With money managers increasingly pessimistic about the prospects for global economic growth, more are looking for emerging markets in Asia to outperform.
Here's what analysts and others say they're watching before the bell Friday.
The U.S. dollar's strength appears to be waning as the focus turns from Europe's debt worries to China's possible appreciation of its currency, Chris Zwermann, global strategist and technical analyst at Zwermann Financial said Tuesday.
Emerging markets still will provide value to investors but not necessarily through their stock markets, strategists at Barclays Wealth Management said Wednesday.
As the rest of the world worries about economic growth, angry complaints from consumers such as these Indian bloggers have turned Asian policymakers’ minds to a different problem: rapidly rising inflation, the Financial Times reported.
China has long claimed to be just another developing nation, even as its economic power far outstripped that of any other emerging country. Now, it is finding it harder to cast itself as a friendly alternative to an imperious American superpower. For many in Asia, it is the new colossus.
Indonesia's economy will eventually return to an annual growth of 7-8%, the rate it has managed before the onset of the Asian financial crisis, Tim Condon, head of research, Asia at ING Financial Markets, told CNBC.
Indonesia's central bank governor said he would "do whatever it takes" to bring annual inflation below 10 percent in 2009, from 11.9 percent in July, as elections next year will ensure strong economic growth.
Shares of Malaysia's top lender, Maybank, raced higher on Wednesday after the central bank blocked its plan for a costly Indonesian purchase, but analysts said the move could hurt growth in the long run.
In most countries that do not subsidize fuel, high prices have caused oil demand to stagnate or fall, as economic theory says they should. But in countries with subsidies, demand is still rising steeply, threatening to outstrip the growth in global supplies.
Shares in Indonesian coal firm PT Adaro Energy jumped as high as 56.4 percent in their market debut on Wednesday after the company raised $1.3 billion in the country's largest ever initial public offering.
All this week, CNBC Asia's Squawk Box goes on the road in Indonesia. We'll be looking at issues including trade and investment, energy, and tourism. And we'll also be talking to the country's movers and shakers, asking them their take on where Indonesia is going and how it will get there.
A $1.3-billion initial public offering by Indonesian coal company PT Adaro Energy was five times oversubscribed at the end of its offer period last week, its lead manager said.
Singapore's United Overseas Bank said on Wednesday it had proposed to delist its 61.1 percent-owned Indonesian lender UOB Buana, and planned to buy the remaining shares that it does not own.
Indonesia cannot rule out further hikes in fuel prices ahead of the 2009 presidential elections, Energy Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro said on Sunday, due to the impact of fuel subsidies on the budget.
Declining oil reserves and investment have forced Indonesia to quit the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries even as other members cash in on soaring global prices, the energy minister said.
Indonesia is considering quitting the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) as the country's crude oil output had declined, the country's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said on Tuesday.
Private equity firms are hiring more staff in emerging markets to keep up with faster growth opportunities in Asia and Eastern Europe.
South Korea's Kookmin Bank said on Monday it would sell its 14 percent stake in Bank Internasional Indonesia to Malayan Banking for $378 million.
Indonesia's second-largest mobile phone operator, PT Indosat Tbk, saw a better-than-expected 23.6 percent rise in fourth-quarter net profit, thanks to strong growth in its subscriber base.