Overseas Headlines- February 04, 2020

United States:

Trump Administration Clears Way for New Currency Tariffs

“The Trump administration is going ahead with controversial new rules that would clear the way for the U.S. to start applying punitive tariffs on goods from countries accused of having undervalued currencies, the Commerce Department said Monday. The move would give new muscle to U.S. complaints about currency manipulation that have in the past targeted economies like China and Japan and thus turn the more than $6 trillion-a-day global currency market into a new battlefield in the Trump administration’s trade wars.”



Pound Gains as BOE Rate-Cut Bets Fade on U.K. Construction Data

“The pound erased losses after traders pushed back bets for a Bank of England interest-rate cut to next year following better-than-expected U.K. construction data. Money markets now see a 25-basis-point reduction by the BOE in January 2021, compared with bets on Monday for easing in November. That led sterling to rebound after it earlier dropped to its lowest level since late December on concerns about fraught trade talks between Britain and the European Union.”




Virus Puts China’s Main Economic Goals on a Collision Course

“Two sweeping goals have dictated the direction of China’s economic policy during President Xi Jinping’s presidency: Doubling per-person GDP and household incomes over the 10 years ending this December and containing an explosion in debt. Tiptoeing between the two conflicting ambitions hasn’t been easy, especially last year as the trade war with the U.S. deepened. Yet policy restraint held and economists ended the year surprised by the lack of big-bang stimulus. Now, as the coronavirus shutters huge swaths of the economy, it looks like one of those goals has got to give.”


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