Overseas Headlines – February 27, 2023

February 27, 2023


United States:

Yellen Notes Inflation Problem But Still Sees Soft Landing Path

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said inflation continues to be a problem even as she reiterated her conviction that there is a path for it to come down while maintaining a strong labor market.

Yellen’s comments come after data on Friday showed the Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation gauges unexpectedly accelerated in January and consumer spending surged after a year-end slump, adding pressure on policymakers to keep ratcheting up interest rates.



Russia Boosts Pacific Oil Cargoes as Year of War Reshapes Flows

A year on from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Moscow’s seaborne crude exports held close to the highest levels seen since its troops crossed the border, with record volumes leaving its Pacific ports.

The country’s shipments rose marginally to 3.63 million barrels a day from its ports in the seven days through Friday, a level that has been surpassed just four times since the start of 2022. The less-volatile four-week average also gained, before a 500,000-barrel-a-day production cut that’s due to come into effect from Wednesday in response to Western embargoes and price caps on Russian oil cargoes.



Hong Kong Exports Plunge by Most in 70 Years as Demand Plummets

Hong Kong’s exports plunged in January by the most in 70 years as waning global demand and the Lunar New Year break weighed on trade and Chinese demand remained weak, even after the mainland emerged from Covid Zero.

Overseas shipments plummeted 36.7% from a year earlier to HK$290.9 billion ($37.1 billion), the Census and Statistics Department said Monday. That was the lowest amount since February 2020 and was far worse than an expectation of a 27.6% fall in a Bloomberg survey of economists. The drop was the largest since September 1953.




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