Checking in on China (finally)
"The Onion on the Great Fall of China: Shoddy Chinese-Made Stock Market Collapses," tweets journalist Louisa Lim, sharing a link that, while a parody, still manages to tie together the current Chinese market crisis, Tianjin explosion and overall corruption there in one perfect post. "Trust the @TheOnion to place current crisis in context," advises Omer Benjakob with Haaretz. "When comedy and reality blur into one," reflects NYT's Martin Fackler.
In actual, non-parody news articles, Bloomberg News reveals China just lowered its interest rates for the fifth time since November, ramping up efforts to buoy its stock market and economic slowdown (at 2,400+ shares). "Yang Ma, or Big Mama, comes to the party," WSJ Asia finance reporter Enda Curran bills it. The big issue here, however, is that China’s economy is a total black box. "Nobody knows how much #China's economy is slowing, and that's the problem," explains economics reporter Pedro Costa. Strangely, the Chinese government’s current priority right now seems to be the success of a World War II military parade.
Cue the takes featuring crisis expert Kenneth Rogoff, whose warnings on China now seem oh-so-prescient, don't they? "China's economic reckoning, via the eyes of a savvy crisis forecaster who's seen it looming for years," elaborates Rick Gladstone at the New York Times. But Keenan Mayo with Men's Fitness Magazine remains unimpressed: "Ah, yes, the inevitable post-financial calamity profile of 'the guy who knew everything but everyone ignored...'" Simultaneously, investors are piling on to bet on currency pegs coming under strain while even Donald Trump is weighing in on the debacle (we'll save the rest of our Trump news for the politics section, of course).
Elsewhere in finance, oil price drops have raised fears of unrest from Venezuela to Iraq to Russia and Simon Kennedy suggests there's a lesson for Janet Yellen in the trigger-happy central bankers who reversed course.