Friday, January 29, 2010
Retailers have reported good December sales gains, suggesting the beginnings of a sales comeback. Overall the industry turned in a 2.9% sales increase from 2008 and 75% of retailers beat analysts' estimates, the highest percentages of companies to do so since March 2007.
The holiday results are amongest some of the latest signs that the economy, while still a long way from pre-recession levels, has turned a corner.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
In terms of the United States, Kotkin tells that the country's fertility rates remain the highest of advanced nations and that continued immigration will allow for a 100 million population increase by 2050. According to those calculations only 1/5th of the population will be over 65 by then so it will not be too hard of a problem to offset the burden of the aging population.
Approximately 1/3 of China's population, on the other hand, will be over 60 by 2050. Kotkin claims that China's lack of democracy, cultural homogeneity, historic insularity and the rapid aging of its population that will start in the 2020s will combat any global preeminence.
This could all be good news; however, although success of nations in terms of an aging population may mean that the United States will maintain global dominance I find this overall theory hard to believe. There may always be technological advances but I don't think that a 100 million person population increase will be highly beneficial to the United States as it will put a huge strain on natural resources, making disease and competition for resources more prevalent. But who is to say who is right and wrong just yet?
Monday, January 25, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
Calculations show that China has narrowed the trade gap to $4.909 trillion but has yet to supersede Japan's $5.126 trillion.
During the 4th quarter of 2009 China's GDP expanded 10.7% from a year earlier.
Although there remains the risk that third parties will challenge the EU decision the deal has already received the U.S. Department of Justice's approval. China and Russia are still left to grant approval for the deal.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has essentially put American internet companies on notice in their dealings with China. Clinton has stated that she hopes U.S. companies will follow Google's lead, putting an end to the censorship of the internet.
Although she did not outright propose regulations the stronge urgings for this type of action and her praise of the Global Network Initiative, a consortium of companies and organizations that is designed to provide guidelines for operating in countries with authoritarian governments founded by Google, Microsoft and Yahoo; tells enough of how the U.S. government may react to companies that do not comply with her urgings.
This of course leads to a dilmenia for the U.S. based companies as voluntarily adhering to Clinton's standards will require corporations to do decrease revenue, increase costs, and reduce profits. In the case of China, this could mean a lot of profits as China already has the most internet users in the world, despite the fact that only 25% of the population are online and are thus a huge source of potential growth; however, not complying with Clinton's standards could lead to less government contracting and possible future taxes.
Though I doubt that many companies will be detracted from doing work in such a large market it will be interesting to see how companies will react.
The figures suggest that China is also growing much faster than previously expected; the country is poised to overtake Japan as the second largest economy. There however is fear about the bursting of Chinese asset bubbles and the negative effects of the nation's stimulus packages.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Secretary of State Clinton has now stated that those who carry out cyber attacks should face consequences and condemnation as "an attack on one nation's networks can be an attack on all". This statement is likely to lead to a build up of tension.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
After 4 months of struggle on the part of Cadbury's board, the company recommended that shareholders accept the deal that would amount to $13.78 a share.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Unemployment claims also rose from 11,000 to 444,000 last week; analysts had believed that only 437,000 claims were going to be filed.
Monday, January 11, 2010
We will see over time if the involved countries choose to follow up on this, but knowing that North Korea is interested in developing a peace treaty is definitely a step in the right direction.
FEMSA will now have a 20% share in Heineken's boardroom.
Friday, January 8, 2010
During the first 10 months of 2009 China exported $957 billion worth of goods while Germany exported $917 billion. It is expected that November and December's numbers will not change China's position. Numbers for all of 2009 are expected shortly.
Recently the Chinese government have either blocked access to or shut down 700 plus websites in addition to the tens of thousands of already blocked sites. Freedom of speech violations is one thing, but in blocking many of these sites including Google, YouTube and Twitter, China is damaging foreign commerce and trade. China is also preventing the use of mobile applications which is/was a $29 million industry there and should be a steadily growing industry, blocking even its own innovation.
With 300 million people using the internet in China, China has become almost irresistible to foreign tech companies, however as China only allows access to companies that they deem as being politically reliable this cuts off a lot of international business. If China doesn't change its policies and allow more businesses to penetrate its firewall, they very likely could have a WTO dispute on their hands.
In 2002 clean tech firms only received $0.9 billion.
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
There, however, was a combined revenue of $94 billion this year for the 4 firms. The Americas represented 40% of global revenues; Europe, the Middle East and Africa represented 45% and Asia Pacific represented 15%. Auditing accounted for nearly 50% of the revenues.
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Asia, however did relatively well considering. Asian (excluding Japan) volumes climbed 9% to $493.1 billion. Japan-targeted M&A activity fell 4% to US$142.2 billion, with 92% of volume generated by domestic deals.
Monday, January 4, 2010
According to Sanford C. Bernstein, there also exists the possibility that mergers will rise 35 percent in 2010 and 23 percent in 2011. The forecast is based on an analysis using data since 1980 that incorporates growth in GDP, corporate earnings and commercial loan volume. These figures have about a 72 percent correlation to takeovers.
China also believes that, despite the global recession, their economy grew at least 8% in 2009 and will do so again in 2010. Given that China's GDP at the end of 2008 was approximately $4.6 trillion and that Japan's GDP is continuing to shrink it should be expected that China's economy will quickly overcome Japan's.