Overseas Headlines – January 15, 2021

United States:

U.S. Retail Sales Seen Stagnating in December Due to Virus Surge

“U.S. retail sales probably stagnated in December after declining in recent months as a surge in coronavirus infections led to new business restrictions and limited economic activity during the all-important holiday-shopping season. Economists project Friday’s government report will show that overall receipts at the nation’s retailers were little changed from November, while sales excluding auto dealers fell for a third straight month, according to Bloomberg survey medians.”



ECB Won’t Need Extra Stimulus to Fight Pandemic, Economists Say

“The European Central Bank won’t need to boost its monetary stimulus again to pull the euro-area economy out of its current crisis, according to a Bloomberg survey. The latest pandemic lockdowns and a likely double-dip recession for the euro zone aren’t enough to push officials into revamping the ultra-loose policies they set in December, economists said. That means the 1.85 trillion-euro ($2.25 trillion) emergency bond-buying program is seen coming to a halt as scheduled in March 2022.”



Bank of Korea’s Lee Warns Against Asset Rally Driven by Debt

“Bank of Korea’s Governor Lee Ju-yeol warned against excessive borrowing that has spurred a rally in the country’s stock and property markets, while pledging to continue support for a fragile economic recovery. Speaking at a briefing after the board unanimously agreed to hold its key rate at 0.5%, Lee said recent gains in the Kospi stock index and housing prices have been rapid, especially when compared with the state of the real economy.”




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