Emerging markets come to a halt

The HSBC emerging markets index hovered barely above the neutral 50 mark in March, at just 50.3, the fourth month in which firms in developing economies have reported slower growth in activity. Output fell marginally in China and India, according to the index, with a minor improvement for Brazil and the most severe drop for Russia since 2009, following the tensions over the country’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region.