The Government Shutdown in America is now the longest ever recorded. Theresa May is under pressure to coordinate a Brexit deal. Macron is trying to resolve the “yellow vests” protests. And China’s economic growth is set to lower in 2019.
- This week, Theresa May’s Brexit deal was rejected in a record-breaking vote. However she did survive a vote of no confidence, now she is in the process of rehashing a Brexit deal that her parliament is willing to accept but there is no telling what the EU will do – this all with ten weeks left to the deadline.
- Davos this year will be missing key players. Donald Trump will not attend citing his government shutdown, Theresa May will not be attending due to the Brexit crisis, Emmanuel Macron will not be attending to focus on the “yellow vests” protests in France, and Xi Jinping is sending his deputy.
- In the US, the longest government shutdown in history is reaching its one-month mark. Nancy Pelosi, The House Speaker, has ramped up the pressure asking Trump to postpone his State of the Union Address, Trump responded by pulling Pelosi’s military aircraft, an hour before she was going to board, to war-torn Afghanistan.
- Two stories broke this week regarding Trump besides from the government shutdown. It was revealed that after Trump fired James Comey, the FBI investigated Trump as a potential Russian asset. It was also revealed that the President went to lengths to conceal details of meetings he had with Vladimir Putin, going as far to take his translator’s notes and not allowing him to discuss the meetings with other officials from Trump’s administration.
- China’s economic growth to set to slow to 6.3% in 2019 as domestic demand weakens and exports are hit by U.S. tariffs.
- Zimbabwe erupted in protests this week, with many people being recorded as dead. The protests were initiated by fuel prices doubling in a day; now there has been a severe crackdown on protestors with over 600 people being arrested. This is after inflation rose to 42.1% in December 2018. This article from BizNews paints a very scary picture of the state of the country.
- The rand has performed well over this last week along with other emerging market currencies as renewed risk-taking boosted the market. Today the rand is at R13.776 to the US dollar.
- The South African Reserve Bank kept rates unchanged this week, and defended its mandate of price stability as the ANC said in its 2019 election manifesto that monetary policy should also “take into account other objectives, such as employment creation and economic growth”.
- The Zondo Commission has started up again in dramatic fashion. Bosasa’s ex-COO, Angelo Agrizzi, has laid it bear in his testimony. Follow this link to three bombshells that Agrizzi revealed on his first day of testimony. Today the commission’s secretary was implicated, follow the link for more on this.
Source: Dynasty, Stanlib, Prescient, Daily Maverick, Moneyweb, Reuters, RMB, Aljazeera, and Bloomberg Markets, etc