After some initial sluggishness, Asia-Pacific stocks generally improved as Wednesday’s trading day progressed. But there were no blowout gains occurring, with nearly all rising indexes up no more than 0.5 percent and many seeing advances of 0.2 percent of less.
Global stock markets remained under pressure Friday, headed for one of their worst weekly performances in years, with analysts wondering whether to greet the sell-off as a healthy correction or fear even worse to come.
There has been a rising wave of opposition to globalization across the globe. From widespread trade protectionism to slow trade growth and tightened immigration policies, it would seem that the world is facing a backlash against globalization.
Financial historians looking back at 2016 will comment on what did not happen. Politically if not economically it was a wild year and yet most global markets responded with either steady indifference or easy optimism.
The donor-funded World Bank arm responsible for lending to the globe’s poorest countries is preparing to raise billions of dollars in financial markets after being awarded a credit rating for the first time in its 56-year history.
Managers of the world’s $10 trillion or so foreign exchange reserves are in a bind. More and more of the global government bond market shows a negative yield. If held to maturity, such bonds will inflict a certain loss. Those bonds that do offer a positive yield are horribly overvalued by historic standards. If held to maturity, they will show a profit. But the capital value of these so-called safe assets is vulnerable to a spike in yields, which is bad news if central banks need to liquidate them to cope with a currency crisis or fiscal disaster.