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A slew of Asian price numbers are due this Friday, and they will all likely show that price gains softened further in January.
Korean trade activity is slowing.
In terms of one-day moves, the drop in U.S. equities yesterday and Asian equities in the past two days has been pretty bad.
The Asian PMIs point to a strengthening manufacturing sector in September but external demand is the driver.
The Fed's unscheduled 50bp cut on Tuesday opens up some space for Asian central banks to follow suit.
The past year has been difficult for Asian economies, with trade wars, natural disasters, and misguided policies, to name a few, putting a dampener on growth.
Korean exports are often a useful gauge of Asian and global trade; the country sits near the beginning of the global supply chain. It also happens to publish early in the data cycle and provides a measure of exports in the first 20 days of the month.
Early signs of financial fragilities emerge...with policymakers fretting, after the fact
China recovery falters...and now tariffs...Japan's Q1 gdp growth was a mirage; Korean exports are turning the corner, just...India's status quo vote won't turn growth around
Activity Data Confirm China's Nightmare Q1...Japan In For A Full-Year Contraction...Korea Should Be Able To Avoid A Technical Recession....India's Policymakers Are Reasonably Quiet, For Now
China's first recourse: Secure a trade deal...The boj is reticent to join the chorus of doves...The bok won't blink, green shoots are evident...India's Q1 was poor, but rbi cuts are overkill
U.S. profligacy will extend Asia's cycle...but domestic demand to struggle this year and next
Punchy Q2 Implies A Quieter Q3 In China...Expect A Quieter Secord Half For The BOJ...Korean Exports Look Poised To Turn The Corner..No Bullet Was Dodged In India; Unlock 1.0 Is Risky
China Delivers Stimulus; No Trough Yet...Korea and Japan Pummelled by China's Slowdown...Time for a Boj Inflation Target Rethink?
China Gets A 2020 GDP Growth Downgrade...Back To The Bad Old Days For Japan...Korea Points To Stabilisation In Global Trade...Plus -4% Inflation Sets Up An RBI Pause
Back to 2014/2015 for China? A Weak Q3 for Japan, After Rocket-Charged Q2...The BOK Will Kick Its Rate Hike Into the Long Grass
China's Dire Q3 GDP points to Further Easing
Asia supported by U.S. demand in Q3...while domestic demand weakens in China and Japan
After June respite, China will hit Q3 headwinds...Japan probably dodged a Q2 GDP contraction...The BOK's surprise cut in July is a one-and-done...The case for additional RBI cuts narrows further
China's social contract has changed...Fed normalisation to test the new paradism
China's Stimulus Faces Q4 Hurdles...Japan Bounced Back in October but will it last?...Misplaced BoK Hopes for Stable Growth
China's Unsustainable V-Shaped Recovery...Japan's Q1 GDP Contraction Is Just A Taster...Korea's Grim April Exports Is A Warning Shot...India's Lockdown Will Kill Q2, Despite Relaxation
Expect a Rare Q/Q Fall in Chinese GDP In Q1...A Technical Recession In Japan is on the Cards...The Real Hit to Korean Trade will Start This Month...Post-Virus in Oil Will Help India's Recovery
Chia faces a u-shaped recovery..Japan's domestic demand strentgh is fragile...The bank of Korea is likely to pause, for now...Expect a respectable Q2 GDP rebound in India
Winter has come as China curbs pollution...Asia will use fed hikes to tackle financial risks
China's switch to easing shows up in the data...The BOJ takes a baby step away from uber-easing
China's Growing Demand-Supply Mismatch...Three Straight Quarters Of Contraction In Japan...Covid Defeated, But Korea's Economic Hit Isn't Over...An H1 Recession In India Is All But Guarenteed
China's 2018 growth forecast revised up...but activity in Japan took a breather in Q1
Is This Really The Recovery For China?...Japan Catches A Cold;...Q1 Will Be Poor, But The BOK Is Set For A Long Pause
China's Stimulus Faces Q4 Hurdles....Japan Bouced Back in October, But Will it Last? Growth in Korea is Set to Become Much Weaker
China Is Stabilising, But Not Yet Recovering...Japan's Fiscal Stimulus Faces Capacity Constraints...No New Year Shock This Time For Korean Workers..India's Q3 Wasn;t A Disaster; The RBI Is Done Easing
Chinese GDP Growth Won't Trough Until Q3...The Window For BOJ Adjustments Is Narrowing...Not Buying Into Korea's Consensus-Beating Q4 GDP
China: Manuf. Green Shoots; Household Pain...Japan's Fiscal Package Faces Capacity Constraints...Korea's Q4 GDP Bump Is Iffy, But The Recovery Is On...Food Inflation In India Isn't Just About Onions
BOJ is out of ammo; PBOC still has options...and is likely to fight back against RMB strength
China Takes the Trade High Road..The BOJ will Act Before Markets Expect Unemployment Upshift Rules out 2018 BOK Hike
A Major Turning Point For China? Financial Fragilities; Political Regime Change
China Downtrend Worse; Outlook Better..Japan's Bouncy Q4 Won't Be Repeated In Q1...Korea's Job Market Pummelled By Minimum Wage Hike
China shifts to easing but scope is limited...While the Boj is set to tweak its yield curve targets
Tariffs are unlikely to damage GDP this year...But the tension is unveiling financial fragilities
The Caixin manufacturing headline was unremarkable, but the input price index signals that PPI inflation is set to rise again in May, to 4.0%-plus, from 3.4% in April.
