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Today's Headlines USA

  • Singapore Largest Foreign Investor in Indonesia in the First Half of 2014

    According to the Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM), Singapore is the largest foreign investor in Indonesia. In the first half of 2014, Indonesia received USD $3.4 billion worth of investments from Singapore. In total, foreign companies invested IDR 150 trillion (USD $12.9 billion) in Indonesia during the first six months of 2014. This is the highest amount of foreign investment that Indonesia has ever managed to attract in a six-month period. It also diluted fears that the legislative and presidential elections would cause a temporary slowdown.

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  • Fed Minutes: QE3 Ends in October 2014 but No Immediate US Interest Rate Hike

    Fed Minutes: QE3 Ends in October 2014 but No Immediate US Interest Rate Hike

    The US dollar continues to depreciate against emerging currencies after the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest FOMC meeting, released Wednesday (09/07), suggest that the US central bank will maintain historic low interest rates (0.0 - 0.25 percent) into 2015. The Fed informed that US interest rates hikes will only occur ”a considerable time” after the US asset-buying program (quantitative easing) has ended. Based on the latest minutes, this program is expected to end in October 2014.

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  • IMF: Despite Challenges, Global Economic Growth Expected to Improve

    IMF: Despite Challenges, Global Economic Growth Expected to Improve

    Head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Christine Lagarde stated on Sunday (06/07) that the institution expects improved global economic growth in the second half of 2014 as well as in 2015 supported by the assumption that China, the world’s second-largest economy, will expand between 7.0 and 7.5 percent in 2014, thus not showing a sharp slowdown. Later this month, the IMF will release its new global economic outlook. Lagarde said that forecasts will be slightly different from forecasts made in the April edition.

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  • World Bank Cuts its Global Economic Growth Forecast to 2.8% in 2014

    The World Bank cut its global economic growth forecast because of the weaker outlooks for the economies of the USA, Russia and China, as well as the geopolitical tensions between Russia and Ukraine which triggered worldwide concerns. The Washington-based institution expects to see 2.8 percent of global economic growth in 2014, far below its January 2014 estimate of 3.2 percent. However, it kept its global growth forecasts for the next two years at 3.4 percent and 3.5 percent, respectively.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Appreciating on Weak US Data

    Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate appreciated 0.23 percent to IDR 11,603 per US dollar on Thursday (24/04). The currency's performance was particularly influenced by weak new US single-family homes sales. These sales fell more than expected and hit a five-month low in February 2014, implying that there is continued weakness in the US housing market. Meanwhile, US durable goods orders and US initial jobless claims, which will be released later today, are expected to be weak too.

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  • Bappenas Expects Indonesia to Record a Trade Surplus in 2014

    Indonesian exports are expected to rise 6.7 percent to IDR 1,399.7 trillion (USD $123.9 billion) in 2014 as a number of advanced markets (including the United States) have been showing signs of improving economies (the calculation of the figures was done by the Ministry of National Development Planning also known as Bappenas). Increased demand from these advanced markets will result in more exports of Indonesian manufactured products. Indonesian exports of natural resources, on the contrary, are expected to slow.

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  • Emerging Asian Currencies Rise on US Jobs; Market Waiting for FOMC Minutes

    Most emerging currencies in Asia appreciated against the US dollar on Monday (07/04) as the 192,000 jobs that were added by US employers in March 2014 are believed to be too low to trigger an early interest rate hike by the US Federal Reserve. The new jobs data did not meet expectation, particularly after the strong US private jobs report. Meanwhile, trading in Asia was subdued as China's financial markets were closed (due to the Qingming Festival also known as Tomb Sweeping Day).

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate Moves Sideways on Friday

    The Indonesian rupiah exchange rate moved rather sideways on Friday (04/04). Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the currency appreciated 0.06 percent to IDR 11,316 per US dollar. Most emerging Asian currencies tended to depreciate against the greenback as the market is waiting for US unemployment data, released later today. Overall, market participants remain confident in Indonesia's economic fundamentals as inflation eased to 7.32 percent (yoy) in March, while the country posted a trade surplus of USD $785 million in February.

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  • Market Waiting for Economic Data; Indonesian Rupiah Depreciates 0.25%

    The Indonesian rupiah exchange rate depreciated 0.25 percent to IDR 11,323 per US dollar on Thursday (03/04) according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index. Analysts Rangga Cipta (Samuel Sekuritas Indonesia) and Zulfirman Basir (Monex Investindo Futures) expect the rupiah to move sideways or weaken toward the end of the week as the market is waiting for various data, including the meeting of the European Central Bank regarding its interest rate (03/04), US unemployment, US nonfarm payrolls and US ISM Non-Manufacturing PMI.

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  • Indonesia Rupiah Rate Up 0.15%; Market Participants Waiting for US Data

    Indonesia Rupiah Rate Up 0.15%; Market Participants Waiting for US Data

    Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate appreciated 0.15 percent to IDR 11,647 per US dollar on Wednesday (26/02). All through the day, the currency traded within a fairly narrow trading range, possibly due to market participants' wait and see attitude ahead of the release of important US economic indicators. As the US economy is improving and the US unemployment rate is declining, the Federal Reserve may wind down its quantitative easing program in a more aggressive manner soon.

