Stories about market

Osama’s death will not stop the dollar’s decline

The news of Osama Bin Laden’s death will open new dimensions for the US dollar but only for a short while. The reason I say this is because while global financial markets are terming the news of Bin Laden’s as good news for the currency, the dollar will continue to stay weak in 2011. Stock markets will rally in the US, Europe and Asia, but these efforts will all be short-lived and the status of the dollar will go back to its original position. Analyses of the past The bull market for the US dollar is like an invisible man. An important aspect ...

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Why I want an iPad 2!

Since the launch of the iPad last year, various tablets have been released on the market which are more powerful than the original. But Apple was not going to sit back and watch the competition succeed. They have announced the iPad 2 – the new improved version of the revolutionary iPad. Size and weight The iPad 2 is 80 grams lighter and 33 per cent thinner than the original. So if your reason for not buying the original tablet was its size and weight, you should seriously consider the iPad 2. Aesthetics The device’s edges have also been reshaped and look much sleeker. ...

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Will the Nokia-Microsoft partnership work?

For 10 years Nokia dominated the smartphone industry. But in the fourth quarter of 2010, Android overtook Symbian as the most used smartphone operating system (OS) for the first time. This may not come as a shock but if you look back a year, you’ll notice that at the end of 2009 Nokia had 44 per cent of the market share while Android had a mere 9 per cent. How did Nokia react to this? Simple: they killed Symbian. The start of Symbian’s troubles Since the iPhone brought about the touch revolution, Symbian looked like it was in trouble. Nokia first embraced this fact ...

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Money 101: Getting down to business

If I was to do a spot poll and ask a hundred odd people whether they wanted to work for themselves or someone else, 95 per cent would choose being their own boss over job security and the luxury of forgetting about work when the clock strikes 6pm. But for every person who dreams of owning a quaint bookshop, a café by the sea or any other small scale business there are 10 others who will never get around to starting it up. Small businesses are the backbone of any economic system, often owned and managed by families, they continue ...

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Fighting over Rs130

On a recent visit to a market in Gilgit, I witnessed two men beating up a vendor. When I inquired about the cause of the fight, I was told it was a result of bitter haggling over the price of a jacket. The two men had offered Rs100 for a jacket while the vendor insisted that he couldn’t give it for less than Rs230. The mere difference of Rs130 triggered a verbal debate, which then culminated in violence. While many may find this shocking, I thought the incident wasn’t unusual. We have come across similar cases of a much more serious ...

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Chinese cell phones: The pros and cons of buying cheap

Whether we like the idea or not almost all appliances we use are made in China. The country is currently the world’s manufacturing base, churning out cheap products ranging from common pins to automobiles. They may be cheap but sometimes these products can be of very good quality. But not often. Normally, Chinese goods are what we like to call, expendable. The term “China” or “Chinese” has almost become interchangeable with third-rate – especially in the cellphone market.  So, are fake “Chinese” cellphones as good as the real thing? Trust me, I am uniquely qualified to answer this question.  I have lost ...

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Why our business grads are unprepared for the real world

It came as a shock to me when I read somewhere that Tokyo city alone had over 200 universities. If we check the list of the most populous cities in the world, Karachi is included in the top five, while Tokyo is not even in the top 10. Considering the huge difference in the population and education facilities, no wonder we have so many fake graduates ruling us. When deciding to apply for graduate and post graduate programs, the youth find themselves facing extremely limited choices. If we consider business schools only, the top business school in Karachi doesn’t really ...

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The Microsoft phone: Just not good enough?

Is the new Microsoft phone going to take over the market? Is it going to dominate the Apple iPhone and Android? Or maybe stop Blackberry OS 6 from taking over? Can Microsoft rule the industry once again? These are all the questions people are asking about the new mobile platform announced by Microsoft. The Windows Phone 7 will be used by manufacturers such as HTC, LG, Dell and Samsung in their new devices. Let’s try to answer a few of these questions by looking at some of the features this newest mobile platform has to offer. Homescreen Microsoft has made a very clean ...

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So your best friend just lost his job?

The global economy is in shambles. For those who have any doubts I recommend checking out the unemployment rate in the country and comparing it to last year’s. A large local media organisation recently fired a crop of employees. Luckily, as far as I know none of my friends were axed. None of them make enough money to warrant being firing – talk about market efficiency. But the incident got me thinking – how do you interact with people who have recently lost their jobs? There is no play book, so I have come up with several courses of ...

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The most expensive Ramazan ever

The holy month of Ramazan has arrived with pre-dawn prayers, iftar’s and frantic efforts to make up for every sin committed during the rest of the year. For most of us, religious fervor is accompanied with more worldly pleasures like delicious parathas, traditional khajla and pheni to be devoured at sehri and the innumerable delights of Iftar. Would Ramazan even feel like Ramazan if not for the daily dose of fruit chat and the onion and potato pakoras and samosas? Traditional Ramazan fare has long fed the greed of hoarders and profiteers. But this year man made shortages have been eclipsed  by a natural destruction of an unbelievable ...

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