China leaves 1- and 5-year lending rates unchanged

The The People’s Bank of China left its benchmark lending rates unchanged for the ninth consecutive month.

China left its 1-year prime rate unchanged at 3.65% and its 5-year prime rate unchanged at 4.30%, in line with the expectations of economists polled by Reuters.

The Chinese onshore yuan weakened 0.2% to 7.0205 against the US dollar.

— Jihye Lee

South Korea’s exports fell 16.1% year-on-year in the May 1-20 period

Exports from South Korea have fallen 16.1% in the first 20 days of May compared with the same period a year ago, its customs authority said.

Imports during the same period also fell by 15.3% year-on-year.

Export value for the first 20 days was $32.4 billion and imports were $36.7 billion, resulting in a deficit of $4.3 billion for the May 1-20 period

Refinitiv data showed that South Korea’s exports have fallen for seven straight months, with April recording a 14.3% year-on-year decline.

— Lim Hui Jie

Japan’s orders for nuclear machinery fell in March

Japan’s orders for nuclear machinery fell 3.9% in March from the previous month, falling further than expected.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected the value to rise 0.7% month-on-month.

Compared to a year ago, machine orders also fell by 3.5%, against expectations that pressure would increase by 1.4%

Japan’s machinery orders rose 9.8% year-on-year in February.

— Jihye Lee

CNBC Pro: Tesla vs. BYD: Here’s why a fund manager prefers the Buffett-backed automaker

In an era defined by the need to tackle climate change, electric vehicles (EVs) are seen as an increasingly important part of the solution.

For Philip Ripman, portfolio manager at Storebrand Asset Management, one global electric car manufacturer stands out: China’s BID – not Elon Musk’s Tesla.

As an investor, Ripman said BYD’s appeal goes beyond just making electric cars.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read why the fund manager is bullish on BYD here.

— Ganesh Rao

CNBC Pro: These 4 Stocks Are On Goldman’s ‘Conviction Buy’ List – And It Offers 115% Upside

Debt write-off negotiations resume on Monday

Federal leaders are expected to follow through negotiations on the US debt ceiling on Monday as the country nears a potential default.

President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., are scheduled to meet in person at the White House.

Minister of Finance Janet Yellen said Sunday that “tough choices” will have to be made about which bills will remain unpaid if the debt ceiling is not raised and reaffirmed his warning that the U.S. could go into debt as early on June 1,

— Jesse Pound, Ashley Capoot

Powell says interest rates may not need to rise as much as expected

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Friday that interest rates may not need to rise as much as previously thought, in part because of strains in the banking sector.

“The financial stability tools helped calm conditions in the banking sector. Developments there, on the other hand, are contributing to tighter credit conditions and are likely to weigh on economic growth, employment and inflation,” he said as part of a panel on monetary policy.

“So as a result, our policy rate may not need to rise as much as it otherwise would have done to achieve our goals,” he added. “Of course, the extent of that is highly uncertain.”

-Jeff Cox

Fed’s Williams says “era of very low” interest rates remains intact

New York Federal Reserve President John Williams said the long-term trend in interest rates is likely to be lower, despite recent hikes in an effort to fight inflation.

In a largely academic discussion during a forum in Washington, DC, Williams said the “natural” interest rate remains on the downside as the outlook for economic output is subdued. That’s despite the pandemic’s rise in inflation and the hikes in interest rates to combat the higher prices.

“Importantly, there is no evidence that the era of very low natural interest rates has ended,” Williams said.

-Jeff Cox