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Watch Live: ‘Hawkish’ Powell Hints At Firmer Policy Position, Warns Of Inflation “Head-Fakes”

Watch Live: ‘Hawkish’ Powell Hints At Firmer Policy Position, Warns Of Inflation "Head-Fakes"

Following a slew of FedSpeak from his minions…



Watch Live: 'Hawkish' Powell Hints At Firmer Policy Position, Warns Of Inflation "Head-Fakes"

Following a slew of FedSpeak from his minions (all confirming the 'high(er)-for-long(er), data-dependent, no rate-cuts in sight' narrative), and after his nothingburger address at The Fed yesterday, Fed Chair Powell will participate in a panel discussion at The IMF entitled: "Monetary Policy Challenges in a Global Economy."

Joining Powell in the discussion are the IMF's Gita Gopinath, Bank of Israel Governor Amir Yaron, and Kenneth Rogoff, chair of international economics at Harvard University.

Powell's prepared remarks are more hakwish than expected: (emphasis ours)

Thank you for the opportunity to participate in today's panel discussion. My assigned topic is U.S. monetary policy in the current global inflation episode. I will briefly address the U.S. outlook and then turn to three broader questions raised by the historic events of the pandemic era.

U.S. inflation has come down over the past year but remains well above our 2 percent target (figure 1). My colleagues and I are gratified by this progress but expect that the process of getting inflation sustainably down to 2 percent has a long way to go. The labor market remains tight, although improvements in labor supply and a gradual easing in demand continue to move it into better balance. Gross domestic product growth in the third quarter was quite strong, but, like most forecasters, we expect growth to moderate in coming quarters. Of course, that remains to be seen, and we are attentive to the risk that stronger growth could undermine further progress in restoring balance to the labor market and in bringing inflation down, which could warrant a response from monetary policy. The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) is committed to achieving a stance of monetary policy that is sufficiently restrictive to bring inflation down to 2 percent over time; we are not confident that we have achieved such a stance.

We know that ongoing progress toward our 2 percent goal is not assured: Inflation has given us a few head fakes. If it becomes appropriate to tighten policy further, we will not hesitate to do so.

We will continue to move carefully, however, allowing us to address both the risk of being misled by a few good months of data, and the risk of overtightening. We are making decisions meeting by meeting, based on the totality of the incoming data and their implications for the outlook for economic activity and inflation, as well as the balance of risks, determining the extent of additional policy firming that may be appropriate to return inflation to 2 percent over time. We will keep at it until the job is done.

With that, I will turn to three questions that have arisen from the receding but still elevated inflation we are experiencing today.

The first question is, with the benefit of 2‑1/2 years to look back, what we can say about the initial causes and ongoing policy implications of the current inflation.

After running below our 2 percent target over the first year of the pandemic, core PCE (personal consumption expenditures) inflation rose sharply in March 2021. Economic forecasters generally did not see this coming, as shown by the February 2021 Survey of Professional Forecasters, which showed core PCE inflation running at or below target over the subsequent three years.3 The real-time questions for policymakers were what caused the high inflation and how policy should react. At the outset, many forecasters and analysts, including FOMC participants, viewed the sudden upturn in inflation as mostly a function of pandemic-related shifts in the composition of demand, a disruption of supply chains, and a sharp decline in labor supply. The resulting supply and demand imbalances led to large increases in the prices of a range of items most directly affected by the pandemic, especially goods. In this view, as the pandemic abated, our dynamic and flexible economy was likely to adapt fairly quickly. Supply disruptions and shortages would diminish. Labor supply would rebound, aided by the arrival of vaccines and the reopening of schools. Elevated demand for goods would shift back to services. Inflation would ease reasonably quickly without the need for a significant policy response.

Indeed, although monthly core PCE inflation spiked in March and April of 2021, beginning in May it declined for five consecutive months, providing some support for this view (figure 2). But in the fourth quarter of 2021, the data clearly changed amid waves of new COVID-19 variants, with only gradual progress in restoring global supply chains, and relatively few workers rejoining the labor force. That lack of progress, combined with very strong demand from households, contributed to a tight economy and a historically tight labor market, and more persistent high inflation.

The Committee signaled a change in our policy approach, and financial conditions began to tighten. A new shock arrived in February 2022, when Russia invaded Ukraine, resulting in a sharp increase in energy and other commodity prices. When we lifted off in March, it was clear that bringing down inflation would depend both on the unwinding of the unprecedented pandemic-related demand and supply distortions and on our tightening of monetary policy, which would slow the growth of aggregate demand, allowing supply time to catch up. Today, these two processes are working together to bring inflation down. The FOMC has raised the federal funds rate target range by 5-1/4 percentage points and reduced our securities holdings by more than $1 trillion. Monetary policy is in restrictive territory and putting downward pressure on demand and inflation.

