Tag Archives: china

>Spain backtracks on China investment claim


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What fools they look like, but then again, this is nothing new for Zapatero

Spain backtracks on China investment claim

By Miles Johnson in Madrid
Published: April 14 2011 13:57 | Last updated: April 14 2011 13:57
The Spanish government has been forced into an embarrassing reversal after claims that Spain had secured up to €9bn in investment in its troubled savings banks from China were denied by Beijing.
Spanish government officials said an “error of communication” had led to claims that China Investment Corporation, one of the country’s sovereign wealth funds, was considering the €9bn investment after José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, Spain’s prime minister, met Chinese leaders this week.
“China has said it will continue to buy Spanish government debt, and is interested in participating in the restructuring of the savings banks, but it is too early to name specific amounts of investments,” the Spanish government said.
Mr Zapatero is on an official visit to China and Singapore to meet Asian investors to promote Spain’s government debt and financial sector.
A CIC official earlier told Reuters that reports in the Spanish media of the investment were false. CIC is known to no longer have available funds to invest abroad, and the €9bn ($13.5bn) figure would dwarf its largest previous investment which was a $5bn stake in Morgan Stanley made in 2007.
The admission of error came as Spain’s central bank was finalising its approval of plans submitted by the country’s regional savings banks, known as cajas, to raise new capital to meet a €15bn shortfall that has shaken investor confidence in the stability of the Spanish economy.
The previously little-known and privately held cajas were left gasping for new capital after loans made during Spain’s property bubble began to sour and its economy fell into recession.
Tough economic reforms led by Mr Zapatero’s socialist government, including freezing civil service pay and slashing Spain’s budget deficit, have helped the country partially regain the confidence of financial markets after some investors had started to view Spain as being at risk of following Greece, Ireland and Portugal into taking European Union rescue funds.
The interest investors demand to hold Spanish government debt over German bonds has fallen sharply since the start of the year.
On Thursday, however, after the confusion over Chinese investment in the cajas and ahead of the finalisation of their own capital raising plans, the spread between Spanish and German 10-year debt rose by 9 basis points to 190bp.
Spain’s outreach to China for investment comes after the prime minister of Qatar said in February that his country would invest €300m in Spanish banks after expressing confidence in the Spanish economy during a visit to Madrid.
Since then there have been no further details about which institutions Qatar would invest in, nor what form any investment would take.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2011.

FT.com / Europe – Spain backtracks on China investment claim

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>China: Lightning Audit Ordered for Local Governments


>China: Lightning Audit Ordered for Local Governments WordPress Tags: China,
Blogger Labels: China,
Lightning Audit Ordered for Local Governments

Caixin
Auditors are fanning out to examine more than a decade of local government-related lending – and report by summer

(Beijing) – Central government auditors launched March 1 a strict, nationwide survey of provincial and municipal government debt programs, looking closely at risks involved in direct and indirect loans backed by local governments.

Auditors participating in the lightning campaign will trace loans issued over a 13-year period from 1997, when China rolled out an expansive fiscal policy to counteract a financial crisis spreading from Southeast Asia, through 2010, the second full year of an economic stimulus initiative that successfully spared China the worst of the global financial crisis.

The State Council recently ordered auditors to study local finances and return to Beijing in four months with a full report.

Ni Hongri, a research fellow at the State Council Development and Research Center, has several questions on his plate. ‘How much debt did local governments and their (financial) platforms assume after the recent stimulus plan?’ he asked. ‘How much banking and fiscal risk might these debts incur?

‘Policymakers need a clear picture before making the next moves on macroeconomic management or fiscal allocations,’ Ni said.

The National Audit Office dispatched 18 teams and mobilized 37 local audit bureaus to examine government books in 31 provinces and municipalities. They’re looking at loans made to, guaranteed by, or indirectly backed by local governments.

Funds for loans with indirect government backing usually come from local government financing platforms (LGFPs), government-affiliated agencies, and government-backed non-profit organizations. Credit agreements may not expressly say so, but local governments are generally expected to bail out borrowers that default.

Estimates vary for the amount of money loaned to local governments, with official and non-official institutions weighing in.

But outstanding loans to LGFPs alone had risen to 7.66 trillion yuan as of last June, exceeding the 7.1 trillion yuan raised through central government bonds. In addition, local governments have issued bonds worth 400 billion yuan via the finance ministry since 2008.
Lightning Audit Ordered for Local Governments_English_Caixin:

A full story will be published soon on Caixin Online.

