Investors prefer India, China, Brazil to US

The US has fallen behind emerging markets in Brazil, China and India as the preferred place to invest, a Bloomberg survey shows, though the world’s largest economy still ranks highest of all major developed countries. The US ranked first three months ago in the last quarterly Bloomberg Global Poll. Along with the slipping perceptions of the US markets in the most recent survey, conducted Sept 16-17, poll respondents say the Federal Reserve is likely to take further steps to try to bolster the economy.

In the September poll of 1,408 investors, analysts and traders who are Bloomberg subscribers, respondents rate the US fourth for potential returns over the next year, behind Brazil and China, tied for first, and India, in third place. The US economic situation “is obviously unsustainable, and the concerted attempt to suspend disbelief is playing increasingly poorly abroad,” says poll respondent Eric Kraus, chief strategist for Otkritie Brokerage House in Moscow. “One can delay, but no one can forestall the unwind of a multidecade credit bubble.”

Economic reports released since the June poll show US GDP growth slowed to 1.6% in the second quarter from 3.7% in the first quarter. In the final quarter of last year, GDP grew at a 5% annual rate. Expectations for US GDP growth next year have dropped to a median forecast of 2.5% in September from 2.9% in June, according to Bloomberg’s monthly survey of economists. Read more

Rain springs green hope for Gurgaon

GURGAON: Gurgaon, the city of steel and glass, has never been — since its inception a little over 20 years ago — as green as it is now.

Thanks to a Kerala-style monsoon, thick foliage covers the open spaces between and around the city’s highrises. Even bare concrete walls are covered with a thick carpet of ivy.

Environmentalists, however, say it is too early to say whether tree cover in the city has increased. ”For several years now, Gurgaon has never got a monsoon as good as this. Though we have to wait till October-November to assess the increase in green cover, what we see now is a good sign,” said former conservator of forests R P Balwan. ”The greenery is more visible because of the revived Aravalis.” Read more

60-yr-old south Mumbai bungalow sold for Rs 300cr

MUMBAI: An old bungalow property in the exclusive residential enclave of Carmichael Road in south Mumbai is believed to have been sold for around Rs 300 crore.

Villa Nirmala, an over six-decade-old property, has been jointly purchased by Peninsula Land, which is part of the Ashok Piramal Group, and developer Khemchand Kothari. Interestingly, a member of the Kothari family was recently involved in a hit-and-run accident at Marine Drive.

Sources said the transaction involved a payment of Rs 240 crore plus 15,000 sq ft of space for the occupants of the bungalow once it was redeveloped. The bungalow, which has a garden at the back and occupies about half-an-acre, may give way for a skyscraper in the otherwise low-rise Carmichael Road, a declared heritage precinct. The only high-rise on this road is the 24-storey Usha Kiran which came up in the mid-1960s. Buildings in the area command prices ranging between Rs 40,000 a sq ft and Rs 90,000 a sq ft.  Read more

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