The unwinding of pandemic-related supply and demand distortions is playing an important role in the decline of inflation. For example, wage growth has steadily fallen by most measures since mid-2022 (figure 3), despite continued robust job gains, reflecting a resurgence in labor supply thanks to higher labor force participation and a return of immigration to pre-pandemic levels.

While the broader supply recovery continues, it is not clear how much more will be achieved by additional supply-side improvements. Going forward, it may be that a greater share of the progress in reducing inflation will have to come from tight monetary policy restraining the growth of aggregate demand.

Turning to my second question, for many years, it has been generally thought that monetary policy should limit its response to, or "look through," supply shocks to the extent that they are temporary and idiosyncratic. Many argue as well that, in the future, supply disruptions are likely to be more frequent or more persistent than in the decades just before the pandemic.7 A second question, then, is what we have learned about the standard "looking through" approach.

The idea that the response to the inflationary effects of supply shocks should be attenuated arises, in part, from the tradeoff presented by those shocks. Supply shocks tend to move prices and employment in opposite directions, whereas monetary policy pushes each in the same direction. Therefore, the response of monetary policy to higher prices stemming from an adverse supply shock should be attenuated because it would otherwise amplify the unwanted decline in employment.8 In addition, supply shocks have most frequently come from the volatile food and energy categories and have passed quickly. While food and energy prices critically affect the budgets of households and businesses, the policy tools of central banks work more slowly than commodity markets move. Responding aggressively to quickly passing price increases could exacerbate macroeconomic volatility without supporting price stability.

Our experience since 2020 highlights some limits of that thinking. To begin with, it can be challenging to disentangle supply shocks from demand shocks in real time, and also to determine how long either will persist, particularly in the extraordinary circumstances of the past three years. Supply shocks that have a persistent effect on potential output could call for restrictive policy to better align aggregate demand with the suppressed level of aggregate supply. The sequence of shocks to global supply chains experienced from 2020 to 2022 suppressed output for a considerable time and may have persistently altered global supply dynamics. Such a sequence calls on policymakers to use policy restraint to limit inflationary effects.

Policy restraint in this case is also good risk management. Supply shocks that drive inflation high enough for long enough can affect the longer-term inflation expectations of households and businesses. Monetary policy must forthrightly address any risks of a potential de-anchoring of inflation expectations, as well-anchored expectations help facilitate bringing inflation back to our target. The sharp policy tightening during 2022 likely contributed to keeping inflation expectations well anchored.

My third question is the level where interest rates will settle once the effects of the pandemic are truly behind us. By 2019, the general level of nominal interest rates had declined steadily over several decades (figure 4). As the pandemic arrived, many advanced economies had below-target inflation and low or mildly negative policy rates, raising difficult questions about the efficacy of interest rate policy when constrained by the effective lower bound (ELB). Over two decades, an extensive literature had identified a number of possible changes to the widely used inflation-targeting regime, including negative policy rates, nominal income targeting, and various forms of makeup strategies under which persistent shortfalls in inflation would be followed by a period of inflation running moderately above 2 percent.9 Today, inflation and policy rates are elevated, and the ELB is not currently relevant for our policy decisions. But it is too soon to say whether the monetary policy challenges of the ELB will ultimately turn out to be a thing of the past.

The prolonged proximity of interest rates to the ELB was at the heart of the monetary policy review and the changes we made to our framework in 2020. We will begin our next five-year review in the latter half of 2024 and announce the results about a year later. Among the questions we will consider is the degree to which the structural features of the economy that led to low interest rates in the pre-pandemic era will persist. With time, we will continue to learn from the experience of the past few years, and what implications it may hold for monetary policy.

These are just three of the many questions raised by these challenging times, and we are far from a complete understanding of the answers. I appreciate the opportunity to discuss these issues with you today and look forward to our conversation.

We would imagine it will be hard for him to navigate that Q&A without some market-moving comment on where we are in the monetary-policy cycle (especially given the dramatic loosening of financial conditions in the last week)...

During his press conference last week, Powell did everything possible to maintain policy optionality, but most Fed watchers and market participants believe the Fed's tightening cycle is complete (90.5% odds that Fed stays on hold in Dec).

EY Chief Economist Gregory Daco.

"We continue to believe the Fed's policy playbook needs a revision, especially in an erratic economic, financial, and geopolitical climate," he wrote in a note Wednesday.

