Japan’s business sentiment dips in first quarter, while China’s deposit insurance is set to be launched in May. The Philippines also gets a growth forecast upgrade from the International Monetary Fund. Here are some of the top business news in Asia today
Japan’s Business Sentiment
The Bank of Japan’s Tankan survey showed that sentiments among Japan’s big manufacturers held steady in the first quarter but is expected to worsen in the current quarter. Tankan survey is the leading measure of business sentiment in Japan.
China’s Deposit Insurance In May
China will introduce a scheme to insure bank deposits from May 1, the government said on Tuesday, ushering in a reform seen as vital for freeing up a highly-protected banking sector. The long-anticipated deposit insurance scheme now requires financial institutions to pay premium consistent with their operations and risk control capacities into the deposit insurance fund.
US on China-Led AIIB: We Are Willing to Work with the Bank
US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said the US government is willing to cooperate with China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) but analysts said the statement means the US is not joining the China-led institution. Lew, who was in China as a special enjoy of US President Barack Obama, said Washington is looking forward to cooperating with the new bank.
Hedge Fund Industry in Asia Outperforms Global Peers
Hedge funds in the Asia-Pacific region have have consistently outperformed the wider global hedge fund community, with assets under management growing by almost 30 percent to US$145 billion at the end of last year, a report released by research firm Preqin revealed. Much of the growth in the region’s hedge funds was driven by the growing base of institutional investors in Asia Pacific that have started turning to hedge funds to meet their investment objectives.
South Korea’s Dipping Inflation
Data released by Statistics Korea showed that the country’s consumer prices rose 0.4% in March from a year earlier, hitting the lowest rate since July 1999, when the country’s inflation dipped to 0.3 percent.
Philippines Gets Growth Forecast Upgrade from IMF
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects the Philippine economy will likely grow by 6.7 percent this year, slightly higher than previous estimate of 6.6 percent, but still lower than government’s growth target. – BusinessNewsAsia.com