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QFINANCE: financial news roundup (January 17 - 23, 2014)

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Each week brings you some of the biggest news stories from the past five days in finance and business – essential reading to keep you up to date with the latest topics.
If you have any views on how we can improve this service or new areas you would like to see covered, please do not hesitate to contact us at

Thursday January 23

A UK interest rate rise is “still some way off”, a senior Bank of England director told the BBC. With inflation back at the target rate of 2%, expectations of an interest rate rise are increasing – however, the Bank has said that it would not consider this unless unemployment falls to 7% or lower.

Related article: A “monetarist” case for UK optimism

While South Korea and Japan’s manufacturing and exports sectors had a positive start to 2014, Reuters has reported that China, the largest of the three, is “struggling to regain momentum”. Asia’s top export powers expect to get a lift from Eurozone and US recovery this year, and better global growth in general, according to the article.

Wednesday January 22

Chief executive of global bond giant Pimco, Mohamed El-Erian, has resigned, the Daily Telegraph reported. No reason was given for his departure, which is scheduled for March, but he will continue to work as a consultant for Pimco’s parent company, Allianz SE.

Related definition: The Uncertain Future of Central Bank Supremacy, by Mohamed El-Erian

Global oil consumption is expected to increase by 1.3 million barrels per day (bpd), the International Energy Agency (IEA) has announced. This is 50,000 bpd higher than the previous forecast, the Guardian reported.

Tuesday January 21

Ireland's five-year borrowing costs have dropped to the lowest level in the state’s history, the Telegraph reported. This follows Moody’s restoration of the country’s credit rating to investment grade, and investors are anticipating further upgrades in the coming months.

Related article: Can Ireland escape from the bank debt burden

Euro corporate bond sales from non-European companies have “more than tripled” since 2011, the FT reported.

Monday January 20

Deutsche Bank reported a surprising net loss of €965 million for the fourth quarter of 2013, the BBC reported. Litigation costs and restructuring have been a large burden, the bank declared, and have weighed heavily on its financial performance.

Related article: Bill to banks for past misdeeds reaches eye-watering proportions

Silicon Valley has launched measures described by the Guardian as a “last-ditch attempt” to “close down international loopholes” which allow companies to pay less tax in the UK and elsewhere.

Friday January 17

The Chinese banking sector is being put to the test with the news that ICBC, the “world’s biggest bank by assets”, has refused to issue the $500 million needed to bail out its investors, the FT reported.

Related article: Global Ambitions: China’s big banks

Come back next week for another report on the world of business and finance.

Event of the Week

3rd Edition Model Risk - January 27-29 - San Francisco, CA

This GFMI 3rd Edition Model Risk Conference will be a two-and-a-half day event that not only will look at banks, but will address model risk management in other financial institutions such as asset managers and mortgage associations.
Attendees will come together to minimize model risk under the new Basel III regime, benchmark with peers to improve model validation and learn from industry leaders about how to maximize scarce resources to develop effective model risk management practices today.

Contact or visit the event website.

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Tags: Allianz SE , asset , bailout , Bank of England , borrowing , China , corporate bond , Deutsche Bank , euro , eurozone , export , ICBC , IEA , interest rate , International Energy Agency , investment grade , Ireland , Japan , litigation , loss , manufacturing , Mohamed El-Erian , Moody's , oil , Pimco , silicon valley , South Korea , tax , UK , unemployment , US
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