Daily Archives: Nov 2, 2012

You have to feel for some investors. Barely have they found somewhere to put their money when the cry of “bubble” goes up.

But with the hot inflows into emerging markets bonds driving yields to a record low and valuation models getting thrown out of whack, that’s exactly what some EM specialists are suggesting. Read more

Such is the shock at the destruction wrought by Hurricane Sandy in the US that it has gone largely unnoticed that long-suffering Haiti was hit very badly too.

Not only is Haiti’s death toll of 54 much higher given that only 10m people live in the impoverished Caribbean nation, but Sandy destroyed thousands of hectares of crops, making the import-dependent country even more reliant on expensive foreign food. Read more

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor OrbanHungarians took a holiday on Friday, a bridge day between an official break, November 1, All Saints’ Day, and the weekend – making this past week the second consecutive, three-day working affair. It may not yet be France – civil servants at least make up for the bridge day by working a Saturday – but it doesn’t do much for GDP growth.

But Viktor Orban, the prime minister, was doing his bit for local industry by signing a “strategic cooperation agreement” between the government and Gedeon Richter, the country’s largest drugs producer. Read more

Gazprom tends to come in for harsh criticism from equity analysts for extravagant and inefficient capital expenditure. So when the Russian gas monopoly pledged to invest $40bn in a project to produce and export east Siberian gas to the Asia-Pacific region this week, there was the usual chorus of complaint.

But investment bank Renaissance Capital has jumped to Gazprom’s defence, saying the high cost eastern project makes sense. Read more

How much higher can Turkish stocks go? The Istanbul market slipped 1.6 per cent in profit-taking on Friday. But that still leaves it within a whisker of the all-time high hit on Thursday, when the ISE 100 index closed at 72,552.

Turkish stocks have gained 46 per cent this year, making Turkey the third-best equity market in the world, behind only Venezuela and Egypt. The bulls put a lot of weight on hopes that Fitch might next week become the first international credit agency to raise Turkey to investment grade. But the bears aren’t convinced that this will happen – or that, even if Fitch delivers, that there’s much scope for further advances in equities. Read more

When it comes to trade, sub-Sarahan Africa is highly exposed to the eurozone, isn’t it? You would think so, given the warnings from the IMF to that effect.

But park your assumptions for one minute. Yes, any eurozone slowdown hurts African trade. But not by as much as a slowdown from other parts of the world, and the eurozone dependency is falling. Read more

Things are going from bad to worse for Interbolsa, Colombia’s largest stock broker which on Thursday saw its shares plummet 30 per cent after it warned that it was suffering “a temporary liquidity constraint.”

In another stunning development, Colombia’s financial markets regulator on Friday moved to take administrative control of the company. Read more

When it comes to internet users, India is growing fast. While the number of internet users globally rose 7 per cent last year, the figure was 41 per cent in India.

And this is creating some interesting opportunities – not least for clothing retailers. Read more

Portfolio investors’ 2012 advance into emerging markets goes on. Data from EPFR, the funds research company, provided to banks indicate that in the seven days to Wednesday, EM bond funds recorded an overall inflow for the 21st week in succession. EM equities posted an inflow for the eighth week in a row.

With the developed world’s central banks pouring easy money into the market, the global financial tide shows little sign of turning. Read more

* Bumi shares jump on counterbid hopes

* Brazil offers utility compensations of $9.4bn for renewals

* China suspends coal mines for Congress, boosting prices Read more

Shares in Bumi soared over 12 per cent on Friday on a Reuters report that financier Nat Rothschild was establishing a consortium to launch a counter bid for the troubled mining company.

Such a move would pit Rothschild against the billionaire Indonesian Bakrie family, which set up Bumi in a partnership with Rothschild that has since collapsed in acrimony.

It would also add political spice to the financial arguments, as the people Rothschild has reportedly approached with his plan include Prabowo Subianto, an Indonesian presidential election candidate, whose rivals in the 2014 will include Aburizal Bakrie, the Bakrie family head. Read more

Friday’s picks from the BB team: Sino-Japanese relations; why Asian equities markets are one-sided; and Israel estimates Iran’s nuclear power. Plus: images of Benghazi; Putin is relaxed and in charge; and the sanity of Mexico’s cartel killers. Read more

By Mark Tay

If you’re concerned about the environmental impact of baths vs showers, it might also be worth looking at what’s in your shampoo or bath soap. What about the palm oil?

Sustainable palm oil is the big new thing in the industry as producers are gradually certifying their plantations and processes to reduce their carbon footprints. Read more

By Dmitry Medvedev

In a few days many heads of state and government will take part in the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Vientiane, Laos. This forum is unique. Established in 1996, it brings together countries from Europe, South Asia and the Pacific region to debate our increasing global interdependence, including the need for deeper regional integration.

When Russia joined ASEM in 2010 it was of great importance, not only for us and the organisation itself, but for the entire system of international relations. It allowed us to literally “connect” two influential political and economic centres in the world. And it is increasingly clear that sustainable global development requires a system of interconnected yet independent regional integration mechanisms. Read more

Last autumn’s emerging market ‘currency quake’ has cast a long shadow over the local bonds of the developing world. But with the aftershocks fading, investors are beginning to return, write Robin Wigglesworth and Alice Ross. Read more

The crisis in the eurozone has been causing plenty of worries in Asia – particularly around the supply of credit to the region. But the bigger problem for many countries lies closer to home – in a dramatic reversal of the build up of surplus cash that has been Asia’s hallmark for the past decade.

Across the region, according to research from Morgan Stanley analysts, declining exports and strengthening domestic demand for goods produced locally and abroad are combining to cut current account surpluses. Read more

Wipro, India’s third-largest IT company by market capitalisation had a good morning on Friday – it beat profit expectations and saw its shares up over 2 per cent by early afternoon. It was the first time for quite a while that Wipro shares had done anything but fall after a quarterly results release.

The reason? The company forecast that IT services revenue for the quarter ending in December will rise 1.2-3.2 per cent, quarter-on-quarter, to $1.56-$1.59bn, in line with expectations. Read more

* Brazil offers utility compensations of $9.4bn for renewals

* China suspends coal mines for Congress, boosting prices

* Indonesia growth seen exceeding 6% reduces need for rate cut Read more

Rapid economic reform in Myanmar and the easing of western sanctions have been touted as great news for the country’s people and economy.

But the benefits are not confined by borders. The country’s opening up is also giving exporters in neighbouring Thailand a badly-needed boost amid a steady slide in demand from other parts of the world. Read more

Barely one month after Interbolsa said it planned to expand into Chile and Peru, investors in Colombia’s largest brokerage were greeted with a bombshell.

On Thursday, the company warned that its trading wing was facing a “temporary liquidity shortage”, which, according to analysts, means it will be hard for Interbolsa to borrow money based on the money the brokerage is making.

The stock closed down 30 per cent to hit an all time low of 980 pesos. Read more