The DailyBrief

Tuesday November 15, 2016

The global bond rout started in China, not the US, writes Asia Times columnist David P.Goldman. Donald Trump’s election victory is blamed for a sudden spike in bond yields, with expectations of the issuance of more government debt to fund spending plans. But the US isn’t the only giant world economy subject to rising growth expectations. The impact of Chinese reflation on the world economy prior to the US election was measurable, if modest.

The Chinese Super League, now the world’s sixth highest-paying domestic football competition, is the most “star heavy” in terms of wage distribution. That is one of the findings of the seventh annual report on global sports salaries published by the UK-based sports website Sporting Intelligence. The league’s highest-paid 10% (47 players) claim more than 81% of total earnings paid by teams. Preparations for the 2016 season witnessed a doubling of average first-team CSL salaries, fueled by a relatively small number of enormous contracts.

Singaporeans are now among the world’s top non-native English speakers, according to newly-published global rankings. Hong Kong, meanwhile, has dropped below Malaysia, the Philippines, India, South Korea and even France. The EF English Proficiency Index, which measures skills in non-native English-speaking countries, put Singapore at number 6, the first Asian country ever to enter the top ten.

South Korea’s political volcano has no end in sight, writes Shim Jae Hoon. As protests against the presidency of Park Geun Hye mount, there is little sign of her going quickly or quietly. Investigators have begun probing allegations of corruption, extortion and influence-peddling but any attempts to impeach the president may well take longer than the 14 months left of her term. The result is a crippling stalemate.

A Hong Kong court on Tuesday disqualified two pro-independence lawmakers from taking office, ruling their oaths of allegiance invalid. That verdict is in step with Beijing, which last week intervened in the city’s legal system after street protests, and will do little to dispel fears that the city’s liberties are under threat.