hong kong – Aisa Net http://aisa-net.com/ Wed, 09 Mar 2022 23:25:15 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://aisa-net.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/aisa-net-icon-150x150.png hong kong – Aisa Net http://aisa-net.com/ 32 32 Principle or pragmatism? Big brands are leaving Russia https://aisa-net.com/principle-or-pragmatism-big-brands-are-leaving-russia/ Wed, 09 Mar 2022 18:15:50 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/principle-or-pragmatism-big-brands-are-leaving-russia/

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McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Starbucks, Unilever: The list of mainstream brands leaving Russia has accelerated in recent days, joining what a Yale professor called a ‘trade blockade’ by Russian President Vladimir’s regime Putin.

The departure of names such as McDonald’s and Levis is loaded with historical significance. The sight of crowds queuing for Big Macs in Moscow was seen as a marker of the end of the Soviet Union, while Levi’s 501 jeans had become a symbol of dissent behind the Iron Curtain.

There were some notable exceptions, such as Danone boss Antoine de Saint-Affrique, who defended his decision to stay in Russia, arguing that he had a “responsibility to the people we feed, the farmers who supply us milk, and the tens of thousands of people who depend on us.

It’s not just mainstream brands. Shell said yesterday it would pull out completely and stop any further purchases of Russian oil. French company Total is under pressure to follow suit.

Russian companies are starting to feel the heat, especially in financial services. The international ambitions of state-backed institutions VTB and Sberbank have been hampered by sanctions, but at home – where the two lenders account for almost half of the banking market – they are hit even harder. JPMorgan Chase has joined MSCI, S&P Dow Jones and FTSE Russell in removing Russian debt from their bond indexes.

On the other side of the economic war, European companies – especially those in energy-intensive sectors such as metals – are preparing for a severe fallout.

For automakers, which already face high input costs and supply chain issues, rising energy bills — their highest costs after labor and materials raw materials – is another blow to their competitiveness.

Airlines, the most oil-consuming sector of all, now faces a second serious crisis in less than two years as the price of fuel rockets and flight cards must be redrawn. “We faced the plague, only to be visited by a war,” said Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary.

Fertilizer and chemical companies are also hard hit. Norway’s Yara warned of a food crisis. Russia is a key source of fertilizer materials that power global agriculture. Petrochemical companies are also likely to suffer from soaring prices for naphtha, which is made from crude oil and used to create resins and plastics. Almost half of European naphtha imports come from Russia.

European banks with large exposure to Russia, such as Italy’s UniCredit, France’s Societe Generale and Austria’s Raiffeisen Bank, are also expected to be affected. UniCredit said an “extreme scenario” in which all of its Russian business was wiped out would leave it with losses of 7 billion euros.

But back to this corporate exodus. Despite the big-name McFlurry heading for the exit, many more have yet to take a stand, our Moral Money newsletter reports.

Either way, argues trade writer Alan Beattie, many of those who leave are motivated more by the threat of sanctions damage than their virtue suggests. He points out that many are happy to do business with other autocracies that do some pretty dastardly things.

“Jumping out of Russia before being pushed is a personal interest: it’s not an act of principle,” he said.

Recent news

For last minute updates, visit our live blog

Need to know: the economy

The American and British decision to ban Russian oil imports has opened a new front in the economic war against Vladimir Putin – here’s our explanation of what that means for global energy markets. Our great read examines whether coal could be the big winner as Europe scrambles to find alternatives. Calls are also growing for more fracking. Meanwhile, UK consumers are urged to reduce their energy consumption by turning down the heating and driving more slowly.

The threat to the economic recovery is the uncomfortable backdrop to tomorrow’s political meeting of the European Central Bank. However, European stocks were boosted by hopes that further stimulus from the EU could be on the way. The gravity of the situation was underscored by economics writer Chris Giles, who compares Russia’s oil shock to those of the 1970s and examines its potential to lead to stagflation – the toxic combination of slow growth and high inflation.

Annotated graph of oil prices, nominal and real prices

Latest UK and Europe

Ahead of her March 23 spring statement and as the economic fallout from Ukraine begins to deepen the cost of living crisis, the British Chancellor Rishi Sunak is under increasing pressure to cut taxes. consumer spending strengthened in February with the reopening of offices and the resumption of social life, according to the payment company Barclaycard, supported by similar findings from the British Retail Consortium. However, the cost of living moves up the list of consumer concerns.

British MPs have accelerated a new economic crimes bill, but Foreign Secretary Liz Truss admitted the country had been “slower” than the EU and US in imposing sanctions on Russian oligarchs. UK taxpayers could be owed £50m in loan guarantees to several of them.

Latest World

Decades of work by China Globalizing its currency by increasing its use in international finance is bearing fruit as investors turn to new safe-haven assets amid the current turmoil. The renminbi, the currency of Russia’s closest strategic ally and main trading partner, has remained remarkably stable throughout the crisis. Still, the Lex column is skeptical of Beijing’s ability to provide financial infrastructure like card payments to help Moscow circumvent sanctions.

Line chart of dollar exchange rate (pegged to 100) showing Chinese currency ignoring Ukraine crisis

Need to know: business

The Global nickel The market, which was already booming due to the conflict in Ukraine, came to a halt today after soaring prices prompted China’s main commodities exchange to freeze trading in some of its most heavily traded contracts. assets. Russia is the world’s third largest supplier of nickel with 13% of global capacity.

Cathay PacificHong Kong’s chief executive said the airline plans to burn up to HK$1.5 billion ($192 million) a month due to Hong Kong’s tough pandemic restrictions, as it reported a net loss of HK$5.5 billion for 2021. Meanwhile, local residents are stuck in limbo waiting for authorities to act as Covid cases soarreports Ravi Mattu, associate news editor for Asia, from our office in the city.

Losses at UK furniture retailer Made.com more than doubled to £31.4m as supply chain pressures and rising shipping costs started to take their toll. The furniture sector has been particularly hard hit by freight pressures, as many of its large bulky items, or their raw materials, come from China and elsewhere in Asia.

The world of work

The experience of confinement and working from home has prompted many people to change jobs, but what are the pitfalls? Work and careers columnist Lucy Kellaway has four big lessons for making the most of a career change.

working women, who already have the lion’s share of domestic burdens, have been disproportionately affected by the coronavirus crisis, usually taking on additional childcare and teaching responsibilities as schools were closed – all at the detriment to their career. “As the world emerges from the pandemic, now is the time to ensure that the cost of care appears elsewhere than in women’s wealth,” says the FT editorial board.

“The pandemic has hit the female talent pool hard,” writes Eleanor Mills, founder of a platform for middle aged women. Companies need to do more to support women through ‘pinch points’, such as divorce, added family responsibilities and the experience of menopause, if they are to reap the benefits of their hard-earned wisdom, she argues. .

Menopause is also the subject of the latest Working It podcast. Isabel Berwick and her guests discuss pioneering politics on Channel 4, as well as the downsides of women being open about their health.

Read our Women in Business special report to learn more about how women’s working lives have been altered by the pandemic.

Covid cases and vaccinations

Total number of global cases: 441.8mn

Total doses administered: 10.9 billion

Get the latest global picture with our vaccine tracker

And finally . . .

Has all that doomscrolling on your phone got you swaying? Find out how European tech correspondent Madhumita Murgia pulled off her digital diet attempt.

© Paul Pateman

Free meal — Your guide to the global economic policy debate. Register here

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]]> Sanctions against Russia highlight the dollar’s exorbitant privilege https://aisa-net.com/sanctions-against-russia-highlight-the-dollars-exorbitant-privilege/ Sun, 06 Mar 2022 09:59:00 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/sanctions-against-russia-highlight-the-dollars-exorbitant-privilege/

Sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union on Russian banks have made Russian business entities a global pariah, much like North Korea. Importers, exporters and banks in many countries are stuck with receivables, payables and exposures and there is a small fear of large defaults. But in financial and academic circles, the seizure of Russian central bank reserves is seen as far more drastic.

The sanctions against the central bank of such a large country with 630 billion dollars in reserves, half of which in dollars and euros, are unprecedented. It would be interesting to consider the psyche of a PBOC (People’s Bank of China) which has over $2 trillion in reserves or the RBI which also has over $630 billion in reserves. Will their rulers encourage them to look for options beyond hard currencies? Above all, are there such options?

“The management of our reserves is guided by safety, liquidity and yield in that order,” Dr. D Subbarao, former RBI Governor, told me, adding that currently only the dollar and , to some extent, the other G3 currencies satisfy these qualities. He said a key lesson for governments from the Russian case will be that “US sanctions bite” and “it’s too costly to be on the wrong side of the United States.”

Read also :

The dollar’s role as an international currency began in 1944 when the United States brokered an agreement at Bretton Woods that pegged other currencies to the dollar and the dollar was loosely pegged to gold. This new arrangement was needed to replace the gold standard that had collapsed during the Great Depression. War-torn Europe was too dependent on the United States to complain. But in the late 1950s, as Europe recovered, some European nations felt the same righteous angst that can currently prevail in the central banks of Russia and China over dollar hegemony. French Finance Minister Valéry Giscard D’Estaing raged against the move from gold to the dollar, calling it an “exorbitant privilege” of the United States.

Economist Barry Eichengreen explains in his book, Exorbitant Privilege: The Rise and Fall of the Dollar and the Future of the International Monetary System, that when trillions of dollar banknotes circulate around the world, seigniorage gains for United States can be substantial. (Seigniorage gain here means for the United States that the cost to earn a dollar is simply the expense incurred to print that bill, but other countries must produce a dollar of goods or services to earn that dollar. ) Also, the fact that central banks around the world hold trillions of dollar bonds means that the US government can raise debt very cheaply. This position of the dollar allows the United States (even requires it) to run current account deficits without worrying about external challenges. Even European countries resent American privilege, economist Kenneth Rogoff said speaking to CNBCTV18.

In the 1960s, European countries starting with France reacted by demanding that the United States pay them gold in exchange for their dollar reserves, which the United States did. But this caused the United States’ gold reserves to dwindle and eventually President Richard Nixon changed the law and broke the dollar’s gold backing. Since then, the world has accepted the dollar as an international reserve currency, and the search for an alternative has remained in academic circles. With the sanctions against Russia, the question of the exorbitant privilege of the dollar is coming back to the fore.

An RBI veteran said the scale of the sanctions against Russia’s central bank and its other banks is so unprecedented that it may be hard to repeat as countries and their central banks will begin to prepare for such eventualities, but we do not know how they will do it. to prepare. What options do they have?

Some pundits have toyed with the idea that as a hedge, central banks like RBI must hold some of their reserves in the form of crude. Subbarao and other central bankers disagree that these are squarely in the domain of governments and private companies. Central bankers have neither the expertise nor the bandwidth to manage these commodity reserves. They can only manage financial reserves, which must necessarily be safe and liquid, in order to be able to use them to intervene in the event of a run on their own currency.

Is it possible that the Chinese central bank with that of Russia tries to develop bilateral payment systems that facilitate the settlement of bilateral exchanges without entering the dollar zone, even if the exchange between the two currencies is done by the dollar? India attempted to do so when sanctions were imposed on Iran. India had a crude oil purchase agreement with Iran, which it wanted to honour. The Reserve Bank used UCO Bank to pay Iran, after isolating the bank from any exposure to US dollar settlements. At present, Indian banks or the RBI are making no such effort towards Russian parties, for fear of secondary sanctions from the United States, according to banking sources. Perhaps when the dust settles, China will likely develop renminbi-denominated trade with more partners, and even with Russia as insurance against possible dollar blackmail by the United States.

“Alternatives could emerge, as appropriate, as a unit of account or a means of payment,” Subbarao agreed, “but as a store of value, the dollar will remain unmatched,” he said.

The trump card in favor of the United States and the European Union is global confidence in their legal system. Even if Russia and China develop bilateral payment systems, they are unlikely to inspire global business confidence due to their opaque legal systems. As Churchill once said: Democracy is the worst form of government except all others. Despite all its flaws, businesses and governments still trust the Western legal system and this is where a rival Chinese alternative can falter.

Central bank digital currencies (or CBDCs) can offer a route. mBridge, which is a prototype of multiple Central Bank Digital Currencies (mCBDC) developed by the Bank for International Settlements Innovation Center and four central banks – Hong Kong, Bank of Thailand PBOC and Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates united – recently demonstrated the potential of using digital currencies and distributed ledger technology (DLT) to provide real-time, cheaper and more secure cross-border payments and settlements. The RBI has also signed with the Monetary Authority of Singapore to link India’s UPI with Singapore’s PayNow to work on cross-border payments.

However, even these are based on dollar exchange rates and therefore are not an alternative to the current international financial regime. In short, to use what Dr. Subbarao said, “there is currently no alternative to the dollar”. But the angst against the greenback is great, from Russia to India to China and even Europe until recently. Whether geopolitics combined with technologies like blockchain will succeed in finding an alternative to the dollar as an international currency remains to be seen.

(Edited by : Bivekananda Biswas)

First post: STI

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Serbia, Government of — Moody’s Update on UK Sovereign Calendar Issuers https://aisa-net.com/serbia-government-of-moodys-update-on-uk-sovereign-calendar-issuers/ Fri, 04 Mar 2022 22:16:07 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/serbia-government-of-moodys-update-on-uk-sovereign-calendar-issuers/

Announcement: Moody’s Update on UK Sovereign Rating Calendar IssuersGlobal Credit Research – March 04, 2022New York, March 04, 2022 — Moody’s Investors Service is issuing this update regarding UK sovereign rating calendar activity scheduled for March 04 2022 to provide further clarification on UK sovereign rating activity. This update is provided as a service to the markets and does not constitute a formal rating action release. For the latest and most complete information about the issuers listed, including the full official text of any credit rating action releases, please see the individual issuer pages available at www.moodys.com . March: Not applicable — no ratings have been updated for the issuers listed in the calendar. RATINGS THAT HAVE NOT BEEN UPDATED FOR ISSUERS AS OF 04 March CALENDAR: Serbia, Government of https://www.moodys.com/SerbiaGovernment. potential publication dates for solicited and unsolicited sovereign credit rating actions, in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 1060/2009, as it forms part of UK domestic law under the Withdrawal Act 2018 of the European Union. It includes sovereign issuers that are covered by a lead analyst based in the UK, as required by the regulations quoted above and, in order to provide greater market clarity, it also includes the UK. sovereign issuers that are covered by senior analysts based outside the UK. This calendar may be updated as needed during the year. global press hotlines: London +44-20-7772-5456, New York +1-212-553-0376, Tokyo +813-5408-4110, Hong Kong +852-3758-1350, Sydney +61 -2-9270-8141, Mexico City 001-888-779-5833, São Paulo 0800-891-2518 or Buenos Aires 0800-666-3506. You can also email us at mediarelations@moodys.com or visit our website at www.moodys.com. This publication does not announce a credit rating action. For all credit ratings referenced in this publication, please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for the most up-to-date credit rating action information and rating history. Anne Van Praagh MD – Sovereign Risk Sovereign Risk Group Moody’s Investors Service, Inc. 250 Greenwich Street New York, NY 10007 USA JOURNALISTS: 1 212 553 0376 Customer Service: 1 212 553 1653 Marie Diron MD – Sovereign Risk Sub-Sovereign Group JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456 Customer Service: 44 20 7772 5454 Release Office: Moody’s Investors Service, Inc. 250 Greenwich Street New York, NY 10007 USA JOURNALISTS: 1 212 553 0376 Customer Service: 1 212 553 1653 © 2022 Moody’s Corporation, Moody’s Investors Service , Inc., Moody’s Analytics, Inc. and/or their licensors and affiliates (collectively, “MOODY’S”). All rights reserved. CREDIT RATINGS ISSUED BY MOODY’S CREDIT RATINGS AFFILIATES ARE THEIR CURRENT OPINIONS OF THE RELATIVE FUTURE CREDIT RISK OF ENTITIES, CREDIT COMMITMENTS OR INDEBTEDNESS OR SECURITIES ASSOCIATED WITH INDEBTEDNESS, AND MATERIALS, PRODUCTS, SERVICES AND INFORMATION PUBLISHED BY MOODY’S (COLLECTIVELY, “PUBLICATIONS” MAY INCLUDE SUCH CURRENT OPINIONS. MOODY’S DEFINES CREDIT RISK AS THE RISK THAT AN ENTITY FAILURE TO MEET ITS CONTRACTUAL FINANCIAL OBLIGATIONS WHEN DUE AND ANY ESTIMATED FINANCIAL LOSS IN THE EVENT OF DEFAULT OR IMPAIRMENT. SEE THE APPLICABLE PUBLICATION OF MOODY’S RATINGS SYMBOLS AND DEFINITIONS FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE TYPES OF CONTRACTUAL FINANCIAL OBLIGATIONS ADDRESSED BY MOODY’S CREDIT RATINGS. CREDIT RATINGS DO NOT ADDRESS ANY OTHER RISKS, INCLUDING INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO: LIQUIDITY RISK, MARKET VALUE RISK OR PRICE VOLATILITY. 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Zipmex Partners with Polygon Studios and Celebrates the Launch of the NFT Platform with the First Metaverse Concert in Thailand https://aisa-net.com/zipmex-partners-with-polygon-studios-and-celebrates-the-launch-of-the-nft-platform-with-the-first-metaverse-concert-in-thailand/ Fri, 04 Mar 2022 12:11:00 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/zipmex-partners-with-polygon-studios-and-celebrates-the-launch-of-the-nft-platform-with-the-first-metaverse-concert-in-thailand/

SINGAPORE, March 4, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — South East Asia leading digital asset platform Zipmex today announced a strategic partnership with Polygon studiosthe famous NFT and gaming branch of the Polygon blockchain, to expand its ecosystem by launching the NFT platform Zixel by Zipmex. Tens of thousands of people from around the world celebrated the launch together at Thailand first metaverse gig on Decentraland.

The long-term partnership with Polygon Studios is part of Zipmex’s 2022 strategy to realize its vision in NFTs and the metaverse, as well as position its ecosystem for future growth. In addition to investing in Zipmex’s native token, ZMT, Polygon Studios will roll out new virtual experiences on the metaverse with Zixel by Zipmex throughout 2022, targeting the Asia Pacific Marlet.

Kelvin LamCEO of Zipmex Group said“It has always been a priority for Zipmex to enhance the user experience with cutting-edge cryptographic technologies. We are thrilled to partner with Polygon Studios to become digital literacy pioneers in South East Asia, a region that has seen significant growth in crypto adoption in recent years. We welcome everyone – whether new to crypto or natives – to join us in this crypto revolution both in the online and offline world.”

Steven Bryson Haynes, Vice President, Head of Business Development at Polygon Studios“It is a pleasure to collaborate with like-minded crypto leaders like Zipmex to drive digital literacy starting with NFT integration. We look forward to introducing new metaverse initiatives through Zixel by Zipmex as well than standardizing crypto and blockchain as part of life South East Asia.”

