China must match foreign policy to global role

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Academic Yan Xuetong says China must adapt its “low profile” foreign policy to its increasing global role. The director of the Institute of International Studies at Tsinghua University tells FT’s China bureau chief Geoff Dyer that, because of their nuclear weapons, there is no danger of war between the US and China, and that the tensions in 2010 between China and other Asian countries were “only slight”. But he sees growing tension with the US as inevitable. […]






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The coming flattening in U.S. profit margins

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“We think earnings growth will slow significantly despite a moderate US economic acceleration in 2011 – to 4% real growth from 3% in 2010 (on a 4Q/4Q basis; on a year-over-year basis we think real growth will accelerate to 3.6% from 2.9%). The culprit is a coming flattening in profit margins. Slower output growth abroad, fading operating leverage, and an end to the decline in interest expense will likely all contribute to flatter margins,” said Richard Berner & the US Economics team of Morgan Stanley in this guest post. […]






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Laugh out Loud: Alternative energy roulette

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Nice one from cartoonist Michael Ramirez … […]






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Keeping a wide view on the rand after all

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By Cees Bruggemans, Chief Economist of FNB.

Traditionally I have kept a wide (200 cent) view on the Rand’s one-year trading range (because that’s the kind of movement history has regularly shown) and an open mind on the outcome of crises. This past week both these traditions converged with a […]

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Inflation titans marshalling 2011 forces

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By Cees Bruggemans, Chief Economist of FNB.

Having dipped as low as 3.2%, CPI inflation has already been rising for two months back to 3.6%, with forecasts of 4.5% this year and 5.5% next year.

This, though, is a ‘risk-free’ scenario, discounting some base effects boosting inflation higher […]

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