Business Times: Sat, Jul 28
Wealthy develop a new respect for forex
WITH other investment products on shaky ground, the seriously rich have been increasing their bets in the foreign exchange (forex or FX) market. So far this year, equity markets have been highly volatile, commodities have turned negative, and even fixed income has been losing its allure. Still, private banks have managed to keep their revenues humming along, thanks to customers who have stepped up their FX trades.
London, S'pore ahead in yuan business
LONDON and Singapore are seen as frontrunners in the race for a bigger slice of the yuan business as the Chinese currency continues its internalisation path.
Spain bears bad news to sink the markets
EUROPEAN stock markets and the euro slumped on Monday on a confluence of bad news about Spain and Greece. Such were the worries that Spanish 10-year bond yields spiked a quarter of a percentage point to a worrying 7.56 per cent in illiquid markets. Italian 10-year bonds also jumped to 6.4 per cent while the rush for safety caused German 10-year bond yields to tumble to 1.13 per cent.
Inflation stays stubborn, hits poorer homes hard
INFLATION is still not coming down and appears to have hit poorest households hardest in the first half of this year. Policymakers expect inflation to moderate in the second half of the year after June's rebound to 5.3 per cent, but high inflation makes any loosening of monetary policy dicey, even as slowing growth raises the need to.
Bank loans growth hits the skids
BANK loans growth is gradually weakening, as persistent economic uncertainty curbs business activity and banks themselves lend carefully. Analysts expect loans growth for the year to slow to the low teens, significantly below last year's 30 per cent growth.
Growth could dip below 1% this year
IF global conditions deteriorate significantly, Singapore could be hit with a double whammy of growth slipping below 1 per cent coupled with high inflation as costs remain elevated, said the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). Housing and private transport costs are likely to remain high and the MAS said it is narrowing the forecast range for inflation to 4-4.5 per cent in 2012 from 3.5-4.5 per cent previously. Core inflation remains unchanged at 2.5-3 per cent.
Ex-City Harvest finance director charged in court
ANOTHER key figure behind the alleged siphoning of millions of dollars of church funds at City Harvest Church was slapped with 10 criminal charges on Wednesday. Former finance director Serina Wee was charged with six counts of criminal breach of trust and four charges of falsifying accounts, in conspiring to dishonestly misappropriate church money to fund the music career of City Harvest's founder Kong Hee's pop-singer wife Ho Yeow Sun, and later, to cover up the tracks.
Changi may be jilted as Qantas eyes Dubai
IN a move that could impact the Singapore-Changi hub, Australia's Qantas Airways and Dubai-based Emirates are headed for an alliance that may see Qantas bypass Singapore as its "kangaroo route" hop-off.
Jostling for position ahead of F&N D-Day
SHARES in Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) fell on Thursday as the spotlight turned to its parent Fraser & Neave (F&N), where acquisition moves by major shareholders are now brewing. Thai Beverage emerged as one of the block buyers of F&N shares earlier this week, raising its deemed interest in the group to 23.9 per cent from 22 per cent. Meanwhile, Kirin Holdings is said to be eyeing F&N's non-alcoholic beverage business. These moves have added complexity to Heineken's takeover bid for APB.
June manufacturing rises 7.6% on pharma surge
INDUSTRIAL output rose 7.6 per cent in June from a year ago thanks to pharmaceuticals' anti-cyclical surge, more than double the 2.8 per cent consensus forecast.
Credo name history after JLL acquisition
HOME-GROWN property agency Credo Real Estate is bidding farewell to its name following its acquisition by global real estate services group Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) - a deal that both firms announced on Thursday.
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