>Treasury Prices Edge up After Fed Buys $8.9B Bonds – ABC News


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Treasury prices Monday inched higher after the Federal Reserve bought close to $9 billion in bonds.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note edged up 12.5 cents. Its yield, which moves in the opposite direction, edged down to 3.39 percent from 3.40 percent late Friday.

The Fed bought $8.9 billion in five- and six-year notes. The central bank also bought $8 billion worth of bonds on Friday. The purchases are part of the Fed’s $600 billion bond-buying program which was launched in November to keep interest rates low and encourage lending.

Treasurys have been in a relatively narrow range since the start of new year. Yields had spiked in the last two months of 2010 on expectations of faster economic growth.

Bond strategist at IDEAGlobal Josh Stiles said the Treasury market has been caught between two forces.

“On the one hand the Fed has an extremely easy policy of cheap financing, which prevents much of a sell-off,” said Stiles. “But the economy is getting stronger, so the question is how much longer can the Fed keep the rates so low and that’s kept the bulls from buying.”

Traders tend to invest in low-risk Treasurys when the economy seems weak. Investors have been shifting money out of Treasurys and into stocks since late November.

In other trading, the price of the 30-year note rose 15.6 cents per $100 invested, keeping its yield flat at 4.56 percent from late Friday. The yield on the two-year Treasury note was up slightly to 0.62 percent from 0.61 percent.

The yield on the three-month Treasury bill was unchanged at 0.15 percent. Its discount was 0.16 percent.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Treasury Prices Edge up After Fed Buys $8.9B Bonds – ABC News

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FT.com / China – Renminbi rolls out


Renminbi rolls out

Published: January 16 2011 19:33 | Last updated: January 16 2011 19:33

It is not yet a flood, but the trickles eroding the walls that keep China’s currency within the country’s territory are beginning to add up to something.
Already last year, the renminbi debuted as a currency for bond financing by multinational corporations (McDonald’s); trade credits (to an Indonesian group by the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China); and offshore deposit accounts (to the Bank of China’s personal banking clients in London, New York and other cities).
Last week, further holes were pierced in the dam of non-convertibility. Pharo Management, a hedge fund manager, announced it will offer renminbi-denominated shares in its funds. The city of Wenzhou launched a pilot project to lighten restrictions on its residents’ ability to invest money offshore. And a year and a half after Chinese corporations were allowed to settle cross-border trades in their own currency, permission has also been granted to use renminbi to acquire or found new operations overseas.
That many of these moves make it easier to ship renminbi out of the country does not change the redback’s natural and favoured direction. If Chinese authorities were relaxing restrictions on capital inflows as freely as on outflows, the renminbi would have appreciated by more than the 3.5 per cent it has risen against the dollar since last year.

Read more on FT.com / China – Renminbi rolls out

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(BN) Copper Faces 2-Year Shortage, Peak Over $10,000, Trafigura Says


(BN) Copper Faces 2-Year Shortage, Peak Over $10,000, Trafigura Says
2010-12-07 09:29:56.282 GMT

By Claudia Carpenter
Dec. 7 (Bloomberg) — Copper supplies will lag demand for
at least the next two years, with prices peaking over $10,000 a
metric ton in the second quarter next year, according to
Trafigura Beheer BV, which considers itself the world’s second-
largest trader of industrial metals.
Copper will move from a balanced market this year to
shortages of 800,000 tons in both 2011 and 2012 at current
prices, Simon Collins, head of refined metals at Trafigura in
Lucerne, Switzerland, said in an interview yesterday. That’s
even before demand climbs as exchange-traded funds backed by the
metal are introduced, he said.
Such funds “will result in higher prices, which in turn
will affect price-sensitive demand and price-sensitive supply,”
Collins said. “Consumers are concerned about an ETF.
Inventories are already relatively low.”
Copper prices are up 21 percent this year, and reached a
record $8,973.50 a ton today, partly as manufacturers and other
buyers who anticipate shortages build inventories to meet demand
for next year, Collins said. Imports into China, the world’s
largest consumer, typically are strongest in the second quarter,
helping to boost copper prices and leading gains in lead, nickel
and aluminum, he said. Copper stockpiles tracked by the London
Metal Exchange have slid 30 percent this year.
In 2006, the copper market was also forecast to have a
large deficit when higher prices brought the market further into
balance than originally estimated, Collins said. If prices rise,
next year’s deficit may be only 400,000 tons, he said.
Copper Trading
Trafigura trades about 1 million tons of copper a year,
Collins said. Glencore International AG is the largest trader of
industrial metals, according to Trafigura estimates.
Trafigura is preparing for more metals demand by customers
and increasing its warehouse capabilities through its subsidiary
NEMS, with plans to expand in the U.S. next year for the first
time with storage facilities in Baltimore and New Orleans, as
well as in China, Collins said. He declined to give an estimate
of the investment.
Copper demand may rise if JPMorgan Chase & Co., BlackRock
Inc. and ETF Securities Ltd. start ETPs backed by the metal, in
line with plans announced by all three companies in October.

