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Today's Headlines China

  • Commodities Update: Why Coal Prices Will Remain Low

    Commodities Update: Why Coal Prices Will Remain Low

    The coal price will have serious difficulty to rise as long as crude oil prices remain low and China's economy remains in slowdown-mode. Weak global oil prices (expected to remain below USD $40 per barrel this month) - and the strong US dollar amid looming US monetary tightening - give a bad signal to other commodities, including coal, while the world's largest energy consumer China is struggling to combat its economic slowdown implying limited global coal demand.

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  • Currency Update: Indonesian Rupiah Heading towards 14,000/USD

    Currency Update: Indonesian Rupiah Heading towards 14,000/USD

    The Indonesian rupiah is again flirting with the IDR 13,900 per US dollar level after the central bank announced on Monday (07/12) that Indonesia's foreign exchange reserves fell further in November. Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the rupiah had depreciated by 0.19 percent to IDR 13,887 per US dollar at 15:30 pm local Jakarta time on Tuesday (08/12). Other factors that put pressure on the rupiah are the low oil price (giving rise to a strong US dollar), weak trade data from China, and the looming US interest rate hike.

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  • Steel Industry Indonesia Still Plagued by Chinese Competition

    Steel Industry Indonesia Still Plagued by Chinese Competition

    The overall capacity utilization of Indonesia's steel industry could grow to 80 percent from 50 percent currently. However, it will require government support. Hidayat Triseputro, Executive Director of the Indonesian Iron and Steel Industry Association (IISIA), is optimistic this target can be achieved as the government's push for infrastructure development is showing positive signs (in the second half of 2015 there have been more groundbreaking ceremonies for large government-led infrastructure projects across the country).

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  • China's Yuan in IMF's Special Drawing Rights: What is Impact on Indonesia's Rupiah?

    China's Yuan in IMF's Special Drawing Rights: What is Impact on Indonesia's Rupiah?

    China's yuan (also known as renminbi) was included in the International Monetary Fund's Special Drawing Rights (SDR) - with a weightage average of 10.91 percent - on Tuesday (01/12), a decision that will take effect on 1 October 2016. Other currencies in the SDR are the US dollar, euro, pound sterling and yen. This move implies that the currency of the world's second-largest economy is increasingly regarded as a global financial instrument and will be increasingly used in transactions across the globe and widely traded on foreign exchange markets.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: China & Fed Hike in Focus

    Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: China & Fed Hike in Focus

    Indonesian stocks and the rupiah weakened on Monday morning (30/11). Indonesia's benchmark Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) was down 0.84 percent to 4,522.09 points, while the Indonesian rupiah had depreciated 0.21 percent to IDR 13,830 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index) by 11:15 am local Jakarta time. Negative sentiments still stem from China and the looming Fed Fund Rate hike in December, while there are few to none domestic sentiments that can support the nation's assets.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah: Gaining on Improved Certainty about Fed Rate

    Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah: Gaining on Improved Certainty about Fed Rate

    Indonesian assets produced a strong finish on Friday (20/11). The benchmark Jakarta Composite Index and rupiah both strengthened considerably on increased certainty about the timing of higher US interest rates, while China announced it implemented more measures to encourage economic growth, giving rise to a stronger yuan (supporting stronger emerging currencies in Asia). Indonesian stocks rose 0.94 percent to 4,561.33 points, while the rupiah appreciated 1.10 percent to IDR 13,623 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index).

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  • Asian Stocks Expected to Be Under Pressure on Thursday

    Asian Stocks Expected to Be Under Pressure on Thursday

    Shares in Asia are expected to be under some pressure today as crude oil prices slid 2.9 percent overnight after the American Petroleum Institute released a report that stated US supplies grew unexpectedly by 6.3 million barrels. Other commodity prices were also down after the release of downbeat industrial output data from China on Wednesday. However, with China's positive October retail sales (posting the strongest gain of the year) there are few chances of seeing new massive stimulus from Chinese authorities. As such 'bad news' is no 'good news'.

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  • Stock Market & Rupiah Update Indonesia: China and Fed in Spotlight

    Stock Market & Rupiah Update Indonesia: China and Fed in Spotlight

    Indonesia's benchmark Jakarta Composite Index climbed 0.01 percent to 4,451.59 points on Wednesday (11/11) despite foreign investors recording a net sell of IDR 614.4 billion (approx. USD $45.5 million). Uncertainty persists in the global economy as more macroeconomic data from China signal weaknesses in the world's second-largest economy. Growth in output from China's factories declined to a six-month low in October (missing expectations), following earlier disappointing trade and inflation data. On the other hand, it triggers hope that Beijing will step up stimulus measures.

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  • Few Reasons to Get Excited about the Coal Mining Industry

    Few Reasons to Get Excited about the Coal Industry

    The global coal industry is still plagued by pessimistic sentiment. Not only has the global supply glut in combination with sluggish global economic growth put serious pressure on coal prices (while China introduced stricter coal quality tests on thermal coal imports), but most countries are also placing more emphasize on cleaner energy sources, which further curtail demand for coal. Coal prices are currently heading for a decade-low with January 2016 coal futures now at USD $52.55 per metric ton on the ICE Futures Exchange.

