Retail sales in May 2013 rose 1.5 percent (month to month) or 8.6 percent (year on year) in Indonesia according to a publication of Indonesia's central bank (Bank Indonesia) released on Tuesday evening (16/07). The report made a positive impact on today's trading day as stocks in Indonesia's consumer goods sector rose 2.5 percent. Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG) gained 0.75 percent to end at the level of 4,679.00 points. Foreigner investors are still mostly avoiding the Indonesian stock market, but did record a net purchase today.
As usual, most investors were anxious awaiting for Ben Bernanke's speech about the possible withdrawal or continuation of the Federal Reserve's quantitative easing plan. On Wednesday (17/07), Bernanke spoke to the American Congress and confirmed that the Fed will adjust its bond buying program to developments in the US economy (particularly the development of the unemployment rate and inflation). If the economy is not ready yet, then the quantitative easing program will be continued. If the economy continues its recovery, then the program may be gradually phased out starting from the end of 2013. European stock indices and Wall Street reacted positive to the words of Bernanke. Asian markets, however, were already closed and will respond tomorrow to today's developments.