Fed’s 6 Reasons, U.S. Consumer Back, Biden’s Trillions: Eco Day

Happy Friday, Asia. Here’s the latest news and analysis from Bloomberg Economics to take you through to the weekend:

  • While much of Wall Street is ringing alarms about out-of-control inflation, Fed Chair Jerome Powell and his colleagues are expressing confidence in a more benign outlook. Progressives are starting to divide on whether Powell should be renominated for a second term
  • In the U.S., vaccinations and reopening are poised to drive a surge in services consumption, writes Tom Orlik. Many of the consumption changes and declines during the pandemic can be attributed to lower spending by high-income individuals, New York Fed research showed
  • President Joe Biden’s attempt to expand the definition of infrastructure has sent economists to the drawing boards
  • Wild stock swings, spikes in Treasury yields, startling economic readings? Interesting, sure. But if you really want to get people’s attention, you need a story about crypto. Elon Musk stepped up his criticism of Bitcoin, while saying he remains a believer in crypto, sending Bitcoin tumbling 15% at one point to around $46,000
  • Governments should embrace digital currencies or risk private firms taking control of the money people use, a BOE official said
  • Business executives in Japan are starting to voice concerns over what they see as an unacceptably slow vaccine rollout, a rare chorus of warnings over increasing risks to any economic recovery
  • The U.S. economic rebound is finding the nation’s biggest firms in need of more workers, putting upward pressure on pay
  • South Korea unveiled ambitious plans to spend roughly $450 billion to build the world’s biggest chipmaking base over the next decade
  • The deep freeze on tourism has been tough on most Asian economies. For China, though, it’s a net positive, writes Chang Shu
  • China’s production, investment and retail sales are due in the week ahead as Bloomberg Economics says the data should show the recovery extending into the second quarter
  • The Philippines will ease movement restrictions in the capital region and nearby areas as the economy struggles to crawl out of recession
  • The Bank of Canada is closely monitoring gains in the currency, to ensure the appreciation doesn’t create headwinds for the recovery
  • Spain won’t reap the full benefits of the EU’s recovery package without measures to tackle its labor market and pension system
  • Brazil’s real will strengthen and the economy will beat expectations this year, according to Economy Minister Paulo Guedes
  • Greece will open to international tourists this week, as the government tries to kick-start an economic recovery
  • A smattering of places, mainly in the Asia Pacific, won breathtaking victories in the battle against Covid-19 by wiping it out within their borders. Now they face a fresh test: rejoining the rest of the world

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