South Africa’s Kganyago Sues After SARB Battle Gets Personal

© Reuters.  South Africa’s Kganyago Sues After SARB Battle Gets Personal © Reuters. South Africa’s Kganyago Sues After SARB Battle Gets Personal

(Bloomberg) — Less than a week since vowed to go to war to protect the independence of the South African Reserve Bank, Governor Lesetja Kganyago has approached the courts to protect his name after a racial slur from a ruling party official.

Kganyago is suing Andile Lungisa, a municipal councilor for the African National Congress, for defamation for a posting on Twitter about the governor’s defense of the central bank’s mandate. Lungisa on Tuesday posted the first page of the summons that was served on him.

This is not the first time Kganyago has gone to the courts for resolve a dispute, but the previous occasion it was on behalf of the central bank.

He successfully fought off a proposal by the nation’s anti-graft ombudsman two years ago to change the institution’s inflation-targeting mandate. The nation’s top court found Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane to be personally liable for 15% of the central bank’s legal costs in that case.

Lungisa’s series of Tweets in June began as support for the ANC’s proposal to nationalize the Reserve Bank, before targeting Kganyago. He described the governor as “a lackey of racist people” and used a highly offensive racial slur, according to the court documents.

Reserve Bank spokeswoman Thoraya Pandy confirmed the legal action when contacted by phone and said the matter was now in the hands of the court.

‘Trojan Horse’

The governor has said the debate about the ownership of the central bank is a distraction from the real problems facing the economy and that it could be used as “Trojan horse” for another attempt to change the mandate. He told reporters at a lunch in Johannesburg last week he would “go to war” if the constitutionally enshrined independence of the central bank is threatened.

The spat also highlights the racial tensions that still exist in South Africa 25 years after the end of white minority rule, and the extent to which race is often used as weapon in public discourse.

Lungisa is currently out on bail pending an appeal of a conviction for assault after he smashed a glass water jug over the head of a Democratic Alliance councilor during a meeting in the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality in 2016, Johannesburg-based Business Day reported on Tuesday. The newspaper first reported on the summons that was served on Lungisa.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Economy News

North Korea fires more projectiles, South Korea says

South Korea’s military said Saturday that North Korea fired two more unidentified projectiles into East Sea, Yonhap reported. North Korea has launched short-range missiles at least four other times since July 25 as the U.S. and South Korea prepare joint military exercises.

South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported Saturday that Seoul’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said the projectiles were launched from an area near the North’s east coast. It didn’t immediately identify the projectiles or how far they flew, but North Korea has unleashed a series of test firings of short-range ballistic missiles in recent weeks.

The North Korean missile tests, which Donald Trump has repeatedly played down, come amid stalled diplomatic talks with the U.S. on the North’s nuclear program. So far, North Korea has stuck by its unilateral suspension of nuclear and long-range missile tests, which came during a diplomatic outreach to Washington last year. 

Trending News

The North described recent test-firings as a new rocket artillery system and short-range ballistic missile launches. It previously called them a “solemn warning” to South Korea over its plans to continue military drills with the U.S. Experts say the North’s weapons display could intensify in the coming months if progress isn’t made on the nuclear talks.

On Friday, Mr. Trump said he received another “beautiful letter” from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and hinted there would be another meeting between them. Mr. Trump made a historic trip into North Korea with Kim in June. 

In an interview with Fox News after the first missile launch, Mr. Trump said he was “getting along well” with Kim and said the country “really haven’t tested missiles other than smaller ones.”

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

World – CBSNews.com

South Korea second-quarter GDP bounces as public spending offsets private sector drag

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People look at a view of central Seoul from an observatory platform in Seoul © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People look at a view of central Seoul from an observatory platform in Seoul

By Choonsik Yoo and Joori Roh

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea’s economy swung back to growth in the second quarter, dodging a technical recession, although the expansion was mostly driven by government spending, suggesting the central bank may need to cut rates again to stoke demand.

Gross domestic product grew by a seasonally adjusted 1.1% in the April-June period from the first quarter, central bank estimates showed, just beating the median forecast of 1.0% growth tipped in a Reuters survey of 12 economists.

