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Today's Headlines China

  • Indonesia's Equity Market: Focus on US-China Turmoil & Fed Meeting

    Indonesia's Equity Market: Focus on US-China Turmoil & Fed Meeting

    Those who invest in Indonesian assets (or actually in any assets across the globe) will need to carefully monitor two matters this week. First, the upcoming Federal Reserve policy meeting (scheduled for 25-26 September 2018) that will most likely result in another interest rate hike. And secondly, the latest developments in USA-China (trade) relations.

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  • Renewed Pressures Push Indonesia's Rupiah to IDR 14,550 per US Dollar

    Renewed Pressures Push Indonesia's Rupiah to IDR 14,550 per US Dollar

    The Indonesian rupiah had been fairly stable against the US dollar since Bank Indonesia's aggressive 0.50 percent rate hike in late-June (a move that caught many by surprise). However, after the central bank of Indonesia decided to leave its benchmark interest rate unchanged at the July policy meeting (which was concluded on Thursday, 19/07), the rupiah has become under heavy pressure again.

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  • Escalating Trade War Impacts on Indonesia's Commodity Prices

    Escalating Trade War Impacts on Indonesia's Commodity Prices

    Earlier this week US President Donald Trump announced plans to impose 10 percent import tariffs on USD $200 billion worth of Chinese export products by 30 August 2018, thus further escalating the trade war between the USA and China. While earlier US tariffs focused mostly on industrial goods, the new list of proposed import tariffs includes various commodities (metals, energy and agriculture) as well as consumer products. As a result most commodity prices were in red territory on Wednesday (11/07).

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  • Indonesia's Steel Exports to USA Surged in March, Impact of Trump Tariffs?

    Indonesia Steel Exports to USA Surged in March, Impact of Trump Tariffs?

    When looking at the trade data that were released by Indonesia’s Statistics Agency (BPS) on Monday (16/04) there is something interesting about Indonesia’s steel exports. Indonesia is a relatively small steel producing nation (and actually imports about half of its domestic steel consumption, mostly from China) but its iron & steel exports to the USA soared over 1,500 percent month-on-month (m/m) from USD $2.13 million in February 2018 to USD $35 million in March 2018. Reason behind this surge may very well be the trade war between China and the USA.

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  • Wall Street Selloff over Trade War Concerns Impacts on Asian Stocks

    Wall Street Selloff over Trade War Concerns Impacts on Asian Stocks

    Despite the selloff on Wall Street overnight where the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 1.9 percent, the S&P 500 tumbled 2.23 percent, while the Nasdaq Composite dropped 2.74 percent, losses in Asia were less severe on Tuesday morning (03/04) as these losses were kept below 1 percent, overall. The selloff on Wall Street, partially driven by a sell-off of tech industry giants, was the weakest start of the second quarter for US shares since the Great Depression.

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  • Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index & Rupiah Down on Renewed Trade Fears

    Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index & Rupiah Down on Renewed Trade Fears

    Many Asian stocks are in deep red territory dragged down by a 3.49 percent decline of Japan's Nikkei 225 index in the morning of Friday (23/03). The Nikkei 225 is responding to plunging stocks on Wall Street overnight where the Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled 2.9 percent, while both the S&P 500 index and Nasdaq Composite dropped 2.5 percent, each. All three benchmark US indexes suffered their biggest drops since 8 February 2018.

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  • Benchmark Coal Price of Indonesia Near Six-Year High in March 2018

    Benchmark Coal Price of Indonesia Near Six-Year High in March 2018

    Indonesia's benchmark thermal coal price (Harga Batubara Acuan, or HBA) touched a multi-year high in March 2018. The HBA, which is determined by Indonesia's Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry on a monthly basis (and which is based on several global and domestic indexes), rose 1.2 percent month-on-month (m/m) to USD $101.86 per metric ton in March 2018, its highest position since May 2012.

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  • China's Slowing Economic Growth Negative for Indonesia

    China's Slowing Economic Growth Negative for Indonesia

    The weakening growth trend of the Chinese economy may not have ended yet. Despite the nation's gross domestic product (GDP) growth rebounding to 6.9 percent year-on-year (y/y) in 2017, its economy is expected to cool in 2018 as a government-led crackdown on debt risks and factory pollution drags on overall activity in the world's second-largest economy. This is a problem for Indonesia as well because China is Indonesia's biggest trading partner.

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  • Coal Mining Industry: Price Remains High on Robust Chinese Demand

    Coal Mining Industry: Price Remains High on Robust Chinese Demand

    Coal demand remains high, particularly due to robust demand from China, the world's largest coal importer. This brings the projection for the full-year 2018 coal price to the range of USD $98.50 - $107.00 per metric ton. So far this year the coal price (ICE NewCastle Coal January 2018) surged around 4 percent, while in full-year 2017 the price had surged 57.09 percent.

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Latest Columns China

  • Analysis and Forecast of Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG)

    Last week, the Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) weakened. The benchmark stock index of Indonesia was affected by negative market sentiments brought on by domestic factors. Most importantly, the large-scale demonstrations across Indonesia by Indonesian workers who demanded for higher minimum wages as annual inflation has surged since June 2013 after prices of subsidized fuels were raised. These demands, however, jeopardize the attractiveness of Indonesia's investment climate.

