Archive forJuly, 2013

Spain’s economy continues to contract

As per preliminary data released by the National Statistics Institute, Spain’s economy shrank 0.1% in the second quarter, marking its eighth straight quarterly decline. The economy had contracted 0.5% in the first quarter.

IMF approves a second rescue loan for Greece

Yesterday, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a loan tranche of €1.72bn for Greece after the fourth review of the country. The IMF also waived the performance criteria for the end of July, in the absence of relevant data. Last week, Greece had completed the set of reforms required to receive the bailout payment.

Japanese inflation at 0.4% in June

Japan’s core consumer prices rose 0.4% y-o-y in June, marking the highest annual pace since November 2008, the Statistics Bureau said in a statement today. CPI came in stronger than expected, largely due to higher energy prices. The Bank of Japan has pegged inflation at 2% within two years.

China announces support measures to boost economy

Late Wednesday, the State Council announced various support measures in the form of tax breaks for small businesses, reduced fees for exporters, and widening of financing channels to speed up railway development plans. The tax cuts would come into effect August onwards.

China’s manufacturing activity slows in July

The flash HSBC/Markit China Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) fell to an 11-month low of 47.7 in July from 48.2 in June. The reading suggests continued slowdown in manufacturing sectors on weaker new orders and faster destocking, the agency said.

Japan upgrades economic view for third straight month

The Japanese Cabinet Office released its monthly economic report today, saying there are signs of a self-sustaining recovery. The report mentioned policies for aggressive monetary stimulus and generous state spending are taking effect as deflation was easing and growth was gaining momentum.

Japan PM Shinzo Abe wins upper house election

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s coalition, Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), secured a landslide electoral victory in Sunday’s upper house elections. As a result, LDP has cemented its control on both houses in the parliament, allowing Abe more freedom to pursue his ambitious growth agenda for Japan.

Moody’s upgrades US credit rating outlook to ‘stable’

Moody’s yesterday raised the US sovereign outlook to stable from negative, and affirmed its AAA rating, easing concerns of an economic contraction. The upgrade came after the government’s debt trajectory came in line with the criteria previously laid down by the rating agency.

China’s home prices rise 6.8% in June

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) released new home price data for China’s 70 major cities earlier this morning. Prices climbed 0.8% m-o-m in June, a slower pace compared with 0.9% in May. However, prices were up 6.8% y-o-y. Home prices in 63 of the 70 cities tracked by the NBS climbed m-o-m.

China’s Leading Economic Index rises 1% in June

Leading Economic Index of China rose 1% m-o-m in June to 263.8 after advancing 0.3% in May, the Conference Board said yesterday. The coincident economic index, a measure of current economic activity, edged up 0.8% in June vis-à-vis 0.6% in May.

Australia’s central bank hints at monetary easing while India’s central bank tightens liquidity

According to the minutes of the policy meeting of the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) held on 2nd July, the cash rate was kept unchanged from the previous month at 2.75%. However, despite a falling currency, RBA indicated a further monetary easing in the future. The minutes also revealed that the outlook for inflation was slightly higher due to the depreciation in currency. Separately, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced a set of fresh measures, including raising of both the marginal standing facility and the bank rate to 10.25% from 8.25%, to tackle a falling rupee.

China’s GDP growth pegged at 7.5% in Q2 2013

According to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics today, China’s GDP rose 7.5% y-o-y in Q2 2013 compared to 7.7% y-o-y growth in the first quarter. The growth figure was in-line with economists’ estimates. The drop was due to weak demand from overseas markets, which lead to a fall in output and investments. China is currently undergoing economic correction, with more focus on sustainable growth driven by consumption.

China’s growth may lower to 7%: Finance Minister

Yesterday, during the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue, the Finance Minister of China Lou Jiwei stated that the country’s growth for the current year may slow down further to 7% due to economic restructuring. The figure is much below the government’s target of 7.5% growth as announced in March. He also said that a minimum growth rate of 6.5% may be tolerable in the future.