This Monitor provides a summary of the main points of interest over the two weeks we were out. The Chinese Caixin manufacturing PMI, published last Friday, confounded expectations for a modest fall, rising to 51.6 in August from 51.1 in July.
Japan's retail sales values jumped 1.2% month-on-month in October, after the upwardly-revised 0.1% increase in September.
China's Caixin manufacturing PMI doused hopes of turning over a January new leaf; it dropped to 49.7 in November, from 50.2 in December.
After strong real GDP growth in Q1, China commentators called the peak, claiming that growth would slow for the rest of 2017.
The Monetary Policy Board of the Bank of Korea will tomorrow hold its final meeting for the year.
While we were out, most of the core domestic economic data were quite strong, with the exception of the soft July home sales numbers and the Michigan consumer sentiment survey.
Demand in German manufacturing slid at the start of Q3.
The PBoC cut the Reserve Requirement Ratio late on Friday--as signalled at last Wednesday's State Council meeting--by 0.5 percentage points, to be implemented from September 16.
The PBOC is hesitant, but the case for an outright rate cut continues to build..
China's authorities recognised, around the middle of this year, that activity was slowing and that monetary conditions had become overly tight.
China's unadjusted current account surplus widened to $16.0B in the preliminary report for Q3, from $5.3B in Q2.
Recent market turmoil and concerns on the outlook for global growth have re-awakened talk of stimulus. For the BoJ, this inevitably raises the question of what could possibly be done, given that policy already appears to be on the excessively loose side of loose.
The Monetary Policy Committee of the Reserve Bank of India voted yesterday to cut the benchmark repo rate by a further 25 basis points, to 5.75%, a nine-year low.
Japan's national CPI inflation has peaked, falling to 0.7% in May from 0.9% in April.
In recent months we've been thinking more deeply about the themes for the next economic cycle for China, and its impact on the world.
Japan's labour cash earnings rose by 1.5% year-over- year in July, a strong result in the Japanese context, if it hadn't been preceded by the 3.6% leap in June.
The Board of the Bank of Korea will meet again in less than a week's time for this year's penultimate meeting.
Yesterday's Chinese PMI numbers disappointed forecasts across the board, failing to meet widespread expectations for either stability or a continued, albeit marginal, improvement in April.
The pace of layoffs might be picking up. Our first chart looks pretty convincing, but it's much too soon to know for sure. The claims data from mid-December through late January are subject to serious seasonal adjustment problems, partly because Christmas falls on a different day of the week each year and partly because the exact timing of post-holiday layoffs varies from year-to-year.
Investors are increasingly anxious that an intentional sharp devaluation of the renminbi, aiming to combat China's slowdown, might lead to prolonged deflation in the West, particularly in an economy as open as the U.K.
The latest trade data from Korea underscore the unfortunate timing of the resumption of the U.S.-China tit-for-tat tariff war.
When Park Geun-hye came to power in Korea 2013, it was to cheers of "economic democratisation". At the time, I wrote a report with a list of reforms that would be needed for Korea to "economically democratise".
At the time of writing, Mr. Trump reportedly is finalising plans to impose tariffs of up to 25% on a further $200B of imports from China.
The two key planks of the argument that a substantial easing of fiscal policy won't be inflationary are that labor participation will be dragged higher, limiting the decline in the unemployment rate, while productivity growth will rebound, so unit labor costs will remain under control.
Yesterday's February PMI data sent a clear message to markets.
The BoJ yesterday published its semi-annual Financial System Report, which often gives insights into the longer-term thinking driving BoJ policy.
Recent industrial data for Mexico point to renewed upside risks for GDP growth, despite the likely headwind to consumption from high inflation and depressed confidence.
Japanese domestic demand probably strengthened in Q2, with both private consumption and fixed investment accelerating. Trade and inventories are the key swing components for GDP growth.
Japanese real Q2 GDP growth surprised analysts, increasing sharply to a quarterly annualised rate of 4.0%, up from 1.0% in Q1 and much higher than the consensus, 2.5%. But its no coincidence that the jump in Japanese growth follows strong growth in China in Q1.
China's manufacturing PMI highlights supply-demand mismatch. China's non-manufacturing PMI reveals struggling services and rebounding construction. Retail sales in Japan started to turn sour before the state of emergency, but the overall picture for Q1 isn't bad. The worst is yet to come for Japanese industrial production.
BoJ snubs the doves. Japan's unemployment rate downtick was minimal. The weak external backdrop dominates Japan's pre-tax front-loading industrial activity.
