Archive for the ‘global economy’ Category

In India, The Shopping Spree is Over?

November 1, 2008

By Rama Lakshmi
Washington Post Foreign Service
Saturday, November 1, 2008; Page A10

GURGAON, India — When Moshumee Jha moved to a luxurious suburban condominium called Belvedere Towers four years ago, she had never shopped in a mall before.
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But within months, her home was surrounded by six new, gleaming, glass-fronted malls, and a whole new world of air-conditioned shopping opened up for her. Like millions of Indians, she grew to love weekends browsing the shops as soothing elevator music played in the background.
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That was before the slowdown. In recent weeks, she has cut back on her visits because of her concerns about the economy.
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On Sunday, when she went to buy the ritual piece of gold for this week’s Diwali festival, she was shocked.
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“It was almost empty, there was no crowd. ‘Is it just me here?’ I wondered,” said Jha, 41, a portrait photographer and mother of two. “What has happened? Where is everybody? Where is the festival shopping rush?”

A man window-shops outside a store at Forum Mall, the oldest shopping mall in Bangalore. A retail survey taken at malls across the country this month reported a 22 percent decrease in buying compared with the previous three months.

A man window-shops outside a store at Forum Mall, the oldest shopping mall in Bangalore. A retail survey taken at malls across the country this month reported a 22 percent decrease in buying compared with the previous three months. (By Aijaz Rahi — Associated Press)

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For the first time since Indian malls began to boom seven years ago, shopping has dropped sharply. For merchants, the timing could not be worse: In the midst of India’s most important month for retail, worries triggered by the worldwide financial meltdown are scaring away customers.
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Much like the Christmas season in the United States, the Hindu holiday of Diwali, which was Tuesday, is traditionally a time of consumption-driven celebration. It is considered an auspicious season to buy clothes, jewelry and home appliances, and to decorate homes.
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An extensive retail survey by Bangalore-based Harish Bijoor Consults taken this month in 38 malls across 10 cities has reported a drop in mall visits and buying. The survey showed a 22 percent decrease in buying and a decline of 14 percent in people visiting stores, compared with the average for the previous three months.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/w
p-dyn/content/article/2008/10/31
/AR2008103103412.html?hpid=sec-world

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China’s Economy Up, Inflation Stays

April 16, 2008

(BEIJING) — China’s economy grew 10.6 percent in the first quarter, slowing only slightly amid gloom about the global economy, but inflation stayed above 8 percent despite efforts to ease food shortages, the government reported Wednesday.
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Beijing said expansion in the world’s fourth-largest economy was driven in part by a 21.5 percent jump in retail spending in March.

“Todays data confirm the growing strength of the Chinese consumer generating domestic economic growth,” said Moody’s Economy.com economist Matt Robinson in a report to clients.

Inflation figures were a setback for communist leaders who have made a national priority of taming a price spike that has battering consumers since mid-2007, due to shortages of pork, grain and other key food items.

Read the rest:
http://www.time.com/time/business/article/0,8599,1731386,00.html?xid=rss-topstories

Fire Sale of Bear Stearns Bear Sparks Rout, Bush Tries to Calm

March 17, 2008
By Jack Reerink 

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A fire sale of Bear Stearns Cos Inc (BSC.N) stunned Wall Street and pummeled global financial stocks on Monday on fears that few banks are safe from deepening market turmoil.

A U.S. two dollar bill is taped to the revolving door leading ...
A U.S. two dollar bill is taped to the revolving door leading to the Bear Stearns global headquarters in New York March 17, 2008.(Kristina Cooke/Reuters)

Trying to assuage worries that the credit crisis is spinning out of control, President George W. Bush said the United States was “on top of the situation,” but the sell-off intensified in the early afternoon.

The U.S. Federal Reserve geared up for a deep cut in interest rates on Tuesday to blow money into the fragile financial system — the latest in a series of rate cuts that has brought down borrowing costs by 2-1/4 percentage points and hammered the U.S. dollar to record lows.

Staff at Bear Stearns‘ Manhattan headquarters were welcomed to work on Monday by a two-dollar bill stuck to the revolving doors — a spoof on the bargain-basement price of $2 per share that JPMorgan Chase (JPM.N) is paying for the firm. A hopeful Coldwell Banker real estate agent was hawking cheap apartments to employees who saw the value of their stock options go up in smoke.

The combination of Bear Stearns’ bailout and the Fed’s offer on Sunday to extend direct lending to securities firms for the first time since the Great Depression highlighted just how hard the credit crisis has hit Wall Street.

And it scared market players worldwide….

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080317/bs_nm/bearstearns_fed_dc;_ylt=
Agm1uUl9fJe7eEc0zjCowb.s0NUE

China’s Economy: Not So Fast, Jack

December 19, 2007

Investors Business Daily
December 18, 2007

Competition: The common wisdom is that China‘s large and fast-growing economy could overtake the U.S. as soon as 2012. Not so fast. New data suggest China’s not quite as big as economists once thought.

The World Bank’s latest estimates for the global economy contained a stunner of a statistic: China accounts for just under 10% of the world’s total output — or about 40% smaller than thought.

At $5.3 trillion based on 2005 data, China’s economy is still No. 2. But it has considerably more ground to make up before passing the U.S. in absolute size — if, in fact, it should ever do so. Total world output in 2005 was $55 trillion. The U.S. produced $12.4 trillion of that — with a population only one-fourth the size of China’s.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ibd/20071218/bs_ibd_ibd/20071218issues01