Asia-Pacific stocks mostly trade higher ahead of US inflation report

Cryptocurrencies trade higher even as Coinbase announces layoffs

Cryptocurrencies rose slightly after crypto firm Coinbase announced plans to cut 20% of its workforce as it seeks to preserve cash during the crypto market downturn.

Bitcoin last traded up 1.55% at $17,459.63 according to Coin Metrics. Ether gained 1% to $1,337.85.

Other digital coins like Cronos and Cardano also advanced gains.

CEO Brian Armstrong said there was “no way” to cut expenses and increase his chances of “doing well in all scenarios” without reducing the number of employees.

—Lee Ying Shan, Kate Rooney

Philippines will return to as low as 2% by 2024, says finance secretary

Inflation in the Philippines is expected to return to the government’s target range in two years, Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said.

Diokno said he was confident that average inflation for 2023 would be between 2.5% and 4.5% before falling back to 2% to 4% by next year, he said. to CNBC on the sidelines of the Asian Financial Forum in Hong Kong.

Headline inflation in the Philippines still remains high, rising to 8.1% in December 2022 from 8% the previous month, according to government data.

The governor of the Central Bank of the Philippines, Felipe Medalla, announced on Monday that interest rates would be raised by another 25 to 50 basis points in February. Diokno added that he expects the central bank to pivot this year.

“It’s also possible that we will scale back at some point this year because we might go over the top,” he said.

— Charmaine Jacob

Australian consumer prices rose 7.3% in November on rising housing and food prices

Australia’s consumer price index rose 7.3% year-on-year in November, according to data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, a sign that inflationary pressures have yet to ease.

The figure is in line with Reuters expectations and above last month’s reading of 6.9%.

Housing, food and transportation were among the main elements that fueled the rise, according to the statement.

Elsewhere, Australia reported a 1.4% sales increase in November compared to a month ago, supported by Black Friday sales.

— Lee Ying Shan

CNBC Pro: This Global ETF Is The Only Fund That Has Recorded Gains Every Year Over The Past Decade

The only stock ETF to have a positive return every year for the past decade has been revealed by CNBC Pro.

It is the only fund of nearly 7,000 equity ETFs globally reviewed by CNBC Pro to not have a single year of negative returns between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2022.

It also offered investors a compound annual growth rate of 14% over the same period, which is significantly more than broader index funds, according to Koyfin data.

CNBC Pro subscribers can learn more here.

—Ganesh Rao

South Korea’s unemployment rate hits 11-month high

South Korea’s unemployment rate in December soared 3.3%, marking the highest in 11 months, according to government data.

The reading is higher compared to the November figure of 2.9%

Despite the higher unemployment rate, the total number of people employed in 2022 stood at 28.089 million, up from 816,000 a year ago.

– Lee Ying Shan, Jihye Lee

CNBC Pro: ‘An expensive mistake: Citi says stop hoarding money – and reveals two areas to invest in

Investors endured a difficult 2022 as stocks and bonds fell amid broader market turmoil.

While many have sought refuge in the relative safety of silver, Citi says now is the time to put it to work and named two ways to deploy it for higher returns.

Pro subscribers can learn more here.

— Zavier Ong

Fed should remain politically independent while fighting inflation, says Powell

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Tuesday stressed the need for the central bank to be free from political influence as it tackles persistently high inflation.

In a speech to Sweden’s Riksbank, Powell noted that stabilizing prices requires making tough decisions that can be politically unpopular.

“Price stability is the foundation of a healthy economy and provides the public with immeasurable benefits over time. But restoring price stability when inflation is high may require measures that are not popular in the short term, as we raise interest rates to slow the economy. the president said in prepared remarks.

“The lack of direct political control over our decisions allows us to take these necessary steps without considering short-term political factors,” he added.

—Jeff Cox

Copper hits highest price since June

Copper reached a peak not seen since June.

The metal settled just under 1.3% at $4.0775. It posted a high of $4.0835, which was its most expensive since hitting $4.1160 on June 17.

Copper has gained around 7% since the start of 2023.

—Gina Francolla, Alex Harring

Coinbase will lay off 20% of its workforce

Coinbase shares gained 6% after the crypto exchange operator announced plans to cut its workforce by 20% in a bid to cut costs.

The layoffs will impact 950 jobs and mark the second round of cuts at the company in recent months. Coinbase laid off 18% of its workforce in June ahead of a possible recession and crypto winter, saying it grew “too quickly” during the bull market.

Crypto markets have come under pressure following the collapse of FTX, one of the biggest operators in the industry.

Coinbase said the new round of layoffs would reduce its operating expenses by 25% for the quarter ending March, according to a new regulatory filing.

—Kate Rooney, Samantha Subin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *