Saturday, 20 March 2010
Disastrous as that would be, if the alternative is chosen and Washington’s printing presses beget hyperinflation, that would probably be worse. In a serious deflation, those who have saved for a rainy day can make it through okay. In hyperinflation, which unconstrained further spending could easily bring on, everyone loses.
Online payments facilitator, PayPal yesterday announced plans to ramp up Singapore operations with more hires and a tie-up with DBS Bank which would make it easier and more secure for the latter’s customers to shop online.
In the latest twist at Sino-Environment, the key management of its subsidiaries in China have pledged their support to help restart business operations.
New Jersey casino regulators said overnight on Wednesday that they have evidence Stanley Ho, the Asian casino magnate, has extensive ties to organised crime in mainland.
The World Bank yesterday urged China to let its currency rise to contain inflation and stop the economy from overheating, predicting that growth will gallop ahead at 9.5 per cent this year. ‘Strengthening the exchange rate can help reduce inflationary pressures and rebalance the economy,’ the World Bank said in its latest quarterly update on the world’s third-largest economy.
A rise in the yuan would be a disaster for labour-intensive mainland exporters, a semi-official trade group said on Thursday, as frictions grow with the US and other western powers over Beijing’s stable currency policy.
A Cabinet official said a further rise in China’s currency risks driving exporters out of business, a newspaper reported Friday, as Beijing stepped up a war of words with Washington over its exchange rate controls.
If you don’t believe that, just look at the example of Japan in the 1980s, when a rapidly appreciating currency simply fuelled the excesses of the bubble economy and led ultimately to the crash of the early 1990s and Japan’s subsequent lost decade.
Mining giant Rio Tinto and China’s Chinalco Friday signed a 1.35 billion US dollar deal to develop a huge African iron ore field, renewing close ties after a major deal collapsed last year.
Monetary tightening in China, the world’s largest metals user, will have little impact on consumption and the country will continue to drive metals demand for years, David Wilson of Societe Generale said on Friday.
Wednesday, 17 March 2010
“Live in famous house, study in prestige school” is the real estate advert that attracted Li Lin to buy an apartment in this “famous” Zhongbo Community 4 years ago. After the spring festival, he planned to transfer his son to the promised prestige school but almost got rejected because the school is severely overcrowded.
Not long ago, Dr. Zhang Hongyan encountered an embarrassing moment at the hospital emergency room: a woman dressed in rags was sent to the hospital with her lower body attached to her pet dog’s genital.
Tuesday, 16 March 2010
Law Minister K. Shanmugam said yesterday he expects Romania to ‘seriously consider’ the evidence from a recently concluded coroner’s inquiry into a fatal road accident that allegedly involved former Romanian diplomat Silviu Ionescu.
China’s government-backed enterprises have widened their investment targets from finance to real estate assets around the world, and their shopping sprees are picking up pace as their financial muscle increases and overseas property prices drop, analysts say.
Thailand’s prime minister, backed by a formidable military force, rejected an ultimatum to dissolve Parliament on Monday as tens of thousands of red-shirted protesters vowed to splatter the seat of government with their own blood if their demands weren’t met.
Thailand’s prime minister on Monday rejected an ultimatum by tens of thousands of protesters who had besieged the army barracks where he was holed up to demand immediate elections.
Throughout all of last week, sharp rises in Jardine Matheson (JM), Jardine Strategic (JS) and Jardine Cycle & Carriage (JC&C) to new all-time highs helped push the Straits Times Index significantly higher on five successive days.
A US embassy staffer in South Korea has fled the country amid an investigation into claims that he swindled a local widow out of 220 million won (194,000 dollars), police said Monday.
Monday, 15 March 2010
John Maynard Keynes wrote during the Great Depression that only ‘fools and madmen’ will tell you ‘the path of escape is to be found in strict economy’. Several countries have now started ‘strict economy’, or fiscal tightening, after the biggest financial crisis since World War II.
Conditions are not ripe to require officials to publicly declare their assets, a top legislating official said yesterday on the sidelines of the National People’s Congress.
Strangely, there is no word on the swoop on the homes and offices of Richard Li and others connected with attempt to take company private
Former president Jiang Zemin, according to diplomatic lore, once boasted about his knowledge of finance by reciting “assets equal liabilities plus equity” to his bemused US counterpart Bill Clinton. The joke, it seems, is that this basic accounting formula should be common knowledge and so it’s absurd to show off with it. But, as people fret about China’s financial position today, it may be good to remind them of this formula to see the big picture.
Moody’s Investor Services warned last month that the triple A credit rating of the highly geared US economy should not be taken for granted.
Car not stolen outside Romanian embassy, as claimed by him
Toyota owners claiming that massive safety recalls are causing the value of their vehicles to plummet have filed at least 89 class action lawsuits that could cost the Japanese auto giant US$3 billion or more, according to an Associated Press review of cases, legal precedent and interviews with experts.
The luxury apartment buildings Yang Xuhua passes on her way to work are a daily reminder of her own frustrated efforts to buy a home. Prices for even modest apartments in Shanghai have soared, putting home purchases out of reach for white-collar workers and professionals.
