Lai See

PUBLISHED : Friday, 04 February, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 08 May, 2015, 4:18pm


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Banker basks in his performance while his managers dream of more

Famous for underperforming market expectations in years past, David Li Kwok-po's Bank of East Asia actually beat most analysts' expectations with a 26 per cent rise in profit last year to $2.42 billion.

Better still, Mr Li strongly hinted that his bank was heading for another bust-out performance in the coming Year of the Rooster and was keen to crow about it.

'I am so happy that analysts are not criticising me today,' Mr Li said to the laughter of analysts and reporters.

But BEA managers were probably not joining in - they still have not had a pay rise since 1997.

echoes of cheney

Despite failing to save the Link Reit's December initial public offering, government counsel Daniel Fung Wah-kin was recently tipped to become Securities and Futures Commission chairman - assuming, that is, a proposed chairman-chief executive split is eventually implemented.

However, while speaking to reporters yesterday, Mr Fung - currently chairman of the Broadcasting Authority - sought to distance himself from any possible SFC appointment.

He even went so far as to produce his own list of SFC candidates - including stock exchange listings chief Marvin Cheung Kin-tung, Executive Councillor Laura Cha Shih May-lun and former Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp chairman John Strickland - although he also suggested that a Mandarin speaker would be ideal.

But we wonder if Mr Fung might not turn out to be another Dick Cheney, the former head of George W.Bush's vice-president selection team who ended up as Veep himself.

peace erupts on the trading floor

Peace can break out in the strangest of places. Fifty-six years into a suspended civil war across the Taiwan Strait, a minor detente was at least achieved on the floor of the Hong Kong stock exchange yesterday morning when Taiwanese handset manufacturer Foxconn International and Fujian-based Xinyi Glass debuted on the same day.

Those foxes from Taiwan almost managed to spoil the party, though. First to the platform, they spent so much time speechifying that Xinyi executives had little time to cram in their own celebration before trading started.

Xinyi was at least able to get its own back. Their shares held level on the day while Foxconn's fell.

PRaise more effective than a raise

China Mobile-turned-China Telecom chairman Wang Xiaochu knows a thing or two about 'giving others the high hat' - the quaint Mandarin idiom for flattery (gei yige gao maozi).

At the same media lunch where he spilled the beans on a secret plot to break up China Unicom, reporters asked Mr Wang why he recently poached former colleague and ex-China Mobile company secretary Jacky Yung Shun-loy to join him at China Telecom.

'It's not my style to poach my ex-colleagues to join my company,' Mr Wang gushed. 'But Jacky is an extremely talented and capable person.'

Mr Yung had another advantage as well - he apparently came cheap. Mr Wang boasted that he did not have to offer Mr Yung a pay rise to lure him across the fixed line-mobile divide.

'I would follow Mr Wang even if I was asked to take a pay cut,' Mr Yung confirmed.

Talented and capable Mr Yung may be, but a good negotiator he's not.

jet-setting prize SWINEs go west

Pigs do fly - really.

And we're not talking about that snoring overweight sod crammed in next to you in economy on a 14-hour flight across the Pacific.

China Southern Airlines yesterday flew 743 prize pigs from Chicago to Shenzhen. The pigs, weighing in at a combined 51,300kgs, flew courtesy of China National Animal Breeding Stock, which apparently hopes to reproduce them en masse.

Happy breeding, guys.