Keith Bradsher at the New York Times reports that the Chinese economy is slowing:
"The gradual slowing in China is evident in the factories that have turned the country into the manufacturing center of the world. Industrial output rose 13.4 percent last month compared with the same month last year.What we would do for such growth!
By comparison, industrial output had been up 13.7 percent in June from a year earlier, and was up 16.5 percent as recently as May.
Much the same pattern was evident in fixed asset investment, which was up 24.9 percent last month compared with a year earlier. It had been ahead by 25.5 percent in June, and 25.9 percent in May.
Retail sales rose 17.9 percent in July compared with the same month last year, as Chinese consumers with rising wages continued to flock to stores for ever more spending. But sales had grown 18.3 percent in June compared with a year earlier, and had been up 18.7 percent in May."
RUSSIA DEPLOYS S-300 MISSILE SYSTEM IN ABKHAZIA
Dmitry Solovyov at Reuters reports that Russia has deployed a S-300 missile system in Abkhazia.
"The S-300, codenamed 'Favorite' in Russia, is a mobile, long-range air defense system that can detect, track and destroy ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and both high- and low-flying aircraft."RUSSIAN ECONOMY GROWS BY 5.2% IN THE SECOND QUARTER FROM A YEAR EARLIER
Maria Levitov at Bloomberg reports that the Russian Federal Statistics Service said today in an email that its second quarter economic growth came in at 5.2% over the second quarter of last year.
IEA REPORTS THAT IRANIAN IMPORTS OF GASOLINE HURT BY SANCTIONS; TURKEY INDICATES IT WILL NOT COMPLY WITH GASOLINE SANCTIONS ON IRAN
Carola Hoyos at the Financial Times reports that the most recent IEA report says that the tougher sanctions on Iran have halved Tehran's gasoline imports.
"As a result Iran has been forced to pay a 25 per cent premium to market prices for its petrol deliveries as many companies shy away from supplying the country, the International Energy Agency reported on Wednesday."Meanwhile, Orhan Coskun at Reuters reports that the Turkish Energy Minister told the wire service that Ankara will support sales of gasoline to Iran.
"Tupras, Turkey's sole refiner and gasoline exporter which is owned by Koc Holding, declined to say whether the company had sold anything to Iran. The refiner buys 33 percent of its crude from the Islamic Republic, however."Also, if I remember correctly, Turkey imports some natural gas from Iran.
UN APPEALING FOR $459 MILLION FOR FLOOD RELIEF IN PAKISTAN
The Associated Press reports that the UN is appealing for $459 million in order to help flood victims in Pakistan.
"The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said 'the worst monsoon-related floods in living memory' has affected more than 14 million people and at least six or seven million require immediate humanitarian assistance including food, clean water, shelter and medical care."AN OVERVIEW OF THE INDIAN ENERGY SECTOR
Utpal Bhaskar and Elizabeth Roche at livemint.com gives a pretty good overview of the energy situation facing India.
VENEZUELA AND COLOMBIA REINSTATE DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS; COLOMBIA INDICATES THAT IT IS OPEN TO TALKS WITH FARC REBELS
The BBC reports that Colombia and Venezuela reinstated diplomatic relations yesterday. Relations were cut off after the Colombian government accused Venezuela of allowing Colombian rebels to operate from Venezuela. Juan Forero at the Washington Post reports that the new Colombian President, Juan Manuel Santos, has indicated that the government is open to talks with FARC.
BRAZILIAN GROWTH Q-O-Q WAS 1.32%
Andre Soliani and Iuri Dantas at Bloomberg report that Brazilian growth from the second quarter over the first quarter was at 1.32%, "compared with a 2.45% jump in the first three months of the year."
"Latin America’s biggest economy is regaining speed in the third quarter, growing 5 percent to 6 percent, after slowing in the second quarter, Finance Minister Guido Mantega said yesterday. Brazil’s gross domestic product expanded 9 percent from a year earlier in the first quarter, the fastest rate since 1995, led by domestic demand and a record rate of investment."FOMC LEAVES BENCHMARK INTEREST RATE UNCHANGED
The Federal Open Market Committee left the US benchmark interest rates at 0-0.25% yesterday. Real Time Economics hosts the full statement of the FOMC.
US TRADE DEFICIT RISES TO $50 BILLION
Free Exchange reports that the US trade deficit rose to $50 billion:
FOOD PRICES TO STAY HIGH IN NEAR FUTURE; US WILL TAKE ADVANTAGE OF RUSSIAN BAN ON WHEAT EXPORTS
Michael Schuman at the Curious Capitalist reports that food prices are likely to stay high by the standard of recent history.
"But whatever happens to wheat over the next few weeks, food is still expensive by the standards of recent history, and is likely to stay that way. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the Food & Agriculture Organization spelled that out in a June report. Their outlook sees average wheat and coarse grain prices between 15% and 40% higher in real terms (adjusted for inflation) over the next 10 years than their average levels during the period between 1997 and 2006. Real prices for vegetable oils are projected to be more than 40% higher, while dairy prices are forecast to be on average between 16% and 45% percent higher."Meanwhile, Alan Bjerga at Bloomberg reports that the US has been contacted by grain importers to see if the US can fill orders for wheat that have been cut off by the recent ban on wheat exports by Russia.
[Agriculture Secretary Tom] Vilsack said he expects markets to stabilize as more information on the drought’s effects, including tomorrow’s USDA crop forecasts, becomes available.EIA REPORTS THAT CRUDE OIL STORAGE FELL BY 3 MILLION BARRELS IN WEEK ENDED AUGUST 6TH
The EIA today reported that stocks of crude oil fell by 3 million barrels to 355 million barrels the week ended August 6th. The amount of crude in storage is well above the historical average. Gasoline stocks rose by 0.4 million barrels countercyclically and distillate stocks grew by 3.5 million barrels. Both are also well above the historical average. Refining capacity utilization fell to 88.1%. The national price of gasoline rose 4.8 cents to 278.3 cents in the week ended August 9th.