News Round-Up

The Indian rupee falls to record low as the Turkish crisis makes investors more risk-averse to emerging markets, while foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt says a no-deal Brexit would lead to “significant” market impact, and Vienna becomes a magnet for low-cost airlines thanks to new incentives and booming tourism – find out more with your international perspective on some recent headlines.

Indian rupee falls to record low as Turkish crisis makes investors more risk-averse

The crisis in Turkey and the weak lira has pulled the Indian rupee to a new record low of 70.08 per dollar.

The crisis stems from a diplomatic feud with the US over a pastor accused of being involved with 2016’s failed coup, and the country’s huge borrowings in foreign currencies. For investors and companies looking to expand internationally, this has caused a few issues.

Experts, including Jameel Ahmad, global head of currency strategy at FXTM, say emerging market currencies are being affected by investors becoming increasingly hesitant to take on the risk of investing during times of volatility. This is being intensified by concerns over trade war threats between Iran, Russia and the US.

Since January this year, the lira has lost more than 34% of its value against the dollar, pushing up the price of everyday items. This week Donald Trump tweeted that he was authorising “a doubling of tariffs” on steel and aluminium with Turkey “as their currency, the Turkish Lira, slides rapidly downward against our very strong Dollar”. Aluminium will now be 20% and Steel 50%, he added.

A no-deal Brexit would be “significant”, according to Jeremy Hunt

The short-term market impact will be significant in the event of a no-deal Brexit, according to foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Earlier this week on a visit to Latvia, Hunt went on to say he believed the UK economy would “find a way to get through it… ultimately to thrive and be successful”.

He said a growing number of countries were coming to recognise that a no-deal Brexit would be a “very big mistake” for the EU, as well as the UK.

The previous day, on a tip to Helsinki, Hunt said everyone needed to prepare for the possibility of a “chaotic no-deal Brexit”.

The UK is due to leave the EU in less than eight months, but the UK has still to come to an agreement with Brussels over the terms, and has been starting to plan for the possibility of leaving the EU without a deal in place. This has meant uncertainty for businesses looking at international market expansion, but Hunt’s overall message should give some encouragement that the government is making plans, even in the worst-case scenario.

Vienna becomes a magnet for low-cost airlines

Vienna airport hasn’t had a lot of attention, historically, but that’s all started to change in recent years.

In 2016, the airport broke three passenger records in one year: best month and busiest ever day, and the annual threshold of 23 million passengers was beaten for the first time.

After breaking three of its passenger records during 2016, the airport’s second-largest customer, Air Berlin Group, collapsed under €2bn of losses in 2017. This ignited a battle between Europe’s low-cost carriers in an attempt to fill the resulting gap.

In response, the airport has introduced an incentive for low-cost carriers. Airlines that base at least three aircraft at Vienna and grow to more than 750,000 departing passengers a year will receive a rebate of €540 per hundred passengers, with more generous tiers of refunds as numbers increase.

Vienna’s booming tourism, which grew 4.4% to 15.5m overnight stays in 2017, is another big help for the airport. It has forecast that 2018 profits will increase 16.5% to 148 million euros on sales of more than 770 million; a good time for the airport, and for those looking to expanding business overseas to Vienna.

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