Tag Archives: economic news

The fund holds the biggest bets against the Brazilian real in more than 3 months – CFTC data | Instant News


BRASILIA, March 5 (Reuters) – Funds and speculators in US futures markets collected their biggest bets against the Brazilian real in more than three months, data showed on Friday, as the latest currency slump prompted this year’s first central bank intervention.

The latest Commodity Futures Trading Commission data on Friday showed that funds increased their net short positions by 5,114 contracts to 21,051 contracts in the week to March 2, the biggest net short since the week ended November 22 last year.

Shortening a financial asset means betting effectively that its value will fall.

Rather than rebounding from 30% against the dollar last year, the real has fallen a further 8.7% so far this year.

The most recent decline over the period captured in the latest CFTC data pushed the central bank into six rounds of direct dollar selling intervention on the spot market between last Thursday and Tuesday, worth more than $ 5 billion.

Apart from the Libyan Dinar and the Sudanese Pound, which both suffered massive devaluations, the real currency is the world’s worst performing currency against the dollar this year, Refinitiv data show.

The central bank is widely expected to raise interest rates for the first time since 2015 sooner than later to fight inflation and a worsening fiscal outlook.

But with the economy likely to shrink in the first quarter due to the second wave of the devastating COVID-19 virus engulfing the country, higher levels could not come at a worse time.

In addition, rising US bond yields draw cash from emerging market assets, leaving currencies as they are actually exposed.

($ 1 = 5.70 reais)

Reporting by Jamie McGeever Editing by David Gregorio

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Will I need proof of vaccine to travel abroad? | Instant News



As vaccine deployments accelerate around the world, attention is now turning to vaccines of another type: vaccine passports. Last week, the International Air Transport Association announced the launch of its new digital travel pass as “the way forward” for a quarantine-free recovery. The app, which is tested by 30 carriers, will allow governments and airlines to collect, access and share encrypted information relating to the Covid-19 test and the immunization status of passengers prior to travel. The Economic Forum has created similar applications – ICC AOKpass and CommonPass – to allow travelers to document their health status electronically. Countries like Denmark and Sweden are launching their own health passports, and even tech giants are looking to jump in. What are digital medical passports and will they facilitate a return to the skies this year? What is a vaccination passport? Also known as a digital health pass, a vaccination passport is digital documentation indicating that a person has been vaccinated against a virus, in this case Covid. Stored on a phone or digital wallet, the data is usually presented as a QR code and can also indicate whether a person has tested negative for a virus. Digital health passports are being tested as a way to validate the Covid-19 test and immunization status of individuals.Maskot | Getty Images Such documentation is not without precedent. For decades, people have had to show physical “yellow cards” as proof of vaccination against diseases like cholera, yellow fever and rubella when traveling to certain countries. However, this is the first time that the The industry is rallying to an electronic alternative designed to improve verifiability and bypass some of the bottlenecks caused by paper counterparts. “Imagine the scene if 180,000 people present a piece of paper that needs to be checked and validated,” said Mike Tansey, Managing Director of Accenture, referring to the pre-deliver daily passenger count at Singapore Changi Airport. Do we need digital medical passports to travel? Tansey, who heads Accenture’s APAC travel and hospitality division, has worked with some major airlines on their digital health pass strategies, including three in the United States. He told CNBC’s Global Traveler that these plans have “accelerated” since the vaccine rolled out, and for him the need for such. The obvious answer is yes, we do. Mike Tansey Managing Director, Travel & Hospitality, Accenture “The obvious answer is yes, we do,” Tansey said, when asked if we would need digital health passes to resume travel. called the debates “red herring”. “Governments may not say you have to have one, but the implications of no will be so ludicrous that the travel is not worth it,” he said, referring to extensive and “drastic testing. “. What are the security concerns? Tansey is not alone. Other experts agree that digital health passports may be the fastest and most efficient way to resume international travel. Jase Ramsey, professor of management at the Lutgert College of Business at Florida Gulf Coast University, agreed that the likelihood of adoption was “very high.” But he noted that concerns about security and personal data may make consumers less willing to adopt digital health passes than their physical alternatives. “As with any application that stores medical records, there will be issues of privacy and fraud,” Ramsey said. store medical information displayed as a QR code.da-kuk | E + | Getty Images Accredify is a Singapore-based document accreditation company whose technology is used as part of the Singapore government-mandated Covid-19 pre-travel health exams. He claims that the appeal of digital accreditation systems – like his, which is blockchain-based – is that they are tamper-proof and therefore cannot be tampered with. “Medical documents stored privately and securely on the app are only accessible to user people, giving them the decision of who to share their medical records with and when,” a spokesperson said via email. . Traveler resistance may be overestimated. A recent study by travel news site The Vacationer found that 73.6% of Americans surveyed said they would use a Covid passport or health app in order for airlines to and border authorities can check their vaccination status and test results.Digital health passports will depend on the effectiveness of vaccines. Little is known about whether vaccines prevent the spread of Covid, although research is ongoing. The World Health Organization has urged caution over health passes, telling authorities and tour operators not to introduce proof of vaccination as a condition for international travel. prevention of transmission is not yet clear, and the global vaccine supply is limited. Spokesman World Health Organization “This is because the effectiveness of vaccines in preventing transmission is not yet clear and the global supply of vaccines is limited,” a spokesperson for WHO. existing and pending vaccine passports in the market, and ensuring that user certifications are linked to verified and approved medical facilities, will prove to be a major challenge. “For vaccine passports to be a practical tool internationally, it will require a standardized platform that crosses all borders – like the current passport system,” said Dr Harry Severance, assistant professor at Duke University School of Medicine.WHO is working with agencies such as the International Air Transport Association and the International Civil Aviation Organization to develop standards for digital vaccination cards. He added that his stance on health passes “will evolve as the evidence regarding existing and new Covid-19 vaccines is updated.” What about the social implications? Then, of course, there are the social, legal and political ramifications of a system based on inequitable global access to vaccines and technology. About 3.6 billion people worldwide cannot access the Internet, according to the WHO, and more than 1.1 billion cannot officially prove their identity. For many, paper passes will remain essential. Access to vaccinations is still far from equitable in the worldLuis Alvarez | DigitalVision | Getty Images “People from different countries, regions or communities may not have access to vaccines or Covid-19 tests,” said Dr Sharona Hoffman, professor of bioethics in the Faculty of Medicine at Case Western Reserve University, noting that low-income countries may not be. receive vaccinations until 2023 or beyond. “A policy that prevents them from traveling or obtaining other services because of it could be discriminatory and exacerbate socio-economic disparities.” Such systems could also set a precedent among other groups also keen to reopen, such as restaurants and event venues. Indeed, Israel has already created a “green passport” to allow vaccinated citizens to access public places. This week, some US states decided to lift mask warrants, which could make this problem worse. others will follow. As such decisions are made across the country, you may find that the ‘patenting’ of vaccines becomes the norm, “Severance said. What could this mean for the future? Ultimately, the resumption of international travel will depend as much on countries’ willingness to reopen as it does on the travel verification technology in place. In Asia-Pacific, where borders remain largely closed to tourists, governments may move towards bilateral deals, or “travel bubbles,” with some neighbors before opening more widely, said Accenture’s Tansey. An internationally recognized health passport system … may allow us to survive an upcoming pandemic Harry Severance Duke University School of Medicine “The reality … is that we are still six months away from any significant air travel,” he said. “It will only be agreements with one or two places at a time.” Yet, with much of the technology in place and with society evolving into an increasingly digital future, the developments made today in digital medical passports could leave the industry – and society – better prepared for the journey. any potential turbulence ahead. “If we move to an internationally recognized system of passports (or) health surveillance, etc., this will be one facet of a downstream preparedness system that may allow us to survive a pandemic to coming, which might have a worse dynamic than Covid-19, ”Severance said.



