Emerging Markets

Do Emerging Markets Have You Sea-Sick?

In the past year, investors have seen emerging markets thrive, plunge, re-emerge and re-decline. Despite the volatile short-term story, the fundamentals of the emerging market assets remain strong.

Last fall, the Wall Street Journal reported that rich nations were “losing emerging markets motor.” Reportedly, the woes of developing economies were ricocheting back to advanced ones and hurting their fragile recovery.

South Africa's Land Reform Program is Failing

What is going wrong in South Africa’s land reform programme, and how can its failings be addressed?

In 22 years, land reform has barely altered the agrarian structure of South Africa, and has had only minor effects on rural livelihoods.

BRICS Need to Act Their Age

The rise of non-Western emerging powers like Brazil, Russia, India and China is a reality that has shaped South Africa’s foreign policy under President Jacob Zuma.

Foreign policy under Zuma has been characterised by his country’s growing closeness with these four countries. The leaders of these countries meet more often than they did in the past. This is the case in the context of their bilateral relationships as well as part of the Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa (BRICS) grouping.

Emerging Markets Vulnerable to FOMC, UK Referendum Outcomes

EM ended last week on a soft note.  The icing on the cake was Yellen’s speech Friday afternoon, which confirmed the more hawkish stance seen in the FOMC minutes and other recent official comments.  We warn that with the FOMC meeting and Brexit vote next month, markets are likely to remain volatile and that risk assets (such as EM) are the most vulnerable.

An Emerging Markets Status Update

In the EM equity space, India (+5.3%), Taiwan (+4.1%), and Hong Kong (+3.6%) have outperformed this week, while Colombia (-1.5%), Qatar (-0.9%), and China (-0.5%) have underperformed. To put this in better context, MSCI EM rose 2.9% this week while MSCI DM rose 1.9%.

South Africa's Finance Minister Needs Your Support

Advocate Shaun Abrahams, South Africa’s National Director of Public Prosecutions, has stepped into some torrid waters.  At a recent media briefing, he dealt with two issues: the first was his announcement that the National Prosecuting Authority will seek leave to appeal a High Court judgment that the matter of the reinstatement of corruption charges against President Jacob Zuma should be reconsidered.

No particular surprise there.

What's Really Going On in Africa's Middle Class?

Since the turn of the century, the middle classes of the global South have taken centre stage in economic policy circles. Animated by diversification of some countries’ economies, a handful of economists from international agencies and think-tanks began a discourse that then entered African and development studies.

Emerging Markets' Rocky Road

EM had another rocky week, but managed to end on a slightly firmer note Friday.  Market repricing of Fed tightening risk was the big driver last week, and that could carry over into this week.  There are several Fed speakers in the days ahead, capped off with Fed chief Yellen on Friday.

Several EM central banks meet this week, including Israel, Turkey, Hungary, and Colombia.  There is some risk of a dovish surprise from Turkey, while Hungary is expected to continue easing.  Colombia is an outlier, with high inflation seen leading to another 25 bp hike.