Focus on Japan's job-to-applicant ratio, not the unemployment rate
Japan: Monetary base growth slowed to 2.8% y/y in August, from 3.7% in July. Bloomberg reports no consensus, Korea: Q2 GDP growth was revised down to 1.0% q/q, from 1.1% in the preliminary report, below the no-change consensus. • Korea: CPI inflation fell to 0.0% in August, from 0.6% in July, below the consensus, 0.2%.
A jump in Chinese services was due, but activity remains well below pre-Covid levels
Chinese manufacturing powers through Beijing's partial lockdown. The hot construction sector in China took a small breather in June. Unemployment in Japan is on track to breach the 3% mark for the first time since 2017. No immediate relief for Japanese industry from the withdrawal of the state of emergency. There is light at the end of the tunnel for the downturn in Korean industry.
China's Caixin gauge still to register renewed tariff threat. Japan's Capex growth on borrowed time. Korean exports stumble in May, but Q2 is shaping up to be better than Q1. Korea's PMI for May highlights the still-huge downside risks facing exporters.
Marginally stronger Q4 GDP growth in Korea implies a more painful Q1 virus hit, CPI inflation in Korea should continue to slide, as the slump in oil prices starts to feed through, Remember the BoJ never officially abandoned it's ¥80T JGB purchase target
Encouraging momentum from China's private sector in the lead-up to Q3.
China's manufacturing PMI was poised for major disappointment... the trade war impact is clear. Don't be fooled by the relative stability of China's non-manufacturing PMI. Japan's March unemployment uptick was early; April was payback. Japan's CPI inflation has peaked. Japan's industrial production ticks up after extreme weakness; don't hold your breath for the recovery. Japan's consumers in poor shape, but maybe it's not that bad. The upswing in Korean industrial production likely to take a breather this month. The BoK holds firm, despite rising calls for a rate cut.
BoJ remains in an alternate reality in order to avoid a rate cut, underlining its concerns over damage to the financial sector. Chances of a serious PBoC blunder are rising. No "Phase 1" sentiment lift for Chinese manufacturers. A sharp fall in China's official services gauge was due. This probably is as good as it'll get for Japanese industrial production. Korean industrial production remains volatile, but the trend is decisively up.
China's Caixin manufacturing PMI was due a correction. Korea's PMI closes out the year strong, chiming with December's punchy trade data.
China's Caixin gauges are picking up but both are volatile
Consensus-beating March PMI merely underscores how bad February was... the economy isn't out of the woods. The non-manufacturing bounce was broad-based, but construction led the way. Japan's job openings plunge shows the direction of travel for unemployment. Japan's retail sales suggest Q1 pain to be concentrated in March. Japan inc granted a last month of reprieve before the Covid-19 storm hits. Korean carmakers' sourcing woes largely to blame for February hit.
China's manufacturing PMI edged up in July. Services in China are finally starting to feel the pinch. Korean IP looks poised for a stronger increase in July, notwithstanding Japan's export curbs.
Tax front-loading in full swing
China's manufacturing PMIs suggest the private sector is recovering ahead of SoEs. China's non-manufacturing PMI again masks construction/services cross currents. Japan's industrial production continues to languish. OK so now Japanese households are front-loading spending. Korean IP corrects from the bumper July; the momentum from the Q2 recovery is waning.
China's PMIs are not yet fully picking up the coronavirus; China's non-manufacturing PMI lifted by local government spending; not yet hit by the virus; Japan's job postings still suggest the unemployment rate is unsustainably low; Japan's national inflation has less far to fall than Tokyo's; The coronavirus will delay the return of Japanese retail sales to pre-tax hike levels; Investment goods drive Japan's IP rebound in December; no real support now for consumer goods production; December probably is as good as it will get for Korean industrial production, for now
PBoC lowers rates, and signals more to come.
Horrendous Chinese profits plummet should spur the authorities into further stimulus. No signs yet of persistent discounting in Tokyo, but a lockdown would change things overnight.
Tokyo inflation had further to fall in September than the national gauge. Some positive stories in Chinese industrial profits despite the gloomy headline.
Japan most exposed workers felt the early Covid-19 hit in March.
Japanese labour data show early signs of virus hit. Japan's industrial production in a slow recovery... pre-virus. Japan's retail sales still trying to make up lost ground after the tax hike. Tokyo prices already showing signs of virus hit? Korean industrial production wobbles before virus hit.
Fresh deterioration in Chinese profits.
Household debt forced the BoK toward targeted measures and away from a system-wide cut
Non-core base effects push Korean CPI inflation to a 14-month high in January. Monetary base data show BoJ back-peddling against virus.
In one line: BoJ makes a gesture on bond buying
Chinese profits show signs of stabilisation, but headwinds will continue
Japan's stable unemployment rate belies underlying weakness. Tokyo energy inflation turns the corner. Sales tax preparations breathe life into Japanese production in May... if only temporarily. Korea's IP plunge in May shows why Japan can't rest on its laurels.
