The principle, according to the Chinese, is straightforward, writes University of Edinburgh senior lecturer Kristen Hopewell: “If foreign multinationals are going to reap large profits from producing and selling goods in the massive Chinese market, then the country should be able to harness that investment to aid its own national development.” The government views the program as helping bridge its way to the developed world. Hopewell notes the country has a long way to go: “Average per capita income is just $8,000 compared to $56,000 in the United States. Although China has achieved remarkable success in fostering economic development and reducing poverty, it still faces immense challenges in boosting incomes to anywhere close to the level of advanced economies.” … [Read more...] about The Finance 202: Beijing trade talks conclude with no progress. Get ready for a long slog.
Dow international finance s a r l
Major indexes in Asia finished mixed. South Korea’s Kospi dropped 0.3 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.4 percent on a short trading day. Australia’s S&P ASX 200 added 0.5 percent. Markets in Japan and Indonesia, which is reeling from a weekend tsunami that has killed at least 373 people, were closed. … [Read more...] about Dow Falls 640+ Points in Worst Christmas Eve Trading Day on Record
Is Trump right about the Post Office? The Post's Steven Pearlstein: "Is Amazon getting a sweetheart deal, as... Trump protests, one that it could never have gotten from UPS or FedEx? Or, as the Postal Service contends, does the Amazon contract allow it to reduce its annual operating deficit and put itself on a more solid financial footing? The answer, it turns out, is that both are right. In a very real sense, the arrangement is a win-win proposition, a great deal for both Amazon and the Postal Service... The reality is that the modern Postal Service has been set up to be a hybrid — part government agency with a mission of universal service, part private enterprise with a mission not to lose money, overseen by an independent regulator whose job is to make sure that the two missions are held in proper balance. Unfortunately, that is a reality that is way too complicated for our president to understand." … [Read more...] about The Finance 202: Trump tariffs aren’t going to impede economic growth (yet)
And true to form, Trump is preserving his options with the TPP gambit . “A senior administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity to describe the White House’s internal approach, said Trump has not set any goals or deadlines for [National Economic Council director Larry] Kudlow and [U.S. Trade Represenative Robert E.] Lighthizer for when a new agreement should be reached,” they write. “Instead, the White House is approaching potential new talks as a way to make signal that Trump is receptive to free market proposals if he feels they can be reached in a way that advances U.S. interests, the official said.” (And Kudlow tells The New York Times the president has asked him to explore rejoining in the past but didn't know he'd say so publicly Thursday: “There’s out of the blue, and there’s, I guess, out of the dark, navy blue,” Kudlow said, adding this was “dark, navy blue.”) … [Read more...] about The Finance 202: Trump’s flirtation with rejoining TPP is surprisingly serious
Asked if China would need to make specific concessions for such a meeting to take place, Mnuchin said, "To the extent that we can make progress toward a meeting I would encourage that and that's something we're having discussions about, but for the moment there's no preconditions. The president will decide on that." … [Read more...] about Prospect of China Talks Raises Hope for Thaw in Trade War