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  1. Hong Kong dollar bank deposits dropped 0.5 per cent in February, the most significant decline in six months as the coronavirus outbreak led to an outflow of funds.But analysts believe the tide is about to turn.Hong Kong dollar deposits are a crucial indicator of money flowing in and out of the city. They fell by HK$33.72 billion (US$4.35 billion) to HK$6.92 trillion in February, according to monthly statistics issued by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority.“The Covid-19 outbreak has spread most…
  2. China's economy showed signs of a recovery in March after a nationwide lockdown paralysed business in February, but analysts warned that it is not yet out of the woods.Despite stronger-than-expected government data released on Tuesday, a series of threats lying ahead could derail China’s fragile recovery, including a second wave of infections, a global recession, worsening deflation due to plunging oil prices and a potentially sharp fall in the property market.“While the lowest point is behind…
  3. Chinese e-commerce platform Pinduoduo has raised US$1.1 billion in a private share placement that could fund its expansion despite current market volatility, the company announced on Tuesday.The transaction for the newly issued Class A ordinary shares, which represent about 2.8 per cent of the company’s total outstanding shares, is expected to be closed with “certain long-term investors” in early April, it added in a press release, without naming the investors.The announcement comes at a time…
  4. Hong Kong’s stocks are so beaten down that the Hang Seng Index is now trading below its net asset value for only the third time in almost 30 years.The 50-member benchmark was valued as low as 0.92 times the book value in March, meaning the stock prices were below the stated values of the constituent companies. It was the third time the metric has dropped below 1, according to Bloomberg data that began to track the valuations in 1993. The Hang Seng last traded at 0.99 times the net asset value…
  5. “The dollar is our currency but it’s your problem,” US Treasury secretary John Connally told other finance ministers at the G10 meeting in Rome in 1971. Almost half a century later, absolutely nothing has changed. The coronavirus pandemic has yet again illustrated the centrality of the greenback to the global financial system.The pandemic will pass, but its financial consequences will still have to be addressed, and the way the US dollar has behaved recently may be a poor guide to how it will…
  6. Huawei Technologies reported that revenue grew 19.1 per cent year on year to a record 858.8 billion yuan (US$121 billion) last year but said that Trump Administration curbs on its ability to do business outside China are biting and that its 2020 outlook amid the US sanctions and global coronavirus pandemic “will only get more complicated”.Last year, revenue from China accounted for 59 per cent of total sales, driven by a domestic market growth rate of 36 per cent, almost double that of the…
  7. The onslaught of social unrest and coronavirus pandemic have changed the travel patterns in Hong Kong, bringing along permanent changes to the hotel industry. It’s hard to see a swift rebound from this one-two punch. Visitor arrivals fell 52.7 per cent to 3.2 million in January 2020 from a year earlier, according to the latest data from the Hong Kong Tourism Board, with mainland Chinese arrivals shrinking by 54.2 per cent. The number of non-mainland visitors also declined, by 46 per cent year…
  8. Hong Kong home prices recorded their steepest drop in 15 months in February, and are expected to decline by up to 20 per cent from a peak in June 2019 by year-end amid the coronavirus pandemic.An index of used home prices dropped 2.1 per cent last month, according to the city’s Rating and Valuation Department, its biggest monthly drop since December 2018. The decline also extended a three-month slide in home prices to a one-year low.The drop might widen to a more “serious” 2.5 per cent to 3 per…
  9. Most Asia markets advanced Tuesday, in an ironic ending to a volatile and brutal quarter in which the coronavirus pandemic left even top-name stocks in tatters.Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index finished with a quarterly loss of 16.3 per cent, having fallen into a bear market in mid-March. On Tuesday, it gained 1.9 per cent to 23,603.48.Hong Kong investors have been hit and hit and hit: The destructive virus arrived on the heels of months-long protests and the US-China trade war that battered the city…
  10. Samsung Electronics said on Tuesday that one of its chip factory workers in South Korea had tested positive for coronavirus, but its output has not been affected.This is the first time a Samsung chip factory employee has tested positive for the virus, although several confirmed cases at the tech giant’s smartphone factory in South Korea’s southeastern city of Gumi resulted in a temporary suspension.Chip factories have been largely unaffected by the pandemic which started in China, although…