Economic Update
2017/12/15Tourism Industries Will See Support in 2018, but Require Repositioning for the Longer Term
Over the past decade, Hong Kong’s retail sales and incoming visitor trends have moved in tandem, and retailers have benefited from the influx of tourists (see Chart 1).[1] However, given the evolving behaviours of visitors, Hong Kong must diversify its strengths from merely being a shopping paradise if it wishes to remain an attractive destination.
2017/12/01Buoyant U.S. Economic Trends Set to Continue
The U.S. economy has remained resilient through the first 11 months of this year. Stronger business investment and consumer sentiment have buoyed the world’s largest economy. Despite the absence of inflationary pressure, the strong economic performance should induce the Federal Reserve (Fed) to continue its steady pace of lifting interest rates.
2017/10/31Overview of the 19th National Congress
At the opening of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on 18 October, President Xi shared his vision to make the country a global economic leader by 2050, as he envisioned that such development would be sustained by a thriving middle class, among other favourable factors.
2017/09/29More Macro-prudential Measures Expected amidst Stabilised Growth in the Mainland
The Chinese economy continued to perform steadily in the third quarter, despite slight moderations in retail sales and fixed asset investment (FAI) growth rates. While it is unlikely to see downside surprises in economic data in the near term, much policy attention may turn to taming the runaway property prices.
2017/09/08 Retail Market Looking Up, Despite Lingering Uncertainties
Hong Kong’s retail sector finally has something to cheer about after facing years of steady declining sales. Moderate growth in the inbound tourism sector in the past few months has also caused retail sales to pick up as well (see Chart 1). However, lingering uncertainties include the U.S. Federal Reserve’s (Fed) potential moves to reduce its balance sheet later this month, which could cause the USD – and hence HKD – to strengthen, which might make Hong Kong less attractive to tourists. Such uncertainties would consequently impact the retail market.
2017/08/31Much Turbulence Anticipated in the Tug of War
U.S. President Donald Trump directed his Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on 14 August to investigate if any of Mainland China’s “laws, policies, practices, or actions that may be unreasonable or discriminatory and that may be harming American intellectual property rights, innovation, or technology development.
2017/07/11Conservative Monetary Policy to Remain in the Mainland despite Low Inflation
Although inflationary pressure was modest in the Mainland during the first half of 2017, policymakers will likely keep the monetary policy stance relatively tight to contain the highly leveraged state of the Mainland Chinese economy.
2017/06/16The Fed to Taper Its Balance Sheet
U.S. Fed Chairman Janet Yellen announced after the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting that the benchmark interest rate target range would be lifted a notch to 1-1.25%, effective 15 June.
2017/05/19Local Economy Continued to Improve
The Hong Kong economy expanded by 4.3% YoY in the first quarter of 2017, the fastest quarterly growth in six years since 2Q2011 (see Chart 1). After bottoming out from its trough in 1Q2016, growth momentum continued its upswing in the last quarter, supported by both domestic and external economic conditions.
2017/04/13Easing Concerns on Trade
The U.S. Treasury Department will submit before 15 April a semi-annual Report to Congress, which is expected to contain criticisms on its major trading partners’ foreign exchange policies. This may happen if and when the Trump Administration could identify currency manipulators that exploit exchange rates for their benefits in trade. Among such economies, observers are most concerned about the possibility that – given President Trump’s campaign rhetoric – the Mainland could be named a currency manipulator and trade activities between the world’s two largest economies would in turn be disrupted.
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