China seems to be at the heart of most dramatic global economic storylines in 2010. Whether the country is being accused of sucking away American labor via outsourcing, keeping its currency artificially low, raising interest rates or fighting a real estate bubble, China's new role as the world's second-largest economy has definitely put it center-stage.… Read more.
On Tuesday, China spooked the markets by announcing that it would raise its lending and deposit interest rates. The stated goal of the move was to reduce inflation and curb economic growth that some saw as overheating. The measure seemed to succeed – temporarily – as it sent investors running into the U.S. dollar, undercutting… Read more.
Crude oil futures sold off on Tuesday after the Chinese central bank said that it would raise its lending and deposit rates and attempt to cut back on inflation in the world's second-largest economy. The news from China is pushing back against bullish pressure from France, where continued strikes are threatening to paralyze the country… Read more.
The greenback surged while corn, wheat and soybean futures fell on Tuesday, raising speculation that the risk trade may be unwinding to some degree. All three commodities have posted strong performances this year, largely on the back of supply worries from around the globe. The worst damage was done in the Black Sea region of… Read more.
The Chinese central bank's announcement of higher rates Tuesday arrived alongside some pessimistic trading patterns in the equities and sent investors running for cover across the board. The People's Bank of China said it would raise lending and deposit rates in an effort to curb inflation and the asset bubbles that are developing in the… Read more.
The central bank of South Korea – which holds the world's fifth-largest store of foreign exchange reserves – may buy gold bullion to hedge its portfolio, which consists mostly of U.S. dollars, reports the Financial Times. The bank hasn't made a firm commitment, though – if it does choose to buy bullion, it will certainly… Read more.
Cotton futures for December delivery briefly hit a nominal high above 119 cents per pound today, before slipping to 115.02 cents per pound, just above Thursday's settling price of 114.87 cents per pound on the IntercontinentalExchange. That's the highest-ever price in nominal terms, though cotton actually went over 400 cents per pound in real, inflation-adjusted… Read more.
If it weren't so lucrative for gold futures traders and brokers, it'd be almost boring: Gold set another record today, rising to a high of $1,366 per troy ounce before retrenching slightly to $1,342.60 per troy ounce. Silver performed similarly, as December delivery contracts climbed to a high of $23.53 per troy ounce before slipping… Read more.
Copper futures slumped on Monday, undercut by a rallying dollar and weaker risk sentiment in global markets. While the dollar gained over 50 basis points against a basket of six competing global currencies, copper futures for December delivery lost 2.65 cents to $3.664 per pound on the Comex – the biggest single-day loss for the… Read more.
Global and U.S. stock index futures were mixed on Monday as risk aversion returned to Wall Street. China led the pack, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng index futures rising 302 points to 22,630 at 5:00 a.m. EST. Mexican Bolsa index futures also gained, climbing 501 points to 33,904. U.S. index futures fared more poorly, with… Read more.