The big event this week for investors in Chinese stocks will be whether index compiler MSCI includes mainland-listed stocks in its closely followed indexes.
The South China Morning Posthas taken a look at the decision, but more importantly, whether China really cares. Here's a little taste:
While it may be the best chance so far for China to get the nod, many analysts anticipate the real impact will be minor as the resulting capital inflows will be limited in the short term.
A number of funds and investment banks are now favourable on MSCI's acceptance of A shares, including Robeco, AXA Investment Managers, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, and China International Capital Corp (CICC).
However, Zhang Xiaojun, a spokesman for the China Securities Regulatory Commission, said Friday that "the pace of China's reform" will not be affected by MSCI's decision.
"China will be glad to see it happen, if MSCI decides to include A shares. But regardless of the result, the direction and pace of China's capital market reform and opening up will not change," he said at a press conference.
Singapore property stocks have been on fire this year, with half of the top 10 performers in the Straits Times Index, which is up 12%, being property-related plays. Bloomberg has a good story looking at what is driving the rally in the Lion City :
With an expected pickup in real estate following the easing of housing curbs, developers are expected to be the bright spot in Singapore equities as gains in the city-state's stocks may be limited for the rest of the year.
"The residential property market has seen a marked improvement in sentiment," said Desmond Loh at JPMorgan Asset Management, who helps manage the second-best performing Singapore fund this year. Developers that have started buying land for new projects stand to benefit, he said, adding that vacancy rates are expected to decline over the next few years.
The city-state's government sparked renewed interest in the Singapore real estate market after it rolled back some curbs in March following a 3 1/2-year slump in home prices, the longest stretch of declines since the data was first published in 1975. In the same month, housing sales surged to the highest in nearly four years as developers sold more than twice the number of homes compared with the previous year, government data showed.
Amazon is monopolizing the headlines after its acquisition of Whole Foods, but it's important to remember there's a whole world out there beyond the U.S. Richard Liu, CEO of Chinese e-commerce play JD.com, is featured in a CNBC story where he explains how drones could transform the logistics of delivering goods to customers in China :
Using robotics for parcel delivery could help to bring down costs and transform the logistics industry, according to the founder of China's second-largest e-commerce player.
Speaking exclusively to CNBC, Richard Liu, founder and CEO of JD.com, said drone technology, in particular, could allow retailers like JD.com to offer delivery services in out-of-the-way locations, without incurring high logistics costs.
"Today we have over 70,000 delivery men working on the street. It's high cost, you know," he said. "If you can use robotics to deliver a parcel, the cost will be very low."