Zixel by Zipmex successfully held its first event on Decentraland, ‘Zixel Launch Party’ celebrating the launch of the NFT Platform. Participants from all over the world were able to interact with the Zixel NFT gallery and from Asia top music talent, including Thai Electronic Pop group, Getsunova, and a DJ set from hong kongShanghaiLondon based music collective, Yeti outside. The event also invited users to participate in a wide range of activities such as Zixel NFT gallery showcase, NFT badge and wearable giveaways.

Currently, Zipmex hosts South East Asia Metaverse’s first physical exhibit,”Zixe’s Metaworldl”. Visitors can immerse themselves in the Metaverse through a variety of interconnected experiences with the ‘Zixel Launch Party’ event on Decentraland. In its NFT Factory area, visitors can create their own virtual avatar by recording their movements powered by motion capture technology The expo also includes a Crypto Arcade X Polygon Studios area where visitors can play to win MATIC, Polygon’s native token, and other prizes through a Polygon Studios-sponsored Gashapon machine. event will end on March 20, 2022.

About Zixel by Zipmex

The digital collection destination to discover, collect and trade selected NFTs. Zixel by Zipmex is a platform where brands and digital communities connect, and where internet art and culture converge.

About Zipmex Group

Zipmex is South East Asia fastest growing digital asset platform with a focus on building the foundation of from Asia financial architecture to allow everyone to discover the world of digital assets. The company’s Thai subsidiary has a digital asset exchange license and a brokerage license issued by the Ministry of Finance of Thailand, and is regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company has offices across South East Asia: Singapore, Australia and Indonesia.

About Polygon

Polygon is the leading platform for scaling and developing Ethereum infrastructure. Its growing suite of products provides developers with easy access to all major scaling and infrastructure solutions: L2 solutions (ZK Rollups and Optimistic Rollups), sidechains, hybrid solutions, standalone and enterprise chains, data availability, etc. Polygon’s scaling solutions have been widely adopted with over 7,000 hosted applications, over 1 billion transactions processed, approximately 100 million unique user addresses, and over $5 billion in revenue. secure assets. If you are an Ethereum developer, you are already a Polygon developer! Leverage Polygon’s fast and secure txns for your dApp, start here.

Website | Twitter | Ecosystem Twitter | Twitter Developer | Studios Twitter | Telegram | LinkedIn | | Discord | Instagram | Facebook

About Polygon Studios

Polygon Studios is the Gaming and NFT arm of Polygon that is focused on growing the global Blockchain Gaming and NFT industry and bridging the gap between Web 2 and Web 3 gaming through investment, marketing and development. developer support. The Polygon Studios ecosystem includes popular NFT games and projects like OpenSea, Upshot, Aavegotchi, Zed Run, Skyweaver by Horizon Games, Decentraland, Megacryptopolis, Neon District, Cometh, and Decentral Games. If you’re a game developer, builder, or NFT creator looking to join the Polygon Studios ecosystem, start here.

Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Telegram | tiktok | LinkedIn

#Zipmex #ZixelbyZipmex #ZixelVerse | www.zipmex.com

SOURCEZipmex

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Chinese stocks fall amid geopolitical tensions; focus on the parliamentary meeting https://aisa-net.com/chinese-stocks-fall-amid-geopolitical-tensions-focus-on-the-parliamentary-meeting/ Fri, 04 Mar 2022 04:59:00 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/chinese-stocks-fall-amid-geopolitical-tensions-focus-on-the-parliamentary-meeting/

SHANGHAI, March 4 (Reuters) – Chinese stocks fell on Friday amid geopolitical tensions and concerns over the property market, with investors nervously watching for hints of an easing of measures at the next congressional meeting.

The CSI300 index (.CSI300) fell 0.9% to 4,509.53 at the end of the morning session, while the Shanghai Composite Index (.SSEC) lost 0.7% to 3,458 ,30.

The Hang Seng Index (.HSI) fell 2.7% to 21,867.45. The Hong Kong China Enterprise Index (.HSCE) fell 2.5% to 7,699.14.

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** China’s parliament begins its annual meeting on Saturday, when it is expected to unveil more stimulus measures to mitigate a slowdown in growth in a politically sensitive year, with the war in Ukraine adding further uncertainty. Read more

** China’s central bank may lower a key interest rate this month, the official China Daily reported on Friday. Read more

** Property developers (.CSI000952) lost 1.7% and Banks (.CSI000951) edged down 1%.

** The number of Chinese companies “persistently late” on commercial paper payments more than doubled in February from the previous month as China’s real estate sector continued to struggle with a liquidity crunch. Read more

** The CSI Computer Index (.CSI930651) fell 1.8%, while New Energy Vehicles (.CSI399976) fell 2.3%.

** “The latest developments in global geopolitical tensions, real estate market uncertainties and the COVID-19 situation raise heightened concerns,” Morgan Stanley said in a note.

** The research firm also said investors should “stay cautious and watch for inflection after the NPC (National People’s Congress) and Q4 earnings results.”

**Hong Kong shares followed a tumble in Asian stock markets as investors took fright at reports of a burning nuclear power plant amid fierce fighting between Ukraine and Russian troops. Read more

** The Hang Seng Tech Index (.HSTECH) fell more than 4% to a record high, with Meituan (3690.HK), Alibaba (9988.HK) and Tencent (0700.HK) down 3 .8% to 7.1%.

** The Hang Seng Finance Index (.HSNF) fell 2%, while the Consumer Discretionary Index (.HSCICD) fell more than 4%.

**While many property developers tumbled amid real estate woes, Country Garden (2007.HK) jumped 6.3% after signing a 15 billion yuan ($2.37 billion) deal in M&A facilities with China Merchants. Read more

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Report from the Shanghai Newsroom

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The week that was — February 14-19 https://aisa-net.com/the-week-that-was-february-14-19/ Sun, 20 Feb 2022 01:30:48 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/the-week-that-was-february-14-19/

Traders continue to stay busy as the flurry of news from the private markets shows. Let’s dive into the big stories of the past week.

The Bargain corner

One of our scoops this week featured Indonesian digital payments platform Xendit, which is finalizing a new funding round worth over $200 million from global investors Coatue Management and Insight. Partners.

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC has invested $170 million for a minority stake in Asia Healthcare Holdings, South Asia’s largest single-specialty healthcare platform backed by private equity firm TPG.

Merchant trading platform Pine Labs secured $150 million from New York-based investment firm Alpha Wave Global in a round that included a mix of primary and secondary deals. The Sequoia Capital-backed company has received $75 million in equity funding from Alpha Wave so far, according to regulatory filings.

