Daily Archives: Jan 4, 2013

Most people probably don’t think Spam lunchmeat and Skippy peanut butter make a good pairing.

But Hormel Foods, maker of the canned curiosity, begs to differ. The Minnesota-based company on Thursday said it would acquire the Skippy peanut butter business from Unilever for $700m – the largest deal in the company’s history. Among the rationales for the move? China. Read more

a demonstration in support of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, December 15, 2012The Venezuelan government dropped something of a bombshell late Thursday night.

In the most revealing comment made since Hugo Chávez underwent cancer surgery in Cuba on December 11, a top official said the Venezuelan president was suffering from “a severe respiratory infection” that had led to “respiratory deficiency”. Read more

Is it the end of the world as we know it? The dollar up more than 1 per cent against the yen, 10-year Treasury yields up 12 bp in two days to their highest in eight months… aren’t these the early warnings of the potential for a general dumping of EM assets as the QE liquidity that has sloshed around the world in search of yield starts flowing back home? Read more

Opening the only five-star hotel in Iraq two years ago was a bold move by any standards. Throw in marketing cigarette makers in Lebanon and distributing Shell Lubricants in Iraq, and Malia Group looks like a controversial risk-taker. Read more

The second in our series of guest posts on the outlook for 2013 is by Mohamed El-Erian of Pimco

In the 30 years that I have worked on and with developing countries, I have witnessed an amazing change in how conventional wisdom characterizes their economic relationship with the advanced world. And while conventional wisdom has not always kept pace with changes among this group of nations, it inevitably ended up in the right zip code.

Today, the situation is more complicated due to the fluidity of the global economy. Read more

Not a great start to the year for Hungary. The forint lost as much as 1.3 per cent against the euro on Friday before recovering a bit. And the yield on its 10-year bonds – at a more than six-year low of 6.05 per cent on Thursday – is closing the week 40 bp higher at 6.45 per cent.

It must all be causing some frayed nerves in Budapest, coming so soon after the country apparently shut the door on a loan package form the IMF and threw itself at the mercy of bond marketsRead more

Fines handed down on Friday by China’s anti-trust body to Korean giants Samsung and LG and four smaller Taiwanese manufacturers are a clear sign that China is getting tough on price fixing and other anti-competitive behaviour. Foreign companies can now expect the same treatment in China as they get in the US and Europe. Read more

* Emerging-market stocks fall from 17-month high on Fed minutes

* Abe moves to ease South Korea tensions

* Anglo sells Brazil iron ore stake

* Drugmaker hub hit as power gap at six-year high: corporate India

* India economic advisor suggests tax rise

* China fines LCD makers $56m

* Chávez infection called severe Read more

Zambia is not normally considered a part of the international sovereign debt investment landscape, but it made a stir back in September with a massively oversubscribed debut eurobond issue. Now the city council of the capital, Lusaka, is seeking to build on the success with its first municipal bond this year. Read more

Friday’s picks from the beyondbrics team: Foxconn is expanding globally but replicating its management model elsewhere will be tricky; could this be the year China’s macro-economic performance is reflected in the stock market? Controversy dogs the building of nuclear power plants in Eastern Europe; Argentina celebrates the return of the Libertad; plus, Lenovo follows Apple’s lead in marketing. Read more

This week’s announcement that Zimbabwe will no longer evict owners from properties covered by international investment protection agreements has been derided as “locking the stable door after the horse has bolted” by John Worsley-Worswick, who heads Justice for Agriculture (JAG), an activist group. He has little faith in the pledge by Herbert Murewa, lands minister, to honour the terms of Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements (BIPPAs) that Harare has signed with foreign governments. Read more

After the fatal assualt and gang-rape of a 23 year-old woman in Delhi last month, Tech Mahindra – a technology and consulting company in the Mahindra Group – has made free to the Indian public an application designed to “help make our streets safer for women”Read more

* Asian shares fall on Fed news

* India economic advisor suggests tax rise

* China fines LCD makers $56m

* Australian shops rations formula amid Chinese rush

* Chávez infection called severe

* China home prices up again Read more