Weekend links – 30.01.2016

India Links

A good piece by R. Jagannathan on the Lordship’s Over-reach on Jallikattu, etc. Who will bell the cat?

The Supreme Court is hearing the petition on Hindustan Zinc Limited, for the third time. The Court, in 2012, had dismissed the petition already! Sunil Jain who wrote this Edit should know that his suggestions made to Arun Jaitley in Feb. 2015 are practical non-starters.

A very insightful piece by Swapan Dasgupta on National Identity vs. Constitutional Patriotism. In the Indian context, I agree with his preference for National Identity.

Extracts from Manjul Bhargava’s brilliant address to the students and faculty at Sanskrit College in Chennai earlier in January.

Ila Patnaik argues for a tight fiscal and loose monetary policy. I would argue for the opposite.

Andy Mukherjee shows that India’s corporate leverage problems are only marginally better than that of China’s.

Financial Markets

Alan Blinder’s shockingly sloppy piece tries to make sense of recent stock market action and comes up short.

The story of Portuguese debt, good bank, bad bank, credit event, ISDA, compensation. Fascinating.

The headline says it all: ‘How Wall Street Finds New Ways to Sell Old, Opaque Products to Retail Investors’

JP Morgan pays USD1.42bn to settle most of the claims that it siphoned off cash illegally from Lehman Brothers before its collapse.

Are macroprudential measures here to stay because they are effective in curbing asset prices?

Carney says US rate rise made a contribution but not fundamental to the market turmoil of 2016.

Keynes’ investment performance could be, well, better.

Europe

European leaders are considering a two-year suspension of Schengen rules. It could be big, if it happens.

Ross Douthat in NYT on why Merkel must leave.

China links

Why capital flight from China will be a long-standing affair

Record low business confidence index and employment index from Sales Managers’ Index in China.

China’s capital outflows reach an estimated USD1.0trn in 2015

This WSJ article leaves it to us to decide if the chart shown is a sign of China’ GDP overstatement and overstatement of its energy appetite in the years ahead. It is both.

Is real restructuring coming for China’s steel industry? No time-frame specified.

Tom Mitchell and Gabriel Wildau in FT try to explain or ‘defend’ China’s policies and their communication. The answer may lie in something else. For that, one must read this, very perceptive piece from Andrew Browne in WSJ: investors are not shorting yuan but China itself.

The Conference Board in the US is officially going with an alternate growth estimate for China and the growth rate is 4%.

Japan

Four days after ruling out negative interest rates, Bank of Japan’s Kuroda will now ask banks to pay a small fee for keeping excess reserves with the central bank, thus ushering in negative interest rates. It is a bit more complex than that. Pl. see here.

Bank of Japan Governor Kuroda-san advises China to deploy capital controls. But, given his flip-flop on negative interest rates, will China take him seriously? Or, will they do the opposite? If so, is that what he actually was aiming at? Intriguing.

General

Zika virus set to spread across Americas, spurring vaccine hunt.

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