"Navigating on a meeting-by-meeting basis without a compass and only yesterday's news at hand is perilous. It's imperative for policymakers to recalibrate and make their policy framework more prospective."

While next week brings the economic data deluge back (most notably CPI), there's still a chance that Powell can gently jawbone back the dramatic 'easing' that the market has created in the days since the last press conference... and will anyone ask him about the collapse of liquidity in the US Treasury market...

Watch Live (due to start at 1400ET):

Tyler Durden Thu, 11/09/2023 - 13:50

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Opportunity Awaits as E-Commerce in Southeast Asia is Booming

E-commerce in Southeast Asia and China is set for significant growth in the coming years, with expectations of continued expansion in these regions. A…



E-commerce in Southeast Asia and China is set for significant growth in the coming years, with expectations of continued expansion in these regions. A December 2022 report by McKinsey, a highly esteemed consulting firm, highlighted a pivotal positive shift in e-commerce across Southeast Asia. The report noted a dramatic increase in the use of e-commerce platforms from 2016 to 2021, particularly in Southeast Asia. Although the growth pace has moderated post-pandemic, the firm predicts that e-commerce markets in Southeast Asia could experience robust annual growth rates of 15 to 25 percent over the next five years. This trend suggests that investing in Southeast Asian e-commerce stocks Coupang Inc. (NYSE:CPNG), Sea LTD. (NYSE:SE), Jd.Com Inc. (NASDAQ:JD), and Society Pass Inc. (NASDAQ:SOPA) could be a promising long-term strategy for investors.

In the rapidly evolving landscape of Southeast Asian e-commerce, Society Pass Inc. (NASDAQ:SOPA) has made significant strides with its strategic acquisitions of Pushkart and Handycart. These platforms are integral to SOPA’s e-commerce initiatives, offering unique insights into the company’s approach to digital commerce and its impact on the market.

Pushkart: Revolutionizing Online Grocery Shopping

Pushkart, an online grocery delivery service, represents a key component of SOPA’s e-commerce strategy. In a region where the demand for online grocery services is burgeoning, Pushkart offers a convenient, reliable, and efficient solution. Its business model, which emphasizes user-friendly interfaces and a wide range of products, caters to the needs of the modern Southeast Asian consumer.

Pushkart has significantly contributed to SOPA’s market presence by tapping into the growing trend of online grocery shopping. Its success is indicative of the shifting consumer preferences towards digital solutions for everyday needs.

Pushkart is not just a revenue stream for SOPA; it’s a strategic asset that enhances the company’s footprint in the e-commerce sector. Its data on consumer buying habits and preferences is invaluable for SOPA’s market analysis and future strategy formulation.

Handycart: A Foray into Diverse E-Commerce Offerings

Handycart, another pivotal acquisition by SOPA, diversifies the company’s e-commerce portfolio. Unlike Pushkart, Handycart offers a broader range of products, from electronics to home goods, making it a one-stop-shop for online shoppers. This platform aligns with the Southeast Asian consumers’ preference for multi-category shopping portals.

Handycart’s diverse product range allows SOPA to penetrate various segments of the e-commerce market. This diversification is crucial in a region where consumer preferences are varied and dynamic.

The integration of Handycart into SOPA’s ecosystem offers synergistic benefits. Cross-promotional opportunities with other SOPA platforms, like travel and lifestyle services, create a holistic shopping experience for consumers.

Both Pushkart and Handycart are more than just individual platforms; they are critical cogs in SOPA’s e-commerce strategy. Their roles extend beyond direct revenue generation:

These platforms enhance SOPA’s overall customer experience by offering varied and convenient shopping options, which is key to customer retention and loyalty.

The consumer data gathered from these platforms provide SOPA with valuable insights for targeted marketing, inventory management, and personalized offerings.

SOPA’s acquisitions of Pushkart and Handycart mark a strategic expansion in the e-commerce domain, reflecting the company’s commitment to understanding and serving the diverse needs of Southeast Asian consumers. These platforms not only strengthen SOPA’s market presence but also contribute to a more integrated and data-driven approach to e-commerce. As SOPA continues to evolve, Pushkart and Handycart will play pivotal roles in shaping its e-commerce strategy and driving growth in the dynamic digital marketplace of Southeast Asia.

Coupang (NYSE:CPNG), headquartered in South Korea, primarily earns its revenue from this East Asian nation. In recent years, the company has extended its operations to Taiwan, another East Asian country, where the e-commerce sector is expected to experience rapid growth in the near future.

