Week 45-46: US elction results, market reactions

Posted on Posted in Weekly Recap

Politics

Despite winning the popular vote, Donald Trump won America’s presidential election, an astounding victory that contradicted the predictions of pundits and pollsters. States that had voted Democrats for decades where receptive of Mr Trump’s populist pledges to repatriate jobs and curb free trade. Republicans also held on to both chambers of Congress.

China’s finance minister, Lou Jiwei, was replaced by Xiao Jie. Mr Xiao is reputed to be a reformer like his predecessor.

Montenegro has accused Russia of backing a plot to assassinate its prime minister shortly before elections last month. The country is in the process of joining NATO.

Russia has withdrawn its signature from the founding statute of the International Criminal Court. This comes a day after the court released a report describing the annexation of Crimea by Russia as an occupation and active armed conflict.

France’s Socialist government is worried that Emmanuel Macron entrance in the French presidential race will impede their chances of reaching the second round of the elections. Mr Macron has previously worked as economy minister for the Socialist government but has now formed his own party ‘En Marche’.

1 million have protested in Seoul against South Korea’s president Park Geun-hye. Ms Park’s approval ratings have fallen to 5% after a close friend was implicated in an influence-peddling scandal.

Colombia’s government has announced a new agreement with the FARC rebels with the aim of ending 52 years of war. A previous agreement was narrowly rejected by a popular vote.

 

Business

Markets continued to readjust their bearings following the election of Donald Trump. The president-elect has promised to increase spending on infrastructure and impose tax cuts leading investors to raise growth, inflation and interest rates forecasts. The yields of 10-year US Treasury bonds have chalked up some of their biggest gains since 2008. The share price of American banks and health care companies have jumped on the anticipation that regulations imposed by the Obama administration would be loosened.

Mexico’s Peso remains low amid concerns of the country’s relationship with the US. Mr Trump has promised to tear up NAFTA and curb Mexican immigration.

India’s government made the decision to withdraw 500 and 1000 Rupee banknotes in an effort to clamp down on the black market and corruption.

Japan’s economy was boosted by an annualised export growth of 2.2%. Domestic consumption however remains weak, an issue that the government has been trying to fix by rebalancing the economy.

Britain’s inflation rate fell to 0.9% in October despite the weak Pound following the Brexit vote. The figure is expected to increase as manufacturers are forced to pay a higher price for imported raw materials. The unemployment rate fell to 4.8%, the lowest in 11 years. The retail sales grew by at its fastest pace in 14 years.

Samsung Electronics has agreed to buy Harman, a visual screen and navigation system provider. The $8bn deal is the biggest foreign acquisition by a South Korean firm to date.