The Week In Numbers: Sweeping Changes At Singapore Post

The US Federal Reserve has erred on the side of caution, yet again. With a possible window of opportunity to increase rates for the first time this year, it chose to point to uncertainty over the Brexit referendum. One of the reasons that Janet Yellen cited for keeping rates at between 0.25% and 0.5% was because Brexit could have consequences for economic and financial decisions in global financial markets. What excuse will the Fed come up with next?

The decision makers at the Bank of Japan also chose to sit on their hands. It left interest rates unchanged at -0.1%. Haruhiko Kuroda, the governor of the Bank of Japan put to one side his repeated comments that he would take action “without hesitation” if necessary. Clearly he doesn’t think that the yen at 105 against the US dollar is necessary.

Economists reckon that the Singapore economy might only grow 1.8% this year, rather than their forecast of 1.9% just three months ago in March. But they aren’t done just yet. They think that 1.8% might still be too optimistic.

China’s A-shares have once again been excluded from the MSCI emerging market index. The next review date will be in June 2017. However, MSCI said an announcement before then is possible, should there be significant positive developments ahead of the next meeting.

There have been dramatic changes at the board level at Singapore Post (SGX: S08). Gone will be 18-year-long board tenures. The logistics company will now cap tenures at nine years, which is in line with its parent company Singtel (SGX: Z74).

And finally, a British farmer has employed the services of four pigs to predict the outcome of the Brexit referendum next week. Racing for the “Remain” camp were “David Hameron” and “George Hogsborne”, while the “Leave” camp were represented by “Boar-is Johnson” and “Iain Duncan Sniff”. In the first heat the “Remain” camp won by 3 votes to 1. Truffles in store for the “Leave” camp?