Posts Tagged ‘Korea’

Are Asian Women Financially Savvy Today?

Years ago the answer for sure would have been a resounding “no.” But today things are somewhat different. It seems that women in Asia (especially those married, 30+, in the workforce) know their won from their yen and their level of competence is likely to increase further “especially among the younger generation.”

For example, women from Thailand topped financial planning (87) and investment (69.3) scores for financial literacy but Vietnamese women also did pretty well, scoring 70.1 overall, placing them in fourth place. There wasn’t much to sniff at with women from the Philippines either (who did extremely well in Financial Planning), but those from Korea and Japan could probably learn a lesson or two on how to get more financially in-the-know.

Survey Assesses Savvyness

It was the MasterCard Index of Financial Literacy that took a survey of these countries. The questions were posed to 24 markets around APMEA (Asia/Pacific Middle East Africa). It looked at three main areas: Basic Money Management (budgeting, savings and credit responsibility); Financial Planning (their understanding of financial products and services as well as ability to make long-term financial plans); Investment (understanding of risks and products associated with investments). In general, Asian women as a whole did best in Financial Planning.

In developed markets it was women from Australia and New Zealand who were most successful in their financial knowledge. Females from Singapore are pretty good at basic money management but were pretty clueless vis-à-vis anything to do with investments. But when looking at financial literacy, India and China don’t seem to be all that with it.

According to VP of Communications for Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa, MasterCard Worldwide, Georgette Tan, “this new MasterCard Index has certainly provided us with fresh insights to women’s aptitude for and knowledge of managing their finances. While it is encouraging to see that women across Asia/Pacific have some degree of financial literacy, it is also apparent that there is still work to be done to improve levels across the board.” This is important as complexities increase in the financial world resulting in a necessity for women to become “more financially confident and competent.” MasterCard also seeks to give more power to these women.

Although he may be struggling to win popularity in his cabinet, Naota Kan might have some fans from the fairer sex and might even be stealthily celebrating International Women’s Day today.  Following his university graduation, Kan was a staff member for Fusae Ichikawa’s campaign, a woman’s rights activist.  But unfortunately, this isn’t exactly helping his case today.  When things are already looking somewhat bleak for the guy, his cabinet is facing further instability leading commentators to conclude that his “days as prime minister are numbered.”

Kan’s Cabinet Crashes

Seiji Maehara resigned for taking illegal donations from a Korean national which also brought to the forefront discussions about Japan’s diplomacy.  This doesn’t look good for Kan as Prime Minister or for the stability of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) either.  The resignation of three cabinet ministers cannot be good for anyone.


So perhaps Kan should step down gracefully and go do something else in the non-profit world instead…like celebrating the women in his country by fighting their corner.  Who knows?  The fairer sex just might not be so harsh on him.


A nationwide smart grid is to be built by 2030, receiving a staggering $7.18 billion investment from South Korea’s state-run Korea Electric Power Corp (KEPCO), in an attempt to “curb the country's carbon emissions and improve efficiency in its electricity market.”  There have been various greening efforts in South Korea such as 131-acre rooftop gardens; electric scooters for local police etc.
Ultimately the smart grid will provide for more efficient power distribution and maintenance.  Consumers are able to participate in a more active role to determine power usage via home appliance monitoring and direct grid feedback.
 

KEPCO (Korea Electric Power Corp) just announced that South Korea will be investing $7.18 billion into a nationwide smart grid that is due for completion by 2030.  This investment is an attempt to “curb the country’s carbon emissions and improve efficiency in its electricity market.”  It seems that South Korea is the perfect location for smaller-scale greening efforts such as the transformation of landfills into hydrogen generators; the construction of huge 131-acre rooftop gardens; the introduction and use of electric scooters for local police.  This is great, but it comes alongside the fact that the country is quite a high carbon polluter within the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries. For South Korea, this will ultimately mean that 11 percent of energy will be taken from renewable sources like wind and solar.  The country will draw 11% of its energy from renewable sources, such as wind and solar.
 

Tokyo stocks fell on Wednesday and the Nikkei stock index lost 0.84 percent, as tensions arose over geopolitical strife over conflagrations in Korean and the instability of the eurozone after Ireland’s debt-rating cut stressed investor feelings.

Standard & Poor’s downgrading of Ireland’s long-term debt caused fear of a domino effect in the eurozone and lowered investor confidence.
Adding to investor uneasiness are increasing tensions in Korean after artillery exchanges between the Republic of Korea (ROK) and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Japan’s nearness to the conflagrations lead to share dumping in the Japanese market, according to some analysts.

Tokyo Electron fell 2.1 %, down to 5,150 yen. Mitsubishi Corp. lost 1.4 percent to 2,115 yen. Mitsui & Co. dropped 0.8 percent to 1, 330 yen.