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US service sector activity ticks up in February NEW YORK: A gauge of growth in the U.S. services sector was modestly stronger than expected in February, helped as an index on employment rebounded from recent weakness.The Institute for Supply Management on Wednesday said its services index was 56.9 in February, up slightly from 56.7 in January. Analysts were looking for a reading of 56.5, according to a Reuters poll.The survey's employment index jumped to 56.4 from 51.6, moving from its lowest level since February 2014 to its highest level since October. One component, prices, rose but stayed under the 50 level that separates expansion from contraction, while two other components - order backlogs and imports - returned to expansionary territory after a recent contraction.The rise in the overall index came despite a deceleration in business activity. That subindex fell to 59.4 from 61.5.Copyright Reuters, 2015 ...

Euro zone inflation bets rise as data challenges deflation outlook LONDON: Market bets on a revival of euro zone inflation are close to their highest this year as surprisingly strong economic data and imminent European Central Bank money printing ease fears of a deflationary spiral.Surveys on Wednesday, a day before the ECB details its quantitative easing programme intended to kick-start inflation and growth, showed euro zone business activity accelerated in the region's four biggest economies in February, helped by price cuts and a weaker currency.This ...
China defence budget 10pc rise to defy slowing economy BEIJING: China's defence budget this year will rise about 10 percent compared with 2014, a top government official said on Wednesday, outpacing the slowing economy as the country ramps up investment in high-tech equipment such as submarines and stealth jets.Parliament spokeswoman Fu Ying told reporters the actual figure would be released on Thursday, when the annual session of the largely rubber-stamp National People's Congress opens.Last year, defence spending was budgeted to rise 12.2 percent to ...
Moody's sees global default rate rising in 2015 NEW YORK: Moody's Investors Services said on Wednesday it projected a rise in the global default rate on high-yield bonds and loans in 2015 on rising risk premiums, geopolitical concerns, sluggish global growth and a possible rate increase from the Federal Reserve.Based on its model, the rating agency said the default rate would climb to 2.7 percent from 2.0 percent in 2014. This implies 76 defaults globally.The predicted higher level though would still be below ...
Obama signs homeland security funding bill: White House WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama on Wednesday signed into law a bill that funds the U.S. Department of Homeland Security until the end of the fiscal year, after lawmakers this week ended a months-long dispute over the agency's budget.Congressional Republicans had hoped to overcome Democrats' objections and tie the department's funding to a measure blocking Obama's recent executive actions on immigration.Republicans abandoned that plan this week, and the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday passed a ...
IMF to 'assess' whether Zimbabwe implemented reforms HARARE: A team from the International Monetary Fund team leading efforts to re-engage Zimbabwe said on Wednesday it will "assess" whether the country has adhered to agreed reforms aimed at normalising its relations with the lender."We are going to look whether the policies that have been implemented in the last five months have been broadly consistent with what we agreed," said Domenico Fanizza, IMF's head of mission to Harare, to a Zimbabwe parliamentary committee on ...
US economy continues fairly moderate growth: Fed report WASHINGTON: The US economy continued to grow at a fairly moderate rate in recent weeks, despite severe winter weather in some regions, according to a Federal Reserve report released Wednesday."Economic activity continued to expand across most regions and sectors from early January through mid-February," with a "moderate pace" seen in half of the central bank's 12 districts, the Fed's Beige Book said.Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2015 ...


Index Closing Chg%
Arrow DJIA 18,135.72 0.21
Arrow Nasdaq 4,982.81 0.32
Arrow S&P 2,101.04 0.12
Arrow FTSE 6,961.14 0.6
Arrow DAX 11,504.01 1.00
Arrow CAC-40 4,963.51 0.94
Arrow Nikkei 18,751.84 0.26
Arrow H.Seng 24,193.04 1.11
Arrow Sensex 29,448.95 0.23

ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.703 bln
Exports $2.156 bln
Imports $3.859 bln
WeeklyFebruary 26, 2015
Reserves $16.137 bln