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Today's Headlines China

  • Bank Indonesia Leaves Interest Rate Unchanged at 7.50%

    Bank Indonesia Leaves Interest Rate Unchanged at 7.50%

    Bank Indonesia, the central bank of Southeast Asia's largest economy, kept its key interest rate (BI rate) at 7.50 percent at the December policy meeting on Thursday (17/12). Meanwhile, the overnight deposit rate facility (Fasbi) was left unchanged at 5.50 percent and the lending facility at 8.00 percent. It was the tenth consecutive month without changing the country's interest rate environment (in February 2015 the central bank cut the BI rate by 0.25 percent).

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  • Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Weaken Ahead of Fed Fund Rate Decision

    Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Weaken Ahead of Fed Fund Rate Decision

    On the last trading day of the week, Indonesian stocks plunged 1.63 percent to 4,393.52 points, while the rupiah depreciated 0.22 percent to IDR 13,984 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index). Most Asian indices were weaker as investors are bracing for - most likely - the first Fed Fund Rate hike in nearly a decade. On 15-16 December the US Federal Reserve will hold a crucial policy meeting. Tighter monetary policy in the USA leads to capital outflows from Indonesia as the country is regarded particularly vulnerable to such a move.

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  • 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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Latest Columns China

  • 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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  • Jakarta Composite Index: Euphoria on the Indonesian Stock Market

    Investors' appetite for mining and plantation stocks managed to support the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as the Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) on Thursday's trading day (22/05). After the recent decline of the IHSG, market participants continued to accumulate stocks that are considered cheap. Furthermore, indices on Wall Street on Wednesday were up and impacted positively on Asian indices on Thursday, thereby providing positive market sentiments for the IHSG.

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  • Indonesia Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Resisting the Asian Trend

    Although most Asian emerging currencies strengthened on Thursday (22/05) against the US dollar due to the preliminary HSBC Flash China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) recovering to 49.7 in May 2014 (from 48.1 one month earlier) and the Federal Reserve Minutes indicating that there will be no US interest rate hike soon, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate continued to decline. Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the currency had depreciated 0.19 percent to IDR 11,531 per US dollar by 5pm local Jakarta time.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market Update: IHSG Climbs 0.29% on Wednesday

    Indonesia Stock Market Update: IHSG Climbs 0.29% on Wednesday

    Although initially the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as the Jakarta Composite Index or IHSG) declined shortly after the opening on Wednesday (21/05), during the remainder of the day it went up. This is a trend which we often detect: after a sharp fall we see a rebound on the following day as investors want to take advantage of 'cheap' stocks. However, the rebound was only limited as investors prefer to wait and see for further market sentiments first. The main positive factor today were rising Asian stock indices.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah Appreciates on Bond Sale and Current Account Data

    Indonesian Rupiah Appreciates on Bond Sale and Current Account Data

    While most emerging Asian currencies fell, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate appreciated 0.08 percent to IDR 11,523 per US dollar based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index on Monday (12/05). The depreciating Chinese yuan, after its central bank set the midrate at its lowest level in eight months, put pressure on other Asian currencies. Today, Indonesia's Finance Ministry sold IDR 10 trillion rupiah (USD $867 million) of bonds, higher than the indicative target of IDR 8 trillion rupiah. Meanwhile, Indonesia’s two-year bonds gained.

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  • Small Loss for the Benchmark Indonesian Stock Index on Thursday

    Contrary to most Asian stock indices, the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (known as IHSG or the Jakarta Composite Index) declined on Thursday (08/05). Positive sentiments that were provided by the BI rate (Indonesia's benchmark interest rate) that was kept at 7.50% in today's Bank Indonesia Board of Governors' Meeting, and China's higher-than-expected trade balance in April 2014 (USD $18.5 billion), were offset by the depreciating rupiah exchange rate and foreign net selling of Indonesian stocks. The IHSG fell 0.02 percent to 4,860.89 points.

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  • Official Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Maintained at 7.50%

    Official Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Maintained at 7.50%

    The central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) decided at today’s Bank Indonesia Board of Governors’ Meeting, convened on 8 May 2014, to maintain the country's benchmark interest rate (BI rate) at 7.50 percent, with the Lending Facility rate and Deposit Facility rate held at 7.50 percent and 5.75 percent respectively. This policy is consistent with efforts to steer the rate of inflation towards its target corridor of 4.5±1 percent in 2014 and 4.0±1 percent in 2015, as well as to reduce the current account deficit to a more sustainable level.

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  • What about Indonesia's Economic Growth in 2014? Growing or Slowing?

    After Statistics Indonesia (BPS) had announced on Monday (05/05) that Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 5.21 percent year-on-year (yoy) in the first quarter of 2014 (considerably below analysts' projections of around 5.6 percent), concerns have risen about the country's economic expansion for the remainder of the year. The government of Indonesia targets a GDP growth rate of between 5.8 and 6.0 percent (yoy). However, several international institutions do not agree with this optimistic target.

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  • Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index Curbed by Slowing GDP Growth

    The benchmark Indonesia stock index (IHSG or Jakarta Composite Index) moved sideways on Monday's trading day (05/05) influenced by Indonesia's disappointing GDP growth result in the first quarter of 2014 in combination with mixed Asian stock indices. At the start of the day, the index was up as investors believed that the Q1-2014 GDP growth result would be in line with expectations. However, after Statistics Indonesia announced the growth rate, the IHSG fell, although stayed in the green zone.

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  • Indonesia's Transition Year of 2015; Slowing GDP Growth & State Spending

    Indonesia's Transition Year of 2015; Slowing GDP Growth and State Spending

    Indonesian Finance Minister Chatib Basri said that the country's economic growth in 2015 is targeted in the range of 5.5 to 6.3 percent. Amid further Federal Reserve tapering and possible interest rate hikes in the world's largest economy, chances of capital outflows from emerging markets (including Indonesia) are becoming larger. Basri said that these global conditions impact on GDP growth, the Indonesian rupiah exchange rate and inflation. Therefore, 2015 is a transition year, reflected by tighter economic projections and state spending.

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