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Monday, 24 November 2014

Asia

DATE IMPORTED:May 05, 2014A Chinese national flag flutters outside the headquarters of the People's Bank of China, the Chinese central bank, in Beijing, April 3, 2014. REUTERS/Petar Kujundzic

China monetary policy enters difficult adolescence

24 November 2014

Cutting rates, as the central bank just did, is far less simple than when China’s economy was in its pliant infancy. New ways to save, borrow and arbitrage have sprouted, and don’t all respond predictably to orders. It will take more to alleviate private sector growing pains.

An employee counts currency notes at a cash counter inside a bank in Agartala, capital of India's northeastern state of Tripura, January 29, 2010.  REUTERS/Jayanta Dey

Indian bank M&A looks hard to copy

24 November 2014

Kotak Mahindra’s $2.4 billion all-share offer for ING Vysya is a rare example of consolidation amongst India’s sizeable private banks. Founder Uday Kotak needs to reduce his stake. Dutch group ING’s willingness to accept a smaller shareholding in a larger group is also key.

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd founder Jack Ma

Alibaba's huge finance arm is a mystery to most

21 November 2014

It’s one of the Chinese e-commerce group’s crown jewels. Yet public investors don’t control it, and can’t reliably estimate its worth. Only select Alibaba executives see the affiliate’s inner workings. Since they own most of its shares, there is room for interests to diverge.

BOC

China gives pointers in West’s war on bank culture

20 November 2014

Chinese bankers who allegedly helped a rogue CEO siphon off $102 mln have some things in common with London’s abusive FX traders. Institutions are sprawling, regulators weak and loyalties mainly local. At least China’s willingness to micromanage ought to help curb bad behaviour.

A Chinese bank employee counts yuan notes at a local bank in Nanjing, capital of east China’s Jiangsu.

China’s rate cut shows depth of growth concern

21 November 2014

The first cut to lending rates since 2012 shows the limits of Beijing’s tolerance of slowdown. It should save some riskier loans from going bad, and breathe some life into a zombified property market. But huge adjustments remain, and long-suffering savers will still be left worse off.

Xiaomi

China great wall of content could be more than fad

20 November 2014

Smartphone maker Xiaomi and e-commerce giant Alibaba are stretching their business models by investing in online TV programming. If viewers pay up content might turn fickle ad revenues and one-off sales of hardware into predictable revenue streams.

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe gestures as he gives a speech during the World Assembly for Women (WAW! Tokyo 2014) in Tokyo September 12, 2014.

How to make Japan's tax timetable more credible

19 November 2014

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is seeking a fresh political mandate to delay next year’s planned increase in the sales tax by 18 months. But fragile demand means investors will be sceptical of the new schedule. A better strategy would be to link the tax hike to growth in real wages.   

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