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Today's Headlines China

  • Can Bank Indonesia’s US Dollar Purchase Restriction Support the Rupiah?

    Can Bank Indonesia’s US Dollar Purchase Restriction Support the Rupiah?

    Last week, Indonesia’s central bank (Bank Indonesia) refrained from adjusting its relatively high interest rate regime as it is committed to support the ailing rupiah and combat high inflation. Another decision that was revealed by Bank Indonesia is the soon-to-be-introduced regulation that limits total (non-collateral) monthly US dollar purchases to USD $25,000 (down from USD $100,000 previously). This regulation will be implemented in a move to thwart speculators that want to take advantage of the weak and volatile rupiah.

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  • Global Markets on Fire: What Happens to the Rupiah & Indonesian Stocks?

    Global Markets on Fire: What Happens to the Rupiah & Indonesian Stocks?

    The Indonesian rupiah continues to flirt with a 17-year low as the currency is getting closer and closer to the IDR 14,000 per US dollar level. Meanwhile, Indonesian stocks took another blow as the country’s benchmark stock index (Jakarta Composite Index) fell 2.39 percent on Friday (21/08). Such turmoil is not only confined to Indonesia but was felt across Asia and the West. Markets were plagued by selloffs in energy shares (due to falling oil prices) and uncertainty about the timing of higher US interest rates.

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  • Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Fall ahead of FOMC Minutes & China Volatility

    Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah: Down ahead of FOMC Minutes & China Volatility

    Indonesian stocks and the rupiah continued to weaken on Wednesday (19/08) in line with most other Asian stocks and currencies. Investors are cautious ahead of the release of the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest FOMC meeting, hence moving into safe haven assets. The minutes are to be released early Thursday morning local Indonesian time. Investors will be searching for signs informing about a possible Fed Fund Rate hike in September. If there are such signs, emerging market assets will be under heavy pressure tomorrow.

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  • Bank Indonesia Keeps Interest Rates Unchanged on Global Uncertainty

    Bank Indonesia Keeps Interest Rates Unchanged on Global Uncertainty

    For the sixth straight month, the central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) left its interest rate regime unchanged at Tuesday’s Board of Governor’s meeting (18/08) as it aims to guard the rupiah against severe volatility (which occurred after China’s yuan was allowed to devalue, while markets are still preparing for monetary tightening in the USA) and tries to combat inflation.

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  • Stock Market & Rupiah Update Indonesia: Impact of China’s Yuan

    Stock Market & Rupiah Update Indonesia: Impact of China’s Yuan

    Today (14/08) the central bank of China let the yuan appreciate 0.05 percent against the US dollar, effectively ending three consecutive days of devaluation. The People's Bank of China (PBoC) also pledged to safeguard a stable yuan after the sharp devaluation had triggered significant volatility on international financial markets. For example, Indonesian assets (stocks and the rupiah) tumbled severely on Tuesday and Wednesday amid yuan devaluation (and looming higher interest rates in the USA).

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  • China’s Yuan Devaluation: Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Rebound

    China’s Yuan Devaluation: Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Rebound

    For the third straight day China allowed its currency to weaken against the US dollar. On Thursday (13/08) the yuan depreciated 0.7 percent against the greenback, signalling that China’s central bank may let the yuan weaken further in a controlled manner. Yesterday, just before trading closed, it actually intervened to support the currency as the yuan depreciated nearly two percent (the daily limit). The move of China to devalue the yuan is a step toward liberalization and also boosts the country’s sluggish export performance.

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  • Devaluation China’s Yuan Impacts on Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah

    Devaluation China’s Yuan Impacts on Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah

    The fall of Indonesian stocks and the rupiah on Wednesday (12/08) is much more severe than had previously been expected. By 11:14 am local Jakarta time, the benchmark Jakarta Composite Index had fallen 3.12 percent to 4,478.56 points, while the rupiah had depreciated 1.75 percent to IDR 13,845 per US dollar according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index. Across Asia, emerging markets are badly affected (for a second straight day) by China’s decision to devalue its yuan. The yuan is now at its weakest level since October 2012.

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  • Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Down on China’s Yuan Devaluation

    Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Down on China’s Yuan Devaluation

    Indonesian stocks are experiencing a remarkable fall on Tuesday (11/08). In the first trading session, the benchmark stock index (Jakarta Composite Index) plunged 2.15 percent to 4,646.95, its lowest level since early March 2014 and leading declines among Southeast Asian stock indices. Stocks in Asia have been hit by China’s decision to allow its currency to weaken against the US dollar (the yuan fell 1.6 percent against the US dollar after the move dragging down other Asian currencies including the Indonesian rupiah).

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  • Why is Indonesia’s Rupiah Weakening? Global & Domestic Factors

    The Indonesian rupiah continues to depreciate on Tuesday (11/08). By 11:16 am local Jakarta time, the rupiah had depreciated 0.14 percent to IDR 13,570 per US dollar according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index. Indonesia’s currency has been touching 17-year lows due to bullish US dollar momentum ahead of looming higher US interest rates. Today, the US dollar received additional strength as China allowed its currency to weaken to a three-year low, dragging down other currencies in the Asian region.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: Influence from China & USA

    Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: Influence from China & USA

    Stock markets in Asia are mixed on Monday (10/08) with Indonesian stocks heading downwards. In the first trading session, Indonesia’s benchmark stock market (Jakarta Composite Index) fell 0.99 percent to 4,723.19 points on weak trade data from China and positive labor data from the USA. Meanwhile, Indonesia’s rupiah is moving sideways. At 13:12 pm local Jakarta time, the rupiah was still at IDR 13,541 per US dollar according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index, unchanged since the opening this morning.

