Macroeconomy

  • 2019-04-18 20:45


    TOKYO (MNI) - Japanese corporate demand for financing via bank loans in April fell from three months ago as the slowing global economy decreased companies' sales and capital investment, according to the Bank of Japan's quarterly survey of senior loan officers at 50 banks released Friday.

    The index for corporate fund demand -- calculated by subtracting the number of banks reporting a decline in lending from the number of those reporting an increase -- came in at +3 in April, down from +4 in January.

  • 2019-04-18 20:30


    --Japan Core CPI Up 0.8% y/y In March Vs. +0.7% in February

    TOKYO (MNI) - Japan's nationwide core consumer price index rose 0.8% on year in March, accelerating from +0.7% in February. However, Bank of Japan officials maintain cautious on the outlook as they don't expect the rising trend to accelerate sharply.

    The March core CPI continued to be boosted by positive contribution from energy prices (0.39 percentage point in March vs. 0.34 percentage point in February and 0.37 percentage point in January).

    The underlying inflation rate measured by the core-core CPI (excluding fresh food and energy) rose 0.4% on year in March, unchanged from February.

  • 2019-04-18 08:31


    By Yali N'Diaye

    OTTAWA (MNI) - The following are the key points from the data on Canadian retail sales released Thursday by Statistics Canada:

    - Following three consecutive monthly declines, retail sales rebounded 0.8% in February, beating the market consensus of +0.4%. The increase was the largest since May 2018 and lifted the 12-month growth rate to 1.8% from 0.9%. The gain more than erased the 0.4% drop recorded in January, which was revised from -0.3%.

    - Details were more mixed than the headline suggests. The gain was mostly a price story as real sales, more relevant to GDP, edged up just 0.2%, failing to offset January's 0.3% decrease.

    - In addition, gains were concentrated in 5 of 11 subsectors, even though they represented 73% of retail trade.

  • 2019-04-18 02:55


    BEIJING (MNI) - China's current account may continue a surplus in the first quarter on exports of goods and services remaining strong, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) said.

  • 2019-04-18 01:31


    BEIJING (MNI) - China's strong growth in the first quarter lifted the government's confidence in meeting all economic and social development targets this year, the National Development and Reform Commission said on Thursday.

    Here are some highlights noted by MNI from a briefing by spokesman Yuan Da.

    - The advancement of traditional and emerging industries, robust consumer demand, stable investment and recovering trade growth assured policymakers that they are on the right path. Q1's economic indicators are usually the bellwether of the whole-year growth.

    - The commission will strictly prevent and resolve risks of hidden debt raised by local governments and closely validate their applications for construction projects.

  • 2019-04-17 10:00


    --Feb Wholesale Sales Up 0.3%; Inv/Sales Ratio Unch At 1.35
    --Business Sales Tracking +0.2%

    WASHINGTON (MNI) - February wholesale inventories increased by 0.2%, vs. +0.3% expected by both a Bloomberg consensus and an MNI survey of analysts, while wholesale sales were up 0.3% in the month, data released by the U.S. Commerce Department Wednesday showed.

    Retail trade sales, those excluding food services sales, were already reported down 0.2% in February's retail sales release, while factory shipments rose 0.4%, so an MNI calculation sees business sales tracking for a 0.2% gain.

    Factory inventories were already reported up 0.3%.

  • 2019-04-17 08:48


    By Yali N'Diaye

    OTTAWA (MNI) - The following are the key points from the March data on the Canadian CPI released Wednesday by Statistics Canada:

    - Headline unadjusted CPI rose at a steady pace of 0.7% on the month, as expected by the market and analysts in a MNI survey. On a seasonally adjusted basis, CPI was up 0.3% on the month, and 0.2% excluding food and energy.

    - Increases were recorded in all major categories except for a 0.1% decline in household operations, furnishings and equipment. The largest upward contributor was gasoline, with a monthly gain of 11.6%, the largest since March 2007. CPI excluding gasoline was up 0.4%.

  • 2019-04-17 08:34


    By Shikha Dave and Harrison Clarke

    WASHINGTON (MNI) - The U.S. international trade gap narrowed to $49.4 billion in February from an unrevised $51.1 billion in January, a smaller gap than the $53.4 billion deficit expected by the Bloomberg consensus and the $53.7 billion gap expected by an MNI survey, data released by the Commerce Department Wednesday morning showed.

    Here are the key findings from the release:

    - Imports rose on gains in capital goods ex. autos, and consumer goods. These were partially offset by decreases in industrial supplies and materials, and foods, feeds and beverages.

    - Exports rose on gains in capital goods ex. autos, led by civilian aircraft, and autos.

  • 2019-04-17 08:30


    By Courtney Tower

    OTTAWA (MNI) - Following are the key points from the February data on Canadian merchandise trade released Wednesday by Statistics Canada:

    - The goods trade deficit narrowed to C$2.9 billion from C$3.1 billion, which was revised from -C$4.2 billion in January. Analysts in a MNI survey and the market had expected a deficit of C$3.5 billion. The trade deficit for the previous month was revised due to late reporting of crude oil transactions, which were revised C$1.2 billion upward.

    - There was a widespread decrease in imports in February after two consecutive monthly increases. Imports declined 1.6% to C$50.9 billion and were down in eight of 11 sub-sectors. Import prices were the cause, down 1.6%, while volumes were essentially unchanged.

  • 2019-04-17 05:38


    BEIJING (MNI) - China's industrial output in March soared at the fastest in more than four years while investment also gained, helping stabilize growth in the first-quarter at 6.4%, beating the 6.3% median of a forecast surveyed by MNI.

    Industrial output jumped 8.5% y/y last month from the pace of 5.3% in the first two months, data by the National Bureau of Statistics released on Wednesday showed. That beat the forecast 6.0% projected by MNI.

    Some analysts suspected that the surge may partly be caused by seasonal swings. Most factories started production in March, earlier than last year's seasonal start in April, as the Chinese New Year holiday came in about 10 days earlier.