Japan’s economy expanded 2.5% year-on-year (y-o-y) in the third quarter of 2017 compared with a preliminary estimate of 1.4% y-o-y made in November. The higher-than-estimated growth was driven by upward adjustments in both private and public demand. The continued recovery in exports provided the main support to Japan’s economic growth. On a quarter-on-quarter basis, Japan’s economy expanded 0.6% in the third quarter of 2017 versus a preliminary reading of 0.3%.
Consumer price inflation eased in Indonesia to 3.3% y-o-y in November from 3.6% y-o-y in October. Bank Indonesia expects inflation to remain subdued at 3.0%–3.5% for full-year 2017. The Philippines’ consumer price inflation slowed to 3.3% y-o-y in November following 4 consecutive months of acceleration. The average inflation rate of 3.2% in January–November remained within the government’s target range of 2.0%–4.0% for full-year 2017.
The People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) export growth in November accelerated to 12.3% y-o-y in USD-denominated terms, while import growth rose to 17.7% y-o-y in the same period. The PRC’s trade surplus widened to USD40.2 billion in November from USD38.1 billion in October. Malaysia’s exports and imports maintained their double-digit growth in October, rising 18.9% y-o-y and 20.9% y-o-y, respectively. A trade surplus of MYR10.6 billion was recorded in October.
Japan registered a current account surplus of JPY2.2 trillion in October, lower than the JPY2.3 trillion posted in the previous month, mainly due to the lower trade-in-goods surplus in October. The Republic of Korea’s current account surplus narrowed to USD5.7 billion in October from USD12.3 billion in September. This was largely driven by the decline in the goods account surplus.
Singapore’s Purchasing Managers Index recorded a reading of 52.9 in November, up slightly from 52.6 in October, marking the 15th consecutive month of expansion in the manufacturing economy. It was also the highest reading recorded since December 2009.
The Philippines’ foreign reserves fell to a 2-year low of USD80.3 billion at the end of November, primarily due to outflows resulting from government payments for maturing foreign exchange obligations and a lower valuation of the central bank’s gold holdings. The PRC’s total foreign reserves increased for the 10th consecutive month in November, rising to USD3,119 billion from USD3,109 billion in October.
On 4 December, the Shanghai Key Yield was launched by the PRC’s bond clearinghouse as the new yield benchmark for PRC government bonds with tenors ranging from 3 months to 10 years. The aim is to promote the use of the government’s bond yield curve to improve bond pricing accuracy.
For the past week, local currency government bond yields rose for most tenors in the PRC, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, and Thailand. On the other hand, bonds yields were mostly down in Indonesia, Singapore, and Viet Nam; while bond yields were mixed in Hong Kong, China; and Philippines. The 2-year versus 10-year yield spread narrowed for all emerging East Asian markets except Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand.