A look at the global business stories.
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This is Business Live from BBC News
with Jamie Robertson
and Sally Bundock.
The boss of the world's biggest
mining firm Glencore has
said that 2017 was a stellar year
as a strenghtening global economy
boosts demand for raw
materials and commodities.
Live from London,
that's our top story
on Wednesday 21st February.
Glencore says profits for 2017 came
in at $14.76 billion -
that's 44% more than a year earlier.
Also in the programme....
South Korea signs trade deals
with central American nations.
Is this a back door
to trade war with the US?
That is how the market started off,
all of them down.
The Asian markets
were looking healthy earlier that
they are taking their cue from the
US, which had a bit of a
City life can be high on excitement
but low on community spirit.
We'll be meeting the man who's
putting the community
at the core of social networks.
Today we want to know:
Do get in touch.
Hello and welcome to Business Live.
The boss of the world's biggest
mining firm Glencore has said that
2017 was its best ever.
It follows strong results
from its rivals BHP
Billiton and Anglo-American
earlier this week.
All of them are benefitting
from the improved global economy.
Glencore says its adjusted profits
for 2017 came in at $14.76 billion
that's 44% more than a year earlier.
Shareholders will be pleased to see
that the company is recommending
that they get $2.9bn in dividends.
That's way above the minimum.
And rising commmodity prices
also helped net debt
31% to $10.67 billion.
That puts the company in a stronger
position for the future.
But challenges lie ahead.
The Democratic Republic of Congo
is key to Gelncore's position
as a key supplier of metals
to the electric car industry.
But the Government is looking
at new laws limiting how much
of profit these firm can take
out of the country.
With me is Paul Renken,
senior geologist and mining analyst
for VSA Capital Ltd.
Well done for getting here. Thank
you for being on the programme.
Glenn caught coming out with a very
familiar tune, it would seem. A bit
of a sweet spot for them at the
moment. Profits are up with a nice
increase in dividend and they are
reducing their debt.
What would you
make of their figures? They are
pretty good figures from what I was
able to review. A little bit better
than expected, I would say, at this
point in time. It was definitely the
right time to have curtailed some of
that production from Africa during
2015 and 2016 in order to make the
market balanced in those
Touching on the issue
of the Democratic Republic of Congo
and a new law which could affect
their business. Nothing was said
about that. I guess it is difficult
to comment when they do not know
what the Government may decide.
There have been comments by other
companies which also have issue with
the Government on this particular
situation about potential changes to
tax rules. That would be changes
which would be retro active, even to
agree the contracts that were signed
We are definitely
concerned. Give me an idea about how
cool this is to the mining industry
generally and Glenn caught in
Cobalt is something that
is crucial to the battery chemistry
is, particular with having a long,
You are talking about
electric vehicles there. The car
industry is so headed in that
direction. Do they see that as being
a really important part of business
in the next few years?
geared to their business in
particular for these battery
materials. It is not just cobalt,
within Glencore you see a lot of
zinc production and copper
production. All of this is part of
the electrical vehicle revolution.
We all know with commodity markets,
they are very cyclical, and good
times do come to an end. How long
are they in this window enables the
expansion profits going up question
does that mean now is the time for
them to really invest?
It is. If the
auto industry is right in its
prognosis as to how quickly
consumers will pick up electric
vehicles. That will depend on
individual nations, as well as
individual auto-makers as to how
well the vehicle fell.
very much indeed. Thank you for
coming in. That is my concern. Stuck
in the countryside in the UK with
nowhere to plug in. I do not have an
electric car yet though. Maybe you
could just stick it into your mains,
couldn't you? If you need one. You
have your own electricity supply, I
presume. If you are on a journey,
say going to Scotland or something.
Anyway, let's move on, shall we?
Let's take a look at some of
the other stories making the news.
Shares in the world's biggest
retailer Walmart has
seen its biggest one day fall
in more than 30 years.
Shares closed down more than 10%
at just over $94 after the company
reported disappointing online sales
figures for the Christmas period.
Walmart says it going to try
and drive more traffic to its main
website as it tries to fight off
competition from Amazon and others.
Sydney Airport says profits are up
as more people than ever
are using the transit hub.
Profits for 2017 came
in at just over US $940m.
A record 43.3m passengers used
the airport with the number
of international passengers up more
than 7% thanks to strong demand
from China and India in particular.
The government announced
plans to build a second
international airport for the city.
