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US jobless claims drop sharply to near 15-year low WASHINGTON: The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits tumbled last week to its lowest level in nearly 15 years, adding to bullish signals on the labor market.Though the decline probably exaggerates the jobs market's strength given a holiday-shortened week, Thursday's report suggested the economy was fairly healthy and weathering weakening global growth."Claims are a welcome shot in the arm for those believing the economy is strong. The U.S. remains an oasis of prosperity in the world and will continue to do so," said Chris Rupkey, chief financial economist at MUFG Union Bank in New York.Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 43,000 to a seasonally adjusted 265,000 for the week ended Jan. 24, the lowest since April 2000, the Labor Department said. It was the biggest weekly decline since November 2012.The drop exceeded economists' expectations for a fall to only 300,000, but last week also included the ...

US pending home sales drop more than expected in December WASHINGTON: Contracts to buy previously owned U.S. homes fell more than expected in December as tighter inventory and an increase in house prices discouraged buyers.The National Association of Realtors said on Thursday its Pending Home Sales Index, based on contracts signed last month, decreased 3.7 percent to 100.7. The NAR also slightly revised down its index in November to 104.6.These contracts usually become sales after a month or two. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast ...
Greece's rating could be cut if troika talks stall: Fitch LONDON: Greece's credit rating could be cut if talks with its international creditors do not make progress by the time of Fitch's next review in May, one of the firm's senior ratings directors said on Thursday.The new Greek government has signalled it will stand by its anti-austerity pledges, setting it on a collision course with European partners reluctant to renegotiate the aid package Athens needs to help pay its huge debts.Fitch is the last of ...
US jobless claims plunge 14pc WASHINGTON: New claims for US unemployment insurance benefits plunged to the lowest level in nearly 15 years last week, the Labor Department reported Thursday.Initial jobless claims, a sign of the pace of layoffs, dropped to a seasonally adjusted 265,000 in the week ending January 24, a hefty decline of 43,000 from the prior week's slightly upwardly revised level of 308,000.It was the lowest level for initial claims since mid-April 2000. The decline in claims was ...
German inflation tips into negative territory: data BERLIN: Inflation in Germany, Europe's biggest economy, dipped into negative territory in January for the first time in five years, largely due to lower energy prices, data showed Thursday.German inflation was -0.3 percent this month compared to January 2014, the federal statistics office, Destatis, said releasing in its provisional figure, which sank slightly more than analysts polled by Factset had forecast.In December it had slowed to 0.2 percent, its lowest level in more than five ...
Philippine economy regains momentum, but policy seen on hold MANILA: The Philippines rounded out 2014 as the fastest-growing economy in Asia after China, regaining momentum in the final quarter of the year on strong farm output and construction activity.The surprising performance, which put Asia's fifth-largest economy on course to return to growth of around 7 percent this year amid cooling inflation, cements expectations the central bank will leave policy rates on hold for some time."Our economy has moved into a long-term growth path; 7 ...
China Jan official PMI seen lifting off 1-1/2-year low BEIJING: China's factory growth likely inched up from a 1-1/2-year low in January, helped by a slight pick-up in momentum the previous month, but the bounce is not expected to last due to unsteady exports and slowing investment, a Reuters poll showed.The official manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, is forecast to inch up to 50.2 from December's 50.1, according to the median forecast of 11 economists in the poll.A reading above 50-point level indicates ...


Index Closing Chg%
Arrow DJIA 17,191.37 1.13
Arrow Nasdaq 4,638.00 0.93
Arrow S&P 2,002.16 1.35
Arrow FTSE 6,825.94 0.21
Arrow DAX 10,710.97 0.78
Arrow CAC-40 4,610.94 0.29
Arrow Nikkei 17,795.73 0.15
Arrow H.Seng 24,861.81 0.22
Arrow Sensex 29,559.18 0.04

ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.664 bln
Exports $1.966 bln
Imports $3.630 bln
WeeklyJanuary 25, 2015
Reserves $15.019 bln