US wholesale prices, Hong Kong census, Reserve Bank of Australia, Singapore

3 minutes ago

Singapore’s domestic exports excluding oil fell 25% in January, further than expected

Singapore’s domestic exports excluding oil fell 25% in January compared to a year ago, after falling 20.6% in December 2022.

The drop was bigger than economists polled by Reuters had expected predicted a 22% year-over-year decline.

Meanwhile, non-oil re-exports fell 10.4% in January, after falling 7.7% in December.

Singapore’s total exports fell 9.6% in January, while total imports contracted 11.3%.

— Lim Hui Jie

27 minutes ago

CNBC Pro: This share of semiconductors is soaring – and is expected to rise another 20%, says Morgan Stanley

Investor interest in the semiconductor sector has recovered in recent months, with the iShares Semiconductor ETF rising nearly 50% from its October low.

2023 will be a “recovery year” for semiconductors, according to Morgan Stanley, and the bank has raised its price target to one “high-quality” chip stock.

Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Zavier Ong

26 minutes ago

CNBC Pro: We are ‘far’ from the top of this rally, says Morgan Stanley’s Slimmon, citing stocks to buy

Have the markets reached “peak pessimism”? Morgan Stanley Investment Management’s Andrew Slimmon says shares will continue to rise.

“With the [S&P 500] 8% up [year-to-date]”Some of that pessimism is starting to fade, but we are still a long way from the top in this rally,” he said.

He also named three stocks to buy.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Weizhen Tan

58 minutes ago

Australian central bank chief warns of ‘damaging’ and ‘undermining’ high inflation

Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Philip Lowe warned of the risks posed to the country by high inflation if not brought under control in a timely manner.

Speaking to the standing committee on economics in the Australian House of Representatives, Lowe noted that inflation in the country had reached 7.8% in December 2022, the highest rate since 1990.

Lowe called high inflation “damaging” and “corrosive” and also noted that “it would indeed be dangerous not to contain and reverse this period of high inflation.”

“If we do not overcome inflation and reduce it in a timely manner, the end result will be even higher interest rates and more unemployment in the future,” he added.

— Lim Hui Jie

An hour ago

Asian Currencies Weaker on Growing Concerns About More Fed Rate Hikes

Asia-Pacific currencies traded at weaker levels Friday morning on concerns about more rate hikes in the US.

The Japanese yen weakened 0.16% to 134.16 against the US dollar, the South Korean won also weakened 0.16% to 1,291.53 against the greenback.

The Australian dollar fell 0.22% to 0.6862 and the Chinese yuan weakened 0.1% to 6.8760 against the US dollar.

— Jihye Lee

An hour ago

Top Chinese Pentagon official visits Taiwan: Financial Times

Michael Chase, deputy assistant secretary of defense of the US Department of Defense, will visit Taiwan amid growing tensions between the two countries over a suspected spy balloon from China, the Financial Times reported, citing well-known people.

He would be the first senior Pentagon official to visit Taiwan after Heino Klinck, the report said, who visited in 2019, marking the most distinguished trip in four decades.

Chase is now in Mongolia for military talks, the report said.

— Jihye Lee

16 hours ago

Standard Chartered ‘absolutely not’ for sale, bank CEO says

Standard Chartered is “absolutely not” for sale, according to the bank’s CEO.

Bill Winters told CNBC’s Geoff Cutmore on Thursday that a possible sale is not what the company is targeting.

“On the right terms, someone wants to come and think they can do something. I would encourage involvement rather than … press speculation,” he said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box Europe.”

The comments come after First Abu Dhabi Bank said on Friday it was not evaluating a bid for Standard Chartered.

The full story can be read here.

—Hannah Ward Glenton

6 hours ago

The Fed’s James Bullard sees a possible rate hike of half a point ahead

St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard said Thursday that he pushed for a higher interest rate hike at the last meeting and saw a more aggressive move ahead.

The policymaker said he advocated a rate hike of half a percentage point on January 31-February. 1 Fed meeting and said he wouldn’t rule out aiming for it during the March session.

“I advocated a 50 basis point increase and I argued that we should get to the level of rates as quickly as possible that the commission deemed sufficiently restrictive,” Bullard said during a speech in Tennessee, according to Reuters.

Cleveland Fed president Loretta Mester also said Thursday she wanted a higher hike than the quarter-point approved by the Federal Open Market Committee. Neither Mester nor Bullard are voting on the FOMC this year.

Bullard added that he sees the larger economic trend toward disinflation, despite recent high inflation rates.

“Due in part to the forward-thinking Fed policy in 2022, market-based measures of inflation expectations are now relatively low,” Bullard said.

“Continued hikes in policy rates could help contain a disinflationary trend in 2023, even with continued growth and strong labor markets, by keeping inflation expectations low,” he added.

The comments come despite separate releases this week showing that both consumer and producer prices rose more than expected in January. Bullard acknowledged that inflation is still too high, but said higher interest rates will keep inflation under control despite continued economic growth and a robust labor market.

“These factors combine to make 2023 a disinflationary year,” Bullard said.

—Jeff Cox

4 hours ago

Dow falls to daily low in last minutes of trading, stocks close lower

Stocks sold off sharply in the closing minutes of trading Thursday, sending the Dow to a new daily low. All three indices ended the day lower.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 431 points, or 1.26%. The S&P 500 fell 1.38% and the Nasdaq-Composite fell 1.78%. Microsoft and Disney contributed the most to the Dow’s decline, each dropping more than 2%.

—Carmen Reinicke

11 hours ago

Wholesale prices rise more than expected in January

The producer price index, an inflation indicator that tracks wholesale prices, rose 0.7% in January, beating the Dow Jones consensus forecast of a 0.4% increase.

This is the last inflation report of this week to come in above expectations. On Tuesday, the Labor Department said the consumer price index — a widely-tracked inflation gauge — rose 0.5% last month. That beat a consensus estimate of 0.4%.

— Jeff Cox

11 hours ago

Weekly jobless claims show a surprising dip

Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell from 1,000 to 194,000 in the week ending Feb. 11, the Labor Department said Thursday. Economists polled by Dow Jones had predicted 200,000 jobless claims.

The number from the previous week was revised from 196,000 to 195,000, the Labor Department said.

Despite the series of rate hikes by the Federal Reserve, the labor market has remained resilient.

— Yun Li


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