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October 20, 2011

German Government slashes economic growth forecast

by Kay Mitchell
”German
The German Government has today slashed its growth forecasts for the euro zone’s largest economy. The Government said it now expected the economy to expand by 1% in 2012, down from an earlier estimate of 1.8%. Meanwhile, this year’s forecast has been lowered slightly to 2.9% from 3%. Its downgrade comes just a week after Germany’s leading economic institutes cut their growth forecasts for ...




ONS: UK retail sales up 0.6% in September

by Kay Mitchell
”ONS:
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has today revealed UK retail sales beat forecasts in September, led by spending on electrical goods such as laptop computers. According to the Statistics Office, sales rose by 0.6% last month, reversing the 0.4% fall in August. Furthermore, the figure was 0.6% higher on an annual basis. Retail sales have been struggling over recent times as ...




October 19, 2011

Bank of Thailand keeps interest rates on hold despite floods

by Kay Mitchell
”Bank
The Bank of Thailand has opted to keep interest rates on hold at 3.5%, despite the worst floods the country has seen in decades which are set to hamper growth. Thailand, which is South-East Asia’s second largest economy, is expected to see growth of just 2% this year as a result of flood damage, compared with an earlier ...




BoE minutes: MPC unanimous over fresh round of QE

by Kay Mitchell
”BoE
Minutes of the Bank of England’s October 5-6 meeting have been released today and have revealed all nine members of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted to keep interest rates at the historic low of 0.5%. This was the third consecutive month that the Committee voted unanimously to keep rates at the record low, despite inflation running at more ...




October 18, 2011

Euro debt crisis impacts on Goldman Sachs Q3 results

by Kay Mitchell
”Euro
US banking giant Goldman Sachs has today reported a fall in third quarter profits. Goldman Sachs, which is the US’ largest investment bank, made a net loss of $393 million (£250 million) for the third quarter compared with profits of $1.9 billion a year earlier. The bank said trading was "significantly impacted" by the euro zone debt crisis and uncertainty ...





UK inflation surges to 5.2% in September

by Kay Mitchell
”UK
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) today announced Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) accelerated to annual rate of 5.2% last month from August’s rate of 4.5%. The rate represented the highest since September 2008 and it has never exceeded this rate since the CPI measure was first calculated in 1997. Higher inflation continues to be led by rising energy costs. The ONS said in ...




October 17, 2011

US banks announce third quarter earnings

by Kay Mitchell
”US
US banking giant Citigroup has today reported a rise in its third quarter profit. Citigroup, which is the third largest bank in the US by assets, said third quarter profit came in at $3.77 billion, or $1.23 a share, compared with $2.17 billion, or 72 cents a share, in the same quarter a year earlier. The bank, which received two Government bailouts in ...




Rightmove: Asking prices up in October

by Kay Mitchell
”Rightmove:
Property website, Rightmove, has today reported a further rise in asking prices for the month of October. According to Rightmove, asking prices for residential property in England and Wales surged 2.8% in October on a monthly basis and were 1.2% higher compared with this time last year. This compares with a 0.7% monthly increase and a 1.5% annual rise last month. The property website, ...




Item Club warns of euro zone crisis impact

by Kay Mitchell
”Item
Leading think tank, the Ernst & Young Item Club, has warned that growth within the UK economy is “grinding to a halt” because of the euro zone debt crisis. The Item Club also warned that the quantitative easing (QE) measures, announced recently by the Bank of England, are unlikely to boost the recovery. Its comments come just a week after the ...




October 14, 2011

US retail sales higher in September

by Kay Mitchell
”US
The Commerce Department today revealed US retail sales grew at their quickest pace in seven months in September. According to the Department, sales gained 1.1% on a monthly basis – boosted by clothing and car sales. The figures were better than the 0.7% rise expected by analysts. Furthermore, August retail sales were revised up to a 0.3% increase after reporting that volumes were unchanged. US ...




IMF downgrades growth forecast for Asia

by Kay Mitchell
”IMF
The Washington-based International Monetary Fund (IMF) has downgraded its growth prospects for Asia amid the euro zone debt crisis and sluggish US growth. The IMF is now forecasting growth for Asia of 6.3% in 2011 and 6.7% in 2012. This is slightly lower than the 7% growth for both years it estimated in April. According to the Fund, risks for Asia were "decidedly tilted ...




Indian inflation eases in September

by Kay Mitchell
”Indian
Figures today revealed India’s wholesale price inflation eased to annual rate of 9.72% last month, down from August’s rate of 9.78%. However, the rate is still significantly above the central bank’s target of between 4% and 5% and represented the tenth consecutive month that inflation has been above the 9% mark. Stubbornly high inflation has led analysts to expect the central bank to lift ...




October 13, 2011

Euro zone’s ‘powerhouse’ expected to slow

by Kay Mitchell
”Euro
Growth in the Germany economy, which is the euro zone’s largest, is expected to slow sharply next year as the ongoing debt crisis persists. In a closely monitored twice-yearly report, Germany’s leading economic institutes have slashed their growth forecasts for the economy from 2% next year to 0.8%, citing the debt problems in the euro zone. The report will raise questions about the ...




Fitch downgrades Lloyds and RBS credit ratings

by Kay Mitchell
”Fitch
Credit ratings agency Fitch has today downgraded two UK banks and placed one on a negative watch. Fitch downgraded Lloyds and Royal Bank of Scotland’s (RBS) long-term credit rating to an A rating from AA-. It also placed Barclays on a negative watch, meaning a downgrade is possible in the future. In a statement, Fitch said: "The banking system is not only large ...




UK trade deficit narrows in August

by Kay Mitchell
”UK
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has today revealed the UK trade deficit narrowed in August as export values hit an all-time high and imports fell. The goods trade gap shrank to £7.77 billion in August from £8.15 billion the previous month, said the ONS. Total exports of goods reached £25.5 billion, led by fuels intermediate goods such as mechanical engineering products and ...




October 12, 2011

Euro zone industrial output up 1.2% in August

by Kay Mitchell
”Euro
The EU statistics office Eurostat has today revealed euro zone industrial output rose by 1.2% in August. On an annual basis, meanwhile, industrial output grew by 5.3%. Both sets of figures beat economists’ forecasts. On a regional basis, Germany, which is the euro zone’s largest economy, saw a monthly fall of 1% but was 7.8% higher on the year. Ireland, which ...




Japan core machinery orders surge in August

by Kay Mitchell
”Japan
Japanese core private-sector machinery orders – a highly volatile series seen as an indicator of corporate spending – surged in August. According to the Cabinet Office, orders grew 11% in August on a monthly basis – the strongest pace in a year – and also beating forecasts. Orders have fallen over recent months due to the impact on production of the March ...




Welfare changes will lead to big rise in poverty

by Kay Mitchell
”Welfare
According to a report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), Government welfare changes will mean there will be 3.1 million children in poverty in the UK by 2013. Typical families will see their annual income fall by around £2,000 by the year 2013, warned the IFS, pushing 600,000 more children into poverty. The independent financial research organisation said the ...




UK unemployment soars to 17-year high

by Kay Mitchell
”UK
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has today revealed UK unemployment rose sharply in the three months to August – rising to a 17-year high. The ONS said unemployment rose by 114,000 in the three month period to 2.57 million, taking the unemployment rate to 8.1% - higher than forecasts. In comparison, unemployment in the US stands at 9.1%, Japan’s unemployment rate is ...