For Related News and Information:
Top commodities: CTOP <GO>
Top shipping: SHIP <GO>
Searches: NSE <GO>
Commodity curves: CCRV <GO>
–Editors: Dan Weeks, John Deane.
To contact the reporter on this story:
Claudia Carpenter in London at +44-20-7330-7304 or
ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Claudia Carpenter at +44-20-7330-7304 or
ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net

China’s Brazilian shopping spree


China’s Brazilian shopping spree

[3] http://www.amazon.com/Rising-Powers-Shrinking-Planet-Geopolitics/dp/0805080643

Brazil | Foreign Investment | China | Resources

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The global power of Brazilian agribusiness – CMAE | Commodities Corn, Soybeans, Soybean Meal, Suppliers and Exporters.


The global power of Brazilian agribusiness

The global power of Brazilian agribusiness
Brazilian farmers don’t need wait for Government to solve the problems of infrastructure or credit to become “world leaders unattainable”, according to a study from the Economist Intelligence Unit, a British research Company linked to the magazine “The Economist”.
The study, titled “The global power of Brazilian agribusiness”, points out the challenges of infrastructure and other difficulties of rural producer such as to obtaining credit, but adopts a positive tone. Instead of lamenting, suggests ways for the farmer to overcome these problems, improving management techniques.

Brazil is world’s fi fth-largest country by geographical area and the largest in terms of arable land.
Although only a fraction of its land is exploited, the country produces a highly diverse array of
agricultural goods. This puts Brazil in a unique position to lead the global agricultural sector in the
medium to long term. With an abundant supply of natural resources—water, land and a favourable
climate—it has the opportunity to be the largest agribusiness superpower, supplying the world market while also providing affordable food for its own population.
The country already ranks as the top global supplier of products as diverse as beef, orange juice and
ethanol, and is expected to continue to expand its exports in other areas as well, such as cotton, soybean oil and cellulose. Its markets are also diverse: China is now the largest market for Brazilian agribusiness products, and sales to Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa are also growing rapidly.
To maintain this trajectory, Brazil must build on the signifi cant improvements in productivity that
underpin its current success and overcome the barriers to full realisation of its potential. Obstacles range from scarcity of credit to logistical logjams, from protectionist measures in key markets to environmental concerns.
Frontier regions are a testament to what is right, and wrong, with Brazil’s agribusiness sector. The rich
harvests from the country’s vast hinterland have more than paid back public and private investment in research to create new plant varieties adapted to the region’s soil and climate. Large-scale production and professional management have helped to offset the high costs and tight margins of farming such areas.
Attracted by the promise of growth, investors have both fi nanced agriculture’s expansion and provided technological know-how. Yet agricultural endeavours in these regions are burdened by inadequate transport and insuffi cient storage capacity. Productivity in such segments as beef production and corn remains low. Margins remain tight.
The industry’s strong performance today is based on changes in business models, farming practices and technology over the past 30 years. For Brazil to fulfi l its potential as a global agribusiness powerhouse in the coming decades, companies must continue to innovate, transforming how and where they do business.
Leading companies have successfully tested different paths to expanding Brazil’s agribusiness beyond
the country’s borders. To overcome protectionist barriers in the US and Europe, they have diversifi ed their offerings, improved sanitary controls and acquired foreign competitors. They have increased the value of products sold in developed markets, but also have penetrated emerging markets worldwide.

Further investments and transformations are needed so that the agribusiness sector can thrive in the
coming decades. These include:

  • l Infrastructure—transport, port and storage—must be upgraded to meet current and future needs.
  • l Land must be used more productively through innovative farming techniques. Growth will come through better use of existing crop and pasture land, not just the opening of new areas.
  • l Research must continue to ensure development of crop varieties adapted to Brazil’s climate and soil conditions.
The EIU study was sponsored by Accenture.
The report is available for download in English and Portuguese

The global power of Brazilian agribusiness – CMAE | Commodities Corn, Soybeans, Soybean Meal, Suppliers and Exporters.

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