Wed. Jan 26th, 2022


What to watch in Asia today

Hong Kong: A number of public activities will be banned in the area from today, for at least the next two weeks, as Hong Kong prepares for the distribution of the Omicron variant.

Data: Japan announces its monthly consumer spending data for November and India announces its annual estimate of its 2022 gross domestic product. The IMF expects the country’s economy to grow 9.5 percent in the year ending March.

Earnings: Japanese convenience store operator Lawson and Ryohin Keikaku, the company behind the household goods company Muji, are both announcing results today.

GameStop shares jump on reported retailer enters NFT, crypto markets

Video game retailer GameStop, whose shares kicked off the meme stock trading frenzy last January, is poised to enter the NFT and cryptocurrency game as well.

Gamestop will introduce divisions focused on developing a cryptocurrency business and non-exchangeable token marketplace as part of a turnaround plan. The move was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.

GameStop shares rose 22 percent to $ 159 in after-hours trading.

Gamestop plans to establish cryptocurrency partnerships, as well as to develop games that use blockchain and NFT technology, WSJ reported.

The retailer’s share price is more than 600 percent higher than a year ago, but 62 percent lower from its peak last January. Despite its popularity among retail investors, the company has struggled while the pandemic continues to plague brick-and-mortar retailers.

US technology stocks fluctuate as investors rate Fed minutes and mixed data

Technology stocks slipped Thursday at the end of a wild trading day, in which a mixed bag of economic data coupled with a faltering Federal Reserve tilted the investment outlook for U.S. stocks.

Wall Street’s technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite stock index, which fell 3.3 percent Wednesday, in its worst session has fallen by 0.1 percent since February.

But the small decline contradicts what was a volatile trading session, with the index falling as much as 1.2 percent at one point before rising as much as 0.7 percent.

The whip saw movements followed poor service data, indicating a continuing disruption of the supply chain and higher than expected initial jobless claims. The data initially led to a pause in the shift away from high-value technology stocks seen as the short-term disaster of a reviving economy and higher treasury returns.

However, the weaker data on Thursday contrasted with figures on Wednesday showing an increase in private payrolls and higher than forecast manufacturing data. Also on Wednesday, minutes of the latest Fed meeting showed that it could potentially move to raise interest rates and tighten financial conditions faster than expected, contributing to the move away from shares in interest rate-sensitive technology companies.

Read more about Thursday’s market movements here.

Argentina’s central bank raises key rate to 40%

Argentina’s central bank has raised its benchmark interest rate for the first time in a year as it seeks to curb high inflation and execute a new repayment agreement with the IMF.

The key Leliq rate will rise to 40 percent, from 38 percent previously. Annual inflation in Argentina runs at about 50 percent.

The bank’s decision to raise interest rates comes as the left-wing Peronist government comes under increasing pressure from IMF officials to tighten its monetary policy and put forward a credible plan to restructure some $ 40 billion owed to the international borrower. part of a record-breaking $ 57 billion bailout in 2018.

In December, fund officials specifically called for interest rates to exceed inflation.

About $ 2.8 billion that Argentina owes to the IMF will be paid at the end of March, which analysts see as a deadline to ensure conditions for a new repayment program for the country, which owes $ 18.8 billion this year and then again in 2022.

Finance Minister Martín Guzmán and Argentina’s chief IMF negotiator said this week that the government and the IMF have yet to reach an agreement on how soon to reduce its fiscal deficit after 18 months of unresolved talks.

Argentine dollar bonds have fallen the most in early trading on Thursday since September after Guzmán’s speech suggested that an agreement in March was not imminent. Credit default swaps have meanwhile expanded the most in five weeks.



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