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Last update: Wed, 10 Feb 2016 03am

Global Business & Economy

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China manufacturing improves in May: HSBC BEIJING: China's manufacturing activity improved in May, but weakness remained as the world's second-largest economy faces headwinds, particularly in the property sector, HSBC said Tuesday.The HSBC final purchasing managers' index (PMI), which tracks activity in the nation's factories and workshops, came in at 49.4 in May, lower than a preliminary reading of 49.7, the British banking giant said in a statement.But the figure improved from 48.1 in April and was the highest reading since January's 49.5, the bank's data showed.The index is a closely watched indicator of the health of the economy. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.The May result marked the fifth consecutive month that the manufacturing industry contracted, according to the survey."The final PMI reading for May confirmed that the economy is stabilising, but it is too early to say that it has bottomed out, particularly in light of a weaker property sector," Qu Hongbing, HSBC's economist in ...

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South Korea inflation rises 1.7pc in May SEOUL: South Korea's inflation rate rose at the fastest pace for more than a year in May, on the back of higher utility costs, state data showed Tuesday, The consumer price index rose 1.7 percent in May from a year ago -- the highest increase for 19 months, according to Statistics Korea. Month on month, the May index was up 0.2 percent.The May figure is still well below the central Bank of Korea's target inflation ...

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US factory data points at Q2 growth pick up WASHINGTON: US manufacturing activity accelerated in May and construction spending rose for a third straight month in April, suggesting economic growth was regaining steam in the second quarter.The economy sank in the first quarter under the weight of a brutally cold winter and a slow pace of restocking by businesses. But businesses appear to rebuilding inventories, with new orders at factories hitting a five-month high in May."It points to an acceleration in economic activity. We ...

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India plant orders hit 3-month peak NEW DELHI: Indian manufacturing orders hit a three-month high in May, according to a business survey Monday that also flagged stubborn inflation risks on the eve of a key monetary policy-setting meeting.The HSBC Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) survey, keenly watched as a portent of industrial expansion and overall economic health, comes as India looks to new Prime Minister Narendra Modi to engineer a growth rebound in Asia's third-largest economy."The momentum in the manufacturing sector improved ...

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Indonesia's trade deficit raises risks ahead of elections, hits rupiah JAKARTA: Sliding exports pushed Indonesia's trade balance into its second biggest monthly deficit in five years in April, a surprise that renewed pressure on the fragile rupiah.A shrinking current-account gap and moderating inflation had only recently boosted investor confidence in Southeast Asia's largest economy ahead of presidential polls in July, making the rupiah Asia's best performing currency earlier this year.But with data on Monday showing exports slipping due to softness in commodity prices, and further ...

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China accelerates as euro zone stumbles LONDON/BEIJING: Signs of an economic revival in China have raised hopes that Beijing's targeted measures to bolster growth are having an impact but a slowdown in the euro zone will increase expectations of policy easing there.Chinese factory activity expanded at the fastest pace in five months in May but euro zone manufacturing growth slowed more than initially thought, fuelling expectations that the European Central Bank will ease policy this week."The Chinese numbers were fractionally higher. ...

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India's infrastructure output growth quickens to 4.2pc in April NEW DELHI: India's annual infrastructure sector output growth accelerated to 4.2 percent in April from 2.5 percent in the previous month, government data showed on Monday.The infrastructure sector, which comprises coal, crude oil, oil refining, natural gas, steel, cement, electricity and fertilisers, accounts for 37.9 percent of India's industrial output.Copyright Reuters, 2014 ...