Sea (NYSE:SE), headquartered in Singapore, is the parent company of Shopee, a prominent e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia. Reflecting the region’s favorable e-commerce trends, Shopee contributed significantly to Sea’s financial performance in the last quarter. Notably, the unit’s gross merchandise value saw a 7% year-over-year increase, and its EBITDA, excluding specific items, reached $258 million. (NASDAQ:JD), a major player in China’s e-commerce market, has strategically focused on penetrating China’s second-tier cities, which are smaller than the nation’s largest urban areas. Furthermore, the company has made significant investments in its logistics infrastructure. This not only reduced its operational costs but also created a new revenue stream, as other companies pay to utilize this logistics network.

The post Opportunity Awaits as E-Commerce in Southeast Asia is Booming appeared first on Wall Street PR.

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New typhoid conjugate vaccine Bio-TCV® approved in Indonesia

November 9, 2023, SEOUL, Republic of Korea and BANDUNG, Indonesia — The International Vaccine Institute (IVI), an international organization with a mission…



November 9, 2023, SEOUL, Republic of Korea and BANDUNG, Indonesia — The International Vaccine Institute (IVI), an international organization with a mission to discover, develop, and deliver safe, effective, and affordable vaccines for global health, and Bio Farma, a biotechnology company based in West Java, Indonesia, announced today that Bio Farma’s Bio-TCV® typhoid conjugate vaccine (TCV) was licensed in Indonesia following marketing approval from Badan Pengawas Obat dan Makanan (BPOM), the national regulatory authority.

Credit: Bio Farma

November 9, 2023, SEOUL, Republic of Korea and BANDUNG, Indonesia — The International Vaccine Institute (IVI), an international organization with a mission to discover, develop, and deliver safe, effective, and affordable vaccines for global health, and Bio Farma, a biotechnology company based in West Java, Indonesia, announced today that Bio Farma’s Bio-TCV® typhoid conjugate vaccine (TCV) was licensed in Indonesia following marketing approval from Badan Pengawas Obat dan Makanan (BPOM), the national regulatory authority.


Bio-TCV® is a Vi polysaccharide vaccine conjugated to the diphtheria toxoid carrier protein (Vi-DT), initially developed at IVI and transferred to Bio Farma in 2014. From the outset, the scope of the joint vaccine development program included preclinical development and Phase I-III clinical trials followed by technical support through local licensure and submission for prequalification (PQ) from the World Health Organization (WHO), a designation that enables agencies such as Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance to purchase the vaccine for global public health use. This decade-long partnership in pursuit of another safe, effective, and affordable TCV has been in part funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


Dr. Sushant Sahastrabuddhe, Acting Deputy Director General, Clinical, Assessment, Regulatory, Evaluation at IVI, said: “We join Bio Farma in celebrating today’s exciting news of Bio-TCV®’s local licensure, a milestone after nearly a decade of collaboration. We’re grateful to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for funding support of this vaccine development program, and to the project sites across Indonesia for their partnership. With emerging evidence that climate change and the increasing rise of antimicrobial resistance are impacting the prevalence and severity of typhoid fever, prevention of disease through vaccination is a key measure for typhoid control. We look ahead now to Bio-TCV®’s WHO PQ and introduction to the global health market.”


Shadiq Akasya, President Director of Bio Farma, said: “Through good collaboration with IVI, Bio Farma has been able to successfully develop typhoid conjugate vaccine (Bio-TCV). Licensure of our typhoid conjugate vaccine (Bio-TCV) from our National Agency for Drug and Food Control (BPOM) has added yet another product to our product portfolio. Bio-TCV will undoubtedly be an important tool in the prevention of typhoid infection affording protection against this disease as early as 9 months of age. The successful development of Bio-TCV is testament to Bio Farma’s commitment to global health; combating infectious diseases through the provision of safe and efficacious vaccines that comply with international standards of quality.”


Dr. Duncan Steele, Deputy Director and Strategic Lead of Enteric Vaccines at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said: “We celebrate the licensure of Bio-TCV in Indonesia, another milestone for PT Bio Farma in their licensed vaccines and another great example of partnerships making the difference to advance vaccines for public health use. IVI’s leadership in developing and transferring the technology to Bio Farma is a credit to both organizations.”


IVI and Bio Farma confirmed the safety and immunogenicity of a single dose of Vi-DT and its non-inferiority to a control WHO-prequalified TCV in a Phase III clinical trial across three provincial capital cities in Indonesia. With the results of this study, BPOM approved the vaccine for national use in individuals ages 9 months to 45 years. Bio Farma will submit the dossier for WHO PQ, which, if achieved, will add an affordable TCV to the global public market that will be made available to low-income countries through Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.


