World shares hovered near record highs on Thursday after downbeat Chinese manufacturing data kept pressure on Beijing for more stimulus and the Federal Reserve signalled higher U.S. interest rates are still some way off.
The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose slightly more than expected last week, but the underlying trend continued to suggest the labor market was tightening.
Federal Reserve officials believed it would be premature to hike interest rates in June even though most felt the U.S. economy was set to rebound from a dismal start to the year, according to minutes from their April policy meeting released on Wednesday.
U.S. shares were set to open higher on Friday as a selloff in the global bond market eased after purchases by the European Central Bank, lifting stock index futures.
U.S. producer prices resumed their downward trend in April as the cost of energy fell and a strong dollar kept underlying inflation pressures benign, supporting views that the Federal Reserve will only raise interest rates later in the year.
The Federal Reserve on Wednesday awarded $92.13 billion of overnight fixed-rate reverse repurchase agreements to 37 bidders at an interest rate of 0.05 percent, the New York Fed said on its website.
The Federal Reserve drew together extensive plans for handling a U.S. debt default that included scheduling deferred payments and lending cash to investors, according to a top lawmaker who cited Fed documents.
U.S. job growth likely rebounded last month and the unemployment rate probably dropped to a near seven-year low, signs of a pick up in economic momentum that could keep the Federal Reserve on track to hike interest rates this year.
The Federal Reserve is sketching out plans to prevent an abrupt contraction in its massive balance sheet next year, when some $500 billion in bonds expire and risk disrupting markets and the U.S. economic recovery.
Always top of the data pile, this week will be no exception for the U.S. jobs report with a first interest rate rise likely this year despite a dramatic slowdown in the first quarter.
China's factories stayed stuck in the slow lane in April while Japanese output went into reverse and South Korea suffered its worst export performance in two years, adding urgency to calls for more state stimulus in all three economies.
As the Federal Reserve's policy-setting committee wraps up its third meeting of the year, a critical task awaits the U.S. central bank: narrowing the wide gap between how it and the markets view the path of interest rates.
The Dow and S&P 500 ended a volatile session higher on Tuesday, helped by strong earnings from Merck and gains in IBM after it boosted its dividend, while the Nasdaq fell with Apple.
World shares hit a new high on Monday, led by China, though the global rally faded in Europe as investors looked ahead to central bank meetings in the United States and worried over Greece.
In January 2014, veteran short-seller Bill Fleckenstein said he was readying a new fund to bet on falling stock prices. More than a year later, he's still waiting to launch that fund.
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