Breakingviews

ECB bazooka a water pistol for emerging markets

January 23, 2015

Between Mario Draghi’s bond-buying plan and the Bank of Japan’s ongoing splurge, central banks are pumping out $1.5 trillion a year in cheap money. The surprise should boost emerging markets wary of rising rates. But fading growth and falling prices will overwhelm the stimulus.

StanChart equities closure is overdue but welcome

January 8, 2015

The emerging markets bank has pulled the plug on its share trading and underwriting arm, cutting 200 jobs. It’s a rational but still-rare step for a business that suffers from chronic overcapacity. Rivals will feel extra pressure to justify their decision to soldier on.

StanChart equities closure is overdue but welcome

January 8, 2015

The emerging markets bank has pulled the plug on its share trading and underwriting arm, cutting 200 jobs. It’s a rational but still-rare step for a business that suffers from chronic overcapacity. Rivals will feel extra pressure to justify their decision to soldier on.

Where to hide in an emerging market rout

December 30, 2014

Developing nations tend to get into trouble after seven fat years. By that yardstick, a meltdown is due. If rising U.S. interest rates help trigger a crisis, investors will look for relatively safe economies. Hungary, Mexico and the Philippines are the most attractive shelters.

Stick with BRIC

By Edward Hadas
December 23, 2014

It’s easy to mock the idea that the four biggest emerging markets – Brazil, Russia, India and China – will reshape the world economy. But the balance is still moving their way, even with slowdowns and Russian turmoil. Markets say otherwise because they were too keen at first.

Strong dollar is $10 trillion headache for debtors

December 8, 2014

The global private sector has borrowed $9.5 trillion from foreign banks; companies in emerging markets have raised another $500 billion by selling foreign-currency bonds. With a big chunk of claims getting settled in dollars, a strong greenback could threaten financial stability.

SABMiller’s Coca-Cola push is Africa buy signal

November 27, 2014

The UK brewer and the U.S. drinks giant are merging assets in southern and eastern Africa to create a soft-drinks bottler with $3 bln of sales. SAB gets control and gains market access. The move points to the continent’s strategic potential, and similar consolidation could follow.

QE gave emerging markets brief gains, lasting pain

October 30, 2014

Six years of money-printing in the United States have ended. The $4 trillion splurge may have averted a deeper slump. But for developing countries it fueled a credit binge while bringing only a fleeting boost to growth. Many will now struggle to boost output and repay the debt.

Credit Suisse’s future is mid-table drabness

October 23, 2014

The Swiss group’s investment bank trumped Wall Street in Q3. But it’s no longer a top-tier player in any standalone business line, and questions linger over its ability to maintain strong fixed income returns if rates rise. Muted expectations should apply to other divisions too.

Global poverty needs a post-industrial definition

August 29, 2014

Criticism is mounting against the $1-a-day threshold, a legacy of industrial-age thinking that equated penury with calorie deficiency. That’s too narrow. Being unable to afford education, medication or old-age security counts as deprivation. So does exclusion from modern jobs.