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Last update: Mon, 26 Sep 2016 01pm

Global Business & Economy

World - Global Business & Economy

Argentina will have greater-than-promised fiscal deficit in 2017 BUENOS AIRES: Argentina will register a primary fiscal deficit equivalent to 4.2 percent of gross domestic product in 2017, higher than previously promised, according to the budget bill the government presented to Congress on Thursday. After taking office in December, President Mauricio Macri's government promised to reduce the deficit next year to 3.3 percent of gross domestic product from 4.8 percent in 2016 as part of a series of free-market reforms meant to attract investment in Latin America's No. 3 economy. Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay said the government would seek to lower the deficit further in subsequent years, but said cutting it too aggressively in this budget would harm efforts to spur Argentina's economy, which remains mired in recession. "We think it would have been a mistake to be more aggressive in deficit reduction, as some sectors of society asked us to do," Prat-Gay said. "We think that would have ...

World - Global Business & Economy

US economic data mixed as Fed meeting nears WASHINGTON: US economic indicators released Thursday pointed to continuing softness in consumer spending and inflationary pressures as the US Federal Reserve prepares to review interest rate policy next week.Contrasts in the data could prolong disagreements among policymakers, who have been divided since the middle of the year on the urgency and timing of the next rate hike.Retail sales fell 0.3 percent in August and the producer price index, one indicator of inflation, was flat and ...

World - Global Business & Economy

Libya oil exports to resume 'immediately' TRIPOLI: Libya's oil company on Thursday announced an "immediate" resumption of oil exports from two of the key ports captured this week by forces opposed to the country's UN-backed unity government.Forces led by a controversial general, Khalifa Haftar, who backs a rival administration in eastern Libya, seized four ports in the country's so-called "oil crescent" this week and handed them over to the National Oil Company (NOC).Their capture was a blow to the Tripoli-based Government ...

World - Global Business & Economy

US retail sales fall more than expected on weak autos WASHINGTON: US retail sales fell more than expected in August amid weak purchases of automobiles and a range of other goods, pointing to cooling domestic demand that could further diminish expectations of a Federal Reserve interest rate increase next week.The Commerce Department said on Thursday retail sales declined 0.3 percent after an upwardly revised 0.1 percent gain in July. Retail sales in July were previously reported to have been unchanged.Sales were up 1.9 percent from ...

World - Global Business & Economy

US current account deficit narrows in the second quarter WASHINGTON: The US current account deficit narrowed in the second quarter as exports and income from abroad rose, government data showed on Thursday.The Commerce Department said the current account deficit, which measures the flow of goods, services and investments into and out of the country, fell to $119.9 billion from an upwardly revised $131.8 billion the first quarter.Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the current account deficit declining to $120.5 billion from a previously reported ...

World - Global Business & Economy

US jobless claims rise less than expected as labor market firms WASHINGTON: The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose less than expected last week, pointing to a further tightening n labor market conditions.Initial claims for state unemployment benefits edged up 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 260,000 for the week ended Sept. 10, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Claims for the prior week were unrevised.Economists polled by Reuters had forecast first-time applications for jobless benefits rising to 265,000 in the latest week.It was the ...

World - Global Business & Economy

British retail sales edge slightly lower in August LONDON: Retail sales in Britain fell 0.2 percent in August from July, official data showed Thursday, with no real indication that the Brexit vote outcome was hurting spending. "Regarding the EU referendum in late June, our data on retail sales since the vote show little evidence of a departure from recent trends," the Office for National Statistics said in a statement.Analysts had expected a decrease of 0.7 percent month-on-month.The ONS added that the largest contribution ...