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January 11, 2013
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  Top Stories 
  • China's exports jump 14.1% in December
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    Confirming a series of indicators that China's economy is picking up, the nation's exports rose a surprising 14.1% in December year-on-year, broadening the base of China's economic turnaround from domestic sources. Year-on-year comparisons of exports to both the U.S. and Europe turned positive in the latest month from November's negative figures. For the year, however, China's foreign trade grew 6.2%, short of the government's 10% goal. Business Insider (1/9) , The Wall Street Journal (1/10) , (China) (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Obama nominates chief of staff for Treasury secretary
    President Barack Obama nominated Jack Lew to succeed Timothy Geithner as U.S. Treasury secretary. Lew, currently Obama's chief of staff, must be confirmed by the Senate. If he is, one of Lew's first duties will be to work to overcome the next budget crisis, with Congress required to increase the U.S. debt ceiling in the next few weeks. Bloomberg (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • ECB chief says eurozone healing, recovery in prospect
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    Citing what he calls a "positive contagion," European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said the eurozone economy is firmly on a slow track to recovery. Draghi noted new stability in the region's bond markets, indicating that "fragmentation is being gradually repaired" and heralding a recovery that's likely to begin later in the year. Bloomberg (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Taxpayer-rescued AIG decides not to sue U.S.
    American International Group has elected not to join a lawsuit by its former chief challenging the terms of the U.S. bailout it received beginning in 2008. Word that AIG was considering such a move raised a public furor, and ultimately, said current CEO Bob Benmosche, "it is not acceptable socially for AIG to have taken this money and to think we can go back and sue the government." The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia)/Reuters (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Market Activities 
    Shares edged mostly lower Thursday in Europe, but U.S. stocks cautiously extended their recent advance, pushing the S&P 500 to a five-year high even as investors remained wary ahead of corporate earnings reports. The Stoxx Europe 600 slid 0.27% to 287.44, and the S&P 500 ended with a 0.76% gain at 1,472.12. Here is a continuously updated list of global stock indexes. The Wall Street Journal (1/11) , The Wall Street Journal (1/10) , CNNMoney (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • China trade boost, weak yen power Asian stocks
    A big jump in China trade figures for December and Japan's sagging yen helped boost stocks across Asia on Thursday. The Nikkei gained 0.70% to 10,652.64, the Hang Seng advanced 0.59% to 23,354.31, the Kospi added 0.75% to 2,006.80 and the S&P/ASX rose 0.32% to 4,723.00. MarketWatch (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Economic Trends & Outlook 

  • China's yuan loans ease as aggregate financing climbs
    A worrisome shift to nonbank credit in China is evident in the latest loan data, with new local-currency loans down more than expected in December while aggregate financing -- which includes nonbank lending -- climbed to 1.63 trillion yuan from 1.27 trillion yuan a year before. The apparent new dependence on shadow banking, the International Monetary Fund says, poses "new challenges to financial stability." Bloomberg (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Japan's central bank, government not likely to abandon fiscal discipline
    Strong signals from Japan's new government that it will be working hard to reverse deflationary momentum are likely to be tempered by a message from the central bank and government that fiscal discipline remains important for the medium and long term, sources say. The Bank of Japan is expected to decide this month on a joint statement with the government regarding a higher inflation target. Separately, the government is reported working on legislation to raise taxes on higher incomes. Yomiuri Shimbun (Japan) (1/10) , The Wall Street Journal (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Indonesia central bank again stands pat on policy rate
    Although Indonesia's domestic economy remains robust, the central bank kept its key interest rate at a record low 5.75% to help address the nation's current account and trade gaps. The bank said the rate, maintained now for 12 months, remains consistent with near-term inflation likely to hover between 3.5% and 5.5%. The Business Times (Singapore) (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Capital Markets & Financial Products 
  • China's mutual fund industry assets climbed 30% in 2012
    Mutual fund assets under management in China rose 30% in 2012 to US$450 billion, helped by the launch of 260 funds and a late-year rally in the A-share market. Money market funds in particular were a big gainer, accounting for 20% of all AUM in 2012, up from 14% a year earlier. Overall, the mutual fund industry is expected to have another banner year in 2013. (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Asia is expected to see surge in private-equity activity
    Nearly 3 in 4 private-equity industry professionals surveyed by Ernst & Young said they see activity picking up across Asia this year, spurred both by the drive to find new opportunities and a rise in institutional investor capital. The biggest institutions in particular will be looking this year for "higher growth, improving corporate governance and higher returns," said one PE investor in Southeast Asia. (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • India block-trading cap worries buy-side traders
    A cap of US$1.8 million on all block trades in India after the 30-minute morning window is causing concern among buy-side traders that execution costs will spike, harming the market. The rule, announced last month by the Securities and Exchange Board of India in response to an October market crash, is to be imposed within weeks. (1/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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