Sep 18, 2013 04:15 UTC

Emerging markets’ foreign debt is no time bomb

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By Andy Mukherjee

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Emerging markets are sitting on a $5.8 trillion pile of debt to foreign lenders. Yet they are far less vulnerable to sudden capital flight than they were two decades ago.

Sep 17, 2013 08:08 UTC

China’s online land grab risks value mudslide

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By John Foley

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

China’s internet dealmakers are on a defensive offensive. Tencent’s $448 million purchase of a stake in search engine Sogou from its owner, U.S.-listed Sohu, is the latest attempt to stop competitors snapping up a bite-sized competitor. When cash is abundant and investors forgiving, that kind of land grab can turn into a value mudslide.

Sep 16, 2013 04:43 UTC

Shanghai trade zone may give rest of China a kick

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By John Foley

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Shanghai’s new trade zone may be a lab for financial reform. It may be a prop for the city’s flagging economy. Or maybe it will just be fuel for property speculators. In fact, it can be all of these and more. But the real benefits may not be in Shanghai at all.

Sep 16, 2013 03:24 UTC

Summers smart enough to avoid Fed chair battle

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By Daniel Indiviglio

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Larry Summers is smart enough to have decided to avoid a battle over the chairmanship of the Federal Reserve. Despite the support of embattled U.S. President Barack Obama, the former Treasury chief faced opposition from both liberal Democrats and plenty of his dismal scientist peers. Summers says it’s better for the economic recovery not to have the fight. That may be true – unless his exit from the race opens new fissures.

Sep 13, 2013 16:10 UTC

Review: A blunt-edged hatchet job of free markets

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By Robert Cole

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Bryan Gould’s new book is a closely argued critique of current trends in globalisation, monetary policy, and big business. Gould, a senior figure in the UK Labour Party in the 1980s has found some culpable targets. But his own answers are unconvincing.

Sep 13, 2013 02:54 UTC

China’s financial paradox: rescue or reform?

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By Peter Thal Larsen

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

China’s financial system is a paradox. Reform demands that the authorities relax their grip on banks and capital flows. But if they do, it could trigger the debt crisis the country has so far avoided.

Sep 11, 2013 06:44 UTC

Japan’s bond market calm hides fiscal disquiet

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By Andy Mukherjee

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The calm in the Japanese government bond market is hiding growing fiscal disquiet. After briefly shooting up to 1 percent in May, yields on 10-year JGBs are back down to 0.74 percent, even as inflation expectations have firmed up. This Zen-like state of affairs is all the more striking considering that interest rates are increasing across the Western world as investors anticipate an end to the cheap money of the post-financial crisis era.

Sep 10, 2013 14:11 UTC

Beware the Italian risk in German elections

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By Olaf Storbeck

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Germany’s parliamentary elections are expected to bring continuity and stability. In fact, they may well usher in a period of paralysis and uncertainty. German politics turning Italian is a possible scenario. Europe’s biggest economy might be stuck in protracted and difficult coalition negotiations – and it could be months before there is a working government in Berlin.

Sep 9, 2013 07:54 UTC

Japan index: Wages and consumption stymie recovery

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By Andy Mukherjee

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Firmer prices, stronger bank lending and higher manufacturing output helped the Breakingviews Abenomics Index reverse half the previous month’s decline in July. But unless wages and spending rise, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will struggle to win his war against deflation.

Sep 9, 2013 04:51 UTC

Japan’s Olympic boost will be mostly psychological

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By Peter Thal Larsen

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Japan’s Olympic boost will be mostly psychological rather than financial. Tokyo’s victory in the race to host the 2020 summer Games will help Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s efforts to rebuild the country’s confidence. But expectations that an Olympian investment spree will lift Japan out of deflation are as misplaced as fears that it will trigger a debt crisis.