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Emerging equities snapped a three-day losing streak on Tuesday and many of the more beaten down emerging market currencies such as the lira and rand bounced off lows as the dollar pulled back. MSCI's benchmark ...
Snow was partly to blame for a sharp decline in the construction industry in February, new figures show. Manufacturing also suffered an unexpected drop in output for the first time in almost a year - falling by 0.2% month on month in February - fuelling fears of a slowdown in the wider economy. Construction makes up about 6% of British economic output.
The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose just marginally last week, suggesting strong job growth in March that should underpin consumer spending. Other data on Thursday offered an upbeat assessment of the economy, echoing a similar tone struck by the Federal Reserve on Wednesday when it raised interest rates and forecast at least two more hikes for 2018. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 3,000 to a seasonally adjusted 229,000 for the week ended March 17, the Labor Department said on Thursday.
* Powell vows to stick to rate hikes in the U.S. LONDON, March 1 (Reuters) - The gap (Frankfurt: 863533 - news) between short-dated borrowing costs in the United States and Germany widened on Thursday to its biggest in more than 20 years as the monetary policy outlooks for the two regions diverge. The spread narrowed slightly by close of day after Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell's second testimony this week pushed U.S. Treasury yields lower, but the premium over German yields should remain in place.
Essentially it is a bet that the price of the share will decline. Short-sellers borrow stock from those that own it, say pension funds, then sell it into the market, hoping to buy it back at a lower price. In the European Union, funds with short positions greater than 0.5 percent of a company's shares are required to publicly disclose these with the respective regulator – which is how Bridgewater's bet came to light.
British households' gloom about their finances deepened this month, and most now expect borrowing costs to rise again within six months after the Bank of England raised interest rates in November, a survey showed on Monday. Data company IHS Markit (Stuttgart: A1139A - news) said its Household Finance Index, a monthly gauge of financial well-being, fell to a seven-month low of 42.2 from 42.9 in January. Conducted over six days starting on Feb. 8, the day the BoE (Shenzhen: 000725.SZ - news) said it was likely to raise rates sooner and by more than it previously thought, the survey showed 60 percent of households expected a hike within six months, up from 45 percent in January.
British shoppers spent less last month than the year before, causing spending in January to fall for the first time since 2013, according to a survey which underscored many households' caution about their finances and the approach of Brexit. Visa (Xetra: A0NC7B - news) , whose debit and credit cards are used for a third of payments in Britain, said on Monday that consumers stayed away from the traditional post-Christmas sales last month. Household spending fell by 1.2 percent in January compared with the same month in 2017, with spending in shops down by 4 percent, it said.
The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note has risen to a four-year high as investors anticipate a slightly faster pace of interest rate increases from the Federal Reserve than has been expected. The U.S. central bank has forecast three rate increases this year after raising borrowing costs three times in 2017. "All of this is before the actual effects of the tax cuts have had time to kick in," said John Ryding, chief economist at RDQ Economics in New York.
The collapse of Carillion (Frankfurt: 924047 - news) has resulted in 377 staff being made redundant, but more than 900 jobs being saved so far. The company went into liquidation in January after being brought to its knees by mounting debts and a hole in its pension fund. The official receiver confirmed the figures for redundancies today, and said: "I recognise this will be a worrying time for all those affected, their families and local communities.
British households felt more of a squeeze on their finances this month, a survey by data firm IHS Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKT - news) showed on Monday, and credit card firm Visa (Xetra: A0NC7B - news) predicted spending over the Christmas holidays would fall in real terms for the first time since 2012. The reports underscored the pressure on finance minister Philip Hammond to come up with measures in this week's budget to help voters cope with the rise in inflation and slow growth in their wages. The IHS Markit Household Finance Index for November fell to 43.4, reversing some of October's improvement to 43.8.
The FTSE 100 has closed at a record high of 7,560, a day after the Bank of England raised the interest rate. The blue chip index ended the day up by just 0.07% but was enough to break the record high for the second time in a month. "The Footsie has climbed this week on the back of a falling pound, as currency markets groaned at the Bank of England's weak expectations for future interest rate rises," said Laith Khalaf, a senior analyst at investment firm Hargreaves Lansdown (Frankfurt: DMB.F - news) .
Monthly purchasing managers' index (PMI) data from Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKT - news) /CIPS UK Services showed higher than expected growth in the industry with a reading of 55.6 - up from 53.6 in September. A reading above 50 indicates growth. It follows strong performances in both the manufacturing and construction sectors, with the report saying the UK economy was on track for a 0.5% expansion in the final quarter of this year, edging up from 0.4% in the third quarter.
LONDON, Oct (Shenzhen: 000069.SZ - news) 23 (Reuters) - British households' financial worries have eased to their lowest since June, despite the prospect of higher Bank of England interest rates and a reliance on borrowing to make up for falling employment income, a survey showed on Monday. The IHS Markit Household Finance Index rose to 43.8 in October from 42.8 in September, its highest since June, and marking a recovery from a third quarter which was the weakest since 2014. Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKT - news) said the survey's improvement this month reflected households' increased optimism about the economic outlook for the next year, as well as an increased willingness to spend on cars, holidays and household large goods.
