June 7, 1998 |
It's not easy to see a bright future in Asia today. The financial crisis that began last year with currency devaluations and loan defaults has plunged many Asian economies into recession and sparked social unrest in others. The threat of a deep and lingering regional depression is very real.
August 31, 1998 |
Like a vortex, the global market collapse driven by Moscow's political and economic tumult last week promises to prolong and deepen the Asian crisis that helped trigger Russia's woes in the first place.
March 3, 1998 |
Just as life was getting really desperate, a man came to Prasert Kingsaklang's village. He went door to door telling villagers about well-paid construction jobs in Singapore and Kuwait and other exotic places. Prasert, 40, whose tiny rice farm had failed because of drought and whose wife made only a pittance selling noodles, knew friends who had gone abroad to work. They always came back with enough money to buy a small farm machine or build a house.
April 1, 2001 |
It began in the debris of Asia's financial crisis as one company's struggle to get out from under a mountain of debt. Four years later, the story of Thai Petrochemical Industries, one of Thailand's biggest industrial companies, remains that and more. Above all, TPI's is a cautionary tale underscoring a lingering weakness of many Asian economies in the wake of the 1997 crisis: the difficulty of transforming prestigious but deeply indebted companies into engines for economic growth.
July 15, 1998 |
Just a year ago, billboards in Malaysia proclaimed "The Future Is Now," and Britain's respected Economist magazine reported that 1 billion--yes, 1 billion--previously poor Asians were entering the middle class. With boom times seemingly destined to roll on, academics and financial experts cast about to find common denominators to explain Asia's extraordinary growth and enhanced living standards--Malaysia's per capita income, for example, jumped from $350 in 1957 to almost $5,000 in 1997.
December 30, 1998 |
What Asian crisis? Companies from Japan, Taiwan and South Korea continue to pour into Baja California, setting up factories in Tijuana and environs to satisfy the strong U.S. market for their consumer electronics and appliances. Boosted by the Asian arrivals, Baja's foreign-owned factories, called maquiladoras, numbered 1,045 in November, up 12% from a year earlier. More than 221,000 people now work at these plants, a 6% bump.
December 8, 1998 |
Samsung will swap its troubled car business for the debt-burdened electronics unit of rival Daewoo Motors as South Korea's conglomerates announced moves to shed scores of their units. Seeking to kick-start its sputtering corporate restructuring campaign, the government also said the family-run conglomerates, or chaebol, plan to raise $58 billion from investors or by selling assets. Samsung is the country's biggest electronics producer and the world's largest producer of memory chips.
September 6, 1998 |
With demand from Asia sinking, pork is no longer bringing home the bacon for Hoosier farmer Jim Moseley. "The reason we have $28 pigs now," said Moseley, recalling the days of $52 hogs, "is we had built a substantial demand base in Japan and Taiwan. The Asian crisis is hurting us." He has lots of company. The nation's agricultural producers are feeling pinched as a falloff in Asian demand for grains, meats, cotton and produce takes a multibillion-dollar bite out of U.S. farm exports.
March 22, 1998 |
The strongest evidence of damage from the Asian economic crisis emerged last week in the form of a record U.S. trade deficit, but the shipping world didn't need to be told: It has been turned on its head by Asia's woes. Much as U-Haul trailers from Los Angeles stacked up in Seattle during the early 1990s flight from California, thousands of empty shipping containers are piling up at Long Beach, Los Angeles and other West Coast ports because of plummeting Asian demand for U.S.
July 6, 1999 |
An encounter with an Army patrol outside Bangkok this spring left money manager Eugene Sit with an indelible image of Thailand's determination to regain its competitiveness after two years of financial crisis. The lead vehicle in the column flew a three-star flag, indicating a general officer. What impressed Sit was that, as a belt-tightening move, the soldiers--general included--were traveling not by car but by bicycle.