The battle to control the market
for the computer chips which power
smartphones is heating up.
America's Qualcomm has
increased its bid for Dutch rival
NXP Semiconductors to around $44bn.
It comes as Qualcomm tries to see
off a hostile takeover bid
from fellow US firm Broadcom
which is worth an estimated $103bn.
South Korea has signed free trade
deals with five central
American countries -
Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras,
Nicaragua and Panama.
The deals aren't worth a huge
amount, but could offer
an alternative route to trade
with the United States,
Dealings between the US and South
Korea have not been back great
First, Leisha Santorelli
is in Singapore.
Just explain the logic of this deal,
It will open important new
markets for South Korea and its auto
sector and electronics sector all
stand to benefit. Talks have been
going on for a while. The trade
packs will eliminate duty on about
95% of all goods and services traded
between South Korea and these five
countries. The South Korean
government also forecasts it will
give a big boost to economic growth
over the next decade and create at
least 3000 jobs, important given
they have a very young population,
all looking for jobs and it is a
political problem for them. Seoul
has said it is an important avenue
for them to a given concerns over
increasingly protectionist trade
Thank you very much
have a look at the markets. That is
the Australian market. The Hang Seng
is moving up but the Dow had a
slightly weak day. Let's have a look
and see what the details are about
what is going on. That is how we
have opened. All of the markets are
down a little bit. Let's see what is
on Wall Street today with Joe
On Wednesday, the Federal
reserve will release minutes from
its last rate-setting meeting held
at the end of January. At the time
the committee decided to keep the
rates steady at 1.5%. The central
bank is widely expected to raise
interest rates again in mid-March.
But the language in the minutes will
be closely scrutinised by Wall
Street and any signs of increased
enthusiasm for further or higher
rises in 2008 teams could send the
stock market spiralling again.
Elsewhere, satellite television
company dish network is expected to
report a drop in revenue and profits
and it is increasingly suffering
from the popularity of streaming
services like Netflix, to which
younger, cash-strapped consumers are
Joining us is Jane Sydenham,
Rathbones Investment Management.
We are talking the markets. It has
been really dominated by the big
mining companies were saying what we
expected, they are having a really
good time right now and making lots
of money. We would expect that. A
lot of them are listed in London on
the FTSE 100 and a lot of them are
very attractive to pension fund
Some of the dividends are
quite substantial, so that is
attractive. To a large extent, they
are reflecting the fact that world
economic growth is good. Demand for
basic commodities will be higher
when there is more economic
Everyone has been telling
us, the global economy is set for a
good year in 2018. I have been
reading quite a lot of people are
saying, actually, we are not going
to get that smooth round we have had
for the last 18 months and things
will be more volatile, even though
we have the gross.
There is often a
mismatch between economic growth and
stock market performance. That's
move upward trajectory we had was
exceptional. Markets are usually
much more volatile. It lasted a long
time. It lasted an incredibly long
time. It is natural to see more
volatility. We have seen a change in
terms of an increase in inflation
and rising interest rates. There are
more questions that investors need
to resolve which will probably make
markets more volatile.
What are you
watching in particular right now? I
feel like we are in February, having
had that massive volatility very
recently. People are repositioning
themselves a little bit.
I think it
is all about where there is value,
relative to the growth is that
investors are looking for. There are
some areas that have performed so
well they are very expensive. That
is where investors were thinking,
perhaps I need to take money out of
those areas. There are not that many
areas that have been growing
strongly and there is always a
trade-off between strong growth and
a high price for that growth. That
is what everyone is trying to
resolve at the moment.
around for that we'll be talking
about the newspaper headlines at the
end of the programme.
Still to come...
Drawing communities together.
We meet the man who's on a mission
to build up neighbourhood spirit -
via his social network.
You're with Business
Live from BBC News.
Lloyds Bank has posted pre-tax
profits for last year
of £5.3 billion, up 24%.
That is the first year as a fully
Joining us now is Laith
Khalaf, Senior Analyst,
at Hargreaves Lansdown.
Just tell us, are we now back on
track? Is this back to the good old
days of Lloyds from precrisis days?
Lloyds has been on a long recovery
but it has recovered quite strongly.