However, the Bank of Korea estimates showed the economy would have contracted without increased government spending, following previous quarter’s surprise contraction.

“Details of the GDP data confirmed the economy has been dependant on government spending and support my expectation of another interest rate cut in the fourth quarter,” said Park Sang-hyun, economist at HI Investment & Securities.

Heavily reliant on exports of chips, smartphones, autos and ships, South Korea’s economy has been hit especially hard by the year-long China-U.S. trade dispute, which has hurt supply chains and global growth.

BOK estimates showed government spending contributed 1.3 percentage points to second-quarter GDP while private-sector activity presented a 0.2 percentage point drag as companies slashed investment due to the uncertain outlook.

Last week, the BOK cut interest rates for the first time in three years, earlier than market expectations for a cut in August, and trimmed its 2019 economic growth forecast to a decade low of 2.2% from the previous 2.5%.

South Korea’s economy shrank 0.4% in the first quarter due to delays in government spending as private investment also slowed.

On a year-on-year basis, Asia’s fourth-largest economy expanded 2.1% in the second quarter, compared with 2.0% growth forecast in the poll and 1.7% growth in the first quarter, the central bank estimated.

Merchandise exports returned to growth of 2.3% in the April-June period after a 3.2% contraction in the first, which was the worst reading since the final quarter of 2017.

But export prospects remain uncertain as Japan has curbed chip and display production materials shipments to South Korea, which Seoul says is related to a diplomatic row over compensation of forced labor during World War Two.

The BOK said in a report to parliament on Tuesday that Japan’s export curbs were one of the top three risks to the domestic economy. Governor Lee Ju-yeol added that this year’s growth could dip further due to the curbs.

Analysts have downgraded their forecasts for 2019 growth, with some seeing growth falling short of 2%.

(This story corrects first bullet of Q2 GDP quarterly figure)

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Economy News

More poor South Korean data – preliminary data for July show exports plunge

South Korean July 1-20 exports (data via the Customs agency, Reuters)  

  •  -13.6 % y/y

July 1-20 imports

  •  -10.3 % y/y

Semiconductor exports -30.2% y/y 

‘Canary in the coalmine’ is often how the performance of SK is viewed. If these are anything to go by its an ex-canary. There will be impact in these from Japan’s move on curbing exporting technology products to the country. 

ForexLive

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Forexlive RSS Breaking news feed

Golf: South Korean Kim sprints away to win LPGA Marathon

(Reuters) – Kim Sei-young sprinted clear in the final round of the Marathon Classic for a two-stroke victory over Lexi Thompson in Sylvania, Ohio, on Sunday.

After starting the day with a one-shot lead, Kim built a tournament-winning advantage with five straight birdies mid-round at Highland Meadows.

The South Korean coasted home from there to card six-under-par 65 and clinch her ninth LPGA Tour victory.

The 26-year-old tied Choi Na-yeon for the fourth most wins by a Korean player in LPGA history, behind Pak Se-ri (25), Park In-bee (19) and Shin Ji-yai (11).

Kim finished at 22-under 262, while American Thompson (66) eagled the final hole for second place on 20 under.

Korean players have now won nine LPGA tournaments this year.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Sports and General News

Golf: South Africa’s Lombard surges into halfway lead at Irish Open

(Reuters) – South Africa’s Zander Lombard carded a solid three-under-par 67 in the Irish Open second round on Friday to take a one-shot lead over England’s Eddie Pepperell.

Lombard, 24, who started the day a shot behind overnight leader Padraig Harrington following an opening 64, fired five birdies to go nine-under for the tournament at Lahinch Golf Club.

Pepperell also shot 67 while three-times major champion Harrington produced a disappointing 73 to slip down the leaderboard.

“I had to change a few things in my physique and how I swing the club so it’s nice to see the hard work coming off and what a better place to see it happen,” said Lombard, who made the weekend for the first time since March.

“I missed a few cuts coming into this week and it’s been three months of hard work… it’s been really good golf, solid, and I’m just really enjoying being at the top.”

