09  January – 13 January

09 January

India’s small service companies cut a third of their jobs and lost half of their revenues in the month after demonetisation, according to a report, giving an early sense of the economic upheaval caused by the government’s radical move.

The British pound has slid to its lowest level against the dollar since last October after Prime Minister Theresa May said in a weekend interview that there was no prospect of Britain keeping “bits of” EU membership. Her comments were the first on Brexit this year and renew fears of many that the UK could be heading for a hard Brexit in which control of immigration ranked higher than maintaining access to Europe’s single market.

China and Taiwan led a record foreign acquisition spree in Japan last year, as traditional barriers to larger-scale inbound dealmaking fell and Asia increased its dominance as the world’s biggest buyer.

Commodity stocks fell in Australia after the government said high iron ore prices seen in 2016 driven by Chinese demand were not expected to last.

10 January

The British pound slid in value for a second day over lack of clarity over Brexit. The currency dropped to a three-month low on Tuesday — a day after it plunged 1.3 per cent against the dollar and the euro. Traders blamed the weakness on uncertainty over Prime Minister Theresa May’s post-Brexit plans. Mrs May has rounded on the media for inflaming fears Britain will crash out of the EU without a deal to stay in Europe’s common market. But some members of her own party say that she should reveal more about her position.

Chinese regulators have taken steps to ensure bitcoin is not used to facilitate capital flight, even as investors in the cryptocurrency say they doubt it is being used to transfer large amounts of cash out of China.

Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce giant, is spearheading a HK$19.8bn ($2.6bn) deal to privatise a leading department store operator in China in which it took a stake in 2014.

Oil prices slid towards $55 a barrel on Monday as fears mounted that funds betting on a price rally have started to pare back positions, with traders waiting for more evidence that Opec supply cuts will be substantial enough to balance the market.

11 January

Record numbers of Chinese travellers visited South Korea last year, with the pull of food and shopping trumping politics even after Beijing’s warnings that tourism would be hit by fallout from Seoul’s decision to install a US ballistic missile shield.

Chinese investors spent four times as much on acquisitions in the EU last year as European companies did in China, according to new figures that will inflame an already heated debate about growing imbalances between the world’s two largest markets.

Asian consumers have a huge appetite for it. Private equity funds find it irresistible. And billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates is investigating how it can help feed the world’s poor. Australian beef has never been so popular or in such demand.

Chipotle extended its 2017 share price rally on Tuesday as glimmers of hope emerged that the US burrito chain may finally be placing its food safety crisis behind it.

12 January

Pakistan’s Arabian Sea port of Gwadar is perched on the world’s energy jugular. Sea lanes nearby carry most of China’s oil imports; any disruption could choke the world’s second-largest economy.

US President Barack Obama has fired a parting shot at Beijing with his administration launching a challenge to one of the competitive pillars of the Chinese economy just a week before leaving office.

The NBA has said team franchises can continue to increase in value as the US league expects to score multibillion-dollar global digital rights deals, even as viewers drift away from watching sport on television.

Merck & Co shares rose 5.4 per cent on Wednesday, after it got a welcome boost from US regulators in its battle to lead the way on a next-generation group of cancer drugs.

13 January

South Korea’s central bank has held interest rates steady in January, in line with economists’ expectations.

Indonesia has relaxed a controversial ban on the export of unprocessed minerals in a policy flip-flop that highlights the financial pressures and unpredictable investment climate in Southeast Asia’s biggest economy.

Demand for PCs fell for the fifth year in a row in 2016, as computer makers struggled in an increasingly mobile, connected world.

Premier Oil failed to publish the full terms of a refinancing deal in a trading statement on Thursday but insisted it would be agreed within weeks.