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Today's Headlines US Interest Rates

  • Financial Market Analysis Indonesia: Why is the Rupiah Weakening Today?

    Financial Market analysis Indonesia: Why is the Rupiah Weakening Today?

    The Indonesian rupiah was under pressure on Tuesday (24/05). Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the rupiah depreciated 0.47 percent to IDR 13,638 per US dollar, the weakest level since early February 2016. However, the Indonesian rupiah is not the only emerging market currency in Asia that was under pressure today. Meanwhile, Asia's emerging market stocks also declined. Negative market sentiments are caused by growing speculation about a sooner-than-expected interest rate hike in the USA as well as sliding oil prices.

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  • Indonesian Rupiah & Stocks Fall on Hawkish Fed Minutes

    Indonesian Rupiah & Stocks Fall on Hawkish Fed Minutes

    Both the Indonesian rupiah and Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) are under pressure on Thursday (19/05) as renewed speculation about a sooner-than-expected interest rate hike in the USA puts severe pressure on emerging market assets, while the US dollar is appreciating sharply. Based on the minutes of the 26-27 April Federal Reserve meeting, more and more analysts believe that another Fed Fund Rate hike could come as early as June 2016.

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  • Rupiah & Stock Market Update Indonesia: Gaining on Dovish Yellen

    Rupiah & Stock Market Update Indonesia: Gaining on Dovish Yellen

    Most emerging market stocks and currencies strengthened today as markets responded positively to Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen's dovish statements overnight. Based on her words, the Federal Reserve is not expected to undertake another US interest rate hike soon as the US economy remains fragile amid sluggish global economic growth. As a result Indonesia's benchmark Jakarta Composite Index climbed 0.74 percent, while the Indonesian rupiah appreciated 1.04 percent to IDR 13,256 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index).

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  • Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: Speculation of April US Rate Hike

    Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: Speculation of April US Rate Hike

    In line with the performance of most emerging stock markets and currencies, Indonesian stocks and the rupiah were under pressure on Monday (28/03). The Jakarta Composite Index fell 1.11 percent, while the Indonesian rupiah depreciated 0.73 percent to IDR 13,343 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index). This performance is caused by rising speculation that the US Federal Reserve could hike its key Fed Fund Rate as early as April. Several Fed officials have made hawkish comments, while the upward revised 1.4 percent GDP growth of the US economy in Q4-2015 may show that the US is strong enough to cope with another rate hike.

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  • Asian Stocks Mixed amid Oil Slide, Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Down

    Asian Stocks Mixed amid Oil Slide, Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Down

    Asian stocks were mixed after opening on the first trading day of the new week. Energy stocks are mostly down due to another retreat in global oil prices. Oil prices continued Friday's slide due to ongoing concern over excessive supply after last week's US rig count grew for the first time since December 2015. This implies pressure on "commodity-driven" assets, which includes Indonesian stocks and the rupiah. The Indonesian rupiah had depreciated 0.27 percent to IDR 13,152 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index), while the benchmark Jakarta Composite Index was down 0.07 percent by 09:15 am local Jakarta time.

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  • Bank Indonesia Should Keep BI Rate at 7.50% due to Fragile Rupiah

    Bank Indonesia Should Keep BI Rate at 7.50% due to Fragile Rupiah

    On Wednesday (13/01) Indonesia's central bank is set to start its monthly policy meeting. A novelty this year is that the monthly policy meetings of Bank Indonesia will take two days instead of one. Another interesting novelty is that Bank Indonesia invited Indonesia's Chief Economics Minister Darmin Nasution to attend the central bank's first policy meeting of 2016. Analyst opinions about whether Bank Indonesia has room to cut its relatively tight monetary policy are mixed.

