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Today's Headlines US Interest Rates

  • Bank Indonesia Expected to Keep Key Interest Rate at 7.50% at Policy Meeting

    Bank Indonesia Expected to Keep Key Interest Rate at 7.50% at Policy Meeting

    With all eyes on the two-day policy meeting of the Federal Reserve, we could almost forget that the central bank of Indonesia (Bank Indonesia) will also hold its monthly policy meeting today. Similar to the topic discussed in the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting (16-17 September), Bank Indonesia may consider raising its key interest rate (BI rate) as a Fed Fund Rate hike would trigger capital outflows, while Indonesia’s inflation rate remains high and the rupiah is fragile.

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  • Stocks Climb as Fed Rate Decision Nears but Indonesian Stocks Fall on Weak Rupiah

    Stocks Climb as Fed Rate Decision Nears but Indonesian Stocks Fall on Weak Rupiah

    Contrary to mostly rising Asian and global stock indices, Indonesia’s benchmark Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) fell 0.34 percent to 4,332.51 points on Wednesday (16/09) as the rupiah continues to slide against the US dollar causing concern about corporate earnings of listed companies on the Indonesia Stock Exchange and eroding the value of Indonesian assets purchased by foreign investors. Outside Indonesia most markets were up as investors are in anticipation of a crucial two-day Federal Reserve policy meeting (16-17 September).

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  • Indonesian Currency Update: Rupiah Weaker ahead of Federal Reserve Meeting

    Indonesian Currency Update: Rupiah Weaker ahead of Federal Reserve Meeting

    Ahead of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting, the two-day policy meeting which starts today (16/09), the US dollar continues to appreciate against most currencies, including the Indonesian rupiah, as investors remain cautious ahead of a possible US interest rate hike. By 09:36 am local Jakarta time, the rupiah had depreciated 0.29 percent to IDR 14,450 per US dollar according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index, a fresh 17-year low.

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  • Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Update: Investors Cautious ahead of Federal Reserve Meeting

    Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Update: Investors Cautious ahead of Federal Reserve Meeting

    Indonesian stocks and the rupiah are having a tough day as investors are cautious ahead of the Federal Reserve’s two-day policy meeting (16-17 September), while Indonesia’s August 2015 trade surplus was slightly below analysts’ expectations. By 14:40 pm local Jakarta time, Indonesia’s benchmark Jakarta Composite Index had weakened 1.17 percent to 4,339.07 points, while the Indonesian rupiah had depreciated 0.47 percent to IDR 14,401 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index).

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  • Indonesia Stock & Rupiah Update: Will the Federal Reserve Raise Interest Rates?

    Indonesia Stock & Rupiah Update: Will the Federal Reserve Raise Interest Rates?

    While most Asian stock indices were mixed, Indonesia’s benchmark Jakarta Composite Index rose 0.69 percent to 4,390.37 points on Monday (14/09) with foreign investors recording a net buy of IDR 91.2 billion (approx. USD $6.5 million). Meanwhile, ahead of a crucial Federal Reserve meeting, the Indonesian rupiah depreciated 0.08 percent to IDR 14,333 per US dollar according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index.

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  • Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: What Happened in Asia Today?

    Indonesia Stock Market & Rupiah Update: What Happened Today in Asia?

    Most Asian stock markets finished lower on Monday (07/09) on persistent concern about the hard landing of China’s economy and the (related) selloff on European and US markets that occurred at the end of last week. Meanwhile, most Asian currencies depreciated (against the US dollar) after a US jobs report (released last Friday) could make the Federal Reserve decide to raise short-term interest rates later this month. All in all, investor sentiment remains fragile.

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  • Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Fall: Weak Start of the Week

    Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Fall: Weak Start of the Week

    Indonesian stocks and the rupiah had a bad start on Monday morning. By 09.35 am local Jakarta time, Indonesia’s benchmark Jakarta Composite Index had fallen 0.99 percent to 4,371.49 points, while the rupiah had depreciated by 0.45 percent to IDR 14,236 per US dollar (Bloomberg Dollar Index).

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  • Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah: Markets Down on China’s Weak Manufacturing

    Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah: Markets Down on China’s Weak Manufacturing

    In line with nearly all other Asian stock markets, Indonesia’s benchmark Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) plunged 2.15 percent to 4,412.46 points on Tuesday (01/09). After Asian trade had closed European and US indices also plummeted severely. The main reason is today’s announcement that China’s manufacturing fell to a three-year low in August 2015, yet another sign that China’s economic growth is declining faster than estimated. The country’s manufacturing PMI dropped to 49.7 in August from 50.0 in July (a reading below 50.0 indicates contraction).

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  • Indonesia’s Rupiah Weakens beyond Psychological Level of IDR 14,000/USD

    Indonesia’s Rupiah Weakens beyond Psychological Level of IDR 14,000 per USD

    For the first time since July 1998, when Indonesia was still plagued by the Asian Financial Crisis, the rupiah has fallen beyond the IDR 14,000 per US dollar mark. Many analysts had already predicted over the past couple of months that Indonesia’s currency would weaken beyond this ‘psychological’ level as external pressures are simply too high. Since 2013 the rupiah has weakening (against the US dollar) as the US Federal Reserve started preparing for monetary tightening. The recent devaluation of China’s yuan added more pressure.

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  • Global Selloff Hits Asia: Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Weaken Sharply

    Global Selloff Hits Asia: Indonesian Stocks & Rupiah Weaken Sharply

    The global selloff hit Asian markets on Monday (24/08). Stock indices and currencies in the Asian region collapsed dramatically on Monday morning. Indonesia’s benchmark Jakarta Composite Index (IHSG) was down 4.66 percent to 4,133.33 points by 10:50 am local Jakarta time, while the rupiah had weakened beyond IDR 14,000 per US dollar according to the Bloomberg Dollar Index. China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite Index plunged over 8 percent. What is happening to the emerging market assets in Asia today?

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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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