The bubbly enthusiasm that many analysts express about the Chinese economy reminds me of the old-time US variety show host Lawrence Welk, who banished worries each week with soothing sounds from his “Champagne Music Makers”.
Every now and then, market imperfections throw up arbitrage potential from corporate activity. One such opportunity may just be emerging in the ongoing takeover of offshore services specialist Swissco International by Catalyst-listed C2O Holdings.
Tens of thousands of protesters converged in Bangkok on Sunday to give Thailand’s military-backed government an ultimatum: either call elections or face more pro-democracy demonstrations over the coming week.
Global financial markets are yet to bottom and investors should hold cash, investment-grade debt or defensive stocks to ride out a coming “general correction”, according to HSBC Holdings.
At least 210 journalists and intellectuals have signed an open letter calling for the impeachment and resignation of Hubei governor Li Hongzhong, who hit the headlines last week for snatching a recorder from a journalist on the sidelines of the National People’s Congress.
China’s premier rejected foreign pressure over its exchange rate controls and said Sunday the Chinese currency will be kept “basically stable.”
Premier Wen Jiabao sharply defended China’s currency and trade policies on Sunday against what he called foreign “finger-pointing,” charging instead that the developed world seeks to force unfair changes in those policies “just for the purposes of increasing their own exports.”
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said on Sunday that external calls for yuan appreciation were unhelpful and even a form of trade protectionism, vowing that Beijing would stick to its own course for currency reform.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said he was snubbed at last year’s Copenhagen climate change conference and fired back Sunday at critics who accuse China of arrogance.
Meetings of the nation’s parliament are ritual affairs. But because China is a one-party state, the annual sessions of the legislative and political consultative bodies also amount to a political-party conference. As such, they give the ambitious a rare opportunity to make an impression among the elite and rank and file. The duller the proceedings, the better for attention-seekers.
It is the Wall Street equivalent of a coroner’s report - a 2,200-page document that lays out, in new and startling detail, how Lehman Brothers used accounting sleight of hand to conceal the bad investments that led to its undoing.
For the year that it took the court-appointed examiner to complete his report on the demise of Lehman Brothers, officials from Wall Street to Washington were anticipating it as the definitive account of the largest bankruptcy in American history.
Sunday, 14 March 2010
Australia, a country shaped by migration, is again being challenged to define itself by a new wave of migration from its giant Asian neighbours. How Australia deals with the new and different influx from China and India will also affect its political and strategic relations.
Suddenly, the true purpose of expos becomes a lot clearer. Judging from their track record, they are nothing more than a device used by corrupt but self-aggrandising officials to siphon vast amounts of money out of the public purse and into their own pockets and those of their business cronies.
Ex-audit chief targets ‘grey income’
Eleven rare Siberian tigers have died at a wildlife park in a startling case that activists say hints at unsavoury practices among some zoos and animal farms in China: They are over breeding endangered animals in the hopes of making illicit profit on their carcasses.
China plans to revamp its university admissions system, allowing students to take subject-specific tests and introducing other measures besides the exam to ease the stress millions of students undergo as they compete for a coveted few spots in colleges.
One of China’s top Internet regulators warned bluntly on Friday that any move by Google to stop censoring its Chinese search engine would be “irresponsible” and would draw a response from the Beijing government.
China’s seemingly unquenchable thirst for wine has ousted America as Bordeaux’s number one client outside Europe, latest figures showed Friday.
Beijing’s foreign ministry spokeswoman on Tuesday defended rules that foreign companies claim lock them out of the multibillion dollar market for selling computers and office equipment to government departments.
There are few constants in business, but the law of supply and demand is one of them. With business picking up and labour short, migrant workers in Guangdong province are increasingly choosy about what jobs they take - and not surprisingly so.
Talks with China over censorship have reached an apparent impasse and Google, the world’s largest search engine, is now “99.9 percent” certain to shut its Chinese search engine, the Financial Times said on Saturday.
The mainland is the world’s second-largest processor of small diamonds, after India, and is keen to establish an industry that encompasses not just manufacturing but trading, designing and retailing. This won’t happen until there is more interest by mainlanders in owning diamonds.
China may be forced to rescue banks that made loans for local government projects under the unprecedented stimulus programme revealed in 2008, according to Citigroup and an academic from Northwestern University.
A PLA deputy to the National People’s Congress has called for a major shake-up of the way that the military sources and maintains equipment stockpiles, to prevent stores being filled with outdated gear that is “only good for scrap”.
Thousands of red-shirted protesters surging into the Thai capital from impoverished rural areas Saturday gave the government an ultimatum to “return power to the people” or face mass marches in key locations.
"I would rather be lightening up on positions in the next couple of weeks than heavily buying in here," says Marc Faber, editor of the Gloom, Boom and Doom Report.
"It's beyond repair -- it's too late," to avert fiscal disaster, Faber declares.
Mish agrees: "The day of reckoning has arrived. The question is how long it takes to play out."
Mish agrees: "The day of reckoning has arrived. The question is how long it takes to play out."