Expecting one more cut from the BoK, as it mulls implicit forms QE and YCC
National CPI probably will rise in October, despite Tokyo stability
No post-lockdown bounce for private services in China
Headline GDP growth in Q3 was unchanged, but the revised details mostly were positive. BoJ in a holding pattern on aggregate JGB purchases; focus on curve steepening
Japan's firms are done hiring. Tokyo inflation points to uptick in national gauge, driven by non-core effects. Japan's start to Q4 goes from bad to worse, as industrial production tanks in October. Still far too soon to call time on Korea's IP recovery, despite the October setback. Governor Lee attempts to manage 2020 expectations, as the BoK stands pat after the October cut.
Commodity-price pressures dampen Chinese profits' return to growth, Retail sales in Japan recover only modestly in May
Larger-than-expected collapse in Japanese retail sales highlight inefficacy of tax-smoothing efforts
Korean IP was due a bounce after February's sourcing woes... that will pale in comparison to the April hit.
Minimal front-loading ahead of Japan's October tax hike so far.
PBoC rate cut still on the tame side but more is coming, China's Caixin manufacturing PMI yet to see virus damage, China's profits better than the headline suggests going into the coronavirus hit, Early signs of coronavirus damage in Korea's trade data, Surge in Korea's manufacturing PMI comes to a stop in January
Not giving up on China's stimulus yet. China's PPI inflation will head higher this month. China's CPI inflation will peak soon.
China's trade surplus probably has peaked. Chinese FX reserves jump in May, thanks primarily to valuation effects. Chinese FX reserves jump in May, thanks primarily to valuation effects. April should be the low of Japan's current account surplus.
China's real imports showing signs of stabilisation? Japan's regular wages staging a comeback?
Japan's wage growth rebounded because August is not a bonus month. Japan's current account maintains stability as trade balance cross currents persist. China's services PMI report contains some positive details but we aren't convinced. The rebuilding of Korea's current account surplus will soon lose momentum.
Valuation effects boost China's June FX reserves. Japan's currency account surplus unlikely to fall further. Japan's core machine orders should shake policymakers' conviction in Capex resilience.
Japan's wage growth is not strong enough to support households through the tax hike
China's exporters fulfil old orders; new orders have plunged; Caixin survey underlines that smaller firms are still sputtering; An unsurprisingly modest start for "unlimited QE" in Japan; Expect much more trade damage to Korea's current account surplus in April
China is not taking any chances with the RMB ahead of its 70th anniversary
China's see-sawing trade surplus is likely to continue in the short run, but it mostly has peaked. Japan's unadjusted current account surplus slipped to ¥1,211B in June, from ¥1,595B in May, marginally surpassing the consensus, ¥1,149B.
Japan's Q2 GDP growth was not all it's cracked up to be. M2 growth in Japan inched up in July, but trends at the margin have rolled over. China's July inflation uptick shows that the swine flu outbreak is nowhere near under control. China officially enters PPI deflation... but it shouldn't last beyond Q3.
Japan GDP now shows more of the tax distortions. Japan's current account surplus is likely to see another downshift. Chinese imports boosted soybeans and circuits. China's FX reserves slide in November, as Phase One talks enter crunch time.
Machine tool orders in Japan are still in the doldrums.
Japan's capex on a much weaker footing than original data showed. Japan's current account surplus will continue to face cross-currents. China's export weakness is not over yet. China FX reserves spared as intervention goes on behind the scenes.
China's trade surplus falls unexpectedly in April, thanks partly to a bump in imports. Japan's services PMI falls despite holiday boost. The BoJ remains in a holding pattern. Korea's current account surplus rose in March, but its overall downtrend remains intact.
March was painful, but Japan's all-industry index likely was hit much harder in April.
Rebound in Chinese trade will be hampered in the short run by virus disruptions around the world. PBoC leant against Covid-19 pressures on the RMB... a far cry from January's Phase One rally. Japan's Q4 GDP nose-dive downgraded on weaker private and public investment. Japan's current account surplus is facing strong crosscurrents.
China's PPI turning the corner. China's CPI inflation should peak this month ber's punchy trade data.
Japan's money growth reverts back after a brief uptick. Japan's wage headline improves, details deteriorate. Japan's machine tool orders should turn stomachs.
State of emergency destroyed Japanese overtime pay in April. M2 growth in Japan hasn't been this strong since the early 90s. No relief for Japanese tool orders in May, despite the phased withdrawal of the emergency declaration.
Korea's current account surplus should rebound sharply in December. The rate of QE in Japan slipped in December.
Japan's December wage data suggest household in no mood to weather tax hike
Let's not get carried away with the Japanese fiscal stimulus. Korea's current account surplus rebounded in October, as the services gap returned to its narrowing trend.
Caixin services PMI shows labour market worries before the virus hit
Japan's services PMI points to Q2 GDP contraction. China's Caixin services PMI highlights the reasons for official concern over employment. Korea's current account slips into deficit for the first time since 2012.
The Caixin services PMI was due a bounce
The hit from oil prices has just started; CPI deflation is imminent in Korea. Korea's PMI descends further, but April could mark the low
Korea's Q1 GDP downgrade will fuel calls for a rate cut. CPI inflation in Korea should soon peak out. Ignore the uptick in Japanese monetary base; it's a one off.
Korea's current account deficit in April probably was the low.
Smaller services sector firms worse hit by virus containment. Korean virus response notches up in the wake of the Fed move.