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  • General Motors (GM) Eager to Expand its Car Business in Indonesia

    General Motors (GM) Eager to Expand its Car Business in Indonesia

    General Motors Company (GM), the American multinational holding corporation that engages in the automotive industry, aims to expand its partnership with China's SAIC Motor Corp by joining hands to enhance business activities in Indonesia. Recently, speculation emerged that both companies were drifting apart. However, both camps claim that the relationship has never been better. In fact, GM China and SAIC are opening four new plants in China which will add 1 million cars (per year) to the current production capacity of 3 million vehicles.

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  • IMF: Asia and Pacific Regional Economic Update by Anoop Singh

    Anoop Singh, Director of the Asia and Pacific Department within the International Monetary Fund (IMF), conducted a media roundtable in Tokyo today (30/10) in which he outlined the IMF's view on the economy of Asia. Asia will remain the global growth leader, although the IMF has lowered growth forecasts. Both tighter global liquidity and homegrown structural impediments will weigh on growth, but for most economies a gradual pickup in exports to advanced economies and resilient domestic demand should help support growth.

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  • Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) Up 1.06% on Thursday

    Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) Up 1.06% on Thursday

    Although at the start of the day the Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) went into red territory, it rebounded and managed to gain 1.06 percent to 4,594.85 points at the end of Thursdays' trading day (24/10). Factors that positively influenced the IHSG were net foreign buying of Indonesian stocks and a number of corporate earnings reports that met investors' expectation. These included various property companies such as Sentul City and Modernland Realty as well as a number of banks. The rupiah, on the other hand, depreciated again.

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  • US Debt Ceiling Agreement Results in Rising Jakarta Composite Index

    US Debt Ceiling Agreement Results in Rising Jakarta Composite Index

    The Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) rebounded on Thursday's trading day (17/10), supported by good news from the United States where finally an agreement was reached regarding the US debt ceiling. This agreement brought positive market sentiments on Asian stock markets, including the IHSG which rose 0.59% to 4,518.93 points. Moreover, Indonesia's minister of Economy Hatta Rajasa stated that Indonesia had not been significantly impacted by the US shutdown issue and this statement also managed to ease investors' concerns.

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  • ADB Outlook 2013: Developing Asia Slowing Amid Global Financial Jitters

    ADB Outlook 2013: Developing Asia Slowing Amid Global Financial Jitters

    Softer than expected economic activity in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and India and jitters over the United States (US) quantitative easing (QE) program will weigh on Asia and the Pacific’s growth prospects in the near term, says a new Asian Development Bank (ADB) report. “Asia and the Pacific's 2013 growth will come in below earlier projections due to more moderate activity in the region’s two largest economies and effects of QE nervousness,” said ADB Chief Economist Changyong Rhee.

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  • Continued Profit Taking Causes Indonesia's IHSG to Fall 0.46%

    Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) extended its downward movement on Monday (23/09) as investors continued to look for profits after the index had risen sharply following the announcement that the US quantitative easing program will not be ended yet. Pressures on the IHSG were intensified by the depreciating rupiah and the weakening of Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index (which was partly brought on by a typhoon). Despite foreign investors being net buyers of Indonesian stocks, the IHSG fell 0.46 percent to 4,562.86 points.

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  • World is Waiting for Outcome of the FOMC Meeting; IHSG falls 0.10%

    World is Waiting for Outcome of the FOMC Meeting; IHSG falls 0.10%

    After a strong performance yesterday, the Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) fell 0.10 percent to 4,517.62 points on Tuesday (17/09). Part of the investor community grabbed their chance to engage in profit taking after yesterday's gain but most investors are careful and reluctant to make any major decision prior to the result of the Federal Reserve's FOMC meeting (17-18 September). It is expected that after this meeting there will be more clarity about the future of the Fed's quantitative easing program.

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  • Last Week's Rising Benchmark Index of Indonesia: Trap or Opportunity?

    Last week, Indonesia's benchmark stock index (IHSG) climbed 7.3 percent to end at 4,375.53 on Friday (13/09). This growth is remarkable as it remains unknown what the Federal Reserve will do with its quantitative easing program (QE3). The next Fed meeting - scheduled for 17-18 September - is expected to provide more clarity regarding this matter. Positive sentiments that lifted the IHSG were Indonesia's slightly increased foreign exchange reserves, its stable rupiah after another BI rate hike, and the Bilateral Swap Deals (BSA) with Japan and China.

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  • Plan to Increase Revenues from Indonesia's Coal Sector may Backfire

    Plan to Increase Revenues from Indonesia's Coal Sector may Backfire

    Concerns have arisen over the government's plan to increase royalties and export duties for coal. The Indonesian Coal Mining Association (APBI) expects that this policy will lead to the closure of various coal miners while increasing acts of illegal mining. According to Bob Kamandanu, chairman of the APBI, 60 million tons of coal per year is not listed by any authority and thus can be labeled 'illegal'. Illegal coal mining also implies that the Indonesian government misses out on about IDR 5.6 trillion (USD $495.6 million) per year.

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