Typhoid fever is a potentially life-threatening febrile illness caused by Salmonella typhi that particularly affects children and young adults. According to the WHO, there are an estimated 11 to 20 million typhoid cases every year, largely in low- and middle-income countries. Vaccination has been shown to be an effective preventive strategy in controlling typhoid fever, though there are only two vaccines prequalified by the WHO at this time. IVI is working with vaccine manufacturers around the world to make more TCVs available in the public market.






About the International Vaccine Institute (IVI)

The International Vaccine Institute (IVI) is a non-profit international organization established in 1997 at the initiative of the United Nations Development Programme with a mission to discover, develop, and deliver safe, effective, and affordable vaccines for global health.

IVI’s current portfolio includes vaccines at all stages of pre-clinical and clinical development for infectious diseases that disproportionately affect low- and middle-income countries, such as cholera, typhoid, chikungunya, shigella, salmonella, schistosomiasis, hepatitis E, HPV, COVID-19, and more. IVI developed the world’s first low-cost oral cholera vaccine, pre-qualified by the World Health Organization (WHO), and developed a new-generation typhoid conjugate vaccine that is currently under assessment for WHO PQ.

IVI is headquartered in Seoul, Republic of Korea with a Europe Regional Office in Sweden and Collaborating Centers in Ghana, Ethiopia, and Madagascar. 39 countries and the WHO are members of IVI, and the governments of the Republic of Korea, Sweden, India, Finland, and Thailand provide state funding. For more information, please visit



About Bio Farma

PT Bio Farma (Persero) referred to as “Bio Farma” is a state-owned vaccine and antisera manufacturer for humans in Indonesia. Celebrating its 133th anniversary, Bio Farma has through the years grown into a life science company of international recognition producing and distributing more than 3.2 billion doses of vaccines per year. Bio Farma is by far the largest vaccine manufacturer in Southeast Asia. The company supplies not only the needs for Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) in Indonesia but also the global market to more than 150 countries. Bio Farma’s ability to enter the global market is due to numerous of its vaccines attaining pre-qualification (PQ) from World Health Organization (WHO). The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and PATH have collaborated with Bio Farma to produce novel Oral Polio Vaccine type 2 (nOPV2) in support of Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI); it was the first vaccine granted the EUL designation from WHO in 2020.   

Bio Farma plays an important role in establishing a healthy nation in which its existence would be maintained for generations to come. With its philosophy of “Dedicated to improving Quality of Life” Bio Farma stands firm in devoting its efforts to Global Health Security.

In early 2020, a state-owned pharmaceutical holding company was established with Bio Farma as its parent company. The establishment of this holding company is aimed to strengthen self-reliance of the national pharmaceutical industry, and also to increase the availability of products supporting the pharmaceutical ecosystem. For more information refer to:







Aerie Em, Global Communications & Advocacy Manager
+82 2 881 1386 |


Bio Farma:
Iwan Setiawan, Corporate Secretary

+62 81321174856


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Financial Assets Are Running Out Of Steam For Now

Financial Assets Are Running Out Of Steam For Now

Authored by Simon White, Bloomberg macro strategist,

The impressive rally in stocks and…



Financial Assets Are Running Out Of Steam For Now

Authored by Simon White, Bloomberg macro strategist,

The impressive rally in stocks and bonds over the last week or two is likely to take a breather, with both assets now overbought in the short term.

Bonds have been deeply oversold since last year, but the latest rally to ~4.5% in the 10-year has taken Treasuries to only one standard deviation below their long-term mean growth level (back towards the range they normally inhabited before the extremes of the pandemic).

The stock rally in recent months has taken the S&P back to near its long-term average growth level of 10% on an annual basis.

Overall this leaves the stock-bond ratio a little overbought, so it may come off a little more.

But it is looking less likely the NBER will call a recession for most of next year, meaning the stock-bond ratio should resume its rise.

Not much from a data perspective is likely to move the dial for the balance of this week, with only initial jobless claims today and University of Michigan’s consumer survey on Friday.

In China overnight we got the latest deflation data. Focus was on the disappointing deflationary print in October’s CPI (-0.2% year-on-year versus -0.1% expected). But given the industry-orientated nature of China’s economy, it is in PPI, not CPI, we are first likely to see a recovery in China’s economy.

PPI’s slow recovery stalled (October’s was -2.6% versus -2.5% the previous month), but the rise in China’s bond yields anticipates PPI should continue rising in the coming months, as both fiscal and monetary stimulus take further effect.

Tellingly, China’s stock market did not sell off on the data, closing up on the day. As discussed Wednesday, Chinese stocks may be putting in a bottom.

Tyler Durden Thu, 11/09/2023 - 09:20

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