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Stocks and Bonds: World


The Dow industrials hit a record high on Friday as stocks rallied on Wall Street after the Bank of Japan significantly ramped up its stimulus program, just days after the Federal Reserve wound down its years-long package of incentives. The S&P 500 came within 0.1 percent of its record high, after the December e-minis contract hit an intraday record earlier.

US stocks rose on Thursday, boosted by a strong reading on quarterly economic growth and by another round of upbeat earnings reports including Visa, which accounted for nearly 140 points in the Dow industrials. Despite the bullish data and the Federal Reserve's Wednesday statement indicating the economy is strengthening, gains on the S&P 500 were led by healthcare and utilities, traditionally defensive sectors.
Tokyo shares soared 4.83 percent to a seven-year high on Friday after the Bank of Japan ramped up its vast monetary easing programme, sending the yen into freefall. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index surged 755.56 points to 16,413.76, its best close since November 2007, while the Topix index of all first-section issues jumped 4.28 percent, or 54.74 points, to 1,333.64.
Britain's top equity index surged on Friday, as unexpected monetary stimulus measures in Japan boosted appetite for stocks around the world. Banks such as Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland led the way for the bluechip FTSE 100 index in terms of percentage gains.
A key pan-European index posted its biggest weekly gain so far this on Friday after the Bank of Japan surprised global financial markets by ramping up its massive stimulus spending. The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares closed 1.8 percent higher at 1,351.96 points, taking its weekly gain to 3 percent, the largest since December 2013.
Indian shares surged nearly 2 percent on Friday to record highs for the second consecutive day after Bank of Japan's surprise expansion of its massive stimulus programme raised hopes for additional foreign inflows, boosting bluechips. In a rare split decision, the BoJ's board voted 5-4 to accelerate purchases of Japanese government bonds so that its holdings increase at an annual pace of 80 trillion yen ($725 billion), up by 30 trillion yen.
Sri Lankan stocks rose for a seventh straight session Friday to hit a three-week high, led by banks and foreign investors as corporate earnings and lower rates helped lift sentiment. Sri Lanka's main stock index ended up 0.44 percent, or 32.40 points, at 7,326.81, its highest close since October 9. "There was a lot of buying interest. Investors are expecting good earnings and heavy trading was seen mostly in bluechips," said Dimantha Mathew, manager, research at First Capital Equities (pvt) Ltd.
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ArrowDJIA 17,390.52 1.13
ArrowNasdaq 4,630.74 1.41
ArrowS&P 2,018.05 1.17
ArrowFTSE 6,546.47 1.28
ArrowDAX 9,326.87 2.33
ArrowCAC-40 4,233.09 2.22
ArrowNikkei 16,413.76 4.83
ArrowH.Seng 23,998.06 1.25
ArrowSensex 27,865.83 1.90

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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-19.98 bln
Exports $25.13 bln
Imports $45.11 bln
WeeklyOctober 27, 2014
Reserves $13.464 bln