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  • NEW YORK, March 16- The S&P 500 closed at its highest level of the year on Wednesday after the U.S. Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged and signaled fewer rate hikes in coming months. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 74.78 points, or 0.43 percent, to 17,326.31, the S&P 500 gained 11.34 points, or 0.56 percent, to 2,027.27 and the Nasdaq Composite added...

  • LONDON, March 16- The combination of a slow-growth world of shrinking policy options and the splintered political voting patterns it's fostered is stifling the global economy at a critical juncture. With major central banks maxed out at near zero interest rates and inflation rates still below target, spikes in investor alarm like the one seen in January are...

  • *Dollar rises as markets await Fed review. NEW YORK, March 16- The dollar rose broadly on Wednesday, moving in a tight range after solid U.S. economic data, as investors positioned for fresh guidance from the Federal Reserve on when U.S. interest rates are likely to rise. "The main focus is the FOMC," said BK Asset Management Managing Director Kathy Lien in New York.

  • WASHINGTON, March 16- Underlying U.S. inflation increased more than expected in February as rents and medical costs maintained their upward trend, which could keep the Federal Reserve on course to gradually raise interest rates this year. "While few expect the Fed to announce a policy rate hike today, further evidence of building inflationary pressures will...

  • LONDON, March 16- Gold eased on Wednesday after data showed U.S. inflation rose last month, potentially keeping the Federal Reserve on course to raise interest rates this year, but moves were muted ahead of a pending U.S. central bank policy statement. Spot gold was down 0.1 percent at $1,230.49 an ounce at 1235 GMT, while U.S. gold futures for April delivery were down...

  • WASHINGTON, March 16- Underlying U.S. inflation increased more than expected in February as rents and medical costs maintained their upward trend, which could keep the Federal Reserve on course to gradually raise interest rates this year. The Labor Department said on Wednesday its Consumer Price Index, excluding the volatile food and energy components,...

  • Moody's warns of Saudi Arabia's rising 'credit risk'

    The ratings agency downgrades Saudi Arabia's banking system to 'negative' from 'stable.'

  • March 16- U.S. stock index futures were little changed on Wednesday ahead of the outcome of a Federal Reserve meeting on monetary policy. Fed Chair Janet Yellen is scheduled to hold a press conference at 2:30 p.m.. *Crude prices rose about 2 percent after OPEC and non- OPEC producers agreed to meet next month to discuss freezing output, fueling hopes of strong...

  • *Copper premiums for China shipments hit 2016 low. LONDON, March 16- Copper edged higher on Wednesday ahead of the outcome of a Federal Reserve policy meeting, drawing support from reassurance from China's leaders that the top metals consumer is able to manage its slowing economy. "There was hope that China would unleash a lot more stimulus, possibly some monetary...

  • LONDON, March 15- The global banking system has more cash now than at any time since the 2008 crisis but the failure of banks outside the United States to lend that money out is fast becoming the biggest barrier to economic growth. Analysis from Morgan Stanley shows that the amount of cash in the G4 economies of the United States, the euro zone, Japan and Britain has...

  • BEIJING, March 16- Capital outflows from China are moderating as the yuan steadies, the country's foreign regulator said on Wednesday, as data showed less foreign exchange selling by commercial banks in February. China's commercial banks sold a net $33.9 billion of foreign exchange in February, down from $54.4 billion in January, data from the State...

  • BEIJING, March 16- China's commercial banks sold a net $33.9 billion of foreign exchange in February, down from $54.4 billion in January, the foreign exchange regulator said on Wednesday.

  • *Sterling at 2- week low on "Brexit" concerns, UK budget eyed. LONDON, March 16- The dollar climbed against a basket of currencies and was up nearly 0.5 percent against the yen on Wednesday, as investors positioned for fresh guidance from the Federal Reserve on when interest rates are likely to rise. It was higher against the yen at 113.70 while the euro was 0.3 percent...

  • How to trade European banks

    Raoul Pal, founder and author of The Global Macro Investor, says bear markets are difficult to trade and he is shorting European banks.

  • What will we learn from the Fed?

    Guy Miller, chief market strategist and head of macroeconomics at Zurich Insurance, talks about what the Federal Reserve needs to do.

  • TOKYO, March 16- Japanese government bonds firmed on Wednesday, as investors cover their short positions ahead of the outcome of the U.S. The Fed is expected to hold steady at the end of its two-day meeting, which will be followed by a Fed Chair Janet Yellen's news conference. The central bank offered to buy 450 billion yen of 5- year to 10- year JGBs, 420 billion yen of...

  • CAIRO, March 15- Egypt's central bank is expected to raise interest rates on Thursday, a Reuters poll showed, in an attempt to defend the pound after the central bank devalued the currency and said it will adopt a more flexible exchange rate policy. "We've seen measures from the central bank to enhance foreign exchange liquidity... but for this cycle to be complete...

  • Fed could raise rates in June: Gerard Cassidy

    Gerard Cassidy, managing director and banking analyst at RBC, says a Federal Reserve rate rise could be very profitable for banks.

  • SHANGHAI, March 16- China's yuan edged lower on Wednesday after the central bank fixed a weaker midpoint for a third straight day as the market awaited possible policy-related messages on the currency from Premier Li Keqiang. Premier Li said in earlier remarks in an ongoing press conference in Beijing that the global economic recovery is fragile and that...

  • SINGAPORE, March 16- Gold was largely unchanged on Wednesday, after dropping for the past three sessions to its lowest in nearly two weeks, as investors waited for the outcome of the Federal Reserve policy meeting. Spot gold was down 0.02 percent at $1,231.80 an ounce by 0221 GMT and U.S. gold added 0.1 percent to $1,232.5 an ounce. "Gold's reign as the top performing...

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