Wednesday, June 28, 2017
On 20 June 2017, Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI), a widely tracked provider of global indices, announced its decision to add China’s local currency shares (A-shares) to the MSCI Emerging Markets Index. MSCI will include around 222 large-cap Chinese equities in the index from June 2018, along with other international indices that cover Chinese stocks. The long-awaited decision, which came after three previous rejections by the global index provider, brought cheer to China’s stock markets. MSCI’s decision is seen as an acknowledgement of the progress made by China in opening its capital markets.
Monday, June 26, 2017
• Wall street finished almost flat amid low oil prices.
• Most European markets move lower as Brexit negotiations begin.
• Asian markets finished divergent on account of domestic cues.
Thursday, June 22, 2017
Greece gets next tranche of funds, averts default
On Thursday (15 June, 2017), Greece and its European creditors struck a deal on the next phase of Greece’s bailout programme to finally make some progress in the months-long bickering over the next stage of the programme. Eurozone ministers and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) offered an 11th hour credit lifeline to the debt-ridden country, ensuring that it would not default on €7 billion of the debt repayment scheduled in July.
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
In its latest monetary policy meeting on Wednesday, the US Federal Reserve (Fed) raised its target fund rate range by 25bps to 1–1.25%, despite concerns on weak inflation data. The central bank also unveiled a detailed plan for trimming its massive balance sheet. Although the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) policymakers acknowledged the recent series of weak inflation readings, they remained confident about inflation returning to the target range in the medium term.
Sunday, June 18, 2017
• US equities finished mixed amid flurry of economic data.
• European equities end lower as weakness in the US markets spills-over in the Europe.
• Domestic cues direct most Asian markets lower.
Wednesday, June 14, 2017
In April, when Theresa May announced her surprising decision to hold snap elections to strengthen the parliamentary presence of her party, the Conservatives were comfortably leading the Labour party in the polls. However, as the results came out, it was crystal clear that May’s gamble to strengthen her party’s position ahead of unpleasant Brexit negotiations has backfired. Although May’s Conservative party is still the largest in the Parliament with 318 seats of the total 650, the party lost its majority. The election results were at odds with May’s expectations of a significant increase in Conservative seats, with her party actually losing 12 seats and falling short of the 326 seats needed to form a majority government. In contrast, the Labour party performed much better under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.
Tuesday, June 13, 2017
• US benchmark indices finish mixed as most large cap stocks edge lower.
• European equities digest UK election outcome and European Central Bank’s (ECB’s) monetary policy.
• Asian equities close mixed as domestic economic data weighs.
Friday, June 09, 2017
Tourism has always been a prominent sector in Greece’s economy. Although the country’s economy struggled over the past several years since the unfolding of the Greek debt crisis, the tourism sector consistently outperformed all major sectors. For an economy hobbled by austerity measures, dependent on external bailouts and stuck in a vicious debt cycle, tourism plays a vital role in boosting the system. It supports around 20% of the jobs in Greece and remains crucial to the country’s economic recovery and prosperity.
Thursday, June 08, 2017
A leading ratings agency downgraded a number of Australian financial institutions last week but investors should not be too concerned. Despite the downgrades, the credit ratings of Australian banks are stronger than those of their global peers.
While there is cyclicality in bank earnings, the outlook for our banks remains sound despite the headwinds of a weakening residential housing sector and a “big bank tax”. Banks are money-making machines.
Wednesday, June 07, 2017
After postponing his decision to commit US participation in the landmark Paris Agreement at the G7 summit, US President Donald Trump announced that the US would pull out of the climate accord. Sticking with his campaign agenda of putting “America First”, he stated, “I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris”.