Covid-19 could soon push Korea's current account surplus into the red.
China's meagre cut is not enough. Broad slowdown in Chinese services activity continues. Japan's rate of QE is low but roughly stable.
Cash earnings in Japan surprise to the upside thanks to base effects... January will be as good as it gets.
Overdue correction in the primary income surplus brings Korea's current account back down to earth.
Japan's bonus drop is dictating spending in Q3
China's Caixin services PMI corrects from November's Singles' Day bump
The coronavirus will put renewed pressure on Korea's current account surplus.
Korea's current account surplus rebounded on a smaller services deficit in July
Japan's wage growth bounces back on volatile bonuses; distortions still at play? Korea's current account surplus has bottomed out, but pressure on the won will continue to rise in the S/T.
Korea's current account balance returns to the black in May
Japan's inflationary upturn will be limited. Japan's activity index reinforces case for Q1 GDP downgrades.
Mr. Trump's partial U-turn on September tariffs shows some semblance of an understanding of reality...that's a good thing. China's industrial production crushes June hopes of a swift recovery. Chinese consumers struggle. Chinese FAI: the infrastructure industry growth slowdown is especially worrying. Japan's strong core machine orders rebound in June probably faded in recent weeks. Korea's jobless rate will soon creep back up after remaining steady in July.
Relative import strength jars with domestic data, while exports have yet to feel the full virus hit
Evidence continues to build that Korea's August unemployment plunge was a fluke. October sales tax hike in Japan opens the door for a quicker exit from PPI deflation.
Japan's tertiary index rounds out a dismal Q4
Chinese imports ride high on tech and Phase One trade deal. Risks continue to build in Japan's financial account
BoJ programmes are propping up M2 growth; Japan's machine tool orders tumble will get worse before better
Japan's trade surplus deterioration not as bad as official stats suggest, but more to come
Surprise stability in Korea's unemployment rate won't last. Risks to Japan's current account surplus are weighted to the downside
Japan's PMI had suggested an upside surprise, but now points firmly down
Japan's tertiary index remains below trend despite looming tax hike
Japan's M2 growth is going nowhere fast. Japanese machine tool orders suggest some stabilisation in global activity.
Japan's tertiary index shows Q2 services strength was merely an April leap. Japan's PPI is slated for more deflation.
Positives in the Tankan survey should be taken with a pinch of salt.
Don't get too excited on Japanese domestic demand just yet
Japan's PPI inflation probably just peaked
Slowing FAI growth underscores the urgency for more PBoC easing October was painful and the slowdown in Chinese IP growth is far from over and no, households in China won't come to the economy's rescue. Japan sneaks in a tax hike; GDP data unfazed. Japan's tertiary index jars with the GDP data.
Signs of stabilisation in Chinese trade?
No new measures from the BoJ, as sees light at the end of the tunnel.
Japan's machinery orders boosted by one-off transportation spike. Japanese PPI ticks higher on commodities. China's new home price rises should remain on the tepid side for now .
Judgement pending on Chinese industrial production. Chinese retail sales buoyed by inflation. Chinese FAI growth stable through Q4; local government spending better managed this year. China's housing market still not reached a bottom. Japan's tertiary index plunge is more tax hike than typhoon. Japan's PMIs underline damage from tax hike.
The BoJ is doing everything within its power to cushion the virus blow. The PBoC is driving down market rates without a formal corridor cut.
China's retail sector is on its knees at best. China's IP data suggest that the horrendous PMIs underplayed the carnage. A damning FAI report... tertiary capex should rebound, but the hit to global demand will hold back the secondary industry. China's property market grounds to a halt in February. The Bank of Korea steps in with an emergency cut, despite falling new infections locally.
PPI inflation in Japan likely has peaked... expect steeper drops in coming months. China's property recovery is spreading to more cities.
Energy prices in Tokyo generally lag... deflation probably took hold nationwide this month
PPI deflation should soon trough. Chinese food inflation takes off. Japan's tertiary index points to strong Q3 GDP growth.
Easing of curbs so far won't slow property decline
China's homes market faces fundamental headwinds.
PBoC MLF cut is housekeeping; further easing to come.
Job losses in the over-60 group pull Korea's unemployment rate higher in December. Japanese M2 growth holds steady in December. Still no clear signs of a recovery in machine tool orders in Japan.
Short-term trends in Chinese industry continued to soften in May, with catch-up growth fading, No noticeably May Day lift, as retail sales in China continue to fall behind, Chinese investment looks to have taken a breather in May, Don't put too much stock into the stronger increase in Chinese home prices, Japan's tertiary index should rebound from April, but Q2 is a write-off
Chinese production surprises in April, as catch-up growth and inventory build continue; Disappointing sales headline in China masks respectable short-term trends; Recovery in secondary investment in China still lagged behind tertiary capex; PPI deflation has largely bottomed out, but don't expect a quick exit
Our caution over China's March industrial production spike was justified. Chinese retail sales growth hits lows. Chinese FAI growth suggests private sector policy loosening isn't working. Japan's M2 growth upturn is a welcome break, but needs to be sustained. Korean unemployment jumps in April, showing the limits of the government's hiring spree.
