What's new in business news: April 25, 2014 | Bangkok Post: learning

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What's new in business news: April 25, 2014

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Facebook buys fitness app & launches journalist info aggregator, workers face increasing debts & can't cover expenses & pirates steal fuel from Thai tanker. 

Armed marine policeman stands guard on deck of patrol boat while tanker passes in Strait of Malacca where the recent act of piracy against a Thai tanker took place (Source: AFP, Jimin Lai)

TECHNOLOGY 

Facebook buys fitness app & launches journalist info aggregator

AFP News agency

Screen shot of the new Move fitness app acquired by Facebook (Source: Facebook).

Facebook has bought the fitness app Moves, which helps users monitor daily physical activity and their calorie counts on a smartphone. The app was developed by the two-year-old Finnish start up ProtoGeo.  Facebook is focusing on building up an "ecosystem" of apps to draw more users to Facebook and find more mays to generate revenue via advertising and other means.  So far this year Facebook has spent $19 billion for the instant messaging service WhatsApp and $2 billion for a virtual reality company, Oculus.

Facebook also launched Thursday FB Newswire, billed as an online trove of real-time information for journalists and newsrooms to mine while reporting on events or crafting stories. In partnership with News Corp-owned Storyful, FB Newswire aggregates newsworthy content shared publicly at the social network, including original pictures, videos, and comments posted by "people on the front lines of major events" such as protests, elections and sports matches. News Corporation, which owns the Wall Street Journal, acquired Storyful in December in a deal valued at about $25 million.

FB Newswire is part of a Facebook challenge to Twitter, which has become a globally used platform for instantly sharing information about current events and can be reached at facebook.com/FBNewswire and at the Twitter account @FBNewswire.

Read full story here and here 

ECONOMICS & PERSONAL FINANCE 

Thai workers face increasing debts & can't cover expenses 

The quality of life of Thai workers is said to be the worst in six years. A recent survey, focusing mainly on workers who earn less than 15,000 baht, found that more than 80% of workers had insufficient income to cover expenses, while 93.7% said they faced increased debt. Average debt per household was estimated at 106,216 baht, a 7.9% surge from 98,428 baht in 2013 and against 87,399 baht in 1999 and up to 76.1% of respondents said they had no savings or extra income from overtime or extra jobs.

Household debt has seen a significant rise since 2012, when the government raised the monthly salary of state workers and the daily minimum wage, as most workers with increased income started creating more debts particularly to buy residences and vehicles. Once economic conditions were not favourable and their income had yet to increase as expected while their expenses and cost of living were higher, the quality of life of most workers got worse. This led many of them to rely on loan sharks or to mortgage their assets.

A rise in unemployment and a drop in income are currently highly likely due to an expected drought, delays in state investment, political protests and weakened confidence among consumers and businesses. This year’s growth forecast has been cut to 3-4% from the 4-5% predicted earlier, however on the bright side, exports seem to be recovering.

Read full story debts" >here 

ECONOMIC CRIME

Pirates steal fuel from Thai tanker

AP News agency

KUALA LUMPUR - Pirates pilfered diesel fuel from a Thai tanker off Malaysia's east coast, making two attacks in a week and raising concerns of a rising threat to shipping. The tanker was sailing from Singapore to Cambodia when it was boarded by 16 pirates about 26 nautical miles off Aur Island on the east coast of the peninsula late April 17. The pirates, armed with swords and guns, damaged the ship's communication equipment, transferred part of the fuel cargo into a smaller unknown tanker and stole the ship and crews' belongings before fleeing.  The captain of the Thai ship sustained minor injuries. The ship continued its journey and reached Cambodia on April 20 but only reported the theft on Wednesday.

A similar theft followed just five days later. The pirates stopped a Singapore tanker in the Malacca Strait off Malaysia's west coast and stole part of its diesel cargo worth US$2.5 million (81.25 million baht). Three Indonesian crew members of the Singapore tanker, including the captain and chief engineer, disappeared along with their belongings during the pirate attack. Authorities are investigating if they were abducted or were involved in the sea robbery. Piracy, mainly low-level thefts, have been declining following maritime patrols by the three countries, but attacks appeared to have picked up last year in Malaysian and Indonesian waters.