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Latest Columns USA

  • Indonesia's IHSG Stock Index Falls Slightly on Wednesday amid Profit Taking

    Without any real negative global reasons, Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) was down 0.20 percent to 4,349.42 points. Apparently, market participants were looking for profit taking after the index rose sharply in the last couple of days. There may also have been the psychological influence of the gaps at 4,191-4,225 and 4,072-4,102 that still need to be closed. Will the IHSG close these? Compared to the general upward trend of Asian indices, it seems strange if the IHSG would deviate from this trend only to close the gaps.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market: Overview and Analysis of Last Week's Performance

    Although many global indices were up, Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) fell a total of 2.93 percent during last week's trading. One important issue on global indices is the tapering off of the Federal Reserve's quantitative easing (QE3). On 17 and 18 September, the next meeting of the FOMC is scheduled, which is expected to discuss the future of QE3. Notably, as the meeting comes closer, most global indices in fact rise. Thus, market players seem to have become less concerned about an end to QE3.

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  • Indonesia's IHSG Index Finishes Week with a 0.53% Rise

    Contrary to Thursday's trading day (05/09) when the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (IHSG) opened strong but ended in the red, on Friday (06/09) it was the other way round. The IHSG started negative but ended the day 0.53 percent up to 4,072.35 points. Factors that made a negative impact on the IHSG were the continueing fall of the rupiah as well as speculation that Indonesia's foreign exchange reserves would decline again at end-August. However, a number of rising Asian indices influenced the IHSG in a positive way.

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  • Indonesia's Benchmark Stock Index Fails to Join Rising Asian Indices

    Indonesia's Benchmark Stock Index Fails to Join Rising Asian Indices

    Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG) started rather well on Thursday's trading day (05/09) despite the fact that most analysts expected a weakening index. Positive market sentiments were triggered by rising Asian stock indices (brought on by yesterday's rising indices on Wall Street). However, as the rupiah continued its downward spiral, market players began to exit the market, thus resulting in the 0.55 percent fall of the IHSG to 4,050.86. Foreign investors were net sellers of Indonesian assets, while domestic players recorded a net purchase.

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  • Indonesia Stock Index Rebounds on Tuesday; Rupiah Depreciates

    Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) rebounded on Tuesday (03/09) amid rising Asian stock indices inflicted by optimism about economic recovery in China and the USA. The IHSG rose 1.53 percent to 4,164.12 points. Agribusiness and mining stocks were the top performers today, while the miscellaneous industry, which fell 0.09 percent, was the only sectoral index on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) that was down. The rupiah depreciated against the US dollar as investors are concerned about July's USD $2.3 billion current account deficit.

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  • Market Update: Eurozone Posts Good Data, USA Waiting for Decisions

    Most European stock indices rose sharply on Monday (02/09) as investors were happy to see favorable industrial data from China and the Eurozone. The benchmark stock indices in Paris, Frankfurt, London and Amsterdam climbed up to 1.8 percent. Trade was relatively quiet as Wall Street was closed due to Labor Day celebrations. However, it may be a 'calm before the storm' because on Friday (06/09) new official data about U.S. job creation will be released, while next week more clarity about a military operation in Syria is expected.

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  • Jakarta Composite Index Rebounds amid Rising Asian Indices

    Jakarta Composite Index Rebounds amid Rising Asian Indices

    Rising Asian stock indices from the start of the week have supported Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG) to follow suit on Tuesday (13/08). Despite mixed markets in the United States and Europe, the IHSG grew 1.19 percent to 4,652.40 points. Japan's Nikkei index, which weakened seriously after the country's disappointing Q2 GDP result, rebounded and had a positive impact on the IHSG. Lastly, positive European openings made sure the IHSG would stay in the green zone.

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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 Benchmark Index (IHSG) Rises 1.88% on Tuesday

    Yesterday's rising indices on Wall Street, high expectations of companies' financial reports and positive statements regarding economic growth in China resulted in a good day at the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX). Indonesia's main stock index, the IHSG, rose 1.88 percent to 4,767.16 on Tuesday (23/07), even though technical indicators seemed to predict a weakening of the index. Also the continued fall of the Indonesian rupiah did not turn investors away from the market. In fact, foreign investors were net buyers of Indonesian stocks.

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  • Indonesia's Stock Index Ends Week in the Plus, while Asia Weakens

    Indonesia's main stock index (IHSG) ended the last trading day of this week in the plus. The index rose 0.08 percent to 4,724.41. The growth was limited because most Asian stocks fell as investors are looking for profit after a positive trading week. Global stock indices had a relatively good week after Ben Bernanke stated that the quantitative easing program (the Federal Reserve's monthly USD $85 billion bond-buying package), will continue as long as the US economy needs it, which gives rise to a low interest rate environment.

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