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  • Consumer Price Index Indonesia: Inflation 0.96% in December; 3.35% in 2015

    Consumer Price Index Indonesia: Inflation 0.96% in December; 3.35% in 2015

    Indonesia's inflation figure in December 2015 was higher than expected at 0.96 percent month-on-month (m/m). The monthly inflation rate was high due to rising prices of food and transportation caused by the Christmas and New Year celebrations. Nevertheless, Indonesia's annual inflation rate fell to the lowest level since 2010 as the impact of the November 2014 subsidized fuel price hike vanished from the annual inflation figure, hence inflation realization falling well below the government target (5 percent) and the central bank's target range (3 - 5 percent) in 2015.

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  • Stock Market Indonesia: Prognosis Jakarta Composite Index in January

    Stock Market Indonesia: Prognosis Jakarta Composite Index in January

    Last year the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (Jakarta Composite Index) fell 12.13 percent to finish at 4,593.01 points on 30 December 2015 amid severe global uncertainty due to looming tighter monetary policy in the USA and the rapid economic slowdown of China. Today, the Indonesia Stock Exchange will have its first trading day of the new year. What do we expect from the performance of Indonesian stocks in January 2016?

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  • Economy of Indonesia in 2015: Failure to Achieve Most Economic Targets

    Economy of Indonesia in 2015: Failure to Achieve Most Economic Targets

    The Finance Ministry of Indonesia released a statement on Sunday (03/01) saying that Indonesia failed to meet the majority of economic targets that were set in the (revised) 2015 State Budget. Primary reasons for the weaker-than-targeted performance are low commodity prices, sluggish global economic growth, China's economic slowdown, and capital outflows triggered by the tighter monetary policy of the US Federal Reserve. Only realization of inflation and the treasury yield were in line with the government's targets.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market: What are the Picks in 2016?

    Indonesia Stock Market: What are the Picks in 2016?

    Although challenges persist, Indonesia's benchmark stock index (Jakarta Composite Index) is estimated to rise in 2016, surpassing the level of 5,000 points. Last year the index fell 12.13 percent to close at 4,593.01 points. In particular Indonesia's infrastructure, banking, consumption, cement, property and construction sectors are expected to post a good performance this year on the back of accelerated domestic economic growth supported by government spending and the recent economic stimulus packages.

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Latest Columns US Interest Rates

  • Interest Rate Environment: Why Bank Indonesia Left it Unchanged?

    Interest Rate Environment: Why Bank Indonesia Left it Unchanged?

    Indonesia’s central bank (Bank Indonesia) decided to hold the country’s key interest rate (BI rate) at 7.50 percent, the deposit facility rate at 5.50 percent, and the lending facility rate at 8.00 percent at the Board of Governor’s Meeting conducted on Tuesday 17 March 2015. Bank Indonesia said that its decision is in line with its ongoing efforts to push inflation back to the target range of 4±1 percent for both 2015 and 2016, and to guide the country’s current account deficit towards a healthier level at 2.5-3 percent of GDP in the medium term.

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  • Bank Indonesia Lowers Key Interest Rate in Surprise Move

    In a surprise move, the central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) decided to lower its key interest rate (BI rate) by 25 basis points to 7.50 percent at the Board of Governor’s Meeting on Tuesday (17/02). The deposit facility rate (Fasbi) was also lowered by 25 basis points (to 5.50 percent), while the lending facility rate remained steady at 8.00 percent. In a press release the central bank stated that the current policy direction is estimated to moderate the country’s wide current account deficit further, while inflation remains under control.

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  • Indonesia’s Rupiah at 6-Year Low; Expected to Weaken until Mid-2015

    Indonesia’s Rupiah at 6-Year Low; Expected to Weaken until Mid-2015

    Amid weakening emerging Asian currencies, Indonesia’s rupiah exchange rate touched a six-year low on Friday (12/12) after US consumer spending rose in November while US jobless claims fell (signalling a strong recovery in the world’s largest economy). Based on the Bloomberg Dollar Index, the rupiah depreciated 0.95 percent to IDR 12,467 per US dollar on Friday. Besides the impact of the US dollar’s bullish momentum, the rupiah also weakened on year-end US dollar demand from local companies for debt payments.

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  • Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Bank Indonesia Active in Market?

