Stocks Slump in China But Rising in Europe

July 13, 2010

China‚Äôs stock market fell 1.6% after government indications that property market curbs will be retained.  Signs such have been effective already include a 0.1% dip in property prices last month and a smaller 608 billion yuan rise in bank loans.  Elsewhere in the Pacific Rim, equities declined 0.7% in Australia, 0.6% in Taiwan, 0.3% in […] More

A Shift in Focus from Euroland to the United States

July 2, 2010

A watered-down, more politically palatable proposed tax on Australian mining was announced by the new prime minister.  The Aussie Dollar and kiwi are up 0.4% and 0.5% against their U.S. counterpart on relief that growth in Australia will not be damaged as much as feared previously. The Swiss franc retreated 0.5% against the dollar and […] More

So Many Economic Problems and No Easy Solutions

June 29, 2010

The U.S. economy performed worse during the past thirty years than between 1950 and 1980 even though the more recent bloc of time had two fewer recessions.  The table below compares growth in real GDP, jobs, and consumer prices in the two periods and additionally isolates the past ten years.  All three economic variables have […] More

Stocks Tumble Around the World

June 29, 2010

Equities plunged 4.6% in China following a revision to the economy’s index of leading economic indicators to 0.3% from 1.7% reported originally.  This is a recently developed indicator of the Conference Board, which has been calculating a similar statistic for the United States and Europe. The Chinese market’s steep losses spearheaded other sharp stock market […] More

U.S. Economic Growth: Reflections

June 25, 2010

Revised U.S. GDP expanded 2.7% at an annualized rate (saar) last quarter and by a similar 2.4% between 1Q09 and 1Q10.  Although not as good as preliminary indications, growth in the United States has not been bad for an advanced economy.  GDP last quarter increased only 0.8% saar in Euroland and by 1.2% in Britain.  […] More

Verbal Vote of Confidence for Euro from China

May 27, 2010

China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange released a statement asserting China remains a long-term investor in Europe and denying rumors of any consideration of downsizing its euro portfolio.  The statement, although just words (but what else could realistically be said?) boosted world stocks and bond yields while depressing the dollar.  British PM Cameron also made […] More

Doubts Return on European Debt

May 11, 2010

Equities have swooned.  In a familiar pattern, the EUR 750 billion EU/IMF standby credit for ending the Euroland sovereign debt crisis produced only fleeting hope.  One concern is that all governments will not pass laws ratifying the accord.  Another is that the deal only postpones defaults.  A third is that the ECB’s purchase of bonds […] More

Dollar and Yen Up as Investors Opt for Greater Safety

April 27, 2010

The dollar has risen 0.7% against sterling, 0.5% against the euro, 0.4% relative to the Swiss franc, 0.3% versus the kiwi and 0.2% against the Australian dollar.  The Canadian dollar and yen are unchanged and up 0.3% against the greenback.  Investors fret that some EU governments won’t approve a bail-out of Greece or that it […] More

Not a Bad Day For China

April 15, 2010

April 15th was to have been the day that the U.S. Treasury Department declared Chinese officials currency manipulators, a step that would have paved the way for punitive commercial barriers against U.S. imports from that country.  Instead, the Obama administration suspended the deadline a couple of weeks ago, conducted some behind-the-scenes diplomatic mending, and enabled […] More

Greek Risk Again Weighing on the Euro

April 15, 2010

It took just four days for concerns about Greek debt to roar back.  A third of the post-aid package decline in Greek two-year yields has been reversed, and the Greek-German ten-year spread again exceeds 400 basis points.  Investors are convinced the Greek government will have to use the EUR 45 billion package very soon and […] More