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The Bank of Japan said in
a statement that it expected the world's
third-largest economy to "level off" for now, with inflation at about 0%.
In an unusual move, the government's national policy minister, Seiji Maehara,
told reporters he attended the central bank's meeting to appeal for more
dramatic action to spur growth.
The Bank said it will encourage the uncollateralized overnight call rate (the
benchmark rate) to remain at around 0 to 0.1%.
The Bank said: "Japan's economic activity is leveling off more or less.
Exports and industrial production have been relatively weak as overseas economies have moved somewhat deeper into the deceleration phase. On the other hand, domestic demand has been resilient, mainly supported by reconstruction-related demand. Specifically,
public investment has continued to increase, and housing investment has generally been picking up. Private consumption has been resilient with the employment situation
on an improving trend. Business fixed investment has been on a moderate increasing trend as corporate profits have improved on the whole."
The policy committee agreed by unanimous vote to leave policy unchanged.
Samsung Electronics Co,
the Korean electronics giant, today previewed its third-quarter report and said
it expects that operating profit
nearly doubled from a year earlier to record, boosted by strong
smartphones sales that offset weak semiconductor orders.
The company’s earnings preview estimated July-September operating income at
8.1tn won ($7.3bn), compared with 4.25tn won in the
The world’s biggest maker of hand phones, memory chips and TVs estimated
its quarterly revenue at 52tn won, a 26% growth from a year
Associated Press said Nomura Securities estimates Samsung sold 60m smartphones in the
three months ending Sept. 30, including 18m units of the Galaxy S
III. That is above 50m smartphones that Samsung is believed to have
sold in April-June.
Economic View: ECB passes the baton to politicians; Dermot O'Leary of
Goodbody comments -- "The most important take away from yesterday’s ECB
policy meeting is that the ECB believes
that it has provided the tools and it is now up to politicians to step up to the
plate. This goes for
the Spanish government biting the bullet and requesting aid and is also aimed at
the rest of the
European leaders to come up with compromises on how to move forward to a banking
The clear message is that the ECB cannot and will not solve the problems in the
euro area on
In terms of policy, rates were left on hold as expected and it appears that
further rate cuts are
unlikely as the ECB focuses on its “non-standard” measures, the latest of which
is the OMT. At
yesterday's press conference, Draghi reiterated the need for conditionality
request for the ECB to purchase bonds but also said that the conditions don’t
need to be
necessarily harsh. He also reiterated that IMF assistance will be requested in
relation to setting
this conditionality. Finally and most importantly, Draghi said that the ECB is
ready with the
OMT. Although he didn’t mention Spain specifically, all comments are relevant to
In other issues, Draghi stated that a voluntary haircut on the ECB's Greek
constitute monetary financing. This makes such a move illegal but there is still
a possibility that
the ECB could transfer the bonds to another institution (the ESM?) before
applying a haircut to
the bonds. This is important as it is clear that some form of Official Sector
Involvement will be
necessary for Greece to be given its next tranche of aid, with the IMF repeating
its concerns on
Greek debt sustainability yesterday.
While Spain has captured the headlines in recent weeks, a bailout request,
comes, is likely to return the market’s attention to the problems in Greece. The
18 summit is seen as key, but agreement on Greece is likely to linger longer."
Markets focus on US labour market data:
David McNamara of Davy comments
-- "With the US presidential election just weeks away, today's labour market
report, the penultimate before the election, is unlikely to provide any respite
for President Obama in his bid for re-election. While 115,000 new jobs are
expected to have been added in September, an increase on the lacklustre 96,000
added in August, this figure is still well below the perceived break-even level
of 125,000 which would hold the unemployment rate steady. The unemployment rate
is expected to tick up to 8.2% from 8.1% in August, as the numbers joining the
labour force offset any increase in new employment.
The underlying trend in 2012 has been very weak with a marked slowdown in
monthly employment growth, averaging just 96,667 in the six months to August
compared to robust growth of 200,000 on average in the six months to February.
Businesses are clearly holding back on investment with the fiscal cliff now
looming large, and the presidential election hanging in the balance. These
factors will likely hold employment growth at subdued levels out to end-2012.
Elsewhere, Irish industrial production data released today (11.00) for August
should show another month of robust growth in manufacturing output, up 5.7%
year-to-date with export-orientated industries focused in pharmaceuticals and IT
outpacing more traditional manufacturing industries in recent months."
In New York Thursday, the
Dow rose 81 points or 0.60% to 13,575.
The S&P 500 added 0.72%
and the Nasdaq advanced 0.45%.
The MSCI Asia
Pacific Index gained 0.4% Friday.
Nikkei closed up 0.44%; China's markets were closed today; South Korea's Kospi
rose 0.10%; Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.94% and in Mumbai, the Bombay Stock
Exchange's Sensex 30 Index dipped 0.75%.
the Dow Jones Stoxx Europe 600 is up 0.29% in early morning trading Friday.
skyscrapers and immaculate beaches of Singapore's seaport look out on one of the
world’s largest parking lots: mile after mile of empty cargo ships, as far as
the eye can see.
fleets bob at anchor, with empty cargo holds, off the coasts of southeast
Malaysia and Hong Kong. And dozens of newly built ships float empty near the
giant shipyards of South Korea and China, their owners from all over the world
reluctant to accept delivery during one of the worst markets ever for the global
recently as six weeks ago large freighters that can carry bulk commodities like
iron ore or grain were fetching charter rates of $15,000 a day. Now, brokers and
owners say, the going rate is $6,000 a day. If any customers can even be found.
between the US benchmark WTI (West Texas Intermediate) used on the New York
Mercantile Exchange and Brent is at $21 - - The Globe and Mail says that for
the past 10 months, Canadian producers - - whose prices are tied to WTI - - have
been taking steep discounts for their oil compared with international crude
prices that are benchmarked against North Sea Brent, which can be shipped more
readily. In the past, WTI tended to trade at a small premium to Brent, because
it is easier to refine.
hit a peak of $28.08 (US) on Oct. 14, but has fallen dramatically since then.
After plans for more pipeline capacity at Cushing, Oklahoma, the differential