Economist/Economics

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Europeans quibble about long trading hours: the finance edition

Down timeEuropeans quibble about long trading hours: the finance editionEurope’s stockmarkets are open for longer than anywhere elseFinance & economicsJul 11th 2020 editionIN THE POPULAR imagination, Americans toil endlessly in the office while their European counterparts arrive late, lunch at leisure and depart punctually. If that were ever true...

The race to lead the WTO begins

Global tradeThe race to lead the WTO beginsPicking a winner could get messyFinance & economicsJul 11th 2020 editionAND THEY’RE off! On July 8th the window for members to nominate the next director-general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) closed. Over the next few months members will try to pick between eight candidates, each hoping to rescue...

The pandemic revives ultra-safe European bonds

Seeking havenThe pandemic revives ultra-safe European bondsThe European Commission could soon become a big player in capital marketsFinance & economicsJul 11th 2020 editionTHE EURO ZONE has not been a hospitable place for investors seeking safety in recent years. The currency area’s pool of super-safe, AAA-rated sovereign securities shrank by 40%...

More corporate defaults seem to be on the way

ButtonwoodMore corporate defaults seem to be on the wayDespite a mini-boom in the bond market, defaults are priced inFinance & economicsJul 11th 2020 editionIT WAS A company revered by business-school gurus and investors alike. British consumers cherished it for its value-for-money clothing. Its own-brand biscuits were unrivalled. But the glory...

Some economies are bouncing back. But recoveries can easily go wrong

How to feel betterSome economies are bouncing back. But recoveries can easily go wrongOur analysis shows just how fragile consumer confidence can beFinance & economics

Stockmarket mania comes to China again. Can it last this time?

A new bull market in ChinaStockmarket mania comes to China again. Can it last this time?There are grounds for optimism but also signs of irrational exuberanceFinance & economicsIN CHINESE STOCKMARKET mythology, the rarest of beasts is the slow bull. The past couple of decades have brought two fast bulls: vertiginous surges in share prices, neither...

As foreign banks circle, China plots an “aircraft-carrier” defence

Xi sank your battleshipAs foreign banks circle, China plots an “aircraft-carrier” defenceThe government may let banks launch brokerages to fend off foreign maraudersFinance & economicsJul 4th 2020 editionCHINA PUT its first domestically built aircraft-carrier into service last December, the culmination of three decades of work. The government hopes...

How resilient are the banks?

Banks and the crisisHow resilient are the banks?If today’s lenders were run like they were in 2008 they would be in huge troubleFinance & economicsJul 4th 2020 editionWHEN FINANCIERS and governments redesigned the financial system in order to make it safer after the debacle of 2007-09, most of them imagined that a shock as bad as the subprime fiasco...

The poorest countries may owe less to China than first thought

The debt tollThe poorest countries may owe less to China than first thoughtStill, China lends more than the members of the Paris Club combinedFinance & economicsJul 4th 2020 editionTHE FOUR-LANE, 62-km toll road being built between Masiaka, a business hub in Sierra Leone, and Freetown, the country’s capital, promises shorter journey times, fewer...

Trade finance stumbles into the digital era

Collateral damageTrade finance stumbles into the digital eraCovid-19 forces the world’s most complicated paper chase to moderniseFinance & economicsJul 4th 2020 edition“IN WARM WEATHER, fewer people wear socks,” says Paul Rotstein of Gold Medal International, a wholesaler in New York. People may not sport socks in the summer but his firm starts...

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