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Last update: Mon, 26 Sep 2016 12pm

Global Business & Economy

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Norwegian trade surplus shrinks by two-thirds in August OSLO: Norway said Thursday its trade surplus shrank by two-thirds in August on a yearly basis, hammered by a combination of higher imports and declining exports of natural gas, marking one of its worst results since 1999.The surplus stood at 6.8 billion kroner ($825 million, 729 million euros) in August, a drop of 67.5 percent compared with a year earlier, the national statistics institute SSB said.Exports fell by 13.1 percent, hit by natural gas sales that plunged 42.2 percent, with imports increasing by a nearly 11 percent.Outside of hydrocarbons and shipbuilding, Norway's trade balance had a deficit of 19.4 billion kroner.Since the beginning of the year, Norway's trade deficit has shrunk by 48.3 percent compared with the same period in 2015.Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2016 ...

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S&P says UK economy's rebound in August may be a mirage LONDON: Ratings agency Standard & Poor's said on Monday that signs of a post-Brexit vote recovery in Britain's economy may prove to be a "mirage" as uncertainty about the country's relationship with the European Union weighs on business investment."While the news is encouraging, we believe it has no bearing on the cloudy longer-term outlook for the UK economy," Sophie Tahiri, an economist at S&P Global Ratings, said in a report.British consumers have shown little sign ...

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Portugal CPI decline slows to 0.2pc in August vs previous month LISBON: Portuguese consumer prices slipped 0.2 percent in August, less than the 0.7 percent decline the previous month as the summer clothing and footwear sales drew to a close, but rose from a year ago, official data showed on Monday.The National Statistics Institute said that year-on-year inflation last month clocked 0.7 percent, up slightly from 0.6 percent in July.In July, the month-on-month drop was 0.7 percent.Average inflation in the 12 months to August was unchanged ...

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China producer prices fall at slowest in 4 years BEIJING: China's producer prices fell at their slowest rate for more than four years in August, the government said Friday, another sign of stabilisation in the world's second-largest economy.The news came a day after Beijing unveiled a forecast-beating rise in imports -- the first in almost two years -- raising hopes that a long period of slowing growth could be bottoming out.The producer price index (PPI), which measures the cost of goods at the factory ...

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US jobless claims fall at start of September WASHINGTON: Claims for US unemployment benefits fell last week, continuing a record run at low levels, the US Labor Department said on Thursday.Initial benefit claims, seen as an indicator of the prevalence of layoffs, dropped to 259,000, a decrease of 4,000 below last week's unrevised figure of 263,000, the department said.Analysts had forecast a claims level of 265,000 for the week ending September 3."This marks 79 consecutive weeks of initial claims below 300,000, the longest ...

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Greek unemployment drops to 23.4pc in June ATHENS: Greece's jobless rate dropped to 23.4 percent in June from an upwardly revised 23.6 percent in the previous month, statistics agency ELSTAT said on Thursday.The number of officially unemployed reached 1.124 million people. Hardest hit were young people aged 15 to 24 years, with their jobless rate easing to 47.7 percent from 48.2 percent in the same month a year earlier.The reading in June, based on seasonally adjusted data, was the lowest since April ...

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World food prices hit 15-month high in August: FAO ROME: World food prices rose in August to their highest since May 2015, as increases in dairy, oils and sugar offset a drop in cereal prices, the United Nations food agency said on Thursday.The rise in the Food and Agriculture Organization's (FAO) index puts food prices back on an upward path after dropping slightly in July. The index hit a seven-year low in January."We seem to have reached the bottom for food prices in general ...