Singapore-based startups Zilingo and ShopBack, both backed by public investor Temasek Holdings, are reportedly looking to raise at least $150 million each in separate funding rounds that could push them into the unicorn club.

Southeast Asian online lending platform Funding Societies, popularly known as Modalku in Indonesia, raised $144m in a Series C+ round, as well as $150m of debts. SoftBank Vision Fund 2 led the round.

Indonesia-based digital banking and financial platform Akulaku has raised $100m in new funding from Thai lender Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) in what is believed to be a pre-IPO round in stock exchange. The company is expected to consider listing later this year.

Alternative protein maker Next Gen Foods has raised $100 million in a Series A funding round from Indonesia-based venture capital firm Alpha JWC Ventures and other backers including EDBI and the British company MPL Ventures, a venture capital firm owned by Paul McCartney.

Social e-commerce startup DealShare has raised an additional $45 million in its Series E funding round from an affiliate of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. The latest funding brings its total funding to $393 million and its valuation to $1.7 billion.

Silent Eight, a Singapore-based startup that uses artificial intelligence to fight financial crimes, raised $40 million in a Series B funding round. The latest round was joined by backers Wavemaker Partners and SC Ventures, the venture capital arm of Standard Chartered.

Reebelo, a Singapore-based e-commerce marketplace that lets users buy and sell used tech gadgets, raised $20m in a Series A round led by venture capital firms Cathay Innovation and June Fund.

Singapore-based Appboxo, a platform that allows customers to build their own awesome apps, has raised $7 million in a Series A round led by RTP Global.

Lummo, an Indonesian direct-to-consumer SaaS startup formerly known as BukuKas, has secured an undisclosed amount of funding from Jeff Bezos’ personal investment firm Bezos Expeditions as part of its Series C round.

News of mergers and acquisitions

B2B fintech unicorn Nium is in preliminary talks to acquire SoCash, a Singapore-based fintech startup, industry sources have told DealStreetAsia. The deal will likely be a share swap, with the two sides expected to discuss further details in the coming weeks.

Bangladeshi travel technology platform GoZayaan has acquired Pakistani online travel and tourism portal FindMyAdventure. Although the size of the deal was not disclosed, sources told DealStreetAsia that it was over $3.5 million.

Fund Manager Updates

Malaysia-based private equity firm Creador has so far raised $660 million for its fifth fund and expects to close the vehicle within the next two months.

Singapore-based venture capital firm Jungle Ventures is exploring secondary sales for portfolio companies such as interior design startup Livspace, B2B commerce platform Moglix and SaaS company Deskera.

US pension fund Virginia Retirement System (VRS) has committed a total of $525 million to two Asia-focused vehicles – a private credit fund managed by Ares SSG and a closed-end fund Blackstone which invests in the opportunistic real estate.

Singapore-based private equity real estate firm Q Investment Partners is aiming to raise $100 million in capital to acquire multi-family housing assets in Japan, CEO and co-founder Peter Young told DealStreetAsia.

The Texas Employees Retirement System (ERS) has made a $50 million commitment to PAG Real Estate’s latest core-plus/value-add pan-Asian real estate fund.

Avendus Future Leaders Fund II has secured capital commitments worth $200 million, primarily from Indian investors. The fund was initially aiming to raise Rs 750 crore ($100 million) with a greenshoe option of another Rs 500 crore ($67 million).

Hong Kong-based life sciences venture capital (VC) firm Delos Capital has made the first closing of its $300 million Fund III with the backing of investors from the United States and China. Greater China.

Chinese alternative asset management firm Sino-Ocean Capital has set up a $600 million Special Situations Fund to invest in residential properties in key cities in the Yangtze River Delta Economic Zone on the central coast of China and in the southern Greater Bay Area.

Australian renewable energy investor Clean Energy and Finance Corporation (CEFC) has committed $80 million to IFM Investors’ second middle-market private equity (PE) fund.

Dutch development bank FMO has proposed an $18 million investment in Singapore-based venture capital firm Jungle Ventures’ fourth Southeast Asia-focused venture capital fund.

UAE-based investment firm Gulf Capital is set to launch its fourth private equity fund this year, targeting more assets in Southeast Asia. The company opened an office in Singapore in December to invest in Southeast Asia and India.

Blackstone has acquired a majority stake in ASK Investment Managers Limited (ASK), one of India’s largest asset and wealth management companies, for an undisclosed amount. It acquired the stake from private equity firm Advent International and other sellers.

Swiss bank Pictet Group plans to step up its alternative investments by tracking growth in the healthcare, technology and environment sectors. Pictet Alternative Advisors (PAA), a 100% owned unit of the bank, is set to launch its third thematic fund, focused on investing in companies related to the environment.

Data and analysis

Sea Ltd’s popular NYSE-listed game Free Fire and 54 other Chinese-origin apps were banned by India this month over security concerns. The ban poses a serious risk not only to the company’s gaming business, but also potentially to its e-commerce initiatives through Shopee, writes editor Angus Mackintosh in this article.

We spoke to Anuj Maheshwari from Temasek to understand the factors driving agriculture and food investments from the public investor. The company was one of the top three investors in the space last year and has invested more than $8 billion in food-related ventures since 2013.

Boosted by a pick-up in risk appetite and improving exit prospects, Southeast Asian venture capital firms saw 21 final closings in 2021, nearly double the year’s total former. Although the number remains below pre-pandemic levels, it is a clear sign that the overall fundraising landscape is improving, according to the latest report from DealStreetAsia – DATA ADVANTAGE.

Nearly 20 social commerce startups in Southeast Asia have announced new funding rounds since the start of 2020, led by Indonesia. What is driving interest in this segment?

Eight of the 25 new Southeast Asian unicorns in 2021 came from Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and the Philippines. Can we expect these markets to produce more this year?

weekend reading

How does a new Singapore-based oat milk brand plan to compete against rivals such as Oatly in the crowded dairy alternatives market? We posed this and other questions to OATSIDE, which was founded by a former Heinz ABC executive, and his private equity firm Proterra.

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Sensex, Nifty end a bit lower; Cement UltraTech, M&M, Infy, RIL weight https://aisa-net.com/sensex-nifty-end-a-bit-lower-cement-ultratech-mm-infy-ril-weight/ Fri, 18 Feb 2022 10:50:16 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/sensex-nifty-end-a-bit-lower-cement-ultratech-mm-infy-ril-weight/

India’s stock market continued its lackluster trading for the third straight session as it struggled for firm direction amid the absence of any major developments on the domestic or global front. Additionally, mixed signals from global peers also weighed on the market, with lingering concerns over Ukraine-Russia tensions and fears of aggressive US Federal Reserve policy triggering a sell-off in stocks. world. The Ukrainian crisis prompted investors to go into risk aversion mode and focus on safe havens.

Extending the slide for the third session, the BSE Sensex closed 59 points, or 0.1%, down at 57,833, and the NSE Nifty was down 23 points, or 1.16%, at 17,276.

In a similar trend, the broader markets also finished lower. The S&P BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices fell 0.8% each.

The overall market breadth on BSE was negative, with 2,272 shares falling out of a total of 3,706 shares traded. Only 1,288 stocks advanced and 146 remained unchanged.

Excluding capital goods and banking, all sectors end in red

On the sector front, all indices closed in negative territory, with the exception of capital goods and banks. The BSE real estate index was the biggest loser with a loss of 1.23%, led by Sobha, Godrej Industries, Indiabulls Real Estate, Sunteck Realty and DLF.

The BSE oil and gas index also saw a strong increase in sales and ended down 1.14%. The main losers in the oil and gas sector were ONGC, Adani Total Gas, Petronet LNG, HPCL and Reliance Industries.

Top winners and losers

Both the BSE Barometer and benchmark Sensex closed slightly lower with 13 of the top 30 stocks closing higher. The top Sensex pack winner was mortgage lender Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd. (HDFC), which ended up 1.25%.

Other notable gainers are Larsen & Toubro, Axis Bank, State Bank of India and Kotak Mahindra Bank, which rose 0.7%.

On the losing side, UltraTech Cement topped the charts with a 2.03% decline. Other underperformers include Mahindra & Mahindra, Infosys, Reliance Industries and Bajaj Finance, which fell in the range of 0.7% to 1.4%.

Shares in the news

Ambuja cements: Shares of the company ended down 5.9% after reporting a weak operational performance for the December quarter due to higher fuel prices and flat achievements. Profit after tax decreased by 36.2% year-on-year to ₹317.4 crore, mainly due to lower operating margins and an exceptional charge of ₹65.7 crore due to restructuring.

GR infraprojects: The share of construction and engineering companies closed down 2.3%, after falling 4% to an all-time low of ₹1,485.80 on BSE. The share price has fallen 22% so far this February after announcing disappointing results for the December quarter (Q3FY22).

TCPL packaging: Shares of TCPL Packaging rose 20% to a 52-week high of ₹727 with a good outlook. The company reported a 20% year-on-year (YoY) rise in cash profit to ₹34.8 crore for the December quarter (Q3FY22), while revenue rose 12.9% year-on-year to 274 ₹ crores.

Venky’s (India): Shares of the poultry processing company closed down 2.2% following reports of bird flu in Thane, Maharashtra.

Veritas India: The stock price fell 2% as investors weighed the disappointed December quarter results. Net profit fell 40% year-on-year to ₹17.8 crore in the third quarter of the current financial year from ₹29.5 crore in the same period a year ago.

Global stocks mixed on Ukraine woes

Stocks in the Asia-Pacific region and the European market were trading mixed today amid looming fears of a Russian invasion of Ukraine. US President Joe Biden has warned that Moscow may be on the verge of invading Ukraine as it has failed to withdraw its troops from the border. Russia has amassed 45,000 troops in Belarus, near the Ukrainian border.

Australia’s ASX 200 index ended down 1%, Japan’s Nikkei 225 index fell 0.4% and Singapore’s Straits Times index lost 0.35%.

The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong was the region’s worst performer with a loss of 1.88%, while Taiwan Weighted fell 0.2%.

On the other hand, mainland China stocks were among the best performers in the regional market, with the Shenzhen component and the Shanghai composite up 0.27% and 0.66%, respectively. South Korea’s KOSPI finished a little higher, Indonesia’s Jakarta Composite jumped 0.84% ​​and Thailand’s SET Composite finished slightly higher.

In the European market, stocks opened on a mixed note, after a negative finish on Wall Street overnight. Investors were awaiting the outcome of US Federal Reserve policy as the central bank begins its two-day meeting tonight. The German DAX is down slightly early in the trade, while the French CAC index and the UK FTSE 100 index are trading a bit higher.

In day-to-day trade, all three major U.S. indexes closed lower amid concerns over political tensions between Russia and Ukraine. The Nasdaq Composite Index was the worst performer with a 2.9% loss as growth-oriented tech stocks were hammered by fears of a rate hike. The S&P 500 fell more than 2% and the Dow Jones lost 1.8%.

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Asian stocks mixed, US futures plunge as traders weigh Fed minutes, geopolitical concerns; Oil Slumps: Market Recap https://aisa-net.com/asian-stocks-mixed-us-futures-plunge-as-traders-weigh-fed-minutes-geopolitical-concerns-oil-slumps-market-recap/ Thu, 17 Feb 2022 02:47:09 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/asian-stocks-mixed-us-futures-plunge-as-traders-weigh-fed-minutes-geopolitical-concerns-oil-slumps-market-recap/

Japan’s Topix index fell 0.6%, South Korea’s Kospi index rose 1.2% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.2%. While S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures fell 0.2%.

U.S. stock futures fell and Asian stocks were mixed on Thursday as traders weighed geopolitical concerns and the likely trajectory of Federal Reserve interest rate hikes.

Shares slid in Japan, surged in South Korea and fluctuated in Hong Kong, where reports suggest authorities are preparing mass testing to combat Covid. US contracts fell after the S&P 500 managed a small gain on Wednesday.

Treasuries have climbed, the dollar has held steady, and gold has recently seen a rally. Traders were digesting the United States’ rejection of Russian claims of a troop withdrawal from the Ukrainian border. The Kremlin has repeatedly denied any invasion plans.

Oil slipped amid signs that an Iranian nuclear deal is drawing closer, which could pave the way for a resumption of official exports from the Persian Gulf producer. In recent times, crude has also been plagued by supply issues related to the buildup of Russian troops.

The Fed’s latest minutes showed officials had concluded they would start raising rates soon and were on high alert that lingering inflation would warrant faster tightening. There were few new details on the balance sheet liquidation plans.