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Australian stocks rose as upbeat GDP data bolstered hopes of an economic recovery | Instant News


* Mining giant BHP hit record highs

* Gold stock set for the best day of the week

* Rio Tinto’s chairman resigns next year, stocks rise

March 3 (Reuters) – Australian stocks rose on Wednesday, with miners and gold stocks leading gains, as investors remained optimistic on recovery hopes after data showed that the country’s fourth-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) grew at a faster-than-expected pace. expected.

The S & P / ASX 200 index was up 0.6% at 6,803.20, at 0043 GMT. The benchmark ended 0.4% lower on Tuesday.

Figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Wednesday showed that GDP grew 3.1% in the December quarter, as further evidence that the economy is bouncing back from a lockdown-triggered recession.

Economists in a Reuters poll had expected a 2.5% gain following an upwardly revised 3.4% gain in the third quarter.

The figure comes after upbeat data on Monday showing house prices surged at the fastest pace in nearly two decades in February and job advertisements also skyrocketed.

On further aid sentiment, the Reserve Bank of Australia left interest rates unchanged at its March meeting on Tuesday and committed to maintaining “very supportive monetary conditions” until employment and inflation goals are met.

Domestic gold stocks rose by up to 2.9%, set for their best day in more than a week, helped by higher gold prices.

The mining sector rose nearly 3%, on track for its best session since February 22.

Mining giant BHP Group is up 4.5% to hit a record high, while its counterpart Rio Tinto is up 2.4%.

Rio Tinto said on Wednesday that Simon Thompson would step down as chairman next year after deciding not to run again as non-executive director at the miner’s 2022 annual general meeting.

