Apart from the global economy shifting back and forth, ForexTime said the process is bedeviled by a whirl of mixed data.
According to the report, a mix of sentiments emerged from the US last week, as both positive and negative data came through to reflect a somewhat muddled image of what is happening in the US right presently.
Unhindered by the high mortgage rates, existing home sales shot up by 6.5% to reach 5.39M; a figure substantially higher than the predicted 5.15M.
Meanwhile, the housing data has been the most encouraging since 2009 and was reported as evidence of just how important to the health of the economy the housing sector is.
To dampen US spirits however, new home sales were not quite in line with existing home sales, falling to 497K and then further revised to 455K on August 23rd, raising question marks about the recovery of the housing sector.
Further discouraging were the jobless claims released on August 22nd ,which at 336K were a rise above the predicted 329K and a far move away from the 5 and a half year low of 320K recorded on August 15th.
“Wednesday, August 21st, saw a release of the Federal Reserve’s July Meeting Minutes, where most policymakers were in favor of Ben Bernanke’s plan to start gradually reducing bond-buying until finally putting an end to it in 2014. This week, the US is holding its breath for a number of key indicators such as core curable goods orders, out on the 26th and predicted at 0.6%, and CB consumer confidence, out on the 27th and expected at 79.6.
“Mixed data was also seen on the European front, where the disappointing French Flash Manufacturing PMI served as a contrast to the pleasing German counterpart. French Flash PMI failed to meet expectations, coming through at an unchanged 49.7 instead of reaching the hoped for 50.4. In juxtaposition, the German Flash PMI exceeded expectations by rising to 52.0 from July’s 50.7 and beating predictions of an expansion to 51.1,” the report read.
ForexTime also said that the final German GDP released on August 23rd rose by 0.7% as predicted; a two year high and a definite indication of the gulf between Germany and the rest of the eurozone.
Whilst other European countries cower in the shadow of austerity, Germany seems to be making its way to the light.
This week too, all eyes are on Germany as Europe awaits the Ifo Business Climate Index to rise to 107.01 from 106.2 and the unemployment levels to drop from 7K to 5K.
“Things were looking gloomy in the world’s third largest economy last week, with the Japanese trade deficit coming in at -0.94T on August 19th, much higher than the forecast -0.73T and practically double the figure recorded in 2012. Shinzo Abe’s policy of devaluing the yen to boost exports may be wise for achieving certain goals but has come with a huge consequence too.
“Nonetheless, Japan seems to be staying true to its aggressive policies and intends on ploughing its way through these difficult times by focusing on the country’s exports despite other drawbacks. Data out this week includes Japan’s National CPI on August 30th, anticipated to rise by 0.6%; if predictions are fulfilled it will mark the second consecutive yearly rise in National CPI for Japan.
“In the United Kingdom, the economy is continuing its recent bout of progress, with the second estimate of the UK GDP released on August 23rd and up by 0.7%, spurred on by positive services and manufacturing data, higher exports and imports and a rise in consumer spending. Of utmost importance this week in the UK will be Bank of England Governor Carney’s speech on August 28th, where he is expected to persist in keeping interest rates low for as long as possible,” it contained.
Jumia Partners Reckitt Benkiser, Nokia, Others to Enable Consumers Access Quality Products
Jumia has launched a Brand Festival campaign in partnership with top global brands such as Reckitt Benkiser, Unilever, Nokia, Intel, HP, Nexus, Hisense, Sharp, Samsung, Binatone, XIAOMI, ABSOLUT, Dettol, and Logitech.
The campaign which is scheduled to run from September 21st to 27th, will provide consumers access to top quality products directly from the manufacturers, eliminating all third parties, thereby reducing the cost of the products, which will enable consumers to save money.
Jumia Nigeria CEO, Massimiliano Spalazzi, said: “The aim of the campaign is to enable our consumers to save more money while getting the best quality products directly from the brand manufacturers. Consumers today are more conscious of the quality of the product they buy on Jumia, and at the same time want to save money while shopping.
In the wake of COVID-19, we have continued to strive to operate so that consumers can continue to stay at home, use e-commerce to shop, and stay safe in this trying time. We are proud to partner with Unilever, Nokia and other top brands as part of our commitment to provide customers easy access to quality products directly from the manufacturers at best prices.
Head of Key Accounts and e-Commerce at Reckitt Benckiser Nigeria Ltd, Afam Onwordi, stated that: “We have enjoyed a good and healthy relationship with Jumia in the last couple of years.