Here are some key events this week:

  • G-20 finance ministers and central bank governors meet from Thursday to February 18
  • Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester and St. Louis Fed President James Bullard speak Thursday
  • US Monetary Policy Forum: Speakers including Fed officials Charles Evans, Christopher Waller and Lael Brainard, Friday

Some of the major movements in the markets:

Shares

  • S&P 500 futures fell 0.2% at 10:55 a.m. in Tokyo. The S&P 500 rose 0.1%
  • Nasdaq 100 futures lost 0.2%. The Nasdaq 100 fell 0.1%
  • Japan’s Topix index fell 0.6%
  • Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.6%
  • South Korea’s Kospi index rose 1.2%
  • Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.2%
  • China’s Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.1%

Currencies

  • The Japanese yen was at 115.48 to the dollar
  • The offshore yuan was at 6.3315 to the dollar
  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index remained stable
  • The euro was at $1.1381

Obligations

  • The yield on 10-year Treasury bills was 2.03%
  • Australia’s 10-year yield was at 2.24%

Merchandise

  • West Texas Intermediate crude fell 2.3% to $91.54 a barrel
  • Gold was at $1,869.04 an ounce

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Analysis: the Japanese yen becomes a financing currency again, but with more risks https://aisa-net.com/analysis-the-japanese-yen-becomes-a-financing-currency-again-but-with-more-risks/ Tue, 15 Feb 2022 09:45:00 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/analysis-the-japanese-yen-becomes-a-financing-currency-again-but-with-more-risks/

HONG KONG, Feb 15 (Reuters) – As the Bank of Japan asserts its position as a lone dove among its peers, the yen is regaining its status as the world’s most popular funding currency.

The trade is risky, however, as the yen could once again become a safe haven if tensions over Ukraine escalate or an aggressive Federal Reserve triggers a sell-off in markets.

The conventional role of the yen as a cheap currency that investors could borrow and use to fund “carry” trades in higher-yielding markets has been diluted somewhat during the coronavirus pandemic, as other central banks also cut their rates to zero.

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But it once again became the preferred funding currency this week after the BOJ announced a special bond-buying operation to remind markets of its commitment to keeping yields low for longer.

This stance is at odds with the Fed and European central banks which have become decidedly hawkish about inflation.

“If you’re an investor in London or Hong Kong and you’re thinking about what currency to fund a transaction with, you’re basically left with one central bank…at least for now,” Ben said. Shatil. , a Tokyo-based FX strategist at JPMorgan.

“And it’s an environment that has generally favored the yen as a funding currency for carry trades.”

Some things haven’t changed for the yen. Japan has one of the weakest currencies among the Group of Seven countries, sub-zero short-term rates and a base of domestic investors desperate for yield overseas.

Yet, Ukraine factor aside, shorting the yen has become a riskier transaction.

The prospect of higher energy prices and imported inflation could force the BOJ to raise rates. An associated risk is that the Fed goes too fast and too far with its tightening policy, causing a global sell-off in the markets which generates flows towards the safe-haven yen.

In a typical carry trade, investors borrow the low yielding yen or Swiss franc to invest in higher yielding assets elsewhere. The stability of the funding currency is essential to keep the cost of the transaction low.

In a deflation-ridden Japan, short-term yen deposit rates have been close to zero for decades, and negative since 2016, when the BOJ adopted its yield curve control policy.

An example of a typical carry trade would be to borrow yen to invest in Brazilian money markets. This trade has returned 10.7% annualized so far this year.

Paul Mackel, global head of FX at HSBC, says investors can return to the yen as the funding currency of choice, but it’s risky.

“A carry trade will never be very smooth, it’s always about picking up pennies in front of the steamroller, but that steamroller may be a little closer given those uncertainties associated with political risk,” Mackel said.

IF THE YEN APPRECIATES

As the United States warns of an acceleration in the build-up of Russian forces on the Ukrainian border, the yen rose.

After testing its more than four-year low at 116.33 on the dollar last week, it strengthened strongly to 115.33. This type of rapid appreciation erodes carry trades, most of which involve shorting the funding currency.

“The safe-haven properties of the yen can accelerate very quickly,” Mackel said.

There are also fears that Japanese policymakers will worry about the economic impact of a weak yen, especially as the country imports most of its energy and oil prices have hit seven-year highs.

Inflation has edged closer to the BOJ’s 2% policy target, raising the odds that the BOJ will loosen its grip on yields and that rising yields will torpedo yen-funded trades.

The BOJ leaves the markets guessing. While he offered to buy an unlimited number of bonds this week to underscore his determination to contain domestic borrowing costs, he made it clear that such offers would only be made sporadically. Read more

For now, investors are buying into the dovish view.

The BOJ’s offer to buy bonds, “in the near term will likely quiet what was a pretty loud chorus of people saying the BOJ would give in on yield curve control,” JPMorgan’s Shatil said.

This “creates a track for a bit of yen weakness, which would be helpful in the context of these carry trades.”

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Editing by Vidya Ranganathan and Jacqueline Wong

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Lower hospitalizations in the United States; Austrian Experience: Virus Update https://aisa-net.com/lower-hospitalizations-in-the-united-states-austrian-experience-virus-update/ Tue, 01 Feb 2022 14:53:18 +0000 https://aisa-net.com/lower-hospitalizations-in-the-united-states-austrian-experience-virus-update/

(Bloomberg) – U.S. hospital admissions for Covid-19 are falling in 34 states and the nation’s capital, easing healthcare staffing crises that were widespread at the start of the year.

Bloomberg’s Most Read

New studies are emerging that suggest the latest version of omicron spreads even faster than the original, and mild cases of the former may not offer much protection against future infections.

South Africa has dropped a requirement for people who test positive but show no symptoms to self-isolate. Meanwhile, Austria has launched a dramatic public health experiment, with a divisive new law making Covid-19 vaccinations mandatory.

Key developments:

  • Virus Tracker: Cases Exceed 378 Million; deaths exceed 5.6 million

  • Vaccine Tracker: more than 10.1 billion vaccines administered

  • What we now know about the omicron variant: QuickTake

  • Sign up for the free Coronavirus Daily newsletter here

New version of Omicron not more severe: WHO (10:30 NY)

The emerging omicron subvariant does not appear to be more severe than the original form, a World Health Organization official said, according to Reuters.

Vaccines also continue to provide similar protection against different forms of omicron, Boris Pavlin of the WHO’s Covid-19 response team told an online briefing, according to the news service.

Portuguese Prime Minister Tests Positive (9:50 a.m. NY)

Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa is self-isolating after testing positive for Covid-19, the Prime Minister’s Office said in an emailed statement. Costa, 60, who won the general election on Sunday, has no symptoms and will self-isolate for seven days.

