Overseas Headlines – December 29, 2020

United States:

How to Get U.S. Companies to Leave China

“We learned something very important over the four years of Donald Trump’s scuffle with China: However frustrated U.S. businesses may be with some aspects of Chinese policy, they are not ready to abandon the world’s second-biggest economy. That should be a lesson to President-elect Joe Biden and his administration. U.S. companies won’t be frightened out of China; they need to be enticed. The simple fact is that, for many of America’s most important firms, China’s massive market and efficient supply chains are still too attractive to abandon, especially for the high-wage U.S. Precious few have left, despite much talk of “decoupling.” Foreign direct investment from U.S. companies into China has remained generally stable despite rising tensions, even ticking upward a bit in 2019 to $13.3 billion, according to data from the Rhodium Group.”



Read My Brooch, Says Russian Central Bank Chief Nabiullina

“Bank of Russia Governor Elvira Nabiullina confirmed what the market has been thinking this year: The brooches she’s worn after key rate meetings are clues to understand policy decisions. The first signal was in March, when she wore a brooch in the form of a Nevalyashka doll, a traditional Russian toy that pops back up when pushed over, as policy makers sought to shore up the economy against the Covid-19 pandemic. In May, she displayed a small white house on her jacket as the government urged people to stay at home. And in June, she choose a pigeon — the word in Russian also means dove — after cutting the key rate.”



Korea’s Consumer Sentiment Retreats Amid Worst Virus Wave

“South Korean consumer confidence weakened sharply in December from a 10-month high as a resurgence of the coronavirus led to tighter restrictions on activity. The Bank of Korea’s consumer sentiment index slid to 89.8 from 97.9 in November for its lowest reading in three months, the central bank said in a Tuesday statement. The biggest declines were seen in sub-indexes measuring the outlook for spending among households and their assessment of the economy.”




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