Daily Archives: Nov 9, 2011

Hot on the heels of Blackrock rating Peruvian bonds a better bet than British sovereign debt, Moody’s has given Peru’s banking system the thumbs-up.

Thanks to dynamic, investment-led economic growth, strong earning prospects and good asset quality, the outlook for Peruvian banks is stable, even “robust”, according to Moody’s.  Read more

Europe might be in the doldrums and the US is still just muddling through. But thank goodness for China. The world’s biggest auto market was the sole bright spot in General Motors’ third quarter earnings results.

But can the good times last? Read more

A roulette wheelIt’s a question that doesn’t always go down so well in Brazil: just how risky is the country’s banking system? In light of the recent disaster with mortgage-backed securities abroad and the current crisis among US and European banks, Brazilians are always very quick to defend their own banks.

Well, Standard & Poor’s has just come to their own, more measured, conclusion on Brazil’s banks and the answer to the original question is: well, only a bit. Read more

It’s been a few years since there was serious talk of the Argentine government renationalising former energy monopoly, YPF.

But just days after the company, now controlled by Repsol of Spain, announced a monster shale oil discovery, one of Argentina’s former top privatisation promoters under former President Carlos Menem says the state should return to the driving seat of YPF. Read more

If proof were needed of the impact of Kenya’s collapsed shilling, look no further than half-year results for the country’s biggest telephone company.

Safaricom net profits for the six months to the end of September, out on Wednesday, are down 48.3 per cent, to 5.4bn shillings ($55m). Read more

Diligenta, a division of Tata Consultancy Services, India’s biggest IT outsourcer, landed its biggest UK deal on Wednesday – a $2.2bn contract for running the 3.2m pensions, investments and insurance policies of Friends Life.

And the fact that a deal of this size can still be done in Europe, with its economy struggling, is a welcome sign for India’s outsourcers who are worried about prospects in the region, their second most important market after the US. Read more

Warsaw’s foggy streets are a continent away from Rome’s piazzas but that didn’t stop worries about Italy’s economy and the future of Silvio Berlusconi hammering the zloty on Wednesday.

The Polish currency was down about 3.3 per cent against the dollar and 1.2 per cent against the euro as concerns over the eurozone’s third largest economy translated into heightened increased risk aversion that hit Poland and other emerging markets hard. Read more

Jawaharlal Nehru, former prime minister, would not have been amused  1953Even when the Brics have something sensible to say, they get muddled trying to say it.

Beyondbrics reported earlier on an apparent failure of co-ordination between India and China over a joint statement, urging the developed world to “adopt responsible macroeconomic policies to handle the issues of debt and financial stability properly”Read more

The Kremlin’s anti-alcohol drive may be changing Russian drinking habits, but it has hit brewers in the pocket.

Reporting third quarter results on Wednesday, Carlsberg (CARL B:CPH), blamed rising costs and a contraction in its core Russian market for a 21 per cent fall in profits. Read more

Cut rates! That must surely be the message being nailed to the door of the People’s Bank of China by any passing property developer this week.

Wednesday brought more bad news on the state of the housing market, with sales falling, and falling fast. Read more

India and China have a long way to go to co-ordinate their strategies at the G20, not to mention between their own capitals.

The world’s two fastest growing large economies were at odds on Wednesday about a supposedly shared view on the challenges facing the world economy – and the failure of the developed world to deal with them. Read more

Moody’s on Wednesday downgraded the outlook for South Africa to negative from stable, citing heightened political risk and sluggish growth in a move that will add fuel to the debate about the direction Africa’s largest economy is headed. Read more

Two blows for India’s banks in one day. An outlook downgrade from Moody’s for the whole sector and a chunk increase in bad debt provisions at the State Bank of India (SBID:NSI), the biggest lender, which saw its shares plunge on Wednesday by 6.8 per cent. Read more

Goldman Sachs is looking to off-load a chunk of its remaining stake in Industrial & Commercial Bank of China for $1.54bn as the US bank seeks to insulate itself from possible future portfolio valuation losses.

This will be the third time Goldman has sold stock in ICBC, which has seen its share price fall by about 20 per cent since October 2010. A person familiar with the situation told beyondbrics Goldman was selling the shares to avoid further accounting losses on its ICBC holding. Read more

The latest bout of concern about the euro in general and Italy in particular has hit eastern European markets hard.

Hungary suffered especially badly on Wednesday, with the forint falling 1.4 per cent against the euro to its lowest level since April 2009, when CEE was close to financial crisis. The Polish zloty and the Czech crown weren’t far behind, falling by around 1.1 per cent. This isn’t funny, Silvio. Read more

* LCH.Clearnet lifts margin on Italian debt

* Chinese inflation in sharp fall to 5.5%

* Indian bank system cut to negative by Moody’s Read more

Most people in Bangkok right now are too busy sand-bagging their homes to worry whether they’ll be sugar available for their morning coffee, but that risk is, unsurprisingly, very much a concern of Thai sugar executives.

Mitr Phol, Thailand’s largest sugar producer, on Wednesday launched a takeover bid for Australia’s MSF Sugar (MSF:ASX), a move which will allow the Thai group to expand in Asia and make sure its sourcing operations are not over-exposed to any one region’s too damp, or too dry, weather. Read more

China, the world’s biggest energy user, is facing a growing diesel shortage as domestic fuel prices are increasingly out of line with global energy prices.

China periodically faces diesel shortages when the state-set diesel prices are below levels at which Chinese refineries can make a profit given prevailing international crude prices, because some producers shut down rather than sell diesel at a loss.  The supply problems are prompting speculation that the authorities may be forced to switch to market prices. Read more

Wednesday’s top picks from the beyondbrics team: why the IMF cannot be the eurozone’s saviour; Hernando de Soto on the free-market drive behind the Arab spring; the rate decision facing South Africa’s central bank; and the quiet revolution underway in south-east Asia. Read more

Indian automakers were hit by the biggest contraction in car sales in more than a decade in October, according to figures released on Wednesday.

That’s a major change of fortune for the country that was the world’s second-fastest-growing car market last year, behind China – where sales for October declined 4.2 per cent compared to last yearRead more