Below is a list with tagged columns and company profiles.

Today's Headlines BI Rate

  • Lower Oil Imports in Q3-2013 will Support Indonesia's Weakening Rupiah

    The Indonesian government assumes that the recently increased prices of subsidized fuels will translate into lower oil imports from the third quarter of 2013. Lower oil imports will result in lower demand for foreign currencies and, as such, will support Indonesia's currency, the rupiah. The value of the IDR rupiah is also influenced by market participants' expectation of inflation. Indonesia's central bank (Bank Indonesia) projects inflation to rise to 2.77 percent in July, and to slow down to 1 percent in both August and September.

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  • Indonesian Banks Post Good Financial Results in Semester I-2013

    Despite a higher benchmark interest rate, higher inflation, a weakening rupiah, and global economic turmoil, four out of seven Indonesian banks that released their financial results over the first half of 2013, have posted double-digit growth. The seven banks show a combined growth of 16.2 percent. Although it is an impressive figure, it is a couple of percentage points lower than last year's performance. Indonesia's economy has slowed down to an annual economic growth of six percent and this has impacted on domestic demand for credit loans.

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  • Indonesian Government: No Need for Panic over Weakening Rupiah

    Although Indonesia's currency, the IDR rupiah, has continued its weakening trend, Indonesian authorities are reassuring the people that this development is not as much caused by domestic factors but rather due to the rising US dollar against other currencies. According to data from Bank Indonesia, the Indonesian rupiah has weakened 5.99 percent to the US dollar in 2013. It is also clear that the central bank of Indonesia has decided to let the rupiah depreciate gradually instead of using its foreign exchange reserves to support the currency.

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  • Weakening of Indonesian Rupiah Against US Dollar is Part of Global Trend

    According to various analysts and the central bank of Indonesia, the weakening of the IDR rupiah should not be too alarming as there currently is a global trend in which currencies, worldwide, weaken against the US Dollar. This situation is triggered by the economic recovery that has been experienced by the world's largest economy recently. Compared to other ASEAN members, the rupiah's decline is normal. The central bank adds that foreign capital inflows will return and will strengthen the country's currency.

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  • Inflationary Pressure due to Indonesia's Higher Food Prices during Ramadan

    Prices of certain food products in Indonesia have risen steeply during the first week of Ramadan, the Islamic fasting month. Higher prices are a sensitive issue at the moment as the country is fighting higher inflation after subsidized fuel prices were increased in June. Therefore, the central bank raised its benchmark interest rate by 50 bps to 6.50 percent last week. If inflation exceeds 2.3 percent in July (month to month) then it might result in another upward revision of the interest rate, thus slowing down Indonesia's economic growth.

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  • Central Bank of Indonesia Raises Benchmark Interest Rate to 6.50%

    The central bank of Indonesia, Bank Indonesia, has raised its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) and deposit facility rate (Fasbi) by 50 bps to 6.50 percent and 4.75 percent respectively. Bank Indonesia governor Agus Martowardojo said that this policy change is necessary to keep Indonesia's inflation figure within the target range. Last month, prices of subsidized fuels were raised by the government, which led to higher inflation in June (5.90% YoY). However, the impact of higher fuel prices is expected to make a deeper impact in July.

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  • Indonesian Motorcycle Sales Strong, but may Slow down in Second Half 2013

    Motorcycle sales in Indonesia rose 20 percent (year-on-year) to 661,282 units in June 2013. The head of the commercial department of the Indonesian Motorcycle Industry Association (AISI), Sigit Kumala, said that sales peak in June and July because of the Lebaran tradition that follows the holy fasting month (which starts tomorrow). After this fasting month, many Indonesians go back to their places of birth for a couple of days. Motorcycles are one of the modes of transportation used for this short holiday.

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  • Bank Indonesia Raises its Interest Rate to 6.0% to Support the Rupiah

    Bank Indonesia - BI - Interest Rate Increase 6% - Indonesia Investments

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) decided today to raise its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points to 6.0 percent. The decision was made amid concerns about the inflationary impact of a hike in subsidized fuel prices (planned this June) as well as increasing uncertainty in global financial markets as central banks' may scale back stimulus programs. The Indonesian rupiah has weakened considerably in 2013 and forms the worst performer in Asia after the Japanese yen among the 11 most-traded currencies tracked by Bloomberg.

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  • Statistics Indonesia: Indonesia Records Deflation of 0.03 Percent in May

    According to data released by Statistics Indonesia (Badan Pusat Statistik, abbreviated BPS), a non-departmental government institution, Indonesia's inflation figure eased 0.03 percent (month-to-month) in May 2013. The Head of BPS, Suryamin, said that it was the first time since ten years that the country experienced deflation in the month of May. The deflation figure is particularly triggered by the government's policy to allow for more imports of certain food products (such as onions, garlic, tomatoes, and chili).

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  • Bank Indonesia Revises Down GDP Growth, Interest Rate Kept at 5.75%

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia, or BI) kept its benchmark interest rate at 5.75 percent and its overnight deposit facility rate (FASBI) at four percent as the country's core inflation figure is still within the target range of the central bank (3.5-5.5 percent). Core inflation currently stands at 4.12 percent (YoY). However, as the price of subsidized fuel is expected to rise in June, inflation may increase and could trigger a policy response by Bank Indonesia later this year.

