Thursday, October 9, 2008

Bad News And Good News:The World In Turmoil

Hantu Laut

The Asian stock markets tumbled yesterday .The Japanese Nikkei went down 9.38% ,Hong Kong's Han Seng down 8.17% and the biggest fall was Jakarta with over 10%.

Surprisingly, while all other Asian markets went down quite substantially the KLSE went down only 2.71%.Is our fundamentals really that strong and investors confidence unshaken in spite of all the bad news on the global financial markets? Is the government trying to prop up the market to avert panic selling? If that is the case how long can the government continue to do so and where are the funds coming from? Let's hope it is not our money or worse still the EPF money.

In spite of interest rate cuts in most major markets the world's stocks markets continue to tumble.The Dow was down 2% yesterday.The Dow has now fallen 35% from its highest level a year ago.The US rescue package will take some time to make an impact on the market.The Moscow stocks market went down 14% and suspended its trading.

Iceland says the government is bankrupt.It got US$5.4 billion loan from Russia and blamed hedge funds for its financial woes.Sounds familiar.

So Mahathir wasn't wrong back in 1997 when he blamed the hedge funds especially George Soros for the Asian financial crisis.There is one thing we must all know, the capitalist world is greedy,competitive,cruel and sad to say, have no space for social conscience.What happened in America and the resulting crisis is because of freedom and laissez-faire gone amok.De-regulation of the financial system and businesses because the Westerners think they are more responsible,therefore, need not be regulated.

I must say again Mahathir was ahead of his time when he said" the Jews used proxies to fight their wars".Take a look at the 2 presidential candidates' campaign in America, how both of them clamoring to suck up to Isreal by refering to it as their main and strong ally in the Middle East.

There is 50/50 percent chance George Bush will bomb Iran before he leaves office in January 09, especially if Obama won the presidential election, leaving him to pick up the pieces.

Due to high volatility and high risk of the markets investors are expected to dump more stocks and move to safer low-yield government bonds and probably gold.

Among the waves of bad news coming from every corners of the world at least there are two good news for Malaysians, the prices of crude oil have tumbled to below US$90 a barrel and Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has confirmed not contesting the Presidency of UMNO in March 09 meaning he is giving up his premiership.

Now, suddenly the politicians are full of praises and accolades for the Prime Minister on his act of courage and responsibility ??

As usual the oppositions never had anything good to say concerning him of the good news or bad, especially those coming from the Indian community, who probably are still sore with him for locking up the Hindraf's activists.Here's what Perak DAP Vice-Chairman M.Kulasegaran said "what surprises me is why he is waiting till March to quit". Give him a break! Haven't you guys given him enough bashing already.

Most Malaysians are only interested in two things, politics and price of petrol.Others, including the world financial crisis, which can make their lives even more miserable can take a back seat.Oh! One more thing Malaysians also love English and European football, the bad news is, you may soon not be able to watch your favourite teams if they fall victims to the global financial meltdown.The hottest team and favourite with many Malaysians, Manchester United owed the bank a whopping RM4.6 billion.

Let's watch the KLSE today whether it will behave abnormally from other markets. If it does than you know for sure who is throwing good money to chase bad money.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think the KLSE did not fared badly because the players have been sidelined since March 8th.

MRSM Kalae Chepo 66/73

kittykat46 said...

Iceland is likely to be the first national economy to really collapse in the current crisis.

But blaming the meltdown on Hedge Funds is too shallow an analysis, just as Mahathir blaming George Soros for Malaysia's 1997/8 crisis was too shallow.

Iceland is a rather wealthy, though very small (307,000 population) country. It transformed itself in recent years, making international banking a core economic sector instead just a supporting role, as in most countries. Icelandic banks are much bigger than the entire national economy, which also lies the root of its vulnerability.
Ironically, they have almost no exposure to the US sub-prime loans. But the resulting global credit crunch has caused big trouble to their banks. Their Central Bank is now essentially bankrupt.

Seeing this vulnerability, the Hedge Funds have circled in for the kill, selling down their currency to less then 30% of previous value. Imagine you wake up one day and find the ringgit is basically worth only 20 sen.

The Hedge Funds are akin to vultures or hyenas in the international financial circles. They profit from others weaknesses, but don't confuse them with the primary cause of the weakness, which countries often have themselves to blame.

I like your write-ups on the current US crisis, though I don't always agree on the facts as I understand them.

Change the country name to "Malaysia" and the year to 1998 and you will see many of the same issues of hubris, over extension, profligate spending which lay at the root of Malaysia's meltdown at the time.

donplaypuks® said...

Why no interest cut in M'sia. Does BNM know something the rest of the world doesn't?

Hantu Laut said...

anonymous,
Unable to decipher ?

Hantu Laut said...

kittykat46,
Iceland is bankrupted because of its banks.Those Icelandic banks borrowed externally to the tune of US$120 bil in foreign currencies.The country GDP is only about US$20 billion a year so it is by no measure a very rich country although it has a high standard of living because of its small population.

To put it simply Iceland doesn't have the domestic earnings to service such debts.It's a messy affair because it may have to underwrite the loans taken by the banks.Its soveriegn credit rating is fucked and no foreign bank will lent it money, only another govt can rescue it.

Even the government is now considered a lousy credit risk.

Hantu Laut said...

donplaypuks,
Malaysia always wanted to be different.

Malaysian interest rate is already quite low.