INTERNATIONAL ECONOMY AND BUSINESS NEWS
U.S. Federal Reserve policymakers showed worry over the fate of currently low inflation and saw recent tax changes as providing a boost to consumer spending, according to the minutes of the U.S. central bank’s last policy meeting. The details of the meeting, at which the Fed raised interest rates for the fifth time since the 2008 financial crisis, also showed that officials have a similar lack of certainty over the impact of fiscal stimulus on raising price pressures.
China’s services sector activity expanded at its fastest pace in over three years in December on solid growth in new business, with the outlook improving to a six-month high, a private sector survey showed on Thursday. The upbeat findings broadly echo those of an official gauge of the non-manufacturing sector last week that showed activity accelerated at a faster rate in December than the previous month, reinforcing the view that an expected slowdown in the broader economy would be gradual.
Japan December final manufacturing PMI highest since Feb 2014
Japanese manufacturing activity expanded at the fastest pace in almost four years in December as new orders accelerated, a revised survey showed on Thursday, in a sign that steady economic growth will continue into the New Year. The Markit Japan Manufacturing Final Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) was a seasonally adjusted 54.0 in December, slightly below the preliminary reading of 54.2 but still above a final reading of 53.6.
Euro zone factories ended 2017 with record high growth
Euro zone manufacturers ended 2017 by ramping up activity at the fastest pace in more than two decades, a survey showed on Tuesday, and rising demand suggests they will start the New Year on a high. The bloc’s economy outpaced its peers last year, and the European Central Bank plans to scale back its stimulus program from this month.
US jobs growth loses steam in December
US employers added fewer jobs than expected in December, capping a year of slowing jobs growth. Non-farm payrolls rose by 148,000 last month, amid losses in the retail sector, the Labor Department said. But the unemployment rate held steady at 4.1%, the lowest it has been since 2000. Analysts say the tightening labour market, which makes it harder to hire, is driving a broader slowdown in job creation.
UK car sales see first drop for six years
New car sales fell for the first time in six years last year, with demand for diesel cars plunging by almost a fifth. In total, there were about 2.5 million cars registered, according to industry body the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The figure was down 5.7% from 2016, while diesel sales fell 17.1% as higher taxes and pollution fears hit demand. CO2 emissions from new cars increased for the first time in 20 years, up 0.8% on 2016.
INDIAN ECONOMY AND BUSINESS NEWS
Factory activity expands fastest in 5 years, December manufacturing PMI at 54.7
Buoyed by a rise in output and new orders, India's factory activity expanded at the fastest pace in five years in December, suggesting a further strengthening of the economic recovery seen in the September quarter. The seasonally adjusted Nikkei India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose to 54.7 in December from November's 52.6. A reading above 50 denotes expansion.
Gold price gains Rs 1,050 in 18 days, Silver coins get costlier by Rs 3,000 as wedding season sparkles
Gold prices have advanced Rs 1,050 per 10 grams in last 18 days of trading at the bullion market of national capital Delhi. However today, gold prices were flat ended at a rate of Rs 30,450 per 10 grams. From starting of December until 12 December 2017, gold prices were on a sinking trend following a low demand from local jewelers all across. From a price level of Rs 29,400 per 10 grams, gold prices have appreciated by Rs 1,050 in 18 days and silver prices also get a boost of more than Rs 2,000 in the corresponding period.
Sensex, Nifty hit new record high on fund inflows
The BSE Sensex today soared to the life-time high of 34,175.21 and the NSE Nifty scaled the historic 10,562.80 mark in late morning trade as banking, metal and realty stocks advanced following continuous foreign fund inflows and increased buying by domestic institutional investors. The 30-share Sensex spurted 205 points, or 0.60 per cent, to all-time high of 34,175.21 points, breaching its previous record high (intra-day) of 34,137.97 scaled.
Rupee advances gains against dollar in early trade
The rupee gained 10 paise to trade at over 2.5 year high of 63.31 against the US dollar in early session today on increased selling of the American currency by exporters and banks. Besides, stock markets opening with gains and sustained foreign fund inflows also supported the domestic unit, forex dealers said. The dollar's weakness against some currencies overseas also supported the rupee's up move. The rupee opened higher at 63.35 a dollar and moved to a high of 63.31 a dollar in early trade