US Hospital Admissions Drop (9:32 a.m. NY)

U.S. hospital admissions for Covid-19 are falling in 34 states and the nation’s capital. Last week, the number of new Covid-19 patients fell 31% in New Jersey and Maryland, the largest declines in the country, according to data from the US Department of Health and Human Services.

The fast-spreading omicron variant swept across the United States for much of December and early January, sending cases to a weekly peak more than three times as severe as the previous worst period last winter. The number of infections meant that hospitals were again overwhelmed, even with a less virulent variant for the average infected person.

European Covid Spending Detailed (9:26 a.m. NY)

European Union states have spent only about a third of the more than 3 trillion euros ($3.4 trillion) in aid they had budgeted to save their economies from the pandemic, said EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.

New Version of Omicron Studied (6:55 p.m. HK)

The omicron subvariant BA.2 of omicron is even more contagious than BA.1 and is likely to become the dominant virus, based on data from Denmark and the United Kingdom, said Sam Fazeli, senior pharmaceutical analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence.

Early data from the UK suggests that vaccine efficacy against symptomatic disease does not differ between subvariants.

“Although BA.2 does not cause more severe disease, we believe its increased transmissibility could lead to high and sustained levels of infections and associated effects on society,” Fazeli said. Data from the UK suggest a 30% increase in transmissibility.

Hong Kong Faces Epidemic (6:10 p.m. HK)

Hong Kong reported the highest daily number of unrelated infections in its fifth Covid outbreak on Tuesday as the government scrambles to contain community transmission. The city had 129 new confirmed cases – 102 were local cases and 22 currently have no known source, authorities said.

South Africa relaxes isolation rule (6 p.m. HK)

South Africa has dropped the requirement for people who test positive for Covid-19 but show no symptoms to self-isolate, a marked reversal from its initial approach to the virus when it implemented one of the strictest lockdowns in the world.

Austria Vaccination Mandate Goes into Effect (5:30 p.m. HK)

Austria has embarked on a dramatic public health experiment, with a divisive new law that makes vaccinations against Covid-19 compulsory. Police will start checking people’s vaccination status on the street and at roadside checks, and from mid-March violators who have not been vaccinated will face fines of up to 3,600 euros (4,050 $).

It’s a risky political move that has already led to tens of thousands of protesters regularly hitting the streets of Vienna.

Start of vaccine requirements in Italy (4:12 p.m. HK)

Vaccination will be compulsory in Italy for citizens over 50 from Tuesday. People in this age group who have not received at least one vaccine can be fined 100 euros, and later this month will have to show a so-called “enhanced green pass”, which cannot be obtained only with the vaccine or after recovering from Covid, to go to work.

Pandemic Trash Cited in Report (3 p.m. HK)

The pandemic response has produced tens of thousands of tons of additional medical waste, challenging disposal systems and threatening human health and the environment, according to a World Health Organization report.

Overwhelmed waste systems, especially in low-income countries, mean healthcare workers are at risk of needlestick injuries and burns, as well as exposure to pathogenic microorganisms, said WHO. People living near poorly managed landfills and waste disposal sites are exposed to contaminated air and poor water quality.

Effective Shionogi Pill (2:30 p.m. HK)

Shares of Japanese drugmaker Shionogi & Co. rose the most in more than 20 months after it revealed its antiviral pill for Covid-19 was effective in a study.

Omicron Variant and Reinfection (1:15 p.m. HK)

New studies are emerging that suggest the latest version of the highly infectious omicron variant transmits even faster than the original, and mild cases of the former may not offer much protection against future infections.

The findings cast doubt on hopes that the omicron wave sweeping the world could help hasten the end of the pandemic. Calls for governments to treat Covid-19 as endemic like the flu are growing around the world as people tire of pandemic restrictions, vaccines become more accessible and deaths remain relatively low.

Thailand Tourism Without Quarantine (1 p.m. HK)

Thailand expects to welcome hundreds of thousands of holidaymakers a month with the launch of a quarantine-free visa program that should serve as a model for tourism-reliant countries by balancing safely reopening borders with economic recovery.

From Tuesday, visitors of any nationality can apply for quarantine-free entry into Thailand, provided they are fully vaccinated. The government expects between 200,000 and 300,000 travelers to take advantage of the so-called Test & Go scheme in February alone, and the numbers are expected to rise in the following months.

Germany New Cases (11:20 a.m. HK)

Germany reported 162,613 new cases of Covid-19, down from 78,318 the day before, according to the country’s public health authority RKI. New reported deaths associated with the virus rose by 188, bringing the total to 117,974 while the seven-day incidence rate hit a record 1,206.2 per 100,000 people

Slow Beijing local transmissions (11:15 a.m. HK)

Local transmissions in Beijing slowed as neighboring city of Tianjin reported seven new local infections on Monday and Hangzhou, home of e-commerce giant Alibaba, reported 13 new cases, all in currently isolated areas.

Beijing has reported two locally transmitted cases. There were 16 new confirmed cases among Olympic athletes and team officials arriving in a ‘closed loop’ system via the airport, little change from the previous two days.

Hong Kong Quarantine Hotels (10:30 a.m. HK)

Hong Kong has removed three hotels that are currently used to quarantine newly arrived air travelers and converted them into quarantine centers for people who have been in close contact with a Covid-19 patient. The move adds 1,000 more rooms to the 5,200 currently available.

Pfizer to seek approval for under-fives (10 a.m. HK)

Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine could be available for children under five by the end of February as part of a two-shot regimen, The Washington Post reported, citing people briefed on the situation as he did not identify. Pfizer can submit an emergency use authorization request as early as Tuesday.

Japan Emergency Guidelines Set (9:50 a.m. HK)

New daily cases in Japan fell for a second day to 60,838 on Monday after peaking at 84,967 on Saturday, according to data compiled by national broadcaster NHK.

Separately, Tokyo plans to establish new guidelines for requesting a Covid-19 state of emergency, TV Asahi reported on Tuesday, without saying where it got the information from. Tokyo will take into account the number of mildly and critically ill patients, in addition to daily new cases and hospital bed occupancy rates, the broadcaster said.

Tokyo’s hospital bed occupancy rate was 49.2% on Monday, approaching the 50% level that Governor Yuriko Koike earlier gave as the rate at which Tokyo could consider requesting a state of emergency.

Bloomberg Businessweek’s Most Read

©2022 Bloomberg LP

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