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Latest Columns China

  • Indonesia’s Currency still above 14,000 per USD, Why a Weak Rupiah is a Problem

    Although Indonesian stocks managed to rebound, the rupiah continued to depreciate against the US dollar today (25/08). However, rupiah weakening was limited as Bank Indonesia was closely monitoring and intervening in markets to support the rupiah. Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the Indonesian rupiah depreciated 0.03 percent to IDR 14,054 per US dollar. As significant further rupiah weakening is assumed to seriously undermine confidence in the rupiah, the central bank’s intervention efforts are well received by investors.

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  • Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Held at 7.50% in August 2015

    Press Release Bank Indonesia: BI Rate Held at 7.50% in August 2015

    During Bank Indonesia’s Board of Governors it was decided on 18th August 2015 to hold the BI Rate at 7.50 percent, while maintaining the Deposit Facility rate at 5.50 percent and the Lending Facility rate at 8.00 percent. The decision is consonant with efforts to control inflation within the target corridor of 4±1 percent in 2015 and 2016. In the short term, Bank Indonesia (BI) is focused on efforts to stabilize the rupiah amid uncertainty in the global economy, by optimizing monetary operations in the rupiah and the foreign exchange market.

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  • Weaker Yuan Likely to Weigh on Indonesian Businesses

    Weaker Yuan Likely to Weigh on Indonesian Businesses

    For most of this year, the financial media has held a generally positive tone. There have been some exceptions in cases like the Eurozone which is still mired in a deeply divided sovereign debt crisis. But for most of the world, 2015 has been a positive period in terms of general growth in their broad trends. So it might be easy for macro investors to assume that most markets are currently establishing themselves in the bullish direction.

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  • Rising Unemployment in Indonesia as Coal Miners Cease Production

    Rising Unemployment in Indonesia as Coal Miners Cease Production

    In the 2000s many Indonesian companies diversified their business to include coal mining (or shifting their core business to coal mining altogether) due to lucrative opportunities amid the 2000s commodities boom. However, since 2009 mining companies have had to face tough times. Especially since 2011 commodity prices have shown a declining trend and there remains little hope of a rebound on the short term as the sluggish global economic growth trend persists, particularly led by the economic slowdown in China.

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  • Indonesia 8th Largest Shareholder Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

    Indonesia 8th Largest Shareholder Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB)

    Indonesia is the eight-largest shareholder within the newly established Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). The Indonesian Finance Ministry announced earlier this week that the country will invest USD $672.1 million in the AIIB over the next five years. The AIIB is a new multilateral financial institution (initiated by China) that is to provide funds for infrastructure development projects in the Asia Pacific region. Initially, the AIIB has an authorized capital of USD $50 billion. This is expected to grow to USD $100 billion.

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  • Market Update Indonesia: Why Stocks Rose but the Rupiah Weakened?

    Market Update Indonesia: Why Stocks Rose but the Rupiah Weakened?

    In line with other Asian indices, Indonesian stocks rose on Tuesday (26/05). The benchmark Jakarta Composite Index rose 0.62 percent to 5,320.90 points. Positive sentiments did not originate from the USA as US stock markets were closed for a holiday yesterday but primarily stemmed from China where the economic planning agency announced to implement several new policies in a bid to boost the sluggish economy. The rupiah, however, depreciated 0.25 percent to IDR 13,220 per US dollar based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index.

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  • Commodity Watch: Influence Indonesian Export Ban on Nickel Price Short-Lived

    Commodity Watch: Influence Indonesia’s Export Ban on Nickel Price Short-Lived

    At the start of 2014 Indonesia introduced its long-planned export ban on raw mineral ores in a bid to strengthen the domestic economy by reducing its dependence on raw commodity exports and instead forcing miners to process their raw ores domestically before exporting is allowed. Being an important global supplier of certain ores, this new Indonesian rule (stipulated by Law No.4/2009 on Coal and Mineral Mining) has a considerable impact on global markets and prices, one of which being nickel.

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  • Obstacles in Indonesia’s Investment Climate: A Chinese Perspective

    Obstacles in Indonesia’s Investment Climate: A Chinese Perspective

    Indonesia is not the easiest place to invest for foreign investors. This is reflected by the World Bank's Doing Business 2014 index in which Indonesia ranks 120th. In a business forum, held last week in Beijing, Chinese businessmen expressed a number of matters that blocked or seriously delayed their investments in Indonesia. For Indonesia (both domestic and foreign) investment realization, particularly in infrastructure, is important as investments is considered the main driver for the country’s economic growth in 2016.

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  • Indonesia’s Reference Coal Price Hits All-Time Low in May 2015

    Indonesia’s Reference Coal Price Hits All-Time Low in May 2015

    On Monday (11/05), it was announced that the reference coal price of Indonesia declined 5.2 percent (month-on-month) to an all-time low of USD $61.08 per metric ton in May. This benchmark price, which is set by the government each month based on the average of four coal indexes (Indonesia Coal Index, Platts Index, New Castle Export Index and New Castle Global Coal Index), continued to plummet due to the coal oversupply in combination with weak global coal demand (particularly falling demand from China).

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  • Jakarta Composite Index: What is Next for Indonesian Stocks?

    Jakarta Composite Index: What is Next for Indonesian Stocks?

    Stock markets in Indonesia have been particularly volatile in recent weeks, and this has left many investors wondering about whether or not the rally that started last October is still viable and ready to continue. Last month, the MSCI Indonesia Index (which trades under the stock symbol EIDO) took a large drop - from well above the 6,500 mark to below 6,000. From a percentage perspective, a move like this can generate significant losses for those that bought into Indonesian stocks while they were still at elevated levels.

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