Read full story tanker" >here 

Learn from listening

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Vocabulary:

acquire: to get; to obtain - ได้มาซึ่ง

act: to take action; to do something for a particular purpose or in order to deal with a situation - จัดการ, ดำเนินการ, ปฏิบัติ

activity: a thing that you do for interest or pleasure, or in order to achieve a particular aim - กิจกรรม

advertising: telling the public about a product or a service, political candidate, etc. in order to encourage people to buy, use or support it - การโฆษณา

aggregate: a total number or amount made up of smaller amounts that are collected together - ผลรวม, ผลรวบยอด

application (app): a program designed to do a particular job; a piece of software - โปรแกรมใช้งาน, โปรแกรมคอมพิวเตอร์

armed: carrying a weapon - ติดอาวุธ

asset: something owned by a person, company etc., particularly money and property - ทรัพย์สิน

average: an amount calculated by adding several amounts together, finding a total, and dividing the total by the number of amounts - เฉลี่ย, ค่าเฉลี่ย

bill as: advertise as, announce to the public as -

calorie: a measure of how much energy a person gets from food (people worried about eating many calories and becoming fat); a unit for measuring heat - แคลอรี, หน่วยความร้อน ใช้สัญลักษณ์ cal 1 แคลอรี คือ ปริมาณความร้อนที่ทำให้น้ำหนึ่งกรัมมีอุณหภูมิสูงขึ้นจาก 14.5 °C เป็น 15.5°C ที่ความดันปกติ 1 cal = 4.185 J

challenge: an invitation or a suggestion to somebody that they should enter a competition, fight, etc - การท้าทาย

coast (or coastline): an area of land beside the sea - ชายฝั่ง the adjective form is coastal) แนวชายฝั่งทะเล

comment: expressing an opinion - แสดงความคิดเห็น

concern: a worry - ความกังวล

conditions: the circumstances or situation in which people live, work or do things - เหตุการณ์, สภาพการ, สถานการณ์

confidence: being certain of your abilities or of having trust in people, plans, or the future - ความมั่นใจ

consumer: someone who buys and uses goods and services - ผู้บริโภค

content: the subject, ideas, or story that a piece of writing or a radio or television programme deals with - เนื้อหา,สาระ

cost of living: the amount of money that people need to pay for ordinary goods and services such as food, clothing and a place to live - ค่าครองชีพ

craft: to make objects, especially in a skilled way - ทำด้วยมือ

current: of the present time - ปัจจุบัน

currently: at this time; now - ในปัจจุบัน

daily: happening, done or produced every day - แต่ละวัน, ทุกวัน

deal: a formal agreement, especially in business or politics - ข้อตกลง, การตกลงซื้อขาย, การซื้อขาย

debt: an amount of money that you owe - หนี้, นี้สิน

deck: the top outside floor of a ship, boat or building - ดาดฟ้าเรือ

delay: causing to happen at a later time; happening at a later time than expected - การเลื่อน, ช้ากว่าปกติ

develop: develop software, write a computer program to help people do something with a computer -

draw: to attract or interest somebody - ดึงดูดความสนใจ

drop: to fall or cause something to fall by accident or intentionally - ทิ้ง, ปล่อย, หล่น

drought: a long period of time when there is little or no rain - ฝนแล้ง, ภัยแล้ง, ความแห้งแล้ง)

due to: because of - เนื่องจาก

ecosystem: all the plants and animals in a particular area, considered as a system with parts that depend on one another - ระบบที่เกิดจากความสัมพันธ์ระหว่างสิ่งมีชีวิตและสิ่งแวดล้อม

election (n): the process of choosing a person or a group of person for a position, especially by voting - การเลือกตั้ง

estimated: thought to be a particular amount, size, etc. based on a guess or the best information available - ประมาณการ

expenses: money spent in doing a particular job, or for a particular purpose - ค่าใช้จ่าย

export: the selling and transporting of goods to another country - สินค้าออก, การส่งสินค้าออกไปต่างประเทศ

extra: more than is usual, expected, or than exists already - เหนือกว่า

favourable: good for something and making it likely to be successful or have an advantage - ซึ่งอำนวยประโยชน์

focus: to give attention, effort, etc. to one particular subject, situation or person rather than another - เพ่งความสนใจ

forecast: a statement about what will happen in the future based on information available now - การพยากรณ์, การคาดการณ์

front line: the place where a big event is happening -

fuel: any material that produces heat or power, usually when it is burnt - เชื้อเพลิง

generate: to produce - ผลิต, ก่อให้เกิด

globally: throughout the world - ทั่วโลก

growth: economic growth, an increase in economic activity - การเติบโต

household: a group of people, often a family, who live together - ครัวเรือน

income: money that someone gets from working or from investing money - รายได้

instantly: immediately - ทันที, ทันทีทันใด, ในไม่ช้า

insufficient: not enough - ไม่เพียงพอ

investment: the act of investing money in something - การลงทุน

journalist: a person who writes news stories or articles for a newspaper or magazine or broadcasts them on radio or television - ผู้สื่อข่าว