As you say, a landmark achieved last
year, which is back in private hands
finally, after the Government
bailouts during the financial
crisis. The numbers are all looking
pretty good. Income rising profits
rising, and costs under control. A
bumper pay-out coming to
shareholders as well post a lot to
like with the numbers.
still bills to pay for PPI. Is that
anything as we should worry about in
terms of extraordinary costs?
the main one. That has been ticking
over for a long time. What we had
last year, a new deadline was
introduced of August 29 and that has
prompted more people to claim. There
was a campaign fronted by Arnold
Schwarzenegger, run by the SCA,
which has also encouraged people to
claim more and Lloyds has had to put
more money aside. As we move towards
the claims deadline in August of
2019 they will probably tweak back a
little bit. The other thing is the
UK economy. It is so plugged in that
any shocks to the UK will be keenly
felt by Lloyds. Things are plain
sailing at the moment because we
have record levels of employment and
loans are not going bad.
Thank you for that. This is the boss
of Lloyds. He told the Today
programme on Radio 4 that Lloyds
came through with a strong recovery
over the last few years will do it
pointed out his base salary has
climbed to £1.2 million and his
remuneration package increased by
some 11%, to £6.42 million. Is he
worth that? He has brought Lloyds
back to normality. Send us your
You're watching Business
Live - our top story.
Boom time for the mining sector.
The boss of the world's biggest
player Glencore says
2017 was a stellar year,
as a strengthening global economy
boosts demand for commodities.
A quick look at how
markets are faring.
That is how things are standing
Let's get the inside track
on a social network which aims
to bring neighbours closer together.
Nextdoor aims to encourage
with those in your community.
It is now actively used
in more than 185,000
neighbourhoods in the US,
UK, Germany, and the Netherland.
The start-up now has a valuation
of over a billion dollars
but will it end up as the next
Facebook or the next Myspace?
Our colleague Rachel Horne met up
with the CEO and co-founder,
Nirav Tolia, and began by asking him
how it all got started?
The founders of the company had
heard of these amazing experiences
growing up in neighbourhoods that
were strong and supportive and
really felt like communities, a as
we became adults and we got older
and thought about buying homes and
starting to have children, we
realised that while technology had
improved our lives in so many ways,
we didn't feel close to the
communities in which we lived, we
didn't know our neighbours. In fact
when we started the company in
America, almost 30% of Americans
could not name a single neighbour by
name. So, this notion of bringing
back a sense of community to the
neighbourhood and using technology,
which is a thing that we are so
passionate about in Silicon Valley,
that was an easy match to make and
we were lucky that no-one had done
How does it work?
easy to use and it is free, come to
the Nextdoor website and download
the Nextdoor app and you enter your
address and before you know it you
will be connecting with your
neighbours and making the
neighbourhood better for everyone
involved. There are some things
about Nextdoor which make us
different from other social
networks. When you join you have to
verify your address, we need to make
sure that you actually live in the
neighbourhood and we need to make
sure that the conversations that
take place are happening between
real neighbours. This is not a place
for fake news or fake accounts, it
is a place for real neighbours to
make genuine connections and to talk
about the things which matter in the
real world. The other big difference
with Nextdoor is that the
conversations are private. The
things you talk about you will not
find them indexed in the Google
search engine, you won't be sharing
them on social media.
Is free for
users but how do you make money on
We think there is a huge
opportunity not just to connect
neighbours to each other but also to
connect them to small, local
businesses, so ultimately there will
be kinds of advertising on the
service, but the kind which helps
neighbours and support those local
businesses which make their
the figures, how many people are
We came up with the idea
in the summer of 2010 and it took us
quite a while to launch nationally
bubbled even in the United States,
that was at the end of 2011. Fast
forward since then and we have over
80% of American neighbourhoods using
the service. In late 2017 we had
launched in the UK have about six
months before that we launched in
the Netherlands and recently we have
launched in France and ultimately we
believe that globally there will be
Nextdoor for every neighbourhood.
Today, almost 185,000 neighbourhoods
worldwide are using the service, and
we feel like we are just getting
What do people actually use
All of the things you would
imagine neighbours talk about. You
can ask for help to find a lost pet,
you can get a recommendation for a
plumber or a baby-sitter. But what
really inspires us is when there are
examples of true human connection
and community. Folks who may be
lonely are forming social clubs so
that they can get together and feel
How do you define a
neighbourhood, is it a whole city or
is it smaller areas?
It turns out
that we have a set of technology
tools that allow the neighbours to
help us define their areas and name
their neighbourhoods. Typically it
ranges between 500-1000 households.
