22 November 2019

Macro Economy

  • Negative interest rates often seemed to be aimed mainly at achieving a more competitive exchange rate, which might well have been criticized as a “beggar thy neighbor” policy. Photo: Bloomberg

    What next for unconventional monetary policies?

    - Nov 21, 2019 11:19am
    The Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the central bankers’ club in Basel, Switzerland, recently conducted an in-depth evaluation of the unconventional monetary policies that have become the norm in many countries since the 2008 financial crisis....
  • US and other equities are trending toward new highs, and there is even talk of a potential “melt-up” in equity values. Photo: Reuters

    Why financial markets’ new exuberance is irrational

    - Nov 21, 2019 10:57am
    This past May and August, escalations in the trade and technology conflict between the United States and China rattled stock markets and pushed bond yields to historic lows. But that was then: since then, financial markets...
  • A US-China trade deal is still elusive, and negotiations may be getting more complicated, experts say. Photo: Xinhua

    ‘Phase one’ of US-China trade deal may not be inked this year

    Nov 21, 2019 8:16am
    Completion of a “phase one” US-China trade deal could slide into next year, trade experts and people close to the White House said, as Beijing presses for more extensive tariff rollbacks and the Trump administration counters...
  • The Federal Reserve's 17 policymakers agreed that pushing borrowing costs below zero “did not appear to be an attractive monetary policy tool in the United States”. Photo: Bloomberg

    Fed shows little appetite for bold policy change sought by Trump

    Nov 21, 2019 7:34am
    As US Federal Reserve officials hone their monetary policy playbook in preparation for the next economic downturn, it appears they will eschew more controversial approaches tried by other global central banks, including one that President Donald...
  • A file picture shows some industrial buildings in Ngau Tau Kok. Hong Kong needs to revive its manufacturing sector, but with select high-end segments, the author says. Photo: HKEJ

    HK needs to bring back manufacturing, albeit high-end

    - Nov 20, 2019 6:57pm
    Hit by months-long social unrest and the Sino-US trade war, Hong Kong’s economy has entered a technical recession and the prospects going forward appear anything but promising. The government has launched a series of relief and...
  • The People's Bank of China lowered the one-year loan prime rate by five basis points to 4.15 percent. Photo: Bloomberg

    PBoC cuts lending benchmark slightly, as expected

    Nov 20, 2019 9:50am
    China’s central bank cut its new benchmark lending rate on Wednesday for the third time since its debut in August, as widely expected, Reuters reports. The one-year loan prime rate (LPR) was lowered by five basis...
  • US President Donald Trump presides over a cabinet meeting at the White House on Tuesday. Photo: Reuters

    Trump: US to hike tariffs if no China trade deal is reached

    Nov 20, 2019 9:31am
    The United States would raise tariffs on Chinese imports if no deal is reached with Beijing to end a trade war, US President Donald Trump said, threatening an escalation of the spat that has damaged economic...
  • Analysts say the unexpected cut shows the central bank is keen to ease investor worries that higher inflation will prevent it from delivering fresh stimulus measures. Photo: Reuters

    China cuts key liquidity rate for first time since 2015

    Nov 18, 2019 11:37am
    China’s central bank unexpectedly trimmed a key interbank lending rate on Monday, the first easing in the liquidity tool in more than four years and a signal to markets that policymakers are ready to act to...
  • People walk past bricks placed by anti-government protesters to barricade a road in Central on Friday. Photo: Reuters

    HK economy expected to shrink 1.3% for the year amid protests

    Nov 15, 2019 6:20pm
    Hong Kong has revised down its estimate for economic growth this year amid increasingly violent anti-government protests and trade tensions between the United States and China. The government is now forecasting a contraction of 1.3 percent for...
  • Despite accounting for only about 18 percent of the global population, the advanced economies consume about 70 percent of the world’s energy, the vast majority of which (87 percent) comes from fossil fuels. Photo: Bloomberg