    Rupiah Exchange Rate Update: Bank Indonesia Active in Market?

    The Indonesian rupiah exchange rate depreciated 0.09 percent to IDR 12,164 per US dollar on Tuesday (25/11) according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index. The performance is caused by local companies’ month-end US dollar demand as well as US dollar buying by Indonesia’s central bank. Although unconfirmed, it is speculated that the central bank is boosting its foreign exchange reserves ahead of a looming external shock triggered by higher US interest rates in the second or third quarter of 2015.

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  • Financial Update: Foreign Debt of Indonesia Continues to Rise

    Total foreign outstanding debt of Indonesia continues to grow at a robust pace. Based on data from the country’s central bank, total external debt rose 11.2 percent year-on-year to USD $292 billion at the end of September 2014 as private Indonesian companies have been eager to seek lower interest rates abroad. Privately-held foreign debt was up 14 percent y/y to USD $159.3 billion at end-September. Central Bank official Tirta Segara said that private sector debt is concentrated in the financial, manufacturing and mining sectors.

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  • Current Account Balance Indonesia: Deficit of 3.07% of GDP in Q3-2014

    Current Account Balance Indonesia: Deficit of 3.07% of GDP in Q3-2014

    The current account deficit of Indonesia eased to USD $6.84 billion, or 3.07 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) in the third quarter of 2014 (down from USD $8.69 billion, or 4.07 percent of GDP in the previous quarter). This improvement was mainly supported by a solid surplus in the country’s non-oil & gas sector, partly the result of the US economic recovery as well as resumed copper concentrate exports by Freeport Indonesia and Newmont Nusa Tenggara (after successful mining contract renegotiations).

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  • Stocks & Rupiah Today: Performance of the Jakarta Composite Index

    Stocks & Rupiah Today: Performance of the Jakarta Composite Index

    Although we initially expected that the benchmark stock index of Indonesia (Jakarta Composite Index, abbreviated IHSG) would be supported by the various macroeconomic data (inflation, trade balance, and manufacturing activity) that were released by Statistics Indonesia today, the opposite is what happened. The index went into red territory amid profit taking, although the bond market in fact strengthened and foreign investors recorded net buying at IDR 224 billion (USD $18.7 million).

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  • Bank Indonesia Forces Companies to Hedge Foreign Debt

    Bank Indonesia Forces Companies to Hedge Foreign Debt

    Non-bank corporations in Indonesia that hold external (foreign-denominated) debt will be forced to hedge their foreign exchange holdings against the Indonesian rupiah with a ratio of 20 percent in the period 1 January 2015 to 31 December 2015 in an effort to limit risks stemming from increased private sector external debt. At end-August 2014, privately-held foreign debt stood at USD $156.2 billion (53.8 percent of the country’s total external debt), increasing three-fold from end-2005 and thus jeopardizing macroeconomic stability.

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  • Market’s Lukewarm Reception of Joko Widodo’s ‘Kabinet Kerja Indonesia’

    The market showed today (27/10) that the composition of Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s cabinet did not live up to expectations. On Sunday afternoon, Widodo had announced the names of the ministers inside his Working Cabinet (Kabinet Kerja) after having delayed the announcement for almost a week as several of his ministerial candidates needed to be replaced having been red flagged by the country’s Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK). This then heightened expectations that Widodo’s cabinet would constitute a ‘dream team’.

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  • Moody’s Investors Service Positive about Indonesia’s Economy

    Moody’s Investors Service Positive about Indonesia’s Economy

    Global credit rating agency Moody’s Investors Service stated that it maintains a stable outlook for Indonesia’s sovereign and corporate debt rating in the next quarters due to the country’s healthy credit fundamentals, solid macroeconomy, and reduced political tensions. Moody’s believes that Indonesia’s fundamentals are strong enough to offset the negative impact of external pressures such as looming higher US interest rates and slowing economic growth in China. Moody’s had raised Indonesia’s sovereign debt rating to investment grade in late 2011.

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