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  • Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah: Pressures due to China Inflation & Fed Rate Hike

    Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah: Pressures due to China Inflation & Fed Rate Hike

    Most stock indices in Asia fell on Tuesday's trading day (10/11) on concern that China's stalling economy negatively impacts on the pace of global economic growth, while markets are also bracing for a looming US interest rate hike before the year-end. Moreover, sentiments in Southeast Asia are not positive as the majority of Q3-2015 earnings reports have been unfavorable. Combined, it triggers a flight to safer haven assets. Indonesia's benchmark Jakarta Composite Index fell 1.08 percent to 4,451.05 points.

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Latest Columns China

  • Indonesia Stock Exchange Update: Jakarta Composite Index Falls 0.11%

    Indonesia Stock Exchange Update: Jakarta Composite Index Falls 0.11%

    The performance of Indonesia’s benchmark stock index (known as Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) was similar to the performance at the start of last week, possibly influenced by the presidential debates that took place a day prior to the past two Mondays. These debates, between the two presidential candidates (Joko Widodo and Prabowo Subianto), are broadcast live on national television and are important to outline each candidate’s vision and mission to the people. On 9 July 2014, Indonesians will vote for a new leader.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Down 0.05% on Friday

    As the market already expected that Indonesia’s benchmark interest rate (BI rate) would be kept at 7.50 percent in June 2014, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate did not undergo any significant fluctuations on Friday’s trading day. Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the currency had depreciated 0.05 percent to IDR 11,796 per US dollar by 16:25pm local Jakarta time. The US dollar had to cope with some pressures due to US retail sales (rising only +0.3 percent in May 2014) and weaker US jobless claims data.

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  • Foreign Investors Push Indonesia’s Jakarta Composite Index Up

    Although at the end of Wednesday’s trading day (11/06) Indonesia’s benchmark stock index (known as the Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) was up, the index had been moving in the red zone during most of the day. Moreover, the index did not get support from the Indonesia rupiah exchange rate nor did it get support from Asian stock indices which tended to decline after yesterday’s weakening indices on Wall Street. Fortunately, foreign investors recorded net buying, thus contributing to the 0.52 percent growth of the IHSG to 4,971.95 points.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Slightly Appreciating

    The Indonesian rupiah exchange rate appreciated slightly on Wednesday (11/06). According to the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the currency of Southeast Asia’s largest economy appreciated 0.04 percent to IDR 11,810 per US dollar. Reuters reported that the euro zone's monetary easing in combination with the recent improvement in China's economy offset the impact of higher US yields on Asia. However, investors are still waiting for several data, including the BI interest rate, the Eurozone’s industrial production, and US retail sales.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market Update: 1.25% Rebound on Tuesday

    Just as unexpected as yesterday when the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) fell 1.06 percent amid positive domestic and international circumstances, the IHSG made a surprise rebound on Tuesday’s trading day. Yesterday’s fall was exorbitant and unfounded and today market participants made up for that performance by accumulating stocks that had lost value. As a result the IHSG gained 1.25 percent to 4,946.09 points on Tuesday (10/06).

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  • Stock Market Anomaly: Jakarta Composite Index Declines, but Why?

    Stock Market Anomaly: Jakarta Composite Index Declines, but Why?

    Contrary to most Asian stock indices which were positively influenced by Japan’s higher economic growth as well as rising indices on Wall Street last Friday (06/06), the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as the Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) fell considerably on Monday (09/06). Not even the appreciating Indonesian rupiah exchange rate could push the index back into the green zone. At the end of Monday’s trading day, the Jakarta Composite Index declined 1.06 percent to 4,885.08 points.

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  • Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index up despite China and Rupiah Concerns

    It was interesting to follow the performance of the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (Jakarta Composite Index, abbreviated IHSG) on Thursday (05/06) as it managed to enter the green zone just minutes ahead of closing. Most of the trading day, the index had been in the red zone as Asian stock indices were mostly down on concerns about economic growth in China, the world's second largest economy. Furthermore, investors are still cautiously following the recent depreciating trend of the Indonesian rupiah.

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  • Indonesia's Benchmark Jakarta Composite Index Declines 0.19%

    Although Indonesian Finance Minister Chatib Basri provided positive news to the market by stating that the country's trade deficit (and co-related current account deficit) will probably not be as large in the second quarter of 2014 (as compared to the same quarter in 2013) as well as an expected increase in Indonesian banks' consumer credit, the benchmark stock index (known as Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) was unable to rise on Wednesday's trading day (04/06). Particularly local investors were eager to sell their Indonesian shares.

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  • Indonesian Stocks Up but Rupiah Continues Depreciation on Tuesday

    Supported by enthousiastic foreign investors, the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (Jakarta Composite Index or also known as IHSG) managed to climb 0.61 percent to 4,942.16 points on Tuesday (03/06). Particularly consumer, trade and mining stocks were popular on today's trading day. It is interesting to note that this growth happened amid sharp rupiah depreciation as the currency still feels the negative impact of the USD $1.97 billion April 2014 trade deficit that was released yesterday (02/06).

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  • Rupiah Down but Indonesian Stocks Overcome Weak Economic Data

    Rupiah Down but Indonesian Stocks Overcome Weak Economic Data

    Although initially the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as Jakarta Composite index or IHSG) fell after the market responded to today's release of Indonesia's April trade deficit and May inflation, the index ended in the green zone due to foreign net buying and general positive Asian indices (influenced by higher stock indices on Wall Street at the end of last week). Particularly Indonesia's big cap stocks in the miscellaneous industry and consumer sectors were popular as these were relatively cheap after having tumbled at the end of last week.

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