequent reversal helped the Singapore dollar erase its earlier losses. Experts still expect it to weaken to S$1.40 at the end of the year though.

And finally, specially trained dogs to sniff out Class A drugs at a British airport appear to be better at detecting bangers than banned substances. Apparently it cost the Borders and Immigration Agency £1.25 million on new kennels and operating the unit. But the dogs have only helped to seize 46 kg of cigarettes and 181kig of meat.

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