    Green markets for equitable growth

    - Nov 15, 2019 10:39am
    The climate crisis and the 2008 financial crisis are two sides of the same coin. Both were born of the same toxic feature of the world’s prevailing economic model: the practice of discounting the future. Protecting...
  • As the UK general election approaches, both Labour and the Conservatives are pursuing programs to boost minimum wages further. Photo:AFP

    A living wage for capitalism

    - Nov 15, 2019 10:17am
    At 3.6 percent, unemployment in the United States remains near its lowest level since the late 1960s. There are even signs that people who had previously dropped out of the labor force are being attracted back...
  • US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell testifies before a Joint Economic Committee hearing at Capitol Hill in Washington on Wednesday. Photo: Reuters

    Fed’s Powell pushes back on negative interest rates

    Nov 14, 2019 9:52am
    US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on Wednesday told Congress that negative interest rates aren’t appropriate for the US economy at a time when it is enjoying growth, a strong labor market and steady inflation. Pushing...
  • White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow (bottom right) laughs as US President Donald Trump makes a joke during his remarks at the Economic Club of New York at the Hilton Midtown Hotel in Manhattan on Tuesday. Photo: Reuters

    Trump says China trade deal ‘close’, offers no signing details

    Nov 13, 2019 9:58am
    US President Donald Trump dangled the prospect of completing an initial trade deal with China “soon” but offered no new details on the negotiations, Reuters reports. Markets had been on edge about Trump’s highly anticipated remarks...
  • Libra could become a widely used form of payment – partly because Facebook has over two billion monthly active users, but also because the existing financial system is full of inefficiencies, says the author. Photo: Reuters

    Is the global dollar in jeopardy?

    - Nov 11, 2019 11:24am
    Since the end of World War II, the United States dollar has been at the heart of international finance and trade. Over the decades, and despite the many ups and downs of the global economy, the...
  • It is estimated that Shenzhen's economy grew a marginal 0.5 percent in the third quarter. Photo: Reuters

    Will Shenzhen fall into recession?

    - Nov 8, 2019 11:37am
    It’s been circulating on the internet that Shenzhen’s economy nearly slipped into negative growth in the third quarter. According to official data, the city’s GDP expanded 6.6 percent year on year in the first nine months...
  • The trade deal may be signed this month by US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at a yet-to-be determined location. Photo: Reuters

    China and US agree to cancel tariffs in phases: Beijing

    Nov 7, 2019 4:12pm
    China and the United States have agreed in the past two weeks to cancel tariffs imposed during their months-long trade war in different phases, the Chinese commerce ministry said on Thursday. China and the United States...
  • Innovations like smartphones and new internet platforms have fundamentally changed the way that people connect and conduct business. Photo: Bloomberg

    The New Anti-Capitalism

    - Nov 7, 2019 2:07pm
    We are currently living through the most dramatic technological and economic transformation in the history of mankind. We are also witnessing declining support for capitalism around the world. Are these two trends connected, and if so,...
  • Protesters occupy a major thoroughfare in Mong Kok. More than five months of often violent street protests have battered the city’s retail and tourism sector. Photo: HKEJ

    HK business activity contracts at fastest pace in 21 years

    Nov 5, 2019 11:34am
    Business activity in Hong Kong’s private sector fell to its weakest in 21 years in October, weighed down by anti-government protests and softening global demand, according to an IHS Markit survey published on Tuesday. More than...
  • Analysts have believed that the central bank's room for monetary easing has been constrained by worries about rising debt risks. Photo: CNSA

    PBoC cuts medium-term loan rate for first time since 2016

    Nov 5, 2019 11:26am
    China’s central bank cut the interest rate on its medium-term lending facility (MLF) on Tuesday for the first time since early 2016, as policymakers work to prop up a slowing economy hit by weaker demand at...
  • Beijing is pressing the United States to remove a 15 percent tariff that was imposed on roughly US$112 billion worth of Chinese goods on Sept. 1, the reports said. Photo: AFP

    China asks US to remove more tariffs ahead of trade deal: report

    Nov 5, 2019 9:17am
    China is pushing US President Donald Trump to remove more tariffs imposed in September ahead of the signing of the US-China trade deal, Politico reported on Monday, citing three people familiar with internal discussions. Beijing is...