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Italy sees more leeway for growth measures in 2015 budget ROME: The Italian government believes a better macroeconomic outlook and lower interest rates have given it leeway to spend some 3 billion more euros, or at least 0.2 percent of GDP, on measures to support growth, two government sources said on Wednesday. The estimate comes before the 2015 Economic and Financial Planning Document (DEF), which is expected to be released at the end of next week and which Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan said would be "as expansive as possible". Speaking in parliament, he said Italy would make full use of new European Union rules that, under certain circumstances, give countries reforming their economies more flexibility in applying the rules. "The DEF and the budget law last year were already expansive. From this year, there are new clauses. We will use the margins that the rules give us," he said. Italy has been forecasting a 2015 budget deficit of 2.6 ...

Mexico factory sentiment cools to 5-month low in March MEXICO CITY: Mexico's manufacturing sector sentiment fell in March to a five-month low as a jump in costs mostly due to a weak peso combined with a slower pace of new orders and output.The HSBC Mexico Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index cooled to 53.8 in March when adjusted for seasonal swings, its lowest since October 2014, from 54.4 in February, a survey showed on Wednesday.A reading above 50 signals expansion, while a lower reading points to ...
Greek debt forgiveness plan takes in 147mn euros ATHENS: Cash-strapped Greece has garnered a little over 147 million euros ($158 million) via a debt forgiveness scheme designed to bolster the state's near-empty coffers, officials said on Wednesday.The finance ministry said over 150,000 private individuals and companies had hastened to settle or partially repay debts to the state dating to the 1970s.The ministry said that under normal circumstances, repayment of such debts "is close to zero".Among them, some 58,000 people had paid between 50 ...
Obama praises Nigeria's president for conceding defeat WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama praised Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday for conceding defeat in an election that he said showed "Nigeria's commitment to democratic principles.""President Jonathan has placed his country's interests first by conceding the election and congratulating president-elect (Muhammadu) Buhari on his victory," Obama said in a White House statement. Buhari won the election by 2.57 million votes official results showed Wednesday, defeating incumbent Jonathan in a close fought race."I look forward ...
US private-sector job growth sputters in March: ADP WASHINGTON: Job growth in the US private sector sputtered in March, to below the 200,000 level for the first time in more than a year, payrolls firm ADP said Wednesday.Businesses increased nonfarm payrolls by 189,000 jobs in March, following much stronger job growth of 214,000 in February, ADP said.The slowdown in job growth was unexpected after months of solid overall job growth and a falling unemployment rate, which hit 5.5 percent in February.On average, analysts ...
Swiss manufacturing PMI edges up in March after franc shock ZURICH: The sharp decline in Switzerland's manufacturing sector slowed slightly in March, after the country's factories were stunned at the start of the year by the central bank's decision to scrap its cap on the value of the franc.The Swiss purchasing managers' index, which gives a snapshot of the health of manufacturers, edged higher to a seasonally adjusted 47.9 points in March from 47.3 points in the previous month, data showed on Wednesday.This still marks ...
Irish unemployment rate falls to 10 percent in March DUBLIN: The number of people claiming unemployment benefit in Ireland edged down in March, slipping to 10 percent from a 10.1 percent a month earlier, the central statistics office said on Wednesday.Those claiming jobless benefits fell by 4,700 to a seasonally adjusted 350,600, down from 450,000 shortly before Ireland entered a three-year international bailout programme in 2010.Copyright Reuters, 2015 ...


Index Closing Chg%
Arrow DJIA 17,698.18 0.44
Arrow Nasdaq 4,880.23 0.42
Arrow S&P 2,059.69 0.40
Arrow FTSE 6,809.50 0.54
Arrow DAX 12,001.38 0.2
Arrow CAC-40 5,062.22 0.57
Arrow Nikkei 19,034.84 0.90
Arrow H.Seng 25,082.75 0.73
Arrow Sensex 28,260.14 1.08

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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-999 mln
Exports $2.064 bln
Imports $3.063 bln
WeeklyMarch 20, 2015
Reserves $16.132 bln