Date
20 July 2018

Ko Tin-yau

Hong Kong Economic Journal columnist
  • NFC technology has been around for more than 10 years but Apple has only adopted it in the iPhone 6. Photo: CNSA

    Nifty new features don’t need the latest smartphones

    - Jul 21, 2016 6:22pm
    After a relatively quiet year, smartphones are back with a bang. Apple Pay debuted its Pokémon GO campaign in Hong Kong and Facebook launched its Mentions app that enables public figures to post updates, share photos...
  • Brexit has offered the best timing for Masayoshi Son to acquire the British technology giant ARM. Photo: Bloomberg

    Masayoshi Son shows business acumen in ARM deal

    - Jul 20, 2016 6:40pm
    George Soros and Jim Rogers are widely regarded as moguls in the market. My hero is Softbank founder Masayoshi Son. Son has made a great fortune from his investments in Yahoo, Alibaba and Supercell. And now, just...
  • Wah Ha Estate, which was converted from an old factory building in Chai Wan, will soon be home to over 200 families. Photo: Wikimedia

    Convert more industrial buildings into housing estates

    - Jul 19, 2016 6:07pm
    The Hong Kong government has launched a crackdown on illegal premises in industrial buildings. Some units in these buildings are being used as cafes, clubhouses, restaurants, mini-warehouses, and even as homes. It is estimated that around...
  • Still frame taken from video shows Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan addressing his people via Facetime video on Saturday during an attempted coup in the country. Photo: Reuters

    How Erdogan used FaceTime and social media to foil coup bid

    - Jul 18, 2016 4:46pm
    A failed military coup in Turkey has claimed the lives of at least 290 people and injured more than 1,400, in events that shocked the whole world. Straddling the edges of Eastern Europe and western Asia, the...
  • Uniqlo, operated by Japan's Fast Retailing, has resorted to discounts to boost sales, but that has taken a toll on its profits. Photo: HKEJ

    Fast Retailing faces a tough time from Chinese copycats

    - Jul 15, 2016 4:15pm
    After Texwinca Holdings (00321.HK), the owner of the Baleno brand, withdrew from Taiwan and sold its mainland unit, rival clothing manufacturer Esprit Holdings (03300.HK) also intends to cut back its China presence. The moves come as...
  • California Fitness had very limited cash flow each month, which was not enough to cover the rental costs of its outlets. Photo: Xinhua

    What really went wrong with California Fitness

    - Jul 15, 2016 1:02pm
    California Fitness, the largest gym operator in Hong Kong with about 100,000 members, has closed all its 12 outlets across the city. Many can’t understand why the company would suffer huge losses when it was earning a...
  • Chief Secretary Carrie Lam (right) considers The Link among three outsanding issues that need focus. Photo: HKEJ

    Leung’s criticism fails to slow Link REIT surge

    - Jul 13, 2016 4:46pm
    Investors are increasingly wary of political risks amid integration between Hong Kong and mainland markets. For example, Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying has taken on Link REIT (00823.HK). But the share price of the real estate investment...
  • Vanke chairman Wang Shi (L) and president Yu Liang (R) have been facing a challenge from major shareholders Baoneng and China Resources Group. Photo: HKEJ

    What Vanke can learn from Cristiano Ronaldo

    - Jul 12, 2016 7:05pm
    Euro 2016 is finally over. Portugal bagged the championship even though its captain, Cristiano Ronaldo, was stretchered out of the stadium in the first half due to a knee injury. Many people thought that Portugal would...
  • Nintendo's new Pokemon Go mobile game has vaulted to the top of free app rankings on iTunes Store and Google Play Store. Photo: Bloomberg

    Nintendo gets a boost from Pokémon Go

    - Jul 11, 2016 6:31pm
    Japan’s Nintendo has seen its shares surge further on Monday after a 9 percent gain last Friday on hopes that its earnings will get a major boost from its newly-launched Pokémon Go video game. Unlike its...
  • London's new mayor Sadiq Khan is already beginning to disappoint many of his supporters. Photo: Reuters

    New London mayor struggling to keep election promises

    - Jul 8, 2016 4:56pm
    London’s new mayor, Sadiq Khan, made three promises in his election campaign but he is having difficulty fulfilling them. Public transport in London is the world’s most expensive after a sharp rise in prices under his...
  • Italian soccer star Gianluigi Buffon is much better at defending the goal than protecting his investment. Photo: Reuters

