Tuesday's best web covers BP's unsuccessful attempt to secure a dividend from TNK-BP, the Argentinian economy, ASEAN politics, Jim O'neill's latest comments, and the global gold supply.
[caption align="alignright" caption="In Argentina, YPF is never far away from discussions of nationalism"] [/caption]
Best web: The relationship between business partners AAR and BP ( BP , quote ) has been a bit icy. News BP is requesting $1 billion worth of dividends was met with little fanfare by AAR, a group which represents several Russian billionaires. It is unsurprising AAR would object given they want to purchase BP's share of the venture. They would much prefer to see that money stay in the company to be reinvested or doled out to their own stakeholders at some later date. However, some analysts think this may just be a negotiating tactic to get BP to sell its share to AAR instead of Rosneft.
Best web: There is concern the Argentinian economy ( ARGT , quote ) is about to take another turn for the worse. Currently the government forecasts growth for the year to remain above 5%. Inflation is somewhere between 10% and 25%. There is a real lack of dollars in the economy, exacerbating economic difficulties. Because the country defaulted and is now nationalizing companies like Yacimientos Petrolíferos Fiscales ( YPF , quote ), foreign investors are extremely reluctant to loan money to the government. Given the difficulty of getting reliable statistics from the government, it is hard to say whether Argentina will be able to pull through this phase without enduring another bout of hyperinflation or negative growth.
Karim Raslin of The Star Online argues for stronger unity among ASEAN nations
Best web: Pointing out the undeniable fact that ASEAN nations ( ASEA , quote ) are stuck in the middle of a very sensitive diplomatic situation, Karim Raslin wonders what can be done to remedy the South China Sea dilemma. China has been making larger and more aggressive claims over islands in the South China Sea, while bordering countries -- Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia and the Philippines -- have been attempting to regain control of these waters. Raslin argues that there exist two choices: negotiate with China individually, or stick together as a group and negotiate on behalf of the collective. He believes that without quick action, the ASEAN countries will risk "becoming the (next) geo-political faceoff between China and the U.S."
Sean Geary of Emerging Money breaks down Jim O'Neill's latest comments
Best web: Jim O'Neill put out a new note attempting to explain China's unresponsive markets despite recent macroeconomic data and comments from ECB president Mario Draghi. Basically the author concludes there is not enough Chinese retail investor interest in the Shanghai Composite. Rather, those who are able to are opting to invest in other instruments overseas. Until this can be turned around, the Chinese market ( FXI , quote ) will likely remain undervalued compared to other emerging economies.
Nidhi Nath Srinivas of The Economic Times of India reports North America will have to increase gold production to supply Chinese and Indian demand
Best web: Demand for gold ( GLD , quote ) in emerging countries like India ( INDY , quote ) and China continues to soar. Until recently, China was a net exporter of the resource. Today that is no longer the case. Over 50% of new gold resources have been found in North America. In the short term, this means Indian gold demands will be much more difficult and expensive to fulfill than before. The price of gold could move even more depending on what global central banks decide to do in the upcoming days.