Companies Boost Investment Spending
News from NPR:

U.S. companies in October increased their orders of machinery and equipment that signal investment plans by the largest amount in five months, a hopeful sign for future economic growth.

Orders for core capital goods, considered a proxy for business investment, rose 1.7 percent in October, the best showing since a 2.3 percent rise in May, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. Orders in this category had slowed beginning in the spring, acting as a drag on overall economic growth.

Total orders for durable goods were unchanged in October at $ 216.9 billion following a 9.2 percent jump in September that had been driven by a surge in demand for commercial aircraft. In October, demand for machinery, primary metals and communications equipment increased while orders for autos, airplanes and computers fell.

Many businesses had been holding back because they are worried about tax increases and federal spending cuts — known as the “fiscal cliff” — that will take effect in January unless Congress reaches a budget deal before then. Most economists predict the economy will suffer a recession in the first half of 2013 if lawmakers and President Barack Obama can’t avoid the fiscal cliff.

White House economists on Monday

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HK car park investment craze raises bubble fear
News from The Associated Press:

HK car park investment craze raises bubble fear

HONG KONG (AP) — Investors looking for new places to park their cash in Hong Kong are driving up prices for parking spaces, sparking fears of a bubble in the Asian financial center.

Prices for parking spots in Hong Kong are nearing historic highs, the side effect of government curbs to cool the housing market amid worries of overheating following the latest round of monetary stimulus in the U.S. last month.

There are “a lot of speculators in the market, especially for car parks,” said Buggle Lau, senior analyst with Midland Realty. A bubble is “definitely forming.”

Over the weekend, a developer sold about 500 parking spots at a new suburban apartment complex at prices of up to 1.3 million Hong Kong dollars ($ 167,000) per space.

In a commercial building near the city’s financial district on Hong Kong Island, an investor has put 34 parking spaces on sale for HK$ 100 million ($ 12.9 million), according to a report last week in the Ming Pao newspaper. A parking spot in the exclusive Repulse Bay neighborhood sold for HK$ 3 million, the paper also said, citing Land Registry data.

On Thursday, a single parking spot in a building in the popular Mid-Levels residential nei…………… continues on The Associated Press

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