Weekend reading links – 02.04.2016


In a hostile act, China blocks India’s attempts to block the founder of Jaish. This is not the first time nor will it be the last. What is the point in pretending to be friendly? Will a West European nation do this to another and still be counted as a friendly nation?

Indonesia to deploy F-16s to guard against ‘thieves’ in the sea.

Nearly a month after Moody’s downgraded China’s credit rating outlook (which means that the likelihood of the next rating change being a downgrade is higher than that of it being an upgrade), Standard & Poor’s follows suit. Amidst all the reassurances, S&P is not convinced that China is changing its ways of managing and achieving economic growth – more credit growth and more investment are still the norm. Unsurprisingly, China battles with the credit-rating agencies.

China’s local government debt is up 53% in 2015 from 2013. It was supposed to go down.

Is Private Enterprise the Chinese Communist Party’s unsolvable dilemma?

Chris Balding says investors remain in denial about China. His reminder about what Rio and BHP did, based on a McKinsey report, is very timely.

Anbang abruptly withdraws from the bidding war for Starwood Hotels. Was it told to? Michael Schuman has a good take on Chinese acquisitions.


Indian cities’ vegetation cover is disappearing too fast. No wonder it feels hotter and there is more flooding.

Tata Steel decides to shut down its UK steelmaking business. See this too. FT says that there is little rancour for Tata in Port Talbot.

India exports additional power to Bangladesh (600 MW now, up from 500 MW) and gets internet bandwidth into NE India. This is significant.

After a push from the Central Government, States allocate more out of the budget for crop insurance schemes. Ashok Gulati is pleased.

United States

You would not know this looking at the S&P 500 index as it marches back towards a historical high (News from March 2, 2016).

Richmond in California offers vulnerable youngsters money to stop killing each other.

Justin Fox compares Kansas’ low-tax or tax-cut experiment with Nebraska’s no-experiment. Guess who comes out looking better.

The lady who rented a room in the Plaza Hotel in NY for USD500 a month.


In 2018, Switzerland will move to automatic exchange of information with other global tax authorities.

Geriatric crimes on the rise in Japan to ease cost of living. Prison offers free food and shelter. Tragic. Hope Kuroda is aware.

In France, Francois Hollande forced to abandon anti-terrorism bill.

Singapore home prices dropped for the tenth quarter – the longest drop in two decades. It ain’t over soon.


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