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  • Failure to Attract Ratings Upgrade Could Inhibit Rupiah

    Failure to Attract Ratings Upgrade Could Inhibit Rupiah

    Over the last few months, we have seen a good deal of stability in the financial markets. This has been the experience in most asset classes, and the global value of the Indonesian rupiah is giving investors an idea of how the IDR is likely to continue to perform as an emerging market asset.

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  • Economic Update Indonesia May 2016: Inflation & Manufacturing PMI

    Economic Update Indonesia May 2016: Inflation & Manufacturing PMI

    The first day of the month - in case of a working day - implies that investors can count on the release of several macroeconomic data from Indonesia, specifically inflation and manufacturing activity. Statistics Indonesia (BPS) announced this morning (01/06) that Indonesia's consumer inflation reached 0.24 percent (m/m), or 3.33 percent (y/y), in May 2016. Meanwhile, the Nikkei Indonesia Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) eased to a reading of 50.6 in May from 50.9 one month earlier. Lets take a closer look at these data.

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  • Can the Indonesian Rupiah Continue to Rally?

    Can the Indonesian Rupiah Continue to Rally?

    Over the last few months, we have seen some impressive gains in the Indonesian rupiah (IDR) relative to the US dollar (USD). When we compare the performance of the IDR against the rest of the emerging market space, we can see that its gains are behind only the Brazilian real (BRL) and the Malaysian ringgit (MYR) for the period. This has prompted a wave of foreign export purchases as Indonesian consumers look to take advantage of the stronger currency.

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  • A Quick Look at Indonesia's Largest Listed Retail Businesses

    A Quick Look at Indonesia's Largest Listed Retail Businesses

    Indonesian retail businesses are optimistic that their performance will improve in 2016 on the back of rising purchasing power amid the government's decision to cut energy tariffs (fuel and electricity) and its plan to raise non-taxable income by 50 percent. These moves mean that Indonesian consumers (particularly in the lower middle class segment) should have more money to spend. Tutum Rahanta, Deputy Chairman of the Indonesian Retailers Association (Aprindo), says retail business can grow by 12 - 15 percent (y/y) in 2016, considerably higher than the 7 - 8 percent (y/y) growth pace realized last year.

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  • Unilever Indonesia to Rebound along with the Overall Economy?

    Unilever Indonesia to Rebound along with the Overall Economy?

    In 2015 Unilever Indonesia's net profit declined 1.2 percent (y/y) to IDR 5.85 trillion (approx. USD $443 million) due to weakened purchasing power of Indonesian consumers amid the economic slowdown. Last year Indonesia's GDP growth touched the six-year low of 4.79 percent (y/y). This year, however, economic growth is estimated to accelerate beyond the 5.0 percent (y/y) mark. Unilever Indonesia is a leading consumer goods producer in Indonesia that is mainly focused on home & personal care products as well as foods & refreshment products. How about its performance in 2016?

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  • Car, Motorcycle & Cement Sales: Assessing Indonesia's Purchasing Power

    Car, Motorcycle & Cement Sales: Assessing Indonesia's Purchasing Power

    To assess Indonesia's purchasing power and consumer confidence it is always useful to take a look at car and motorcycle sales because when people are confident about their financial situation and have enough money to spend then they tend to buy cars and motorcycles (motorcycles are particularly popular among Indonesia's huge middle to lower-middle class segment). Meanwhile, cement sales inform about property and infrastructure development. Property development is also closely related to purchasing power and consumer confidence because property development grows when people's demand for property rises.

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  • Hot Money Flowing into Indonesia's Bond & Stock Market. A Concern?

    Hot Money Flowing into Indonesia's Bond & Stock Market. A Concern?

    Some concern has been raised about the inflow of foreign 'hot money' into Indonesia amid accomodative monetary policies conducted by central banks of the Eurozone and Japan (the latter implemented negative interest rates in late-January). The world's carry traders are now seeking cheap funds in advanced economies and invest these funds in assets that have attractive returns such as Indonesian bonds and stocks. Indonesia's benchmark interest rate (BI rate) is still relatively high at 7.0 percent after a 25 basis points cut at Bank Indonesia's February 2016 policy meeting.

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  • Snapshot of the Indonesian Economy: Risks, Challenges & Development

    Snapshot of the Indonesian Economy: Risks, Challenges & Development

    Tomorrow (05/02), Statistics Indonesia is scheduled to release Indonesia's official full-year 2015 economic growth figure. Nearly all analysts expect to see a figure that reflects the continuation of slowing economic growth. Southeast Asia's largest economy expanded 5.0 percent in 2014 and this is expected to have eased further to 4.7 percent or 4.8 percent in 2015 on the back of (interrelated) sluggish global growth, low commodity prices, and weak export performance. Domestically, Indonesia has or had to cope with high interest rates and inflation (hence curtailing people's purchasing power and consumption as well as business expansion).

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  • Outlook Indonesia's Car Sales in 2016: Optimistic or Pessimistic?

    Outlook Indonesia's Car Sales in 2016: Optimistic or Pessimistic?

    Whereas the Indonesian Automotive Industry Association (Gaikindo), expects Indonesia's car sales to rise five percent (y/y) in 2016 on the back of improving economic conditions, US-based consulting firm Frost & Sullivan expects to see a 4.3 percent decline in the country's car sales this year as continued rupiah depreciation and persistently low commodity prices undermine Indonesians' purchasing power.

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  • Rupiah Likely to Remain Under Pressure

    Rupiah Likely to Remain Under Pressure

    Broad market trends in the Indonesian rupiah have held relatively consistent over the last year, with a modest devaluation seen against the US dollar. We did see fluctuations in these trends during the summer months but many of these moves came as a result of external influences. One of the best examples here is the media turmoil that posted during this period with respect to a slowdown in the Chinese economy, and this has left many investors wondering whether the rupiah will be able to stand on its own merits and reverse some of its earlier weakness.

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