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30 July 2008 

The second quarter of 2008 marked yet another extended period of consolidation for the British pound as the currency simply range traded between 1.94 and 1.98 for the majority of the time. In fact, the currency ended little changed from the start of April, and for that matter, the beginning of the year!

The second quarter started out with a bang as the Bank of England cut the Bank Rate by 25 basis points to 5.00 percent amidst signs of distress in the financial sector and a housing-led economic slowdown in the UK. However, the scenario rapidly became more complex for the UK's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) as time went on, as consumer price inflation started to accelerate on the back of surging oil and food costs.

As the third quarter begins, the Bank of England is still grappling with these issues, and the future of the British pound will continue to depend upon whether the MPC opts to focus more on the economy and the financial markets or rising price pressures. 

SINGAPORE GDP 2Q 2008 EASED TO 1.9% DOWN FROM 6.9% IN 1Q 2008 Print E-mail

July 10 (Bloomberg) -- Singapore's economy expanded at the slowest pace in five years in the second quarter, as manufacturers cut production amid declining orders and accelerating inflation crimped spending.

Gross domestic product increased 1.9 percent from a year earlier, after expanding a revised 6.9 percent in the first three months of 2008, the trade ministry said in a statement today. That was lower than the 3.2 percent median estimate of 18 economists in a Bloomberg News survey.

A slowdown in the U.S., Asia's largest export market, has hurt demand for Chartered Semiconduct Manufacturing Ltd chips and Hyundai Motor Co. cars, damping growth in the region. Surging fuel and food costs, which have pushed Singapore's inflation to a 26-year high, have also left consumers with less to spend.

Traded Endowment Back in demand as investors seek out stable returns amidst market downturn Print E-mail

one thing positive about UK Traded Endowment is that UK is "happily" keeping this investment to themselves. They are not trying to come to Asia or Singapore to market this product.

What does that tell you? It tells you that they already have sufficient demand back in UK and they do NOT really need or want to market to people in Asia or Singapore.

We had to literally approach them to almost "plead" with them to allow people in Singapore to invest in UK Traded Endowment.

Below is some latest news on UK Traded Endowment:

Traded endowment policies bounce back in favour
By Ellen Kelleher

Published: May 16 2008 18:39 | Last updated: May 16 2008 18:39

Buying traded endowment policies, or Teps, on the second-hand market is in fashion again as investors seek out stable returns amid the market downturn.

The advantage of buying Teps is that they reach maturity at a set date, which is useful, for example, if you need to pay school fees in a certain year. They also offer stable annualised returns of as much as seven to 10 per cent on your initial investment. Another perk is they can be included in your self-invested-personal pension.

When you buy a Tep, you are purchasing an endowment policy in the middle of its life cycle.


June 23 (Bloomberg) -- Singapore's consumer prices rose at a slower-than-expected pace last month, reducing the need for the central bank to allow further gains in the currency to rein in inflation.

The consumer price index jumped 7.5 percent from a year earlier, matching April's pace that was a 26-year high, the Department of Statistics said today. That's lower than all 13 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey of economists, where the median forecast was a 7.8 percent increase. Prices rose 0.2 percent from April.

``Inflation will probably moderate in the second half of the year,'' said an economist at United Overseas Bank Ltd. in Singapore. ``That will allow the central bank to remain on hold rather than tighten monetary policy at its next review in October.''  


U.S. economy likely won't improve until summer 2009, with more layoffs and higher inflation looming, according to a survey of CFOs.

18 June 2008

NEW YORK ( -- Economic woes are expected to continue until at least mid-2009, and things may get worse before they get better, according to a quarterly survey of chief financial officers.

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