    Investment lessons from Italian goalkeeper Buffon

    - Jul 6, 2016 6:05pm
    The 38-year-old Italian soccer star Gianluigi Buffon is regarded as one of the world’s best goalkeepers. However, it seems he is much better at defending the goal than protecting his investment. He made the same mistake...
  • Kuka is Germany’s largest robotics company and the fourth largest in the world. Photo: Bloomberg

    Kuka deal could be a game changer for Midea

    - Jul 5, 2016 6:41pm
    Following negotiations that lasted almost one year, Chinese home appliance manufacturer Midea Group Co. (000333.CN) has agreed to pay 1.2 billion euros (US$1.34 billion) for a 25.1 percent stake in German robot maker Kuka. The deal would make Midea...
  • If the housing market follows an L-shaped trajectory in the short and medium term, it would benefit all stakeholders. Such a trend would avoid the negative wealth effect of plunging home prices. Photo: HKEJ

    Why Hong Kong housing prices are holding firm

    - Jul 4, 2016 5:43pm
    Financial markets have been battered by Brexit but Hong Kong’s housing market appears fairly resilient. The Centa-City Leading Index (CCL) has been rising in the past five weeks and is only 12 percent off last year’s...
  • Investors Exchange offers an alternative trading system to surmount the problems encountered by ordinary investors in high-frequency trading. Photo: Reuters

    Flash Boy’s stock trading platform gains SEC nod

    - Jul 4, 2016 11:56am
    Investors Exchange (IEX) has won approval from the US Securities and Exchange Commission as a national securities exchange. The trading platform has a so-called speed bump of 350 microseconds, which is within the 1 millisecond now allowed...
  • Vanke's chairman Wang Shi (L) and its president Yu Liang are facing a revolt from the company's top two shareholders, Photo: HKEJ

    Why there’ll be no winners in the Vanke boardroom battle

    - Jun 29, 2016 4:57pm
    The battle for control of mainland property developer China Vanke has intensified. Major shareholder Baoneng Group has sought an extraordinary general meeting to oust Vanke’s founder and chairman Wang Shi, president Yu Liang and other board...
  • Southbound trading on Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect attracted 5.7 billion yuan (US$857.3 million) on June 24, a day after the Brexit vote. Photo: Internet

    Here’s why China is untouched by Brexit — for now

    - Jun 28, 2016 4:35pm
    China’s A shares defied a sell-off in global stock markets after Britain’s vote to leave the European Union. The Shanghai Composite Index, the Shenzhen Composite Index and the Growth Enterprise Market rose 1.45 percent, 2.27 percent...
  • The European and British flags fly together in London.  Pollsters failed to predict the victory of the "leave" camp. Photo: Bloomberg

    Why Brexit pollsters got it wrong

    - Jun 27, 2016 5:06pm
    Britain’s vote to leave the European Union has stunned the world.  The catastrophic result of the referendum shows that the traditional ways of communication are badly in need of reform. Brexit may even provide some lessons...
  • China Airlines has 50 percent share of the Taiwan market, but it lags far behind its rivals in revenue passenger miles. Photo: Wikimedia

    China Airlines faces turbulence as union goes on strike

    - Jun 24, 2016 4:01pm
    I’m a frequent visitor to Taiwan both for business trips and holidays. I’m so impressed with the good services of Taiwan’s China Airlines, particularly the fragrant Pu-erh tea the stewardesses serve on their flights. However, I...
  • Ilkka Paananen, Supercell co-founder and chief executive (right), is shown with Tencent president Martin Lau. Tencdent and its partners are paying US$8.6 billion for the Finnish mobile game company. Photo: supercell.com

    Tencent’s Supercell deal is not Lenovo’s IBM PC acquisition

    - Jun 23, 2016 5:58pm
    Tencent Holdings Ltd. (00700.HK) and its partners will pay US$8.6 billion for Finnish mobile game company Supercell. The deal will push the Chinese internet giant to the top ranks of the global online game market. However,...
  • Top Chinese official Zhang Dejiang (left) appears to be happy with the performance of  Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying (center). Photo: Xinhua

    Housing policy unlikely to change even if new CE takes over

    - Jun 22, 2016 5:48pm
    Hong Kong will elect its next chief executive in March next year, or just nine months from now. Many aspirants are already making their moves to be included in the race. Local residents care more about...

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