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Latest Columns BI Rate

  • Government Stance on Indonesian Economy and Investors' Reaction

    Last week Friday (30/08), Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) ended 2.23 percent up to the level of 4,195.09 points, continuing its three-day 'winning streak'. Underlying reasons being the central bank's new policy package (that was released as a response towards the negative impact of global turmoil on Indonesia's financial stability) and the higher benchmark interest rate (BI rate). The BI rate was raised 50 basis points on Thursday (29/08) to 7.0 percent to stabilize the weakening rupiah that fell to IDR 11,000 per US dollar.

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  • Indonesia Stock Exchange (IHSG) Extends 'Winning Streak' on Friday

    The decision of Indonesia's central bank (Bank Indonesia) to raise its benchmark interest rate by 50 basis points to 7.00 percent and its deposit facility (Fasbi) by 0.50 percent to 5.25 percent seem to have had a good impact on the value of Indonesia's stocks and the rupiah. Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) rose 2.23 percent to 4,195.09 points on Friday (30/08), implying a three-day winning streak. Since the first trading day of this year, the IHSG is down 3.47 percent.

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  • Indonesia Stock Index (IHSG) Continues Rebound with 1.92% Rise

    For the second day in a row Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) was able to post a gain. Today, it rose 1.92 percent to 4,103.59 points. This rebound is possibly the result of the higher key interest rate. Yesterday, it was announced that the central bank (Bank Indonesia) scheduled an extra meeting to discuss monetary policy. Immediately speculation emerged that the BI rate might be raised by 50 basis points. And indeed it was raised, much to the liking of many investors and analysts.

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  • Current Account Deficit of Indonesia Expected to Ease to 2.5% of GDP

    Indonesia's current account deficit, which caused much alarm among the investor community, is expected to ease to about 2.5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in the second half of 2013. This assumption is supported by Indonesia's central bank and various analysts. The country's current account deficit reached USD $9.8 billion or 4.4 percent of GDP in Q2-2013. In combination with the weakening rupiah, higher inflation and the possible end to the Federal Reserve's quantitative easing program, investors have been pulling money out of Indonesia.

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  • Indonesian Government Reacts to the Impact of Global Financial Turmoil

    Despite the announcement of an economic policy package aimed at overcoming the impact of global financial turmoil, Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG) was not able to end the week on a positive note, while the value of the rupiah on the spot market depreciated 1.68 percent to IDR 11,058 per US dollar on Friday (23/08) amid a majority of strengthening Asian currencies, including the Indian rupee (0.67 percent) and the Thai baht (0.28 percent). Based on Bank Indonesia's mid rate, the rupiah fell 4.4 percent against the US dollar to IDR 10,848 last week.

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  • Indonesia's Main Stock Index (IHSG): the Ship that is Rocked by a Storm

    For several weeks now, Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG) has been experiencing a sharp correction. As I wrote in my previous columns, market participants have been waiting for several important macro economic data, to wit Indonesia's economic growth figure for the second quarter of 2013, the July 2013 inflation rate, and the country's trade balance statistics for the first six months of this year. Now all above results have been released, we can analyze further the impact of these macroeconomic results as well as investors' reaction to it.

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  • Profit Taking Turns Indonesia's Stock Index (IHSG) to Red Territory

    After two days of growth, Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG) became victim of profit taking on Thursday (15/08). Particularly domestic investors were eager to sell their Indonesian assets. Falling indices on Wall Street on Wednesday (14/08) in combination with global uncertainty about the end of the Federal Reserve's quantitative easing program made a negative impact on Asian stock indices, including the IHSG. Indonesia's central bank's decision to keep its benchmark interest rate at 6.50% was well-received by most investors.

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  • Amid Mixed Asian Markets Indonesia's Main Index Rises 1.02%

    After Wall Street turned back into the green zone on Tuesday (13/08) and was accompanied by continued rising stock indices in Europe, it provided good support for Asian stock indices on Wednesday (14/08), including Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG). Indonesian mining commodities and plantation stocks fell but these losses were offset by rising big cap stocks (particularly finance stocks) and speculation that Indonesia's central bank will keep its benchmark interest rate (BI rate) at 6.50 percent.

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  • Possible End to Quantitative Easing Will Impact on Emerging Economies

    Possible End to Quantitative Easing Will Impact on Emerging Economies

    Worldwide, most stock indices fell on Wednesday (07/08), particularly Japan's Nikkei index, after it has been speculated that the Federal Reserve may phase out the third round of its quantitative easing program in September 2013. This program, involving a monthly USD $85 billion bond-buying package, aims to spur US economic growth while keeping interest rates low. However, one important side effect has been rising stock markets around the globe. Now the end of QE3 is in sight, investors shy away from riskier assets.

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  • Indonesia's Inflation Rate Accelerates to 3.29% in July 2013

    Indonesia’s inflation rate in July 2013 was significantly higher than analysts had previously estimated. The country’s July inflation figure accelerated to 3.29 percent. On year-on-year basis, it now stands at 8.61 percent, the highest inflation rate since many years. Particularly food commodity and transportation prices rose steeply. The main reason for Indonesia's high inflation is the reduction in fuel subsidies. In late June, the government increased the prices of subsidized fuels in order to relieve the ballooning budget deficit.

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