The Asia Eight

Daily must-reads from the world’s most dynamic region

January 4, 2021

1 TOP STORY: 2021 already a volatile year for bitcoin

2 ATF BIG PICTURE: Crypto's all-conquering behemoth

3 ATF TV: How indexes influence China bond investors

4 ASIA MARKETS: HSI, CSI300 climb; Nikkei 225 falls

5 NEWS: China construction firm eyes NEV production

6 NEWS: Manufacturing still powers China economy

7 NEWS: Singapore GDP data offers reasons for cheer

8 COMMENT: The good, the bad and the SPACs

01 Top Story Bitcoin hits 2021 volatility

Wide price swing obscures fact that larger US investors are drawn by the virtual currency’s perceived inflation-hedging qualities and potential for quick gains, as well as expectations it will become a mainstream payments method

02 The ATF Big Picture BTC rise lifts all cryptos

03 ATF TV Indexes and China bonds

Jean-Charles Sambor of BNP Paribas explains the role indexes play in influencing decisions on China bond investments

04 Asia Markets

HSI climbs 0.9% to 27,472.81, CSI300 adds 0.9% to 3.502.96. Nikkei 225 falls 0.7% to 27,258.38

05 China's XCMG plans EV

Project with Tsingshan group plans to focus on research, development, production and sales of vehicles, batteries, electric motor control systems and other parts

06 Factories rebounding

Analysts believe momentum will continue to ease in coming months as fiscal support is partially withdrawn and exports drop back as major markets roll out their vaccines 

07 Singapore swings

City state's GDP hit a record-low for 2020, but the economy staged an impressive recovery in the fourth quarter that should continue at a decent pace in 2021 on back of inherent strengths and widespread vaccination

08 Comment

"There are probably 50-plus SPACs that don’t have proper human capital in place and will not only face full redemption but may pull out many other not-so-commonplace salvage tactics that will leave many in their wake. But this is part of building a rating backdrop to properly price risk and understand forward valuation.”

Brett McGonegal, Chairman of Capital Link International & Founder of Asia Times Financial