Commodity prices continued to pummel Chinese PPI. Normalisation in pork prices will continue to drag CPI inflation down in China;
Japan's PPI set for another bout of deflation
Sharper energy and education deflation offset a jump in food prices in Tokyo. Lockdowns in Europe and the U.S. knock out Korean exports in April.
April wasn't so bad for Korean exports, which are starting to bottom out in real terms
Manufacturers in China are skating on thin ice. Construction is still doing most of the heavy lifting for China's non-manufacturing index. MoF data suggest that Japan probably avoided a technical recession in Q1, just. Korean exports stabilise in May, but Q2 still looks like a lost cause. Korea's PMI continued to sink in May, with no clear signs of a turnaround in export orders.
Japan's labour market remains tight but will face persistent slackening from here. Caixin manufacturing on a tear. In the end, CPI deflation in Korea lasted just one month. October probably was the y/y trough in Korea's export slump. Business sentiment in Korea is recovering... albeit only slowly.
The Tankan points to a q/q contraction for capex in Q3, but GDP growth overall will stay strong. Japan's unemployment steady, but details bode ill for Q4. September's full-month data dispel some export worries in Korea; expect a Q3 lift from net trade. Korea's PMI pours cold water on the spectacular jobs report for August. September is as bad as it gets for Korean CPI deflation.
PPI inflation reflect pre-virus state of play. China's CPI inflation spikes due to holiday effects. Japan's current account to be damaged by virus
CPI inflation in China is nearing a peak, with pork prices starting to stabilise. November's data confirm that PPI deflation in China has bottomed out. Japan's M2 growth looks exposed to a downward revision. Japan's machine tool orders refuse to turn.
Tankan suggests downside risks to our -6% y/y Q2 GDP forecast. Private manufacturers in China continue to play catch-up. Expect a bumpy recovery for Korean exports in Q3. Korean business sentiment is finally recovering.
Tankan reinforces our impression of a nasty Q2. China's manufacturing PMIs show why the authorities are eager for a trade deal. China's non-manufacturing sector holds steady for now. Korean exports disappointed in June, but this probably is as bad as it will get. Ignore Korea's volatile PMI readings... sentiment is improving gradually.
The two major central banks in Asia currently have hugely different aims, causing a policy divergence that won't survive the 2018 rise in external yields.
Korea's preliminary export numbers rebounded quite spectacularly in June, with growth at 24.4% year-on-year, compared with just 3.4% in May. This reading is important as it comes early in the monthly data cycle. Korea's position close to the beginning of the global supply chain, moreover, means its exports often lead shifts in global trade.
Let's say we are right, and global yields go up this year. Somewhere in the world, imbalances will be exposed, causing financial ructions and damaging GDP growth.
China's Caixin manufacturing PMI edged down to 50.6 in August, from July's 50.8. This clashed with the increase in the official PMI, though the moves in both indexes were modest.
PBoC holding still in the wake of Fed rate cut. China's Caixin manufacturing PMI was due a bounce. Inflation in Korea will soon take another nosedive, due largely to unfavourable non-core base effects. Korea's export slump turned less bad in July. Korea's two main manufacturing surveys aren't talking to each other.
The Tankan survey reinforces our conviction in a c.2% y/y Q1 contraction in Japanese GDP. Caixin suggests March was as bad as February... that's bad. Ignore the headline, Korean exports rebounded strongly in March, salvaging Q1. Korean business sentiment is sinking to GFC territory.
Expect Chinese PPI deflation in the second half. China's CPI inflation faces non-core cross currents; services inflation still slowing. Unemployment in Korea held steady in June; the BoK will be chuffed about improving job growth. PPI deflation in Japan will persist until the end of the year.
China's trade surplus rejoins previous uptrend. China's FX reserves; strong valuations boost outweighs sales. Japan's Q1 GDP gets an upgrade, at the expense of Q2. Japan's current account surplus.
Japan's M2 growth stabilises but the near three year downtrend leaves GDP growth looking exposed
CPI inflation in China punches through the 3% target. PPI deflation in China should soon bottom out. Japan's rugby boost small in the face of pre-tax front loading. September machinery orders data seriously undermines Japan's "resilient capex" story.
August plunge in Korean unemployment is unsustainable, but should effectively rule out another BoK cut.
Core machine orders hack a hole in the notion of resilient Japanese domestic demand
China's firms aren't passing on tax hikes after all. China takes full advantage of previous oil price declines. Japan's core machine orders better than expected, but that won't help Q2. Japan is heading for a spell of sustained PPI deflation in H2. Better May jobs report will help to keep any BoK rate cuts at bay.
Japan's monetary and credit trends were looking better, but now stand to be damaged by... the virus scare. Virus hit still to come for Japanese machine tool orders? Korea's jobless rate is back to its pre-August one-off plunge.
Covid-19 efforts in Korea, plus Q1 front-loading of jobs budget, result in February surprise.
Japan's machine tool orders remain nasty. Japan's M2 growth shows first signs of looming tax hike.
