Hang Seng, Shanghai Composite, Covid, oil

SINGAPORE — Greater China stock indexes led losses as Covid concerns resurge, while Asia-Pacific markets traded lower on Wednesday. Oil futures rose after plunging overnight. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index slipped 1.37%, with heavyweights HSBC and CNOOC falling 3.93% and 5.58% respectively. Mainland China markets also declined. The Shanghai Composite shed 1.34%, and the Shenzhen … Read more

Germany’s much-vaunted trade surplus disappears as import prices surge

Germany trade entered negative territory in May, raising questions about the stability of its economy in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Picture Alliance | Picture Alliance | Getty Images Germany is no longer exporting more than what it buys from other countries, highlighting the strains that the nation and other European economies are … Read more

Russia’s ruble is at strongest level in 7 years despite sanctions

Russian one ruble coin and Russian flag displayed on a screen are seen in this multiple exposure illustration photo taken in Krakow, Poland on March 8, 2022. Jakub Porzycki | Nurphoto | Getty Images Russia’s ruble hit 52.3 to the dollar on Wednesday, an increase of roughly 1.3% on the previous day and its strongest … Read more

European Central Bank last-minute meeting to look at market conditions

The European Central Bank announced an unscheduled monetary policy meeting for Wednesday, at a time when bond yields are surging for many governments across the euro zone. “They will have an ad hoc meeting to discuss current market conditions,” a spokesperson for the central bank told CNBC. Borrowing costs for many governments have risen sharply … Read more

Travelers can now go to Japan but domestic tourists remain its focus

After more than two years of closed border policies, Japan is set to welcome back international travelers this week. Come June 10, foreign tourists traveling via packaged tours can enter Japan. However, the government’s priority still lies in boosting domestic tourism numbers, said Tadashi Shimura, president of Japan Association of Travel Agents. Even before the … Read more

Russia thinks it’s found a way around US dollar bond payment blockade

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov (seen here with Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2019) reportedly told Russian newspaper Vedomosti that Moscow will continue to service external debts in rubles, but foreign Eurobond holders will need to open ruble and hard currency accounts with Russian banks in order to receive payments. Mikhail Svetlov | Getty Images … Read more

What is the Indo-Pacific framework, who’s in it, why it matters

US President Joe Biden formally introduced the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, or IPEF, this week during his first Asia tour, revealing Washington’s long-awaited Asia-Pacific economic strategy. It comes five years after the US unilaterally withdrew from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal signed by 12 countries in Asia-Pacific, North America and South America. With the US … Read more

As inflation slows and ruble rallies, Russia is hoping to avoid a crisis

Russian President Vladimir Putin. Pool | Reuters Russia believes it has swerved a financial crisis as its currency rallies and economic data improves, but strategists say the numbers mask some ugly truths for Moscow. Although inflation in the country is running hot, there are signs that price rises are slowing and will continue to do … Read more

eurozone breaks another record in April 2022

Inflation in the euro zone remains well-above the ECB’s target, as energy and food prices soar. Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images Inflation in the euro zone has hit a record high for the sixth consecutive month, sparking further questions over how the European Central Bank will react. Headline inflation in the 19-member region reached … Read more

Russia-Ukraine war threatens the Middle East’s food security

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is threatening global wheat and grain supplies, a particular risk for Middle Eastern and African countries like Egypt, where bread is a major dietary staple. Cairo, Egypt, on March 9, 2022. Photo by Ahmed Gomaa | Xinhua via Getty Images For centuries, bread has been the lifeblood of civilization. Riots and … Read more