The high profile financial sector increased by 0.5%. The National Australia Bank, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia each gained 0.9%. Westpac edged 0.5% higher.

In New Zealand, the benchmark S & P / NZX 50 slumped 0.4% to 12,296.07.

The top losers were Meridian Energy losing more than 3%, and Napier Port Holdings down 3.5%. (Reporting by Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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REFILE-Italy Q4 GDP fell 1.9% q / q as domestic demand slumped | Instant News


 (Refiles to correct date and fix incomplete data table)
    ROME, March 3 (Reuters) - Italy's economy shrank 1.9% in the
fourth quarter of last year from the previous three months,
national statistics bureau ISTAT said on Wednesday, as
coronavirus restrictions weighed on domestic demand.
    ISTAT slightly raised its preliminary estimate of a 2.0%
fall in gross domestic product, issued on Feb. 2.
    On a year-on-year basis, fourth quarter GDP was confirmed at
-6.6%.
    The third quarter, covering summer months in which COVID
restrictions were largely lifted, was revised to show a 15.9%
quarter-on-quarter rise and a 5.2% year-on-year drop. These were
previously reported at 16.0% and -5.1% respectively.
    Earlier this week ISTAT reported that over the whole of 2020
GDP shrank by 8.9%, its steepest contraction since World War
Two, taking Italy's inflation-adjusted GDP level back to where
it stood in the late 1990s. 
    The breakdown of GDP components in the fourth quarter showed
consumer spending fell 2.7% quarter-on-quarter while government
spending rose 1.5% and investments edged up 0.2%.
    Overall, domestic demand net of inventories subtracted 1.3%
from GDP.
    Imports rose 5.4%, easily outweighing a 1.3% increase in
exports.
    Looking ahead, Rome officially forecasts a rebound of 6%
this year, although analysts say this will have to be revised
down as the ongoing COVID-19 emergency continues to blight
economic prospects.
    ISTAT gave the following details on contributions to
quarterly growth for the third and fourth quarters of last year.
 
    
 PERCENTAGE POINT CONTRIBUTIONS TO Q/Q GROWTH
 
                                      Q4               Q3
 Final domestic demand               -1.3             13.1
 Final national consumption          -1.3              8.3
 Consumer spending                   -1.6              7.9
 Government spending                  0.3              0.4
 Gross Fixed Investment               0.0              4.8
 Inventory Changes                    0.3             -1.7
 Net Exports                         -1.0              4.4
 GDP                                 -1.9             15.9    

 (Reporting By Gavin Jones; Editing by Jon Boyle)
  

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Australia, demand for NZ dollars due to economy, outperformed commodities | Instant News


SYDNEY, March 3 (Reuters) – The Australian and New Zealand dollars edged up on Wednesday as upbeat economic news at home and strengthening global commodity prices bolstered sentiment, while bonds calmed after last week’s unrest.

The Aussie was up to $ 0.7835 and is further from Friday’s low of $ 0.7693, which took a hit when surging global bond yields knocked investors out of riskier assets.

It faces a layer of resistance from $ 0.7845 to $ 0.7915, and remains well off last week’s three-year peak of $ 0.8007.

The kiwi rebounded to $ 0.7302, after briefly dipping to $ 0.7210 overnight. Resistance lies around $ 0.7305 and $ 0.7360.

Australian data showed the economy grew at a rapid pace of 3.1% in the December quarter, easily topping the 1.5% forecast and the strongest back-to-back quarterly performance in the series’ 60 year history.

Gross domestic product is still down 1.1% this year, reflecting the devastating damage done during the lockdown pandemic, but all the signs are activity remains strong with free consumer spending.

The bond market welcomed the data calmly given the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) recently committed back to keeping policy very easy.

The central bank is determined to push wages and inflation much higher before tightening, and there is little evidence of a domestically driven inflation in the GDP report.

However, the prospect of rapid growth appears to be confirming much of the recent increase in yields, even if the pace of that movement is exaggerated.

“We think the pressure on the RBA is increasing,” said Nomura economist Andrew Ticehurst. “Data continues to beat consensus, house price momentum appears to be accelerating, and rising job advertisements bodes well for future job growth.”

He now doubts the RBA will extend its three-year yield target to November 2024 bonds. He also opted to buy the Aussie against the euro given the different growth dynamics in their economies.

The implied three-year yield in the futures market is trading around 0.30%, suggesting investors believe the RBA should raise its target 0.1% over time.

While the yields on the 10-year paper have stabilized at 1.71%, from their recent peak of 1.97%, they are still up 73 basis points this year.

Kiwis are benefiting themselves from the latest auction of dairy products, the country’s biggest export of goods, which saw prices jump 15%. The price of powdered milk jumped 21% to the highest level in seven years, promising a windfall for farmers. (Reporting by Wayne Cole; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)

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