Mexico’s Abraham Ancer, Spain’s Jorge Campillo and England’s Lee Westwood were tied for third at seven under.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Sports and General News

South Korea fin min says monitoring if any herd behaviour in FX market. Moo.

HIGH RISK WARNING: Foreign exchange trading carries a high level of risk that may not be suitable for all investors. Leverage creates additional risk and loss exposure. Before you decide to trade foreign exchange, carefully consider your investment objectives, experience level, and risk tolerance. You could lose some or all of your initial investment; do not invest money that you cannot afford to lose. Educate yourself on the risks associated with foreign exchange trading, and seek advice from an independent financial or tax advisor if you have any questions.

ADVISORY WARNING: FOREXLIVE™ provides references and links to selected blogs and other sources of economic and market information as an educational service to its clients and prospects and does not endorse the opinions or recommendations of the blogs or other sources of information. Clients and prospects are advised to carefully consider the opinions and analysis offered in the blogs or other information sources in the context of the client or prospect’s individual analysis and decision making. None of the blogs or other sources of information is to be considered as constituting a track record. Past performance is no guarantee of future results and FOREXLIVE™ specifically advises clients and prospects to carefully review all claims and representations made by advisors, bloggers, money managers and system vendors before investing any funds or opening an account with any Forex dealer. Any news, opinions, research, data, or other information contained within this website is provided as general market commentary and does not constitute investment or trading advice. FOREXLIVE™ expressly disclaims any liability for any lost principal or profits without limitation which may arise directly or indirectly from the use of or reliance on such information. As with all such advisory services, past results are never a guarantee of future results.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Forexlive RSS Breaking news feed

U.S. diplomat urges transparent land reform in South Africa

© Reuters. U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John J. Sullivan attends the U.S.-Brazil Security Forum, at the Itamaraty Palace in Brasilia © Reuters. U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John J. Sullivan attends the U.S.-Brazil Security Forum, at the Itamaraty Palace in Brasilia

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan said on Friday that South Africa should be transparent about land reform so as not to hurt the economy, adding that the issue had not been covered in the United States with the "necessary perspective".

U.S President Donald Trump waded into South Africa’s high-octane land debate last year by sending a late-night tweet in which he said he had asked his secretary of state to study "land and farm seizures" in South Africa.

Those comments weakened the rand and enraged South African officials.

At the time of Trump’s tweet the government had not seized land from farmers, despite its intention to speed up redistribution of the country’s land to the black majority, who still only own a fraction of the land more than two decades after the end of white minority rule in 1994.

But investors have been jittery since Trump’s comments, in case the United States follows up with punitive measures.

Sullivan, who was speaking to journalists in Johannesburg after talks with South African officials, said he was mainly in "listening mode" as he sought to understand the complexities of the country’s land reform program.

"My message on behalf of the U.S. is in addressing this complex issue (land reform), that it be done in a transparent way so that both the agriculture sector and the economy generally aren’t significantly adversely affected," he added.

"I don’t think it has translated well across the ocean and been covered with the depth and perspective that is necessary."

Sullivan said the United States expected that South Africa would extradite Mozambique’s former finance minister Manuel Chang to the United States over his alleged role in a $ 2 billion fraud.

He added that Washington was "very enthusiastic" about the new Zimbabwean government, but wanted to see more action on reform.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Forex News

Ford to close oldest Brazil plant, exit South America truck biz

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: New Ford trucks are seen at a parking lot of the Ford factory in Sao Bernardo do Campo © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: New Ford trucks are seen at a parking lot of the Ford factory in Sao Bernardo do Campo

By Marcelo Rochabrun, Alberto Alerigi and Ben Klayman

SAO PAULO/DETROIT (Reuters) – Ford Motor (NYSE:) Co said on Tuesday it will close its oldest factory in Brazil and exit its heavy commercial truck business in South America, a move that could cost more than 2,700 jobs as part of a restructuring meant to end losses around the world.

Ford previously said the global reorganization, to impact thousands of jobs and possible plant closures in Europe, would result in $ 11 billion in charges.

Following that announcement, analysts and investors had expected a similar restructuring in South America. Ford Chief Executive Jim Hackett said last month that investors would not have to wait long for the South American reorganization plan.

