Wildfires burn across Canada with little relief in sight. Forest fires continued to burn across Canada on Thursday as the country endured its worst-ever start to wildfire season, forcing thousands of people from their homes and sending a smoky haze billowing across U.S. cities. (Reuters)

China trade tumbles in May, adding to signs economic recovery is slowing. China’s exports fell 7.5% from a year earlier in May and imports were down 4.5%, adding to signs an economic rebound following the end of anti-virus controls is slowing as global demand weakens under pressure from higher interest rates. (AP)

Europe’s economy shrank. For households that are hurting, it’s just numbers. The European economy contracted slightly at the end of last year and beginning of 2023, revised figures showed Thursday, underlining the impact of the loss of Russian natural gas and high inflation on consumer spending. (AP)

Rishi Sunak to raise trade issues in US talks with Joe Biden. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has said he expects to discuss Joe Biden's flagship package of investment in green industries when he meets the president during his trip to the United States. (BBC)

US applications for jobless benefits highest since October 2021. The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits last week rose to its highest level since October 2021, but the labor market remains one of the healthiest parts of the U.S. economy. (AP)

German industrial output rises less than expected in April. German industrial output rose less than expected in April, darkening the outlook for the euro zone's largest economy following weak new orders data earlier this week. (Reuters)

India’s economy picks up speed amid global slowdown. With 6.1% quarterly growth, India remains one of the fastest growing emerging economies, especially as China’s recovery stumbles. (Al Jazeera)

Companies unveil details about supply-chain financing under new rule. FASB disclosure rule reveals how and to what extent companies are using the finance tool. Critics say the reports, while compliant, don’t go far enough. (WSJ)

Iran reopens its embassy in Saudi Arabia as the Gulf rivals restore ties. Iran reopened its embassy in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday, according to Saudi media, marking another milestone toward restoring ties and lowering tensions between the powerful Gulf neighbors. (NPR)

'Massive shift' in food shopping habits as prices soar. There has been a "massive shift" in the way we do our grocery shopping since the pandemic, analyst firm Kantar has told the BBC. (BBC)

A bridge from East to West. Ranking among the world’s top 10 countries by land mass, and the biggest landlocked one at that, transport has always been an integral piece of the puzzle for Kazakhstan, and it's important to those around it too. (BBC)

Freight drivers feel the flip-flop. Today, we power up our CB radios to find out what's roiling the transportation services sector, and talk to a trucking company operator who's feeling what one regional bank called a freight recession. (NPR)

Bangladesh suffers long power cuts amid worst heatwave in decades. Frequent power cuts due to fuel shortages worsen the misery of residents as searing heat forces schools to close and disrupts lives. (Al Jazeera)



Singapore Economy Expected to Weaken

wir 052923 01

Kendall Payton, editorial associate

Singapore’s GDP growth slowed to 0.4% in the first quarter of 2023—falling short of the 2.1% growth record from the previous quarter. The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) warned of a rise in “downside risks” such as hiked interest rates and escalations in the war in Ukraine.

Data showed rapid increases in overall operating expenses from Singaporean private sector firms in April, despite price pressures easing over the past year, according to the S&P Global Singapore PMI survey—with concerns around inflation and the overall economic outlook for the country even higher.

Additionally, electronics output fell by 8.7% year-over-year due to a weakened manufacturing output in April of this year, per S&P Global Market Intelligence. “Singapore’s external demand outlook for the rest of the year has weakened,” Gabriel Lim, the trade ministry permanent secretary said in a news conference. “Apart from the expected slowdown in the advanced economies, the electronics downcycle is likely to be deeper and more prolonged than earlier projected.”

Economic performance for the January-March period was better than expected with COVID-19 restrictions lifted that helped growth in those sectors, however, with the growth record falling short, economists predict a maintained growth forecast for 2023 at between 0.5% and 2.5%, per Al Jazeera.

Customers in Singapore have averaged roughly 36 days beyond terms, with 62% of credit professionals saying payment delays have remained the same, per the FCIB Credit and Collections Survey. The most common causes of payment delays include billing disputes (38%), government approval (38%), customer payment policy (38%) and cash flow issues (25%).

What Credit and Collections Survey respondents are saying:

  • “Some customers are still using check for payments.”
  • “For dealing with government agencies, ensure a local representative is present in your organization.”
  • “L/C's, CAD and CADD are used for terms to sell into Singapore.”
  • “Start early building a relationship with your customer and include your salesperson. By doing this, you'll make a team and teams work together.”
  • “Obtain financial statements on your customers and backstop sales with credit insurance.”

The Credit and Collections Survey is now open. It covers Egypt, Peru, Taiwan and Ukraine. You will earn ICEU/Participation credit for your input. Be sure to share the link with your credit and collections network. 



Week in Review Editorial Team:

Annacaroline Caruso, editor in chief

Jamilex Gotay, editorial associate

Kendall Payton, editorial associate