U.S. homebuilding fell for a second straight month in August as a rebound in the construction of single-family houses was offset by persistent weakness in the volatile multifamily home segment. The report from the Commerce Department on Tuesday also showed building permits racing to a seven-month high in August. Homebuilding has been treading water for much of this year amid shortages of land and skilled labor as well as rising costs of building materials.
U.S. retail sales unexpectedly fell in August and industrial output recorded its biggest drop since 2009 as Hurricane Harvey disrupted activity, suggesting the storm could dent economic growth in the third quarter. Hurricane Irma, which struck Florida last weekend, also is likely to hurt the economy, though analysts expect a rebound in the fourth quarter.
Risk appetite started to slip again on Tuesday, with modest falls for Wall Street's main markets as they reopened for the first time since North Korea's biggest nuclear missile test yet. Major U.S. markets had been closed during Monday's global sell-off, so the S&P 500, Dow and Nasdaq were playing catch up as they dropped 0.2-0.3 percent in opening deals.
Fuelled by a resurgent European economy, the highest proportion of British manufacturers in at least 20 years now report rising output and orders, despite gloom around the outlook at home, an industry survey showed on Tuesday. While Britain's factories have failed to contribute to official measures of economic growth so far in 2017, a stronger second half to the year looks in store, according to a quarterly report from manufacturing association EEF and accountants BDO. The survey's gauges for orders and output hit their highest levels since records started in 1995, with respondents reporting especially strong demand from the European Union.
Focus has sharpened on how exchange-traded bond funds react to market shocks after recent wobbles showed some performing out of line with the assets they are designed to mirror. Although bond ETFs (Shenzhen: 395013.SZ - news) largely behaved as expected, some didn't when European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi triggered a bond sell off by hinting the ECB's bond-buying stimulus scheme may soon be scaled back.
A lacklustre performance in Britain's dominant services sector only just beat expectations in July - positioning the economy for a "steady but sluggish" growth in the third quarter, figures show. Monthly purchasing managers' index (PMI) data from Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKT - news) /CIPS UK Services showed higher than expected growth in the industry with a reading of 53.8, up from a four-month low of 53.4 in June. The outlook comes as Britain's factories enjoyed a bounce-back in July thanks to the strongest surge in export orders for more than seven years, but the construction sector slumped with political and economic uncertainty dragging on demand for new projects.
Construction activity slumped in July to its lowest level in almost a year, the latest snapshot of the sector reveals. Monthly purchasing managers' index (PMI) data from Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKT - news) /CIPS UK Construction showed a significant decline in building works, with a reading of 51.9 for last month - down from 54.8 in June.
Growth in Britain's construction industry tumbled to an 11-month low in July, as a lacklustre outlook for the economy and heightened political uncertainty deterred new orders, a survey showed on Wednesday. The survey is another mixed signal for Bank of England policymakers meeting this week to set interest rates. "The combination of weaker order books and sharply rising construction costs provides a concern that an extended soft patch for the construction sector may be on the horizon," said Tim Moore, senior economist at survey compiler IHS Markit (Stuttgart: A1139A - news) .
The UK manufacturing sector bounced back strongly in July thanks to the strongest surge in export orders for more than seven years. Monthly purchasing managers' index (PMI) data from Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKT - news) /CIPS UK Manufacturing showed higher than expected growth in Britain's factories with a reading of 55.1 last month, up from 54.2 in June. The beleaguered manufacturing sector is still struggling to catch up following the recession nine years ago despite efforts to drive growth.
The biggest surge in export orders since 2010 helped British factories to recover in July from a seven-month low, according to a survey on Tuesday that may temper some of the concerns among Bank of England officials about a slowdown in the economy. Sterling hit its highest level in 10 months against the U.S. dollar and British government bond prices fell after Tuesday's Markit (NasdaqGS: MRKT - news) /CIPS UK Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to 55.1 from a downwardly revised 54.2 in June.
LONDON/HONG KONG, Aug 1 (Reuters) - Factories across the world powered into July, providing evidence that economic momentum has carried through into the second half despite central banks in the West preparing to start scaling back years of massive stimulus. Growth in the euro zone remained buoyant, British manufacturing recovered in July from a seven-month low and Chinese factory activity unexpectedly expanded. "The world economy was doing quite well in the second quarter and nothing has changed in July.
A slowdown in euro zone business growth at the start of the second half of 2017, alongside declining inflation pressures in a key business survey, could put paid to expectations of a stimulus clawback by the European Central Bank later this year. Years of ultra-easy policy have bolstered still-solid growth, but inflation is nowhere near the European Central Bank's 2 percent target ceiling and even shallower price rises this month will provide disappointing reading for policymakers. Germany and France, the two largest economies in the club, missed expectations, suggesting an even more robust pace of business activity in many of the bloc's other members.