“As our fight in RB is making access to the highest quality hygiene, wellness and nourishment a right and NOT a privilege, we would therefore always seize the opportunity of every major event like this (Brand Festival) to reward our consumers with interesting offers and deals across our wide range of products.”
Senior Business Manager at HMD Global, Emmanuel Ossai, said: “For us at HMD Global, the home of Nokia phones, we are very excited to be supporting Jumia on this festival for authentic brands in Nigeria.
“We have a commitment to continuously deliver value and believe that this partnership will afford Nigerians more opportunities to enjoy the beauty of quality hardware and the secure Android experience that we offer across our range of Nokia smartphones.
“Interestingly, we have new exciting devices that will be unveiled to our Nigerian customers in the coming weeks and we cannot wait for you to have a feel of hardware magic carefully combined with software excellence. So, keep watching this space.”
TikTok Picks Oracle to Provide ‘Secure’ Cloud Tech
Enterprise software giant Oracle announced that it has been chosen to become TikTok’s “secure” cloud technology provider.
According to Oracle, this technical decision by TikTok was heavily influenced by Zoom’s recent success in moving a large portion of its video-conferencing capacity to the Oracle Public Cloud.
Oracle’s announcement comes after TikTok parent ByteDance last week said it will not be selling the video-sharing app’s US operations to software giant Microsoft.
This after US president Donald Trump signed an executive order on 6 August, blocking all transactions with ByteDance in an effort to address “national emergency” issues.
On 14 August, the US president issued an order that gave ByteDance 90 days to divest the US operations of TikTok.
Since then, US companies such as Microsoft and Oracle have been lining up as potential buyers for the popular short video app.
As the trade war between the US and China rages on, the US government has accelerated its efforts to purge Chinese apps and technology companies that it deems untrustworthy.
Trump and his administration raised national security issues, alleging the Chinese-owned company will share sensitive user data with the Chinese government.
“TikTok picked Oracle’s new Generation 2 Cloud infrastructure because it’s much faster, more reliable, and more secure than the first generation technology currently offered by all the other major cloud providers,” says Oracle chief technology officer Larry Ellison.
“In the 2020 Industry CloudPath survey that IDC recently released where it surveyed 935 infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) customers on their satisfaction with the top IaaS vendors including Oracle, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, IBM and Google Cloud…Oracle IaaS received the highest satisfaction score.”
“As a part of this agreement, TikTok will run on the Oracle Cloud and Oracle will become a minority investor in TikTok Global,” says Oracle CEO Safra Catz.
“Oracle will quickly deploy, rapidly scale and operate TikTok systems in the Oracle Cloud. We are 100% confident in our ability to deliver a highly secure environment to TikTok and ensure data privacy to TikTok’s American users, and users throughout the world.
“This greatly improved security and guaranteed privacy will enable the continued rapid growth of the TikTok user community to benefit all stakeholders.”
Inq. Acquires Vodacom’s Business in Nigeria, Others
inq. Holdings Limited, artificial intelligence service provider, has acquired Vodacom Business Africa’s operations in Nigeria, Zambia and Cote d’Ivoire.
It plans further acquisition in Cameroon subject to regulatory approvals.
Mr. Valentine Chime, managing director, inq. Holdings Limited, said the 100 per cent acquisition of the Vodacom Business Africa’s operations in the three countries was in pursuit of the company’s dream of building pan-African network that will help in creating better future through digital solutions.
Domiciled in Mauritius, inq. Holdings Limited is a subsidiary of Convergence Partners Communications Infrastructure Fund, a fund dedicated solely to communications infrastructure and related services and technologies across Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).
Formerly known as Synergy Communications, the latest acquisition has grown inq.’s regional footprint with operations in 12 cities in seven countries across Africa. It has existing operations in Botswana, Malawi and South Africa with an additional investment in Mozambique.
“Under the inq. banner the company will embark on the next phase of building a unified Pan-African cloud and digital service provider, bringing to market a very relevant suite of next generation technology solutions in the fields of Edge AI, SD-WAN/NFV and Cloud,”Chime said.
According to him, with operations in major African cities of Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Kano, Gaborone, Lusaka, Ndola, Blantyre, Lilongwe, Mzuzu, Abidjan and Johannesburg, the inq. team prides itself on global best practice methodologies customised to local customs in each of the 16 cities, covering different sectors including banking, oil and gas, fast moving consumer goods, mining, health, real estate, information technologies, public sector and logistics.
“Covid-19 has accelerated digital transformation, and inq. is perfectly positioned to deliver intelligent connectivity through seamless delivery of cloud and digital services and technologies to our clients. We are about simpler, seamless solutions,” Chime said.
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