(menafn – ecpulse)
The Asian Pacific ended a week full of heavy and significant economic data, as the region’s major economies such Japan and South Korea released optimistic data this week except for China that reported unexpected weak results.
Starting with Japan, The BoJ Governor Shirakawa said that central banks must consider the risks of keeping the interest rates at their low records for a long time as they seek to recover from the 2008 financial crisis, as keeping the interest rates low for long time could have an adverse impact on productivity and growth potential of the economy by making resource allocation inefficient, where the central bank have maintained record-low borrowing costs to keep its main rate close to zero through at least late 2014 to reduce unemployment.
Japan’s retail sales advanced beyond economists' expectations in February, which refers to the recent boost in reconstruction demand that helped in support retail sales in the world’s third-biggest economy.
Retail trade advanced 2.0%, slowing from the previous 4.1%, but exceeded estimates of 0.0%, on the year retail sales rose 3.5%, compared with the prior 1.9%, and above estimates of 1.3%.
Japan’s CPI unexpectedly rose in February by 0.3%, compared with the prior reading of 0.1% also it exceeded expectations of 0.0%.
The annualized CPI excluding fresh food in February was released as well, where it rose to 0.1%, compared with the prior reading of -0.1%.
Moving to South Korea, South Korea’s manufacturers’ confidence advanced to its highest levels in almost six months on signs that the outlook for global growth is improving.
April's expectations for the manufacturers’ sentiment advanced to 85 compared with March's 84, the Bank of Korea said, April's expectations for the non-manufacturing companies advanced to 82 compared with March's 80.
Heading to China, the government will engineer a soft landing, yet the soft landing will be painful for industries that have become dependent on the world’s fastest-growing major economy as their main profit engine, as analysts at Deutsche Bank AG, Nomura Holdings Inc. and Daiwa Capital Markets, have increased growth expectations this month to 8.6%, partly on anticipation of looser monetary policy.
Yet, the expectations are still below last year’s 9.2% rate, and offer little comfort for Australian mining company BHP Billiton Ltd., seeing slower steel production in China, or German automaker Daimler AG (DAI) whose Mercedes dealers in the nation are giving record discounts.
On the other hand, the Chinese government's efforts on several sectors are limited by the inflation rates, to control the prices of homes that have a significant risk, especially after the bad performance seen recently in a number of Chinese industries.