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- Energy and food are set to drive Chinese inflation dynamics, but base effects will play a big part.
- Global commodity prices are surging, but the link to domestic consumer prices is modest.
- The PBoC will stay dovish, and may ease more ag- gressively, due to—not in spite of—the cost shock.
- A slowdown in Japanese inflation in January will be followed by a surge in March...
- ...but the BoJ wants to see more sustainable price growth, and that means wage increases.
- We see little that would indicate a change in the base rate this year; policy should remain easy.
- Chinese inflation continued its decline in January, thanks to base effects and weak demand.
- The main constraint on PBoC action is worries over financial stability, not inflation.
- China should export disinflation in 2022, a soothing balm for policymakers outside China.
- Chinese factory closures—thanks to Covid, holi- days, and pollution—led to soft manufacturing data.
- Covid alone is the prime suspect for weakness in services activity, and is not yet under control.
- Policy is yet to turn growth around, but we expect the floor to emerge by March.
- Japanese manufacturing activity strengthened in January, likely on the back of external demand.
- Soaring Covid cases have hit Japan's services sec- tor; surging hospitalisations will worry China..
- Price pressures picked up again, though the Japanese consumer is unlikely to notice much.
- Japanese headline inflation picked up in December, but core measures lost momentum.
- Early Korean trade data point to a weak start to 2022 for global trade, thanks in part to Omicron.
- External demand should rebound swiftly, but the bigger risk is disruption to Chinese production.
- China posted a new record-high trade surplus in December, boosting the renminbi.
- Behind the headline, however, lurks a troubling weakness of imports and domestic demand.
- Korea's central bank hiked rates to 1.25%, and signalled more to come this year.
- China's CPI inflation surge was short-lived, and is set to be followed by a sharp reversal, soon.
- Producer prices are also rolling over rapidly, relieving inflation pressure at home and abroad.
- Omicron is now spreading in China, which will hit activity and inflation, but disrupt supply chains.
- Tokyo CPI inflation reached a two-year high in December, thanks largely to energy prices.
- Inflation will climb further yet, but will still fall short of the BoJ's 2% target.
- Chinese reserves data show the PBoC has been leaning against renminbi appreciation.
- The BoJ kept its main policy tools unchanged in December, but tinkered around the edges.
- An announced reduction in corporate debt purchases had already begun in practice.
- The taper is offset by an extension of SME lending, which has been a bigger balance sheet driver.
November's data are a mixed bag, but investment weakness, led by property, is the main concern.
Infrastructure should begin to offset property soon, but manufacturing faces its own challenges.
Omicron has entered China, and will intensify the cycle of zero-Covid lockdowns.
- Chinese consumer price inflation accelerated in November, driven by food prices...
- ...but base effects will soon weigh on the index, such that November marks the near-term peak.
- Producer price inflation has already begun to rollover, as energy prices start to fall.
The Bank of Korea hiked as expected, taking the policy rate to 1.00%, from 0.75%.
Further hikes were made conditional on a plethora of factors, providing plenty of wriggle room.
We expect a pause until mid-2022, as Covid cases spike, and with an election looming in March.
- Japan's latest fiscal stimulus package is significant, but lacks finesse.
- Consumption does need support, but this is the wrong way to go about it.
- The latest inflation data show the BoJ can focus on supporting fiscal policy, for now.
- Japanese growth fell sharply in Q3, as both consumption and capex declined.
- A near-term rebound is on the cards, as temporary headwinds fade.
- Beyond Q4, however, growth needs policy support merely to return to, let alone surpass, its trend.
- China's October activity data were better than ex- pected, but chiefly reflecting a low bar.
- Industrial production growth staved off collapse, but is still near multi-decade lows.
- The property sector is a chronic, and building, headwind for the economy.
- China's economy likely slowed in October, as energy outages worsened and property stress spread.
- We think recent excitement over property sector stimulus is misplaced.
- Retail sales should do better than expected, but it won't last.
- Food and energy prices drove Chinese consumer price inflation sharply higher in October.
- Partial energy liberalisation, coupled with soaring coal prices, led to record PPI inflation.
- We think both spikes will be transitory, and will not necessitate a monetary policy response.
- Japanese inflation remains anaemic, no matter which way you slice it...
- ...as a result, Japan looks increasingly isolated among developed market economies.
- Monetary policy divergence will become more pronounced, with consequences for the currency.
- A new property tax pilot reform provides a long run- way to a long-awaited policy.
- The signalling effect alone will weigh further on property prices and sales, despite a five-year trial.
- Chinese property's glory days are well and truly finished.