Current Affairs Global - 20 February 2014

1. Social Networking giant Facebook announced acquisition of WhatsApp, a world leader in mobile messaging over the internet, for USD 19 billion in stock and cash. Founded five years ago, WhatsApp has a subscriber base of more than 450 million users including 35 million users in India, 70% of whom use the app every day.

"WhatsApp is on a path to connect one billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable," said Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO. The price paid for WhatsApp will change the valuation of all mobile messaging apps.

2. Chinese manufacturing activity contracted further in February to hit its lowest level in seven months, which is a sign of diminishing strength in the world's second-largest economy. HSBC compiled purchasing managers' index (PMI) for China, dropped to 48.3 in February compared to 49.5 in January. Any reading lower than 50 indicates contraction in the sector.