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US retail sales sag in January WASHINGTON: US retail sales fell unexpectedly for the second straight month in January, dragged down by a drop in auto sales, government data showed Thursday.Retail and food service sales dropped 0.4 percent from December, the Commerce Department said.Excluding auto sales, retail sales were flat in January. Sales of motor vehicles and parts tumbled 2.1 percent.The department also revised December's reading down to a decline of 0.1 percent, from the prior estimate of a 0.2 percent gain.Both December, the crucial holiday shopping month, and January were marked by severe winter weather in large parts of the country that may have depressed sales.But analysts also pointed to consumers' tighter wallets."Consumers cash flows are constrained, and retailers are now feeling the squeeze," said Ian Shepherdson of Pantheon Macroneconomics.Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2014 ...

ECB survey sees lower eurozone inflation in 2014, 2015 FRANKFURT: Eurozone inflation will remain below target in the next few years, and growth will speed up, a survey by the European Central Bank forecast on Thursday. In its regular quarterly survey of professional forecasters, the ECB found that inflation in the 17 countries that share the euro was expected to reach an annual average 1.1 percent this year.Inflation would then pick up to 1.4 percent in 2015 and 1.7 percent in 2016, the ECB ...
German inflation eases in January FRANKFURT: The rate of inflation in Germany, Europe's biggest economy, inched lower in January, final official data showed on Thursday. The cost of living rose by 1.3 percent on a 12-month basis this month, compared with 1.4 percent in December, the federal statistics office Destatis said in a statement.Using the Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP), the European Central Bank's inflation yardstick, inflation in Germany stood at 1.2 percent in January, the same rate as ...
Congress extends US borrowing authority until 2015 WASHINGTON: Lawmakers approved a 13-month extension of US borrowing authority with no strings attached Wednesday, shelving a fractious political debate over the nation's debt ceiling until after November's mid-term elections.With last-minute help from Republican leaders to overcome a blocking effort, the Senate passed the legislation 55-43, marking a dramatic victory for President Barack Obama, who had demanded a debt ceiling hike with no political riders or other legislation attached.The measure, which cleared the House of ...
Japan Q4 growth seen quickening on shopping spree before tax hike TOKYO: Japan's economic growth is expected to have quickened at the end of last year as consumers ramped up spending ahead of a planned sales tax hike, but analysts say that Tokyo may have to inject fresh stimulus to brighten the outlook. Lukewarm exports and wages growth have undercut some of the economic gains of the past year, and recent turmoil in emerging markets have also raised worries that Japanese shipments may fail to pick ...
Mexico central bank sees worse inflation in 2014 MEXICO CITY: Mexico's central bank on Wednesday said the inflation outlook for 2014 would be higher than previously forecast, but policymakers said price pressures would cool by the end of the year. The central bank said in its quarterly report that annual inflation would remain above 4 percent in the first months of 2014 before falling below that level in the second half of the year. Last November, the central bank forecast inflation of around ...
IMF sees deep weaknesses in Iran economy after sanctions WASHINGTON: The International Monetary Fund said Wednesday that Iran's economy faces deep structural weaknesses as intensified nuclear sanctions have added to other domestic challenges to the government.In its first review of the Iranian economy in nearly three years, the IMF said the country needs to respond with a "prompt and vigorous" reform program to prevent further deterioration.A combination of shocks, including the start of subsidy reforms, poorly funded social programs, and the intensification of trade ...


Index Closing Chg%
Arrow DJIA 16,643.01 0.07
Arrow Nasdaq 4,828.32 0.32
Arrow S&P 1,988.87 0.06
Arrow FTSE 6,247.94 0.90
Arrow DAX 10,298.53 0.17
Arrow CAC-40 4,675.13 0.36
Arrow Nikkei 19,136.32 3.03
Arrow H.Seng 21,612.39 1.04
Arrow Sensex 26,392.38 0.61

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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $62.649bn
Per Cap Income $1,512
GDP Growth 4.24%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.378 bln
Exports $2.016 bln
Imports $4.394 bln
WeeklyAugust 27, 2015
Reserves $18.509 bln