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October 1, 2012
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  Top Stories 
  • China manufacturing index registers 11th month of slowdown
    An HSBC purchasing managers' index for September recorded the 11th consecutive month of manufacturing contraction in China, although the degree of pullback was slightly better than in August. "The failure of both external and internal demand is weighing heavily on Chinese manufacturing," said Glenn Maguire, principal at consultant Asia Sentry Advisory. Separately, economists say China's consumer inflation probably cooled to less than 2% in September. Bloomberg (9/30) , China Daily (Beijing) (9/30) , China Daily (Beijing)/Xinhuanet (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Analysts see higher U.S. jobless rate
    Analysts expect the U.S. Labor Department to report a higher September unemployment rate this week, offering further confirmation of a sluggish economy and weak outlook. Looking a little further ahead, analysts are hoping Washington finds a way to put off the so-called fiscal cliff, whose presence at year's end poses the threat of added fiscal austerity at an especially weak juncture in the economy. Bloomberg (9/29) , Reuters (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Spanish budget might point to imminent request for rescue
    Spain's national debt is projected to rise to 90.5% of gross domestic product next year as the government nationalizes the bad debts of private banks and takes on other burdens with projected additional borrowing of $266.5 billion. With "huge political pressure on Spain already" to ask for European rescue aid, the figures announced by the Budget Ministry "seemed to be an indication that Spain would be asking for some official financing soon," said Megan Greene, director of European economics at Roubini Global Economics. Bloomberg (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Merkel's main opponent takes softer line on Greece
    The man selected as the main opposition candidate to become Germany's next leader said Chancellor Angela Merkel "must finally tell the German people the truth: Greece will not be able to borrow money on the capital markets in the coming seven or eight years [and] we will have to help it until then." The Social Democrats' Peer Steinbrueck added that Greece must live up to its obligations. Nonetheless, he faces a stiff challenge, with polls showing most Germans firmly behind Merkel's tough line on the eurozone debt crisis. Reuters (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Asset Allocation in a Non-Normal World
Peng Chen, CFA
Chief Executive Officer, Asia (ex-Japan)
Dimensional Fund Advisors
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  Market Activities 
  • Asian markets end mixed in a generally down week
    Anticipation of likely moves by Beijing to shore up slackening growth in China's economy helped limit the week's losses on Asian markets that grew over mounting concerns that political differences may undermine any resolution to the eurozone debt crisis. On Friday, however, markets were mixed, with the Hang Seng rising 0.38% to 20,840.38, the Nikkei dropping 0.89% to 8,870.16, the S&P/ASX ending flat with a 0.06% gain to 4,387.00 and the Kospi adding 0.38% to 1,996.21. Bloomberg (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Economic Trends & Outlook 
  • India's core industries post slow growth for August
    Eight core industrial sectors of India's economy posted only 2.1% growth for August, little more than half the rate of a year before. The underperformance helped drag down overall industrial output. Despite the lagging numbers, Reserve Bank Deputy Governor Anand Sinha said India is better positioned than China to recover from the global slowdown, given the greater prominence of domestic consumption in India's economy. The Economic Times (India) (9/28) , The Economic Times (India) (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Economists see clouds on horizon for Australia
    A survey of Australian economists reveals a gloomy outlook, with expectations that the central bank will cut rates to help address a slowdown initiated by declining export values and less investment in the mining sector. One major factor is an expected decline in demand for raw materials from an increasingly challenged China. Australian Financial Review (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Beijing is under pressure as yuan climbs against dollar
    U.S. quantitative easing and subsequent weakening of the dollar have also boosted China's yuan to its highest point against the U.S. currency since 1994. The gain comes at a particularly bad time for Beijing, given China's slackening economic growth and the current leadership transition. The Wall Street Journal (9/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Capital Markets & Financial Products 
  • Coaches help foreign exchange traders get an edge
    Beleaguered banks and narrower margins in the hyper-competitive world of foreign-exchange trading are pushing the search for any edge to boost returns. One is performance coaches, who delve into trader psychology for the clues and tips that can help traders stay ahead in an increasingly tough game. Reuters (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Industry & Regulatory Update 
  • China's financial services need modernization, leaders say
    Survival may be at stake for China's companies in manufacturing, production and services if the country's financial services sector isn't brought up to international standards. That was the message from leading financiers and academics at 60th-anniversary celebrations for Hebei Finance University. "It is urgent now to accelerate any necessary changes needed to support sustainable improvement of the finance sector, which would help promote the real economy," said Wang Xingnan, head of the financial department of Guangdong Finance University. China Daily (Beijing) (9/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Philippine exchange responds to transparency demands with new rules
    Addressing investors' calls for more transparency and timely data, the Philippine Stock Exchange is tightening reporting rules, with companies whose public float levels fall below 12% now required to submit public ownership reports each month rather than quarterly. Companies also must "establish an effective procedure for monitoring of public float," with a minimum of a once-a-month public float computation. Some companies have threatened to leave the exchange over the new rules. Business World (Philippines) (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Philippine central bank takes a look at shadow banking
    Joining a global chorus of concern over so-called shadow banking, the Philippines' central bank is looking at ways it might reduce associated risks. Shadow banking "is a new field -- in terms of regulation -- obviously because these have gone unregulated even and especially in the advanced economies. We will be careful in introducing new regulations as there may be unintended consequences," said bank Governor Amando M. Tetangco Jr. Business World (Philippines) (9/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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