Capital Markets

Long-term interest rates in Japan have plunged to record lows.

Pursuing higher returns

Japan banks, insurers shunning domestic government bonds

TOKYO -- The sharp decline in long-term interest rates has prompted domestic banks and life insurers to rethink their practice of buying large amounts of Japanese government bonds and opt instead for riskier instruments such as stocks and foreign bon...

  • Impact of deserted market

    JGB yields more volatile as banks, insurers stay away

    TOKYO -- As banks and life insurers avoid purchasing Japanese government bonds, the thinning ranks of buyers are making the market prone to wild fluctuations. The yield on newly issued 10-year JGBs spiked from 0.225% to 0.265% at one point Tuesda...

  • S&P's outlook on Asia

    Malaysia likely to retain sovereign rating despite plummeting oil prices

    SINGAPORE -- Sovereign ratings of nations in the Asia-Pacific region are expected to stay largely stable for the next one to two years, credit rating agency Standard & Poor's says in a recent report. Most Asian countries, being oil importers, benefit...

  • JGBs soften as Tokyo stocks soar

    TOKYO (Dow Jones) -- Long-term Japanese government bonds and futures softened on Tuesday as Tokyo share prices soared. Traders said that a rise in stocks and a fall in bonds overseas overnight, as well as a gains in Tokyo share prices on hopes fo...

  • S&P downgrades Russia's sovereign credit rating to 'junk'

    MOSCOW (Reuters) -- Ratings agency S&P cut Russia's sovereign credit rating to junk status on Monday, bringing it below investment grade for the first time in a decade. Warning of difficult times ahead for Russia's economy, S&P said it had cut th...

  • Fallout from ECB easing

    Negative bond yields ripple through market

    LONDON -- The European Central Bank's decision to purchase government debt has reassured investors of the reliability of these assets, sustaining their popularity even as yields fall into negative territory. Investors would lose money if they hol...

  • Seeking stable rates

    China's central bank pumps cash into market

    SHANGHAI -- The People's Bank of China injected funds into the money market on Thursday as it sought to improve liquidity for banks and businesses ahead of the Chinese New Year holiday. The central bank carried out its first reverse-repurchase op...

  • ECB to decide on bond-buying plan for reviving euro zone economy

    FRANKFURT (Reuters) -- The European Central Bank is poised to announce a plan on Thursday to buy government bonds, resorting to its last big policy tool for breathing life into the flagging euro zone economy and fending off deflation. Market expe...

  • Chain reaction

    Interest rates keep falling the world over

    TOKYO -- Speculation that the European Central Bank will begin quantitative easing has sent long-term interest rates in key countries even lower. Long-term rates have already been declining on the view that inflation will remain low globally beca...

  • Supporting economic growth

    Bank of Japan may extend program encouraging lending

    TOKYO -- The Bank of Japan will consider extending a program designed to provide low-interest loans for financial institutions that boosted lending, in order to supplement monetary easing and stimulate demand for funds among businesses. At a mone...

  • Under pressure

    Japan's central bankers mull diminishing returns from bond buying

    TOKYO -- Some in the Bank of Japan are growing anxious about continuing its massive purchases of government bonds, confronted with the program's negative side effects. Pressure from the financial industry is strengthening by the day, according to...

  • Falling interest rates

    Japan shifting to long-term borrowing

    TOKYO -- The government will ramp up issuance of ultralong bonds in fiscal 2015 to facilitate the rollover from medium-term debt to 20-, 30- or 40-year bonds amid low interest rates. Japanese government bond offerings, including new issues as wel...

  • Oil plunge

    Falling crude prices sending interest rates even lower

    TOKYO -- The plunge in crude oil prices has been slowing inflation in industrialized nations, which in turn is pushing their interest rates to historic lows. The yield on newly issued 10-year Japanese government bonds, the benchmark for long-term...

  • Fiscal 2015 budget

    Japan to rely less on debt for spending

    TOKYO -- Japan is planning a record 96.34 trillion yen ($809 billion) in government spending for fiscal 2015, but a rise in tax revenue will help bring down the nation's reliance on debt to a six-year low. The general-account budget, to be approv...

  • Japanese government bonds

    Investors still eager for inflation protection

    TOKYO -- An auction of inflation-indexed government bonds Thursday drew the most bidding since Japan's Finance Ministry brought back these securities in 2013, showing that demand for them remains strong despite slowing price growth. Investors mad...

  • ASEAN bourses

    Stock Exchange of Thailand top for third year

    BANGKOK - Despite political unrest and other woes, the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) in 2014 recorded the highest average daily trading value among ASEAN bourses for a third consecutive year. Trading rallied on the SET and its benchmark index ...

  • Itsuo Toshima

    New year begins with a crude awakening

    TOKYO -- When crude oil prices were above $100 per barrel, economists warned they could cramp global growth. High-flying oil prices, which reflected huge geopolitical risks in the Middle East, also depressed stock markets. Speculative moves by ho...

  • Debt market worries

    Global corporate bond issuance hits record $7 trillion in 2014

    TOKYO -- Money is flowing into the corporate sector on the back of ultraloose monetary policy worldwide. The value of outstanding corporate bonds topped $7 trillion, a record. Companies find it easy to borrow money at low interest rates, even if ...

  • William Barkshire

    Chinese financial markets set for landmark 2015

    Chinese financial markets had an important 2014. The highlight was undoubtedly the November launch of Hong Kong-Shanghai Stock Connect, a new cross-border investment channel. However, 2015 will be an even more significant year for Chinese market libe...

  • Change in the air

    Japan to push for offshore yuan bonds

    TOKYO -- The Japanese government will convene a meeting in January to prepare for negotiations with China over the offering of yuan-denominated bonds in Japan, a move deemed necessary for making Tokyo an international financial center. The govern...