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Last update: Sun, 14 Feb 2016 06am

Global Business & Economy

World - Global Business & Economy

Brazil's jobless rate falls unexpectedly in December BRASILIA: The unemployment rate in Brazil's main cities fell more than expected in December as fewer people sought jobs in the middle of the country's deepest recession in decades, government data showed on Thursday.Brazil's non-seasonally-adjusted jobless rate fell to 6.9 percent from 7.5 percent in November and below all estimates in a Reuters poll.Average wages discounted for inflation rose 1.4 percent from November to 2,235.50 reais ($549) but declined 5.8 percent from December 2014, statistics agency IBGE said.Brazil's economy shed about 1.5 million jobs in 2015, a decline comparable with that in the United States during the height of its financial crisis in 2008-2009.The number of Brazilians either employed or seeking jobs in the six major metropolitan areas surveyed by IBGE fell by 0.3 percent in December from November, while the non-economically active population grew by 1 percent, suggesting fewer people sought jobs as the recession worsened.Brazil's economy probably contracted ...

World - Global Business & Economy

German inflation rises to eight-month high in January BERLIN: Germany's annual inflation reached its highest rate in eight months in January but overall price pressure remained weak, leaving analysts divided over the merits of more central bank stimulus.Plunging oil prices have raised questions about whether the European Central Bank can pull inflation up towards its target for the whole euro zone, an annual rate of just below 2 percent.German prices, harmonised to compare with other European countries (HICP), rose by 0.4 percent on ...

World - Global Business & Economy

US manufacturing weakening as job market firms WASHINGTON: New orders for long-lasting manufactured goods in December recorded their biggest drop in 16 months, the latest indication that U.S. economic growth braked sharply at the end of 2015.Despite the slowdown in growth, which was acknowledged by the Federal Reserve on Wednesday, the labor market remains on solid ground. Other data on Thursday showed the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits retreated from a six-month high last week.The economy has been blindsided by ...

World - Global Business & Economy

US jobless claims fall WASHINGTON: Fewer Americans filed new claims for US unemployment insurance benefits last week, the government said Thursday.Initial jobless claims, a sign of the pace of layoffs, fell by 16,000 to 278,000 in the week ending January 23, the Labor Department said.The prior week's level was revised up by 1,000 to 294,000.The Labor Department said there were no special factors affecting the initial claims data. The four-week moving average, which helps to smooth week-on-week volatility, slipped ...

World - Global Business & Economy

US durable goods orders slump in December WASHINGTON: New orders for manufactured durable goods slumped for a second consecutive month in December, the US Commerce Department reported Thursday.Orders for goods that typically last three years or more dropped a hefty 5.1 percent in December following a revised 0.5 percent fall in November.Excluding transportation orders, which tend to be volatile month-on-month, new orders fell 1.2 percent. In November they were down 0.5 percent.The November numbers were previously reported as flat.The slump in the ...

World - Global Business & Economy

Euro zone sentiment drops more than expected in Jan BRUSSELS: Euro zone economic sentiment deteriorated by far more than expected in January, pulled down by more pessimism in industry, the service sector and among consumers, data from the European Commission showed on Thursday.The Commission said economic sentiment in the 19 countries sharing the euro fell to 105.0 in January from a downwardly revised 106.7 in December. Economists polled by Reuters had expected a slight decline to 106.4.The Commission's business climate indicator, which points to ...

World - Global Business & Economy

UK retail sales slip, shops braced for weakness ahead: CBI LONDON: British shop sales lost pace slightly in the first half of January as mild weather hurt sales of winter clothing, and retailers expect their weakest performance since 2013 in the three months ahead, a survey showed on Thursday.The sales balance of the Confederation of British Industry's distributive trades survey fell to +16 from +19 in December, below the average forecast of +18 in a Reuters poll.A measure of expected sales for the three months ...