launch: an event held to start selling a new product or service to the public - การเริ่มวางขาย

loan shark: a person who charges very high interest rates for money borrowed - ผู้ปล่อยเงินกู้โดยคิดดอกเบี้ยสูงมาก

major: very large or important - สำคัญมาก

marine: relating to the sea and creatures that live in it - เกี่ยวกับทะเล

match: a sports competition - การแข่งขัน

means: methods; ways - วิธี, วิธีการ

message: a piece of written or spoken information that you send to someone, especially when you cannot speak to them directly - ข่าวสาร, ข้อความ

mine information: to try to get as much information as you can from something -

minimum wage: the lowest wage, daily or hourly, allowed by law - ค่าจ้างขั้นต่ำ

monitor: to regularly check something or watch someone in order to find out what is happening - ตรวจสอบ ตรวจตรา

mortgage: a legal agreement in which you borrow money from a bank in order to buy a house, build something, develop a piece of land, etc - การจำนอง

newsworthy: interesting and important enough to be reported as news - น่าสนใจหรือสำคัญเพียงพอที่จะนำมาเป็นรายงานข่าว

on the bright side: looking at the good things that happened or will happened, instead of the problems and bad things -

original: the first of something - เดิม, แบบฉบับ

overtime: time that you spend working at your job after you have worked the normal hours - เวลาพิเศษที่นอกเหนือจากเวลาทำงานปกติ

particularly: especially, or more than usual - โดยเฉพาะ

partnership: when a company owns and runs a business and shares profits, etc or with another company - หุ้นส่วน, ความร่วมมือ, ห้างหุ้นส่วน, ห้างหุ้นส่วนจำกัด

patrol boats: military or police boats that go around an area regular to make sure there is no trouble there - เรือลาดตระเวน

physical: connected with a person's body - เกี่ยวกับร่างกาย

pilfer: to steal things, especially things of little value -

piracy: the crime of attacking ships at sea in order to steal from them - การปล้นสะดมในน่านน้ำทะเล

platform: a type of media or way of distributing information , e.g., newspapers, magazines, video, etc. -

predict: to say that an event or action will happen in the future, especially as a result of knowledge or experience - คาดการณ์ว่า พยากรณ์จากสถิติว่า

protest: a meeting or rally, sometimes forceful or violent, of people who strongly disagree with something - ชุมนุมประท้วง

publicly: intending to be seen or heard by people in general - อย่างเปิดเผย

quality of life: how nice and pleasant a person's life is, money being important but not the only factor - คุณภาพชีวิต, ลักษณะของการดำรงชีวิต, การใช้ชีวิต

raise: to bring up a subject for discussion - ยกขึ้นมาเป็นประเด็น

recent: happening or starting a short time ago - เร็วๆ นี้

recover: to become healthy and fit again after an illness or injury - การฟื้นไข้

residence: a place where someone lives - ที่พำนัก ที่อาศัย

respondent: someone who answers questions — - ผู้ตอบคำถาม/แบบสำรวจ

revenue: income from taxes or business activities - รายได้

salary: a fixed amount of money that you earn each month or year from your job - เงินเดือน

shipping: tranporting goods by ship, usually across the ocean or sea -

significant: large or important enough to have an effect or to be noticed - ซึ่งมีความหมาย

social network: websites or other services on the internet for communication with people who share your interests - เครือข่ายสังคม

stand guard: to watch or protect somebody/something - เฝ้ายาม, ดูแล, รักษาความปลอดภัย

start up: a new business -

state: government - รัฐบาล

strait: a narrow passage of water that connects two seas or large areas of water - ช่องแคบ

surge: a sudden increase in something - การเพิ่มขึ้นอย่างรวดเร็ว

survey: to ask a large number of people questions to find out their opinions - สำรวจ

tanker: a large ship used to carry oil by sea from place to place - เรือบรรทุก

threat: a danger - อันตราย

took place: happened (in the past) -

trove: valuable things that are found hidden - ขุมทรัพย์, ขุมสมบัติ, สมบัติ

unemployment: the fact of a number of people not having a job; the number of people without a job - การว่างงาน, จำนวนผู้ว่างงาน

value: how much something is worth in money or other goods for which it can be exchanged - มูลค่า

vehicle: a machine that you travel in or on, especially one with an engine that travels on roads, e.g., a car, bus, van, truck, etc. - ยานพาหนะ

via: through - ผ่าน (ช่องทาง) ในที่นี้คือ ผ่านดาวเทียม

virtual reality: images and sounds that are produced by a computer and connected equipment to make the user feel as if they are in real three-dimensional space - สภาวะเสมือนจริงที่จำลองโดยเทคนิคทางคอมพิวเตอร์

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