Billions blown as Macau casino investors fold amid gambling review
Macau casino operator stocks plummeted by as much as a third on Wednesday, losing around $14 billion in value, as the government kicked off a public consultation that investors fear will lead to tighter regulations in the world’s largest gambling hub.
With Macau’s lucrative casino licenses up for rebidding next year, a government proposal to revise the city’s gaming law spooked a Hong Kong market already slammed hard into the red by a broad Beijing regulatory crackdown, across sectors from technology to education and property, that has sliced hundreds of billions of dollars off asset values.
Full coverage: REUTERS
China’s cooling measures curb new home price growth, property investment
China’s new home prices rose at their slowest pace in months in August as authorities stepped up efforts to rein in a red-hot property market, and cooling measures were expected to limit home price growth going forward.
Average new home prices grew at their slowest pace since December on a monthly basis, and since January on an annual basis, after authorities stepped up property curbs this year, from capping banks’ lending to the sector to restricting purchases.
The property market’s sharp rebound from the COVID-19 shock last year has raised concerns about financial risks. But the array of tightening measures are weighing on China’s important property sector, just as the world’s second-largest economy is showing signs of slowing.
Full Coverage: REUTERS
WORLDWIDE: FINANCE / MARKETS
Asian stocks stumble as weak China data fan global growth worries
Asian shares fell on Wednesday as weak Chinese economic data reinforced worries about slowing growth globally as well as in the world’s second-biggest economy amid fraught nerves over a still-dominant pandemic and tapering of central banks’ stimulus.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (.MIAPJ0000PUS) dropped 0.82%, extending earlier losses after the release of the Chinese data, while Tokyo’s Nikkei (.N225) shed 0.89%, moving off a more than 31-year closing-high the day before.
A burst of data out of China showed businesses were grappling with the impact of localized lockdowns following sporadic COVID-19 outbreaks, supply bottlenecks and high raw materials costs.
Full coverage: REUTERS
Oil prices climb after drawdown in stocks, positive demand outlook
Oil prices climbed on Wednesday after industry data showed a larger than expected drawdown in crude oil stocks in the United States, the world’s largest oil consumer, and on expectations that demand will recover as vaccine roll-outs widen.
But a fall in China’s crude oil throughput in August with daily refinery runs hitting the lowest since last May, and overall factory output faltering, capped oil price gains.
Brent crude oil rose 54 cents, or 0.7%, to $74.14 a barrel by 0659 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude climbed 53 cents, or 0.8%, to $70.99 a barrel.
US crude oil, gasoline and distillate stocks all fell last week, according to two market sources, citing American Petroleum Institute figures on Tuesday, after Hurricane Ida shut numerous refineries and offshore drilling production.
China brokers drop yuan forecasts to avoid regulators’ ire
Brokerages in China have dropped detailed currency forecasts from their research notes, or have restricted access to them, underlining the growing sensitivity in the financial sector to a regulatory clampdown on speculative investment.
Their disappearance follows pressure to avoid stockmarket forecasts as well as a ban by authorities on publishing commodity prices, amid a series of sprawling crackdowns that are re-shaping China’s economy and upending financial markets.
It also comes at a delicate moment for the yuan, which China has sought to promote as a global reserve currency but which is tightly managed by the central bank and has been stubbornly firm recently despite a broadly strong dollar.
The market effect of publishing only generalised forecasts is unclear, particularly as foreign institutions continue to offer precise ones. Clients can also privately access projections – a useful tool for corporates in managing foreign exchange exposure.
Multiple sources at brokerages and banks said the trend of avoiding detailed public forecasts has become widespread over the past few months.
Reuters’ analysis of months of notes from four brokers in China shows once-detailed forecasts for the Chinese currency against the dollar have now vanished or grown fuzzy, with precise predictions replaced by ranges or vague statements. None of these brokers answered to questions about the shift.