China: Chinese Retail Sales and Factory Output Slightly Below Forecast in April
Reuters reports that Chinese industrial output and retail sales grew 8.7% and 11.9% over the same month last year, respectively. Both figures were slightly below forecasts. Conversely, fixed-asset investment increased 17.3% in the first four months of this year, which slightly exceeded the forecast.
Thailand: Pressure Builds on Thai Senate as Crisis Drags On
Reuters reports that the Thai Senate is due to meet on 13 May to try to find a “road-map” for the political crisis that has involved Thailand since November last year. Caretaker Prime Minister Niwatthamrong Boonsongphaisan said on Monday he was hopeful that February’s annulled election could be re-run as soon as 20 July. The government will meet the Election Commission on 14 May to decide on the best date.
Ukraine: Russia Tells Ukraine to Pay Gas Debt or Supplies May Halt
According to the BBC News, Russia’s state energy giant Gazprom said it may halt natural gas shipments to Ukraine on 3 June unless the country pays in advance for supplies.
Malaysia: Malaysia Says It’s on Track to Achieve High-Income Nation Status
The Malaysian government declared that it’s on track to becoming a high-income nation by 2020. Malaysia is now at the mid-point of a 10-year program to transform the economy and reduce reliance on oil revenues.
Australia: Abbott Austerity to See Spending Cuts in Australia Budget
According to Bloomberg, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s government delivers its first budget today since winning office in September, aiming to rein in a record fiscal deficit through spending cuts and measures to boost revenue.