Archive for the 'Economics' Category

There is a kerfuffle about the definition of foreign direct investment, due to the former PM Najib Razak’s messaging and the general public’s unfamiliarity of it. I strongly believe Najib actually understands the nuances of FDI but he is navigating through the somewhat complex definition to score political points with half-truths. Truly, you need to […]

The 2019 first quarter GDP will be out on May 16. Since we live in an age of trigger warning, let us play the game first: The consensus views are that growth for the quarter will be weak, possibly in the lower half of the 4.0%-5.0% range. Some are even betting on something lower. There […]

When the Malaysian consumer price index dipped 0.7% an 0.4% year-on-year in January and February this year, there were hysterical claims that Malaysia was experiencing deflation, never mind that deflation is characterized as persistent decline in prices rather than temporary dip. And never mind that the bad deflation is one associated with decline in demand, […]

Recently, there was a column complaining about taxes on the middle class, claiming the middle class is being overtaxed.[1] The origin of the complaint is easily understood because a slew of measures have announced by the government and those new taxes include departure levy and the imposition of sales and service tax on some digital […]

Now that the dust has settled somewhat and the conditions are now more conducive for rational discussion, I would like to discuss about the nature of the debt and liabilities of the Malaysian government. This an non-accountant view, so pardon the terminology. I know the current government’s approach in the matter has diverged from the […]

The Department of Statistics will be releasing the 2018 fourth quarter GDP statistics tomorrow. I was wrong about expecting the 2018 third quarter GDP growth to quicken based on the faster consumption growth. Consumption growth did rise spectacularly and as stated earlier, there was no austerity. But external pressures prevented overall GDP growth from going […]

I rarely use plastic straws for my drinks. I am not religious about it but if I could help it, I would avoid it. I think I started doing so since at least 2010-2011, partly to allay my guilt for breaking a rule I made up when I was in college: use less paper. That […]

The Department of Statistics will release the third quarter GDP figures on November 17. To celebrate… Before you play the game yet again, here is some background. The 2Q2018 GDP grew slowly at 4.5% YoY, largely due to an unexpected major gas supply disruption in west Malaysia. The relatively weak growth was enough for many […]

The term austerity is gaining currency in some Malaysian circles. The press and several brokers have mentioned it to describe what they think the Malaysian government is doing in light of various renegotiation or cancellation of megaprojects. Austerity is a sexy term to pull in some eyeballs but really, I think the term has been […]

I have been extremely busy and I have just realized the last time I updated this blog was just slightly more than 3 months ago. I still want to keep this going, except this time, no real commentary. But the second quarter was quite a quarter, externally and especially domestically. These events had added significant […]

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