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Tag: Federal Reserve

Strong US Payrolls Give Stock Markets A Boost

  LONDON (AP) — Forecast-busting U.S. jobs data gave stocks a boost Friday, as investors breathed a sigh of relief that a weak reading in May wasn’t a sign that the world’s largest economy was slowing sharply at a time when Britain voted to leave the European Union. KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, the FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was up 0.5 percent at 6,566 while Germany’s DAX rose 1.3 percent to 9,545. The CAC-40 in France was 0.9 percent higher at 4,154. Wall Street was poised for a solid open, with Dow futures and the broader S&P...

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US economy grew at slightly faster 1.1 percent in Q1

WASHINGTON (AP) β€” The U.S. economy grew slightly faster at the start of the year than previously estimated, even though consumer spending posted the smallest gain in two years. The gross domestic product expanded at an annual rate of 1.1 percent in the first quarter, an improvement from the 0.8 percent rate released last month, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday. While growth prospects for the spring look even better, the shockwaves from Britain’s decision to leave the European Union could spread to the U.S. economy in the coming months. Economists forecast growth of around 2.5 percent in the current...

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What the Federal Reserve wants to see before raising rates

WASHINGTON (AP) — So what will it take for the Federal Reserve to finally raise interest rates? The U.S. economy is now in its seventh straight year of expansion. It’s growing at a steady if unexciting 2.2 percent annual rate. Unemployment has sunk from a 10 percent peak to a reassuring 5.1 percent. Auto and home sales have accelerated. Yet on Thursday, Fed officials declined to lift rates from record lows. The decision left some Fed watchers mystified over what the central bank needs to see to begin phasing out a policy it launched in 2008 to help save...

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European markets soothed by Chinese assurances

LONDON (AP) — Attempts by Chinese officials to reassure investors have helped European markets post some modest gains Monday, on a day when trading activity is diminished by a U.S. holiday. KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, France’s CAC-40 climbed 0.5 percent to 4,545 while Germany’s DAX rose 0.6 percent to 10,102. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 0.5 percent higher at 6,073. Wall Street is closed Monday for the Labor Day holiday. CHINA RHETORIC: China’s central bank governor, finance minister and securities agency all tried to reassure investors over the weekend that market turmoil was ending. At...

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US stocks close out their worst month in 3 years

NEW YORK (AP) — August was a brutal month for investors. Fears about a slowdown in China’s economy and concerns about when the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates pushed stocks sharply lower this month. While the market recovered much of the ground it lost, the Standard & Poor’s 500 index still finished August down 6.3 percent, its worst showing since May 2012. The selling started midway through the month after China shocked investors by devaluating its currency. The move, an effort to boost China’s economy, seemed to have the opposite effect. Global investors interpreted the decision as a...

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World stocks fall after Fed suggests September rate hike possible

BEIJING (AP) — Markets slumped Monday after a U.S. Federal Reserve official suggested a September interest rate hike still was possible and weak Japanese factory activity provided more evidence of a sluggish global economy. KEEPING SCORE: Dow Jones futures slumped 170 points and the Standard & Poor’s 500 gave up 20. In Europe, France’s CAC-40 fell 0.9 percent to 4,632.59 and Germany’s DAX lost 0.9 percent to 10,211.13. The U.K. was closed for a holiday. Wall Street looked set for losses at the open. FED PLANS: The Fed vice chairman, Stanley Fisher said there was a “pretty strong case”...

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US consumer prices up a slight 0.1 percent in April

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer prices were up slightly in April for the third straight month, suggesting that an improving economy could be setting the stage for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates later this year. Consumer prices edged up 0.1 percent from the previous month, when prices rose a modest 0.2 percent, the Labor Department said Friday. Overall gains were held back by a 1.3 percent drop in energy costs that offset the biggest one-month jump in medical care in eight years. Core inflation, which excludes volatile food and energy, climbed 0.3 percent – the biggest gain...

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Applications for US jobless aid barely rose last week

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits basically held steady last week, as the job market continues to outpace broader economic growth. The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications for unemployment aid rose slightly by 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 291,000. Jobless claims have been subdued for the past two weeks after winter storms caused them to spike at the end of February due to closed schools and construction sites. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, increased 2,250 to 304,750. That average has dropped 7.5 percent over the past year. Applications are a...

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JPMorgan Chase gets clearance for $6.4B stock buyback from FED

NEW YORK (AP) — JPMorgan Chase says the Federal Reserve cleared its plan to buy back up to $6.4 billion in stock and raise its dividend. The New York company says it plans to buy the stock between April 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016. It will raise its dividend to 44 cents from 40 cents, returning about $1.64 billion to shareholders every quarter. On Thursday the Fed said JPMorgan Chase & Co. and 30 other banks passed its annual “stress tests.” The tests are designed to make sure the largest banks in the U.S. are strong enough to...

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Fed rate hike fears weigh on stocks as Greece dogs euro

LONDON (AP) — Global stock markets fell sharply while the dollar spiked further against the euro Tuesday as traders fretted about the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates. Renewed concerns over Greece further weighed on Europe’s single currency. KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, France’s CAC 40 was down 1.1 percent at 4,884 while Germany’s DAX fell 1.2 percent to shed 0.3 percent to 11,553. Britain’s FTSE 100 was 1.4 percent lower at 6,779. U.S stocks were also poised for sharp falls at the bell, with both Dow futures and the broader S&P 500 futures 0.9 percent. FED WORRIES: Last Friday’s...

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