Bleak Picture in Asia, More Gloomy Thoughts

On Asia, from the Financial Times.. A tidbit:

“The figures are further proof that Asia’s economy fell off a cliff in the closing months of 2008 and raise the likelihood that the bad news will continue to flow as the region’s export-dependent nations are forced to cut jobs and manufacturing capacity because of weak western consumer demand.

The collapse in Asian exports over the fourth quarter was “nothing short of breath-taking”, said Frederic Neumann, Asia chief economist at HSBC. “Economic models and experience suggest that financial turmoil tends to transmit far more gradually into the real economy than has occurred this time around. In fact, the severity and rapidity of the fall in output exceeds anything we have ever seen before.”

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard has
this to say about the global situation in general, and this on a possible reversal in Germany’s view of the EU project.

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