2023 Year of the Rabbit, What Does it Mean for You and Financial Markets

The lunar new year typically falls on the second new moon after the winter solstice and is celebrated in countries across East and Southeast Asia, including China, Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Singapore, and Taiwan. The year of the rabbit in the Chinese zodiac occurs every 12 years and the next one begins Sunday January 22, 2023. Lunar New Year is also known as the Chinese New Year or the Spring Festival when Asian communities around the world this year will say … Continue reading “2023 Year of the Rabbit, What Does it Mean for You and Financial Markets”

Semiconductors Lift South Korean ICT Exports to All Time High in 2022

South Korea shipments of information and communications technology (ICT) products in 2022 reached an all-time high of USD 233.3 billion, up 2.5 percent from 2021.  ICT exports achieved a trade surplus of $80.9 billion and make up 34.1% of Korea’s total annual exports. Imports went up 12.9% to $152.5 billion. ICT exports to most major regions expanded, however shipments to South Korea’s largest trading partner, China (including Hong Kong) shrank 4.9% to $102.3 billion as zero-COVID lockdowns and halted production lines … Continue reading “Semiconductors Lift South Korean ICT Exports to All Time High in 2022”

Bank of Korea Raises Rates To 3.50%, Highest level Since August 2008

South Korea’s Monetary Policy Board decided today to raise the Base Rate to 3.50%, the highest level since late 2008 as expected. The move means the BOK has risen rates by 300 cumulative basis points since the BOK started the tightening cycle. This was the BOK’s seventh straight interest hike and the tenth increase since August 2021. Consumer price inflation has been falling since hitting a 24-year high of 6.3% in July, but the current rate of around 5% is … Continue reading “Bank of Korea Raises Rates To 3.50%, Highest level Since August 2008”

South Korean Trade Deficit Biggest Ever Since 1956 with Crumbling Won and High Energy Prices

South Korea for the full year of 2022, the trade balance posted a deficit of USD 47.2 billion, more than double of the previous record deficit of USD 20.72 registered in 1996, and the biggest ever figure since 1956. The trade deficit in South Korea surged to USD 4.69 billion in December 2022 from USD 0.43 billion in the same month a year earlier a preliminary figure showed. However, it was smaller than the market consensus of a 6.74 billion … Continue reading “South Korean Trade Deficit Biggest Ever Since 1956 with Crumbling Won and High Energy Prices”

South Korea’s Kospi the Weakest Stock Market in Asia This Year, Closing Down 24.9%

South Korea’s blue chip Kospi stock market lost almost a quarter of its value in 2022, ending down -24.9%, it was the weakest major Asian stock market this year with its worst performance since 2008. The Kospi was closed for a holiday on the last trading day of the year and closed down -3.3% for the week. Weakness in semiconductor stocks and internet giants particularly hurt the Index with Samsung Electronics being a major component and down 26% decline. Kakao was down … Continue reading “South Korea’s Kospi the Weakest Stock Market in Asia This Year, Closing Down 24.9%”

Bank of Korea Raises Rates To 3.25%, Highest level Since June 2012

South Korea’s Monetary Policy Board decided today to raise the Base Rate to 3.25%, the highest level since June 2012 as expected with continuing US dollar strength. The move means the BOK has risen rates by 250 cumulative basis points since August 2021. This was the BOK’s sixth straight interest hike and the ninth increase since August 2021. Consumer price inflation has remained high at 5.7% in October due to increases in electricity and gas fees and the accelerating price … Continue reading “Bank of Korea Raises Rates To 3.25%, Highest level Since June 2012”

Bank of Korea Raise Rates Again To 3.00% as US Dollar Batters Won and Yen

South Korea’s Monetary Policy Board of the Bank of Korea decided today to raise the Base Rate to 3.00%, the highest since mid-2019 as expected with continuing US dollar strength. The move means the BOK has risen rates by 225 cumulative basis points since August 2021. This was the biggest increase since the central bank adopted interest rates as its primary policy tool in 1999. Consumer prices in South Korea rose 5.6% year-on-year in September 2022, easing slightly from last … Continue reading “Bank of Korea Raise Rates Again To 3.00% as US Dollar Batters Won and Yen”

Consumer Prices in South Korea Eased Taking Pressure off Bank of Korea

South Korean energy and food prices started declining from elevated levels in August. Consumer prices in South Korea rose 5.6% year-on-year in September 2022, easing slightly from last month’s 5.7% and below the consensus forecast of 5.7%. This could take some pressure off the Bank of Korea in their fight against inflation. South Korea’s Monetary Policy Board of the Bank of Korea were among the first central banks to begin its tightening cycle last year. Bank of Korea raised its … Continue reading “Consumer Prices in South Korea Eased Taking Pressure off Bank of Korea”

South Korea’s Coupang Narrowed Losses in Q2 Continuing Positive Traction Toward Profitability

South Korean eCommerce company Coupang, known as the Korean Mazon, reported worse than expected earnings Wednesday. CPNG reported mixed results with another revenue miss but on a narrower loss than expected. In a huge milestone CPNG finally achieved positive adjusted EBITDA, a necessary step for the e-commerce firm. Total Active Customers continued to grow., up 21 percent year over year to 16 million. Earnings Coupang narrowed losses in Q2 but another sales miss in a top-line miss in Q2, Coupang. Adjusted … Continue reading “South Korea’s Coupang Narrowed Losses in Q2 Continuing Positive Traction Toward Profitability”

World’s Top Chipmaker Samsung Reports Highest Second Quarter Profit Since 2018

Samsung Electronics reported second quarter earnings with a 12% rise on Thursday on solid sales of server memory chips. However, the company warned mobile and PC chip demand would continue to weaken as macroeconomic uncertainties persist. Samsung Electronics overtook Intel as the top semiconductor maker in Q3 last year. Operating profit rose to 14.1 trillion won ($10.8 billion) for the quarter from 12.57 trillion won a year earlier, its highest second-quarter profit since 2018. Samsung’s revenue rose 21% to 77.2 … Continue reading “World’s Top Chipmaker Samsung Reports Highest Second Quarter Profit Since 2018”