China's PPI back in deflation until fall. China's February CPI inflation was a battle between food and services. M2 growth in Japan was due a further uptick, given the perkier trends at the margin. Favourable base effects flattered Japanese machine tool orders in February.
China still is on track for mild CPI deflation by Q4, PPI deflation in China has bottomed out , Core machine orders in Japan tank in the wake of the state of emergency, Adverse base effects from last year's tax hike will delay Japan's exit from PPI deflation, Surprise spike in Korea's unemployment rate makes sense given the plunge in jobs created
Japan's wage picture has turned ugly for workers, even accounting for sampling distortions. China's current account surplus increase is hard to fathom.
Japan's machinery orders are set to stay weak. Japan's PPI deflation likely just troughed.
Japan's tertiary index still has further to fall
Big gains in the size of the labour force continue to flatter Korea's unemployment rate. Japan's exit from PPI deflation will be followed by only modest inflation.
Don't expect the BoK to follow the BoJ's unorthodoxy in the foreseeable future. The upward correction in Korean unemployment has much more room to run.
Japan's capex signals were picking up before the virus hit.
Japan's trade balance should recover as domestic weakness sets in; Japan's manufacturing PMI undermines H2 recovery hopes; Japan's services PMI paints a damning picture of Q2; Korea's export recovery from the April low will be more gradual than the descent; A lot more downside left for PPI deflation in Korea before Q3 trough
The renewed trade war is unfortunate timing, as Korea exports are stabilising at the margins. Revised index shows that Korean PPI inflation hasn't been missing this year.
Japan's CPI inflation has peaked. Japan's PMI hit by renewed trade wars, while domestic demand shows signs of slowing. The fledgling recovery in Korean exports lost steam in June.
November's 20-day data confirm that Korea's export slump bottomed out in October
PPI deflation in Korea looks set to deepen, and rapidly so.
Korea's consensus-beating preliminary Q4 GDP print is susceptible to a downgrade
Japan's flash PMIs for August point to short-term gain and long-term pain. Construction is starting to show signs of peaking.
The BoJ's growth upgrade for fiscal 2020 is on the ambitious side, to say the least. Lunar New Year noise hit Korea's 20-day export print for January. Korea completes its exit from a brief and shallow spell of PPI deflation.
Further weakness to come for Japan's manufacturing PMI. First services hit from the coronavirus is damning. Japan's all-industry activity index suggests the 2019 tax hike was as bad as 2014. A drop in food inflation was enough to offset lagged oil pressures in Japan's January CPI. Ignore the headline; the coronavirus is now hurting Korean exports.
China's industrial production growth downtrend worsens. China's retail sales dragged down by autos but boosted as people spend more at home. China's fixed asset investment growth slows despite greater support from infrastructure.
Chinese banks send a message: no rate corridor cut, no LPR reduction, PPI deflation in Korea in Q2 seems inevitable
The PBoC is standing firm for now, but adjustments will be needed; Japan's machinery orders are defying gravity; gravity always wins in the end
China's rate corridor cut was enough to bring down the LPR
Korean exports show no signs of additional pain from Japan's trade salvo. PPI deflation takes hold in Korea.
A grim start to Q2, as developed world demand collapses
Loan prime rates unchanged, but an RRR cut looks imminent, Korean exports are heading into Q3 with promising momentum
Japan's adjusted trade balance will remain in the red for now
Japan will be in deflation in a few months. Stimulus fails to buoy Japan's construction sector. China's smaller TMLF injection means the facility has been superseded, while interbank rates already are low.
Ignore the nasty 20-day print... Korea's export slump has bottomed out
Non-core items drive Japan's CPI inflation higher, with energy also indirectly pushing up core inflation. Sino-U.S. Phase One trade deal gives Japan's manufacturing PMI a boost. Japan's services PMI levels look unsustainable.
Echoes of the global financial crisis and the 2011 tsunami in Japan's manufacturing PMI; Japan's services index tanks to a record low
April should be as bad as it'll get for Japan's all-industry index.
Japan's PMI report bodes well for Q3, but points to headwinds thereafter. PPI deflation in Korea is unlikely to get worse than the August drop.
Trade tensions weigh on Japan's PMI
An encouraging 20-day export print from Korea, as China plays catch-up
Non-core items outweigh government measures in Japan's October CPI. Ignore the minor rebound in Japan's manufacturing PMI; the trend remains very weak. The post-tax drop and rebound in Japan's services PMI isn't as sharp, but Q4 looks vulnerable to a painful GDP hit.
China dumped growth targeting, sending a signal through the deficit instead. The BoJ is doing all it can to support the economy. Japanese inflation quashed by oil price tumble.
Net trade and inventories cushion Korea's historic consumption collapse in Q1. Nasty Japan manufacturing readings, but we can extrapolate light at the end of the tunnel. A devastating services PMI report for Japan.
Japan is creeping towards CPI deflation, but it should just about avoid it in Q4.
A two-tiered economic recovery is emerging in Japan. PPI deflation in Korea will soon bottom out
Japan's trade balance continues to struggle with oil gains and post-tax hike recovery. Activity index shows downside risks to Q4 GDP.
