Most financial markets in Asia ended the week higher after the US Federal Reserve decided to keep interest rates unchanged. China's Shanghai Composite Index was up 0.4% Friday. Despite that, the bourse was still down 3.2% for the week as investors worried over the Fed decision as well as weakness in economic data.
A tame inflation complicates the Federal Reserve's decision whether to raise interest rates this week. Data show that despite many signs of economic improvement, the pace of growth of US consumer prices last month was well below the central bank's target.
Surpassing analysts' projections, UK retailer Next Plc posted better than expected results for the first half of 2015. The pretax profit rose 7.1 percent to GBP347million ($533MN) for the first half. Retail profit margins grew 14.9 percent from 14.1 percent during the previous corresponding period. The strengthening British pound also helped Next Plc improve profit margins.
Global stocks are turning out to be more attractive for investors who prefer to put their eggs in different baskets rather investing in the US market alone.
Federal Reserve's Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer stated that although the US has achieved almost full employment, inflation is temporarily low.
A September interest rate hike is "very much in play" if the U.S. economy continues to strengthen, though the Federal Reserve could also wait until December to start tightening policy, an influential Fed official said in a newspaper interview.
Now that International Monetary Fund head Christine Lagarde has told the Fed to wait to raise interest rates, the IMF staff has followed up with suggestions that the U.S. central bank remake its communications policy and, in a phrase, ditch the dots.
Prices of many foodstuffs are surging in India, despite a good start to monsoon rains - an unexpected boon for wholesalers, but a major headache for the central bank and a government hoping for its help to reboot the economy.
The U.S. Federal Reserve is on track to raise interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade in September, according to a Reuters poll that suggests economists now are mostly confident about that timing.
German bond yields hit 1 percent for the first time since September on Wednesday as long-term inflation expectations rose, although recent rollercoaster moves in fixed-income markets kept stock markets flat.
Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen was clearer than ever on Friday that the central bank was poised to raise interest rates this year, as the U.S. economy was set to bounce back from an early-year slump and as headwinds at home and abroad waned.
The Bank of Japan offered a slightly more upbeat view of the economy on Friday and its governor shrugged off the need for more monetary stimulus, dismissing market concerns that the recovery is too slow to accelerate inflation toward the bank's target.
European shares fell on Monday, weighed down by worries over a looming cash crunch in Greece, while the dollar rebounded after concern over the U.S. economy drove the currency to four-month lows on Friday.
The European Central Bank is satisfied with the effects of its bond buying program on the economy and inflation and has no intention of ending it prematurely, ECB Executive Board Member Yves Mersch said on Saturday.
Wall Street's major indexes gave up early gains to end Wednesday's session little changed as some investors stood on the sidelines waiting for the next round of economic data at the tail end of earnings season.
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