September 4, 2012 in Business

Unemployed in France surpasses 3 million

 

PARIS – The number of French unemployed has broken through the 3-million barrier for the first time since 1999, the country’s leaders say.

The latest total adds pressure on President Francois Hollande, whose administration is under attack for not doing enough to fix the economy. France’s unemployment rate is currently 10 percent.

Breaking the 3-million mark carries more symbolic importance than economic, but it was covered extensively in the French media over the weekend. The Ministry of Employment said the 3-million threshold was crossed in 1996 and again in 1999.

Employment Minister Michel Sapin confirmed the total on French radio Sunday and warned that the numbers would likely get worse.

Valeant agrees to buy Medicis Pharmaceutical

TORONTO – Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. has agreed to buy dermatology products maker Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp. for about $2.6 billion in cash in a deal to strengthen its position in skin treatments and care.

Montreal-based Valeant, Canada’s largest publicly traded pharmaceuticals company, said Monday that it has agreed to pay $44 per share for Medicis, a 39 percent premium over Friday’s closing price of $31.87 for the Scottsdale, Ariz., target company.

The boards of both companies have approved the deal. It needs approval by Medicis shareholders and regulatory clearance. The companies hope to complete the deal in early 2013.

Red Bull heir arrested for lethal hit-and-run

BANGKOK – A grandson of the creator of the Red Bull energy drink has been arrested for driving a Ferrari that struck a police officer and dragged his dead body down a Bangkok street in an early-morning hit-and-run, police said Monday.

Police took Vorayuth Yoovidhya, 27, for questioning after tracing oil streaks for several blocks to his family’s gated estate in a wealthy neighborhood of the Thai capital.

He was facing charges of causing death by reckless driving and escaping an arrest by police but was released on a $15,900 bail.

Vorayuth admitted he drove the sports car but said the motorcycle of Sgt. Maj. Wichean Glanprasert abruptly cut in front of his vehicle, said police Maj. Gen. Anuchai Lekbamroong, the lead investigator in the case.

Bangkok’s top police official, Lt. Gen. Comronwit Toopgrajank, led a team of officers to search the compound of late Red Bull founder Chaleo Yoovidhya, one of Thailand’s wealthiest men before he passed away this year, and confiscated a Ferrari with a badly damaged front bumper and broken windshield.


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