A lot of social networks have issues
with people being abusive online -
how do you prevent that happening?
It is actually not for social things
in general, it is the utility, it is
coming together with your
neighbours, it is for asking for
help and providing help. Because you
have use your true identity and
because of the community context, we
don't get a lot of abuse, we don't
have fake news, we don't have a fake
Who polices the sites?
great thing about Nextdoor is that
neighbours feel like these are their
neighbourhoods. They feel like it is
their toll. And so we don't police
these things, we don't read their
content. These are there spaces, we
are using the technology for them.
Because these neighbours care deeply
about their neighbourhoods, they
ensure that the conversations stay
Are you making a profit yet?
Not yet but in the United States we
are Gary generating revenue. We
started that in early 2017 and it
has gone very well.
Do you use it?
Hang on a minute, let me just
reintroduce Jane Sydenham, and I
don't use it but I am the odd one
out because you both do?
enormous amounts but the other day
we were going to take my daughter on
the school run and somebody said a
tree had gone down across the
road... I never found out whether a
tree actually HAD gone down!
you have to do that just to check
the trees and do you see what I
looking for a cat sitter.
you get one?
I did, actually, it was
really good, really useful. A local
friend got in touch and the number
of members is expanding.
I am not a
Nextdoor person but apparently it is
child-care, nannies... But there is
lots of local social media sites,
actually. Local Facebook pages and,
but then that is Facebook and we are
back to the big giant.
So, this is a
kind of formula. They're probably
going to sell it off eventually. He
had a company which he then sold on
to shopping.com, so the chances are
this is going to get sold on to
somebody bigger. So, it may look as
though he is a small and cosy but
actually, it's not, he is part of a
Let's bring in the
viewers. Bags for your tweet, you
said... Big social media companies
like Facebook are censoring free
speech, behaving like Big Brother,
isolating you from your real-world
Not a fan! This one says...
We should do more off-line.
Sydenham, we said we would talk
about this story which BBC online
has got, but it is also a letter in
the Times newspaper today, 62
members of the Conservative Party
saying to Theresa May, the Prime
Minister, hard Brexit or no
Yeah, from an investment
has republic this will worry
investors again. -- from an
investment perspective. The
consequence might be more weakness
in sterling as we get closer to it
being done or not being done!
some ways it is not so much whether
they get their way, or whether
Theresa May gets her way, it is
actually how long we go on having
this fight within the Conservative
Party, isn't it? If we say, OK we're
going to go for a hard Brexit, that
is a certain form of clarity and one
might be able to do something about
Yes, it is the uncertainty and
the constant fluctuation and
investors' perceptions of where we
are in that. And it looks as though
that is going to continue for quite
In the meantime another
really interesting story in the
Financial Times, the chief executive
of Lloyd's of London, who has been
on this programme, I interviewed her
in Davos, talking about, it says
here, partnerships skew the gender
pay gap data - what does she mean?
What she's referring to is the
partnerships, the law firms, the
accountancy firms, where Hartness
are actually technically owners of
the business rather than employees.
And so this is really about the
gender pay gap...
remuneration is not included in the
data collected by those
organisations and yet they're
probably the highest-paid and could
well be white men, I'm guessing?
And therefore this data
which is being collected, which are
soon companies in the UK will have
to put forward, will not be a true
I think so. It is going to
give as an incomplete picture. Some
of these law firms pay their top
partners substantial amounts of
money, and that is the concern, as
you say. But I think it is early
days for the gender pay disclosure.
So, all of this is going to come
out, I suspect the rules will be
refined as time goes on.
Can I just
ask you about whether the rules
about disclosure gender pay gap is,
is it having an effect hammered it
is obviously getting a lot of
coverage but is it actually changing
I think it will,
gradually. I think the fact that
companies have actually got to think
about it, research it, look at the
data puddle more transparent. They
have got to be accountable to their
employees, so overtime, yes, I think
And also, I can speak for
myself and my colleagues, people are
feeling more empowered to talk about
Yes. That makes such a
And actually feel they
have a reason to bring it up.
knowing that other people are
thinking about it which you feel, I
am right to be worried about it,
too. Yes, and you can talk about it
openly published is on the publico
I think it will make a huge
difference over time.
It has been
great to have you on the programme,
thanks the coming in.
goodbye, because we haven't got any
Very polite! We are back
tomorrow, see you then!