Mar 8, 2013 05:48 UTC

China’s currency inflows could be illusory

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By John Foley

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

China’s currency is a fickle measure of confidence in the country’s fortunes. For much of 2012 the yuan stagnated, causing investors to hold back on previous bets on its appreciation. Recent data suggests they have been piling back in to the Chinese currency – but that may not last.

Mar 7, 2013 15:07 UTC
Edward Hadas

UK policy rhetoric flies in the face of reality

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By Edward Hadas

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

When words and actions don’t match up, the problem is usually overly ambitious promises. In the debate on economic policy in the UK, the failure is in the present – the government’s description of fiscal and monetary policy flies in the face of reality.

Mar 6, 2013 07:58 UTC

Southeast Asia is wrong to neglect inflation risk

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By Andy Mukherjee

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

Inflation in the Philippines reached a five-month high in February; prices rose the most in 20 months in Indonesia. Yet, there is no word from the central banks of Southeast Asia’s fast-growing nations on when they are likely to raise interest rates. While their coyness to signal policy tightening is understandable, it is nevertheless a mistake.

Mar 5, 2013 15:18 UTC

Markets wrong to downplay Italian political risk

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By Neil Unmack

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

Italian bond spreads have risen nearly one percentage point since Italy’s election. It could have been worse – and considering the risks, it should.

Mar 5, 2013 04:09 UTC

Three roadmaps for an urbanizing China

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By John Foley

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

China is at an urban crossroads. Almost 53 per cent of its population lived in cities and towns at the end of 2012. In another two decades, China will probably be nearing the 80 percent urbanization level common in the West – suggesting some 1.1 billion city-dwellers. Premier designate Li Keqiang wants urbanization to put people first. The question is: where in China will he put them?

Mar 4, 2013 08:33 UTC

China’s gains tax won’t put a roof on house prices

By John Foley

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

China’s house prices are too high and local tax revenue too low. What better way to address both problems than taxing capital gains on property? China’s cabinet has promised to enforce such a levy on homeowners. While that drove down the share prices of property developers, it is unlikely to do the same for real estate values.

Mar 1, 2013 15:33 UTC

UK’s EU problem becomes more pressing

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By Pierre Briançon

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

It has taken just a short week to expose British Prime Minister David Cameron’s stated European policy as lacking in both strategy and tactics.

Feb 28, 2013 20:03 UTC

U.S. budget cuts more blip than bomb

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

For all the rhetoric from both political parties, the impending U.S. budget cuts are more a blip than a bomb. An initial $100 billion-worth of federal spending reductions won’t do much real damage to the growing economy.

Feb 28, 2013 07:22 UTC

BOJ chief could score early win by dumping rule

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By Andy Mukherjee

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

Expectations are running high for Japan’s next monetary czar. Haruhiko Kuroda, who has been nominated by the government as the Bank of Japan’s next governor, needs to quickly demonstrate his deflation-fighting credentials. One way would be to do away with the BOJ’s self-imposed limit on how many government bonds it can hold.

Feb 27, 2013 05:58 UTC

Illumination alone won’t slow China shadow banks

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By John Foley

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

When it comes to China’s shadow banks, switching on the lights isn’t enough to make the risks go away. The country’s lenders may soon be asked to disclose their off-balance sheet lending activities, starting with a trial in Shanghai, according to the Financial Times.