The factory slated for closure is in Sao Bernardo do Campo, an industrial suburb of Sao Paulo that has operated since 1967. It first produced a number of auto models before being switched predominantly to trucks in 2001. It makes the F-4000 and F-350 trucks, as well as the Fiesta small car, a sales laggard.

The factory closure may mean Ford is refocusing on the core of its car business in Latin America’s largest economy, based in a much newer factory in the northeastern state of Bahia. But the job cuts in Brazil’s industrial heartland represent a psychological blow for the new administration of far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, which is battling an unemployment rate above 11 percent.

Ford’s latest cuts come as investors watch for signs of progress on the company’s alliance with Volkswagen (DE:) AG, which already encompasses commercial vans and pickup trucks but may soon expand into electric and self-driving cars. The two automakers have also pledged to work together on other projects, which could include combining capacity in regions like South America.

Ford shares closed up 3.4 percent at $ 8.83 in New York.

"You can’t cost cut your way to prosperity in the long term," said David Kudla, who heads Michigan-based Mainstay Capital Management, a firm that previously owned Ford stock. "We want to hear about the future, what you’re doing for mobility services and autonomous vehicles."

The closure is also a blow to the industrial outskirts of Sao Paulo, where Brazil’s automotive industry was born and which long drove its industrial growth. It is also where imprisoned former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva came to fame as a union leader who organized massive strikes that helped harken the end of the military dictatorship.

The union in Sao Bernardo did not have an immediate comment. But Sao Bernardo Mayor Orlando Morando complained angrily that Ford gave no warning and failed to discuss the closure with the workers.

"The 2,800 families directly affected and another 2,000 indirectly affected deserved a chance to react. This is an act of cowardice," Morando’s office said in a statement.

A Ford spokesman declined to provide a precise figure for job cuts but acknowledged there would be "a significant impact" and said the automaker would work with unions and other affected parties on "next steps."

Ford South America President Lyle Watters said on Tuesday the automaker remains "committed" to South America, a region where it is not currently profitable.

SLOW GROWTH

Sales of Ford cars and light trucks grew by 10 percent between 2017 and 2018 in Brazil, lagging a 15 percent post-recession increase for the industry as a whole.

In the trucks business, it ranked fourth, with sales less than half those of Mercedes Benz and Volkswagen.

Ford said in October it would stop building its Focus compact cars in Argentina in May 2019 as part of efforts to end its losses in the region.

Kleiton Da Silva, an employee and union representative in Ford’s surviving Bahia plant, said the carmaker was in talks to cut 650 of its workforce there, which the automaker has said totals 4,604.

The No. 2 U.S. automaker expects to record pre-tax special charges of about $ 460 million, with most of that recorded this year, it said in the statement.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Stock Market News

It Looks Like Deja Vu for South Africa's Fast-Starting Rand

© Reuters.  It Looks Like Deja Vu for South Africa's Fast-Starting Rand © Reuters. It Looks Like Deja Vu for South Africa’s Fast-Starting Rand

(Bloomberg) — As if January’s potential record gain isn’t enough, the may be in for a positive February as well if history is any guide.

Seasonal data show that South Africa’s currency has strengthened against the dollar in February in seven of the past 10 years. Optimism about local political developments and a global risk-on mood spurred the rand to back-to-back monthly gains in January and February last year, and the same factors have already pushed it to its best start since at least 1999 this time round.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni is scheduled to present the budget on Feb. 20, but few are expecting major changes from the numbers signaled in his mid-term fiscal statement in October. Should the budget outcome meet expectations, that may reduce the chance of Moody’s Investors Service lowering the nation’s credit rating when it reviews its assessment in March.

Still, investors should be mindful of the rand’s volatile nature, said Elna Moolman, a Johannesburg-based economist at Standard Bank Group Ltd.

“A pragmatic budget that doesn’t trigger negative sovereign credit rating action might be an initial catalyst for some appreciation,” she wrote in a client note. “There is a risk that, like early last year, rand strength will overshoot once optimism about policy and political reform is revived.”

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Forex News