Afternoon Coffee: Maersk CEO Calls for Consolidation, U.K. Trade Deficit Widens More Than Forecast


Maersk Line CEO Soren Skou called for consolidation in the container-shipping industry, citing “extremely weak” demand growth amid steadily increasing capacity. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Skou said sharing costs with partners would help keep freight rates low while allowing shipping companies to remain profitable.

New U.K. trade data stirred concerns the country’s economy is losing momentum. The goods trade deficit hit £11.1 billion ($17 billion) in August, compared with the  £9.9 billion pounds predicted by economists in a Bloomberg survey, and construction output fell 4.3%.

Companies expect to create new jobs in Vietnam, India and Mexico at a faster pace than almost anywhere else in the world, a survey from SCM World found. As the Financial Times reported, China will still claim the top spot for supply chain jobs created in emerging markets, but it will also reduce headcount significantly, while its neighbors and Mexico will cut comparatively few.

And finally, a figure to ponder over your Friday happy hour: SABMiller announced a cost-cutting plan that hopes to slash more than $1 billion by 2020, the Guardian reported. That’s more than double the brewer’s original target — $500 million by 2018 — but the accelerated savings plan may be necessary if SABMiller hopes to put off Anheuser-Busch InBev’s takeover approach.

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