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Last Updated on Monday, 14 April 2014 13:48
Despite improved figures analysts warn of negative drag and UK is 'not making enough things that other countries want to buy'Britain's trade deficit narrowed in February as imports fell more sharply than exports, but signs of the government's desired economic rebalancing remained elusive.Exports fell by 1.6% on the previous month to £23.5bn, the lowest level in more than three years, while imports fell by a sharper 2.2% to £32.6bn. That left a goods deficit of £9.1bn in February, smaller than January's £9.5bn deficit and slightly smaller than the £9.3bn predicted by the City. The overall trade deficit fell to £2.1bn in February, down from £2.2bn in January. Continue reading...
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 April 2014 04:38
First sale of government bonds since eurozone crisis flared up brings than 11bn of bids despite first general strike of 2014Greece will make a successful return to the financial markets on Thursday after investors flocked to its first sale of government bonds since the eurozone crisis flared up four years ago.There was strong demand for a new five-year bond, despite the country being gripped by its first anti-austerity general strike of 2014. By early evening Athens had received more than 11bn (£9bn) of bids, pushing down the interest rate it will pay on the debt at Thursday's sale towards just 5%. Continue reading...
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 April 2014 10:59
Recently, investing gadfly James Altucher posted a "cheat sheet" for what you should be doing with your money that spotlighted a handful of "demographic trends" that investors could get behind.
We wanted to expand on that handful to a full-blown list of all the technologies out there that are poised to make people billions.
This may not make you a billion dollars. But it shows where things are going.
1) Mobile payments
WHY: Reuters' Emma Thomasson says the mobile payment market is now "fiercely competitive and growing," citing moves by Google, Apple, and PayPal to launch products. Big box retailers also recently announced a joint digital wallet service called the Merchant Customer Exchange, or MCX. And it's not just dollars: Crypto-payment group Circle said it would soon launch its first consumer product that it's calling the Skype of payments. Also for what it's worth, we also recently explained why you shouldn't be using cash.
WHY: Many Americans are getting older and/or
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 April 2014 10:39
HP has agreed to pay $108 million to settle some long-standing investigations of alleged bribery in Russia, Poland, and Mexico, the SEC announced on Wednesday.
This brings to a close investigations by the SEC and Department of Justice that have been hanging over HP's head for years involving subsidiaries in those countries.
For instance, the Russian case involved actions that allegedly occurred between 2000 to 2007, and the Polish case, between 2006 to 2010.
People who worked for these subsidiaries were accused of collectively paying millions of dollars to government officials to obtain big contracts.
In its statement about the settlement, HP's lawyer, John Schultz says that the "misconduct described in the settlement was limited to a small number of people who are no longer employed by the company."
Here's the full press release issued by the SEC:
SEC Charges Hewlett-Packard With FCPA Violations
Company to Pay $108 Million to Settle Civil and Criminal Cases
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 April 2014 12:46
David Zervos, Jefferies' chief market strategist, thinks markets are pricing in the possibility that the Fed is making a mistake in going down the path of monetary-policy normalization too soon.
His evidence: rising short rates, low long-term rates (suggestive of little inflation), the rise in value stocks, and outperformance in emerging markets relative to U.S. equities.
In a note to clients, he points out the following.
The extraordinary demand for durated fixed income: 30-year yields are down nearly 50 basis points in 2014.
The rise in short-end yields: 3-year yields have risen 15 basis points in 2014.
The sharp recovery in emerging markets: EEM has rallied 8 percent in the last six weeks while spoos have gone nowhere.
The sharp outperformance of value stocks to growth stocks: IBB is down 18 percent in the last 6 weeks while IBM is up 6 percent.
He gives the first two points — which together represent a flattening of the Treasury yield curve — the most
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 April 2014 14:52
Real quick, here are two horrendous datapoints from Japan.
Core machinery orders for the month of February fell a staggering 8.8% month-over-month. A decline of just over 2% was expected, reports ForexLive.
A major department store in Japan says so far in April, sales are down 25%. The reason for this is that at the start of the month, Japan let the consumption tax rise from 5% to 8%, despite the obvious potential for an economic drag. This only puts more pressure, of course, on the Bank of Japan to step on the gas pedal to keep the economy going. And it's worth bearing in mind that while a 25% decline in sales is terrible, it might be a bit overstated if shoppers got in some extra pre-tax hike shopping in anticipation. Still that's gonna leave a mark.
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Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 April 2014 18:19