Japan core machine orders rise 10.5% in May

Today, the cabinet office stated that the core machine orders in May climbed 10.5% m-o-m to ¥799.2bn on a seasonally adjusted basis. Orders jumped 16.5% y-o-y. Total number of machinery orders, including volatile segments, soared 12% m-o-m and 18.1% y-o-y in May to ¥2,269.6bn

IMF cuts global growth forecast to 3.1% in 2013

Yesterday, IMF lowered the global growth forecast for 2013 to 3.1% from a forecast of 3.3% in April. This was the fifth consecutive cut by the organisation, owing to weaker demand in the emerging economies and recession across the Eurozone. For 2014, the growth projection was lowered to 3.8% from the April forecast of 4%. IMF also warned of the potential downside impact of the US stimulus cut on emerging countries due to outward capital movement.

China’s CPI rises 2.7% in June; PPI slumps 2.7%

China’s consumer price index (CPI) rose 2.7% y-o-y in June, after increasing 2.1% in May, the National Bureau of Statistics said today. The upward shift was primarily led by a 4.9% surge in food prices. The reading remained well within the central bank’s target of 3.5% for the year. On m-o-m basis, the prices remained unchanged. In contrast, the producer price index (PPI) declined 2.7% y-o-y in June, after falling 2.9% the previous month. The PPI slipped for the 16th straight month due to lower commodity prices, overcapacity and falling demand. On m-o-m basis, the index was down 0.6%

Japan’s bank lending rises 2.2% in June: BoJ

Bank lending in Japan rose 2.2% y-o-y in June, its highest annual increase in four years, to ¥403.64trln (excluding trusts), the Bank of Japan (BoJ) said today. The increase depicts successful outcome of BoJ’s aggressive monetary stimulus. BoJ also released encouraging current account figures, with the surplus standing at ¥540.7bn in May, surging 58.1% y-o-y, following a surplus since last three months.

Italy’s economy likely to contract in 2013, says IMF

The International Monetary Fund (IMF), at the close of its annual consultation with Italy, posed a very dim outlook for the country’s economy. The IMF stated that Italy’s GDP is estimated to contract 1.8% from 1.5% announced in April, but raised growth forecast for 2014 to 0.7% from 0.5%. The IMF recommended a strong backing from the ECB through direct asset purchases and issue of long-term loans at lower rates. Italy’s economy stands at a very lean position currently, with unemployment rate above 12% and continuous contraction in GDP for the last seven quarters. The IMF also urged Italy to bring back the new taxation rules for properties.

China economic growth seen at 7.6% in H2 2013

The official China Securities Journal today reported an economic growth of 7.6% with an inflation rate of 2.5% in H2 2013 for the country. However, it expressed concerns over the potential bad loans by local governments, industrial overcapacity, surging investments in the volatile real estate sector and significant appreciation in the yuan.

Growth in China’s service sector slows in June

A report by the China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing and the National Bureau of Statistics revealed that the purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for the service sector in China dropped to 53.9 from 54.3 in May, mainly due to a seasonal fall in construction activity. The HSBC/Markit PMI for the services industry was 51.3, after growth in new orders hit a 55-month low. The service sector contributes around 50% to the Chinese economy.

Economic recovery in UK accelerates, says BCC

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) released the findings of its latest Quarterly Economic Survey this morning. The agency stated that economic recovery in the UK is gathering momentum, although it could be hampered by national and international factors. Export orders climbed 29%, while service export deliveries rose 36% during the quarter. David Kern, BCC Chief Economist, said that if the recent progress is sustained, the UK could see quarterly GDP growth of 0.6% in Q2 2013.

China’s PMI contracts in June

China’s HSBC Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for June shrunk for the second consecutive month to 48.2, its lowest reading in nine months, indicating further decline in the country’s manufacturing activities. The index stood close to the June flash reading of 48.3. New orders were down to 47.6 in June following a May reading of 48.7.