The BoJ keeps it promises vague. Japan's April is turning out quite nicely. PPI inflation in Korea slipped in May, and is heading for deflation in Q3.
Japan's Q1 GDP number leaves sales tax delay on the table
China's new Loan Prime Rate amounts to a rate cut, but supply-side banking strains limit its efficacy. Chinese slowdown and pre-tax front-loading keeps Japan's trade balance in deficit.
Weak oil prices and flagging domestic demand reduces Japan's trade deficit in August.
Chinese quarterly GDP growth was dire. China's industrial production was due an upward correction. China's retail sales data suggest that households took a Q3 battering. China's FAI growth shows no signs of turning. Japan's CPI avoids deflation.
BoJ focuses on the positives, keeping the door open to increasing flexibility.
Unchanged LPR suggests continued need for easing.
Outright CPI deflation in Japan is just around the corner
Japan's trade balance damaged by export weakness and previous oil price gains.
China's housing recovery faces headwinds.
More evidence of the damage from the tax hike.
Steady Q4 GDP growth in China masks respectable q/q rebound. Signs of recovery in China's industrial complex, but for how long? China's households continue to struggle. China's FAI growth shows rebuilding confidence around the Phase One deal. Japan's November tertiary index suggests October plunge was more tax than typhoon. January sees the first of many BoK "holds" this year.
Japan's GDP plunge: damning across the board, though with some modest potential for upward revision. China's rate cut was mainly a housekeeping move. China's housing market starts to feel the pinch from the virus.
Delayed oil effects wreak havoc on Japan's import bill
Supply hit slams Japan; demand hit just beginning.
China's house price rises should continue slowing
Japan's tertiary index underlines that Q4 was catch-up growth...Q1 is payback
CPI deflation in Japan is looming, due to the collapse in global oil prices. January will be as good as it gets for Japan's all-industry activity index
Japan's core machine orders spell further capex woes; Japan's trade data show some early virus hit, but worse is to come
BoJ signals a package is coming in October. Waning construction tarnishes July's all-industry activity report. No PBoC move, for now, but it's coming.
October monetary base growth uptick attributable to shifts on the liabilities side; tapering continues.
China's Loan Prime Rate drop shows banks are toeing the line. Japan's trade balance should now rebuild.
PBoC furthers efforts to push down real economy rates, signals more to come.
China's LPR drop tells us moral suasion is in full swing. PPI inflation in Korea has peaked, for now.
Japan's CPI inflation has troughed; Japan's budget forecasts for next year are on the rosy side; China's LPR stability reflects precarious banking sector; Korea should make a complete exit from PPI deflation this month
Korean inflation surprises to the upside in April. Manufacturing surveys in Korea are turning up.
China's manufacturing PMIs remain in the downdraft
China PMI chimes with our GDP downgrade last week. China's non-manufacturing PMI weakest on construction. Japan's MoF capex numbers point to Q4 GDP downgrade. Ignore the consensus-beating headline, Korean exports were abysmal in February, calendar effects aside. The virus now has infected Korea's PMI; expect business surveys to get a lot worse.
Japan's government is sucking out more private funds than it is pumping in. Weak oil prices will continue to pull down Korean inflation in the coming months.
China's manufacturing PMIs turn less grim, but look unsupported, for now. China's non-manufacturing PMI receives a one-off singles day boost. Japan's capex data suggests Q3 upgrade. Net trade is shaping up to be a drag on Q4 GDP, as Korean exports remained weak in November. Korea's exit from deflation is complete, thanks largely to more favourable base effects. Korea's PMI jumps in November... and that's before the likely sentiment boost from normalising ties with Japan.
Both China and U.S. look for good will on opposite side and find none; political and economic constraints will soon kick in. BoJ QE remains neutralised by negative yields
BoJ does what it can to avoid more deeply negative yields. Korean inflation should peak this month
A trivial upgrade to Korea's Q1 GDP, CPI deflation in Korea will last for the rest of 2020, Monetary base growth in Japan continued to accelerate in May, as the rate of QE rose
Still no benchmark rate cuts, as the PBoC lowers the cost of its re-lending and re-discount loans. The lagged oil drag on Korean CPI is now receding. No signs, yet, of the BoJ taking its foot off the pedal on JGB purchases.
Korean 20-day exports are volatile and often miss the mark with respect to the full-month print. But these data offer the month's first look at Asian trade, and we often find value in these early signs.
The ramifications of continued disappointing Asian growth, particularly in China, and its impact on global manufacturing, are especially hard-felt in LatAm.
As we go to press, equities in the Eurozone are having a bad day following the collapse in U.S. and Asian equities earlier.
New Asian Cases Ticking Higher; European Growth Steady, but Rapid
In one line: Asian central banks join global onslaught against Covid-19... to varying degrees
Freya Beamish produces the Asia service at Pantheon. She has several years of experience in covering the global economy, with a particular focus on China, Japan and Korea. Previously, she worked at Lombard Street Research (now TS Lombard), where she delivered research on Asia and the Global economy for over five years, latterly as the manager of the Macroeconomics group.
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