Oil Price, Interest Rates and Recovery
Two Thousand and Fifteen may become a very good year, for most nations.
In China, where they recently cut rates and introduced a Trillion Dollar stimulus, the dynamics of internal growth and development as well as for the export markets suggests robust growth. The Honourable Xi Jinping is quoted as saying that China will achieve a new standard in progress. His words are welcome, and should give heart to anyone who may be fearing a slowdown in China. The actual production and shipments overseas ( I hear huge ship loads arriving in Britain, and for the first time in many years hear the trains ferry the goods across in the middle of the night in a huge procession) testify to that.
In the U.S., the start of Prosperity which I had foreseen for November 2014 seems to have materialised, and heatmaps of happiness continue to grow for the people there, with increasing numbers of auto purchases, mortgages taken out on single family units, more people in work both seasonal and permanent, lower Oil prices (although that is a mixed blessing), and good weather, apart from the recent snow.
I see the DOW going upto 18,500* by June this year, although the prospects for 2016 may be mild, with perhaps the saving grace of Hillary Clinton becoming elected as the President. Sentator Jeb Bush is a strong candidate, but I detect the dynamics at play will ensure the Democrats will again have tenure of the highest position in the land.
*I am just expressing my opinion, based on the logics of what I perceive. People should speculate at their own risk.
The Oil producing nations will have to work in co-operation and ensure a stable oil price, otherwise their dollar-denominated revenues will not meet the cost of their imports, and may lead to ques outside empty supermarkets, waiting to buy stocks (g00ds) which are being rationed, as in Venezuela.
It makes me cringe in shock to see the situation in Ukraine, where the rebels loyal to the Soviet leadership are wrecking havoc and creating ghost towns, where life seems at 1950s levels. Mr Putin can be generous and call these people off. He must extricate himself from this very messy situation. It is doing no one any good. Once peace is restored in this region, hopefully the Rouble will recover, and help people in Russia share the common prosperity that is developing worldwide. Oil seems to be bouncing around levels which may be optimum, and which may prove good for everybody, including the newly formed shale and fracking operators. Mr Putin has to apply the generosity principle, and help the kindred folks in Ukraine. That conflict is just so unnecessary, it is just like bullying people who at one time Mr Putin was willing to big a brotherly hug. I just don't believe it.
Under Pradhanmantri Shree Modiji, India is on track for the fastest growth since Independence, although the recent industrial productions figures at 2.6 percent seem so faint. Provided the RBI decide to enjoin the procession of Recovery and lower the benchmark repo rate, things should improve. There is a great natural appetite for investment into India, with the right atmosphere. Creating a major air hub to compete with what exists in the Arab Emirates may be a good raising of the bar, but let us all wait and see what will actually materialise. But in the meantime, the commencement of building a 100 new cities seems a great vision, and Modiji has my congratulations. I hope his BJP policymakers and bureaucrats will ensure implementation and fulfilment of such measures.
The caution that I mentioned....while times are good, save a little for the future, and build some reserves for the second half of 2016, when it will all come in handy.
May the Lord's blessings be upon all.
Durudarshan H. Dadlani
The Trillion Euro stimulus announced this afternoon by ECB President Mario Draghi is nothing less than magnificent in my view, and will help create jobs and industry for millions, and turn into wealth. This stimulus augurs well for the European stockmarkets and for the Euro itself, which it now underpins with a very positive aspect. It seems to have been announced at the right time, and although the immediate market reaction may not have been wildly enthusiastic, it is a complex stimulus, needing people to understand and digest its implications.
In plain terms, it is 60 billion Euros per month over 18 months, starting from March to September 2016, meaning a total of 1,080,000,000,000* Euros. This was announced by Mr Draghi at the press conference in Frankfurt this afternoon.
It will serve the 19 nations that make up the Euro Area, or Eurozone, which now includes as from 1st January 2015 Lithuania. However, it will not be available at the moment to Greece, which benefits from arrangements already in place from the IMF, which gave them two bailouts and numerous haircuts. Perhaps there could be cross border mergers of some organisations which would benefit all?
There seems enough appetite for additional funds, especially by companies who have not been able to find funding from the banks so far. This is a ready segment that will be glad to be served by this Stimulus. As in England and Britain, where Mr Cameron has been visiting various companies, who have received funding now, something similar needs to be implemented in the Eurozone. Money invested in companies which need capital for upgrades of machinery, or cash flow to keep the factories operating while their customers arrange to pay them, will maintain employment and sustain livelihoods and, hopefully, even create wealth in the long term. That 'old school' way of trading had died recently in the credit crunch, and could well do with revival. It may be the clue to bring Recovery back on stream.
This Trillion Euro Stimulus was long awaited, and probably is just in time, now joining the money flow in the U.S., Japan and China, to maintain the worldwide economic Recovery, which shall flourish to Prosperity for all nations. The next stage surely must be for the BRICS nations to reduce their benchmark interest rates and for the Emerging Markets to do something similar, in due course to be followed by Africa perhaps? Or even simultaneously, and soon? Why not? The national books can become squared internationally, as each nation develops its resources, trades with the other nations, and brings development and growth at home. Would that not be the most marvellous thing to happen?
