Indian Economy Stalling — Making It the New China (Reuters)
India’s economic growth for 2012 is projected to be between 5.5% and 6% — the slowest rate in a decade. According to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singth, if hard-to-implement political reforms are not carried through with more urgency, the slowdown will continue. Singh’s aggressive reforms include opening up Indian airline and retail to foreign investment and purchase for the first time ever. These measures are meeting with stern resistance from government hardliners.
Emerging Market Stocks at Six-Week High (Bloomberg)
Led by gains from technology and financial companies, emerging markets are at the highest they’ve been in six weeks. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index (XEM) climbed to 1008.78 earlier today in Hong Kong — its highest mark since mid October. In addition, confidence in China’s economic rebound is the highest it has been in a year, as reflected by Standard & Poor’s claim the country had “excellent growth prospects.” Even smaller emerging markets are picking up steam as exemplified by Thailand’s SET Index, which rose 0.8% to the highest since May 1996.
Goodbye Brick & Mortar & Paper (deadline.com)
Barnes & Noble (BKS) shares slid 6.5% in early-hours trading following the company’s earnings report which came in with revenue slightly lower than expectations. The nation’s leading bookstore chain was expected to have a stronger showing after the liquidation of Border’s last year. BKS continues to lose market share on the Internet — and from its brick and mortar buildings — to online rivals such as Amazon (AMZN). Figures like these don’t bode well for the future, either.