Friday, December 3, 2010

20101203 1008 Local & Global Economics News.

Malaysia: October exports expected to drop
Malaysia’s export data for the month of October, which is expected to be released tomorrow, is likely to show an average decline of 0.9% y-o-y and also a slowdown from the month before, early estimates show. Forecasts of 14 economists compiled by Reuters revealed that the average exports for October would decline 0.9% compared with a 6.9% y-o-y growth in September. (Star Biz)

Thailand: Unexpectedly raises rate to tame inflation
Thailand unexpectedly raised interest rates for the third time this year, signaling policy makers view inflation as a bigger threat than slowing growth. The baht rose. The Bank of Thailand increased the one-day bond repurchase rate by a quarter of a percentage point to 2% after leaving the benchmark unchanged at the previous meeting, according to a statement in Bangkok. The decision was predicted by 5 of 17 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. The rest expected no change. (Bloomberg)

Indonesia: Inflation quickens, adding pressure on interest rate
Indonesia’s inflation accelerated in November, putting pressure on policy makers to raise interest rates and contain price increases in the coming months. Consumer prices rose 6.33% last month from a year earlier, the Central Bureau of Statistics said in Jakarta. That compares with a 5.67% gain in October reported earlier. The median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey of 20 economists was for a 5.98% increase. Bank Indonesia has refrained from raising interest rates from a record low this year, delaying an increase that could attract more funds at a time when emerging markets are luring investors away from developed economies. (Bloomberg)

India: Growth may exceed forecast, ushering rate rise
India’s economy is likely to surpass the government’s 8.5% growth target for the fiscal year, forcing the central bank to resume interest-rate increases as domestic demand offsets risks from abroad. GDP climbed 8.9% for a second straight quarter in July to September, a government report showed, with the gains propelled by the manufacturing and services industries. Kaushik Basu, chief economic adviser to the finance ministry, said after the data release that India could achieve a 9% growth rate sooner than expected.. (Bloomberg)

Australia: GDP growth slower than forecast
Australia’s economy expanded at half the pace economists forecast in the third quarter as a stronger currency hurt exports. GDP advanced 0.2% from the second quarter, when it rose a revised 1.1%, the Bureau of Statistics said. That compares with the median forecast for a 0.4% gain in a Bloomberg News survey of 21 economists. The report reflects Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) rate increases aimed at cooling inflation sparked by a mining industry expansion that governor Glenn Stevens said this week will extend “over a longish horizon”. (Star Biz)

EU: Sets tougher state aid rules for banks
Crisis-hit banks seeking state aid next year will have to overhaul their operations as part of a strategy to wean them off state support, the European Union’s competition chief said. The tougher conditions came as the European Commission extended by a year a framework of rules set up in Oct 2008 allowing EU governments to bail out their lenders under looser terms. (Star Biz)

Japan: Capex points to better 3Q GDP, outlook murky
Japanese firms raised capital spending in July-September for the first time in more than three years but profit and sales growth slowed, as a dip in demand both at home and abroad, spurred by a strong yen, clouds the economic outlook. The data, while pointing to an upward tweak when 3Q GDP figures are revised next week, will keep the Bank of Japan under pressure to maintain its very loose monetary policy, with slowing exports and the waning impact of government stimulus likely to trigger a fall in GDP in the current quarter. (Financial Daily)

Australia: Trade surplus swells
Australian retail sales suffered a shock 1.1% drop in October, the biggest decline in 15 months and a blow to hopes for a revival in economic growth this quarter that sent the local dollar skidding. On the other hand, the country’s trade surplus widened more than expected to AUD2.6bn (USD2.5bn), the seventh straight month of sizable surpluses and a big boost to incomes and investment. (Starbiz)

EU: Exports, investments hold back expansion
European export growth slowed and investment stagnated in the third quarter, countering a gain in consumer demand and curbing an economic expansion. Exports from the 16-member euro region rose 1.9% from the second quarter, when they increased 4.3%, the European Union’s statistics office in Luxembourg said. Investment stalled after rising 1.7% in the second quarter, while spending growth by consumers accelerated to 0.3% from 0.2%. GDP growth eased to 0.4% from 1%. (Bloomberg)

EU: Record low rates
The European Central Bank (ECB) has kept interest rates at a record low as investors look to president Jean- Claude Trichet for an announcement on how the bank will fight the worsening sovereign debt crisis. ECB officials in Frankfurt set the benchmark lending rate at 1% for a 20th month, as predicted by all 52 economists in a Bloomberg survey. (Starbiz)

EU: Spain, Ireland for privatization
The Spanish government is looking at auctioning stakes in its national lottery operator and airports, while Ireland will look at privatizations in its electricity and gas sectors as part of a joint European Union and International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout package. News of privatization plans came as it emerged that the eurozone bailout fund will next month begin issuing debt on behalf of embattled member states. (Starbiz)

US: Home sales rise, job market improves
Pending sales of US existing houses unexpectedly jumped by a record 10% in October, indicating the industry at the center of the last recession is stabilizing as the job market improves. The increase in the number of Americans signing contracts to buy previously owned homes followed a 1.8% drop in September, the National Association of Realtors said in Washington. Another report showed claims for jobless benefits over the past month on average dropped to a two-year low. (Bloomberg)

US: Nov car sales show sector in recovery
After a year of watching car sales slowly increase month by month, industry executives are finally willing to firmly declare that the US market is in recovery. People who had been too afraid to make a big car purchase are finally coming back to dealerships, a little more confident that they won't lose their jobs. And that's reflected in November's car sales figures: Industry sales were up 16.9% for the month compared with a year ago. Ford, General Motors, Chrysler, Honda, Nissan and Hyundai all posted double-digit gains. (BT)

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