I wish you peace and prosperity, to every nation, man, woman and child.
P.S. Earlier I left out three 0's. Aw aw aw!
The announcement of the 0.25 percent cut in the European Central Bank's benchmark rate is an indication that the economic Recovery still needs a great stimulus, and this was EU's way of getting it.
Only the day before I read that Adecco, the temporary staff specialists, were seeing increased signs of hiring of staff, and European economies are showing a sign of strengthening Recovery. It seems the services sector is growing, which is a good sign. As more people are out and about and travel, they need to sit down and eat.
The U.S. "shutdown" which at one point affected between 700,000 and 800,000 workers, who were told not to turn up for work and others who were furloughed i.e. had their hours reduced to only attend at peak-demand times - that "shutdown" saw reduced demand in travelling and catering across the pond. Here in London I have noticed a few cafes and restaurants mostly used by tourists close. And that was the effect of just a lull in a few weeks of trading.
At the moment, although there is a positive buzz, the uncertainity of the debt ceiling raise pending for 7th February is bound to weigh down on sentiment. It seems Senator Paul has indicated that Dr Janet Yellen will see confirmation of her nomination to the Federal Reserve's chairmanship, and the administration of the spigot can continue.
Feelings on this question are mixed, as the Chinese sources suggest that the U.S. is seeking about $561 Billion over the next six months. This would equate to roughly $93.5 Billion a month. That definitely suggests a phase of monetary expansion bigger than before, as the quantitative easing was running at some $85 Billion a month, cut by 1/12th with the Sequestration. If the stimulus could be so increased,
then that would definitely improve the picture of Recovery for next year. But in terms of reality, perhaps the $85 Billion a month will need to be restored, as suggested by Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew. No one liked the Sequestration, with scholars being sent home due to non provision of a mid day meal, not to mention problems with funding necessary upgrades to fleets.
It is good news that housing in the U.S. registered positive gains in 44 States last month, and when a stable situation arrives after the debt ceiling issue is resolved, better gains may be expected.
In the meantime, a stable and happy scenario is expected up to Christmas and New Year worldwide.
Chinese PMI data suggests a growing strength in the domestic re-focus as well as exporting sectors.
The United Kingdom is registering positive growth in housing numbers and GDP growth, greatly helped by the introduction of the Help to Buy scheme. Hopefully speculators and buy-to-let landlords are not assisted so much that the property market may become a bubble, causing soaring rents, homelessness and reliance on the social welfare system.
A mixed picture of optimism, with the Twitter IPO yesterday providing some amusement. The market seems to manufacture some euphoria, with the underwriters making good profits.
That's it for now. Very soon I'm off to the World Money Show, at the Queen Elizabeth Conference Centre not far from Big Ben.
It seems a frequent occurrence, the coming of typhoons and cyclones that seem to hit the Eastern board of India every year, often hitting Odisha the hardest, together with Andhra Pradesh as well as Bengal.
This October, cyclone Phailin landed at Gopalpur in Odisha with a core speed of 200 Kilometres per hour, reducing to matchsticks the flimsy dwellings in the low-lying areas, flooding vast majority of farmland and dwellings. Fallen trees and power lines added to the problems in travelling. Thanfully early warming of the oncoming SuperCyclone enabled the local municipal authorities put into action evacuation plans, together with assistance from the Army and Navy, which were on standby, and so only a tiny number of people lost their lives this time, compared to the 10,000 last time.
Nearly a million people had been evacuated, with a timely and well-ordinated effort by the authorities. Social media must have helped, emphasising the dangers of flooding and the ferocity of the winds, and, most important, how much time they had to get out of harm's way. Villagers became convinced of the seriousness and left for the safety of higher areas and strong public dwellings, travelling at the last minute by buses laid on by the local councils. Thankfully, so many people saved their lives by not ignoring the messages.
About 100,000 people were similarly affected in Andhra Pradesh also.
Odisha Chief Minister has requested the government in Delhi to provide approximately a billion pounds over and above the 572 million pounds which would be available in the state disaster response fund, such has been the devastation left by Cyclone Phailin.
The government and local authorities are stretched trying to provide food, shelter and rehabilitation for the million plus people affected in the last fortnight.
As if that was not bad enough, another cyclone has hit the same region today, killing 29 and leaving another 85,000 marooned. The government and the local communities have a huge task of rebuilding and rehabilitating nearly 1.3 million people in Eastern states, some of the poorest and least developed in India. It would be a great blessing for the people if this encourages the construction of alternative housing in such areas.
In the meantime, again I pray for the safety and well-being of the people of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh and Bengal.
Respectfully Invoking our Saviour's prayer I intone :"Winds, be thee still".
May God's love and care be with the people there.
(written by Duru-darshan
Melchizedek priest at Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Ilford)
Good news heard today, 9th November 2013.
Indian Prime Minister has announced allocation of funds of 1,000 Crores each for Odisha and Andhra Pradesh. (approx. 1 Billion Pounds each).