The Week In Numbers: Getting Ready For A Rate Hike

Some economists believe that the chance of an interest-rate hike in June is more likely than not. St Louis Fed president, James Bullard, said financial markets, which have been betting against a rate hike in June and later, were losing two goals to three. Bullard thinks that US rates could rise gradually and end at 3% by November 2018.

The prospects of a rate hike sent the US dollar to a 2-month high this week. Recent data showed that single-family home sales surged to a more than eight-year peak in April and prices hit a record high. One US dollar is worth S$1.38.

Curiously, a strong dollar should depress commodity prices. But traders are bullish on oil. The price of a barrel of the black stuff climbed above $50 briefly for the first time in seven months, before slipping back slightly. It seems that violence in Nigeria, export problems in Libya and wildfires in Canada have prompted chartists to revisit their squiggly lines in search of trends.

Car buyers in Singapore have been given an early Christmas present. The Monetary Authority of Singapore said buyers can borrow up to 70% of the car price, and pay it back over a maximum of seven years instead of five. The news could be music to the ears of motor dealer, Jardine Cycle & Carriage (SGX: C07).

And finally, shares in China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holdings crashed 7% after the company announced that it is being investigated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Alibaba did not provide details on the nature of the investigation.

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