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U.S. consumer confidence rose slightly in December with a marginal improvement in the outlook for business conditions, employment and inflation, according to a private report on Thursday.
The U.S. dollar slid against the euro in thin trade Wednesday while the yen traded near seven-week lows as investors continued to fund carry trades by borrowing the Japanese currency.
The dollar fell against the euro in thin trade Wednesday while the yen remained near seven-week lows as investors continued to fund carry trades by borrowing the low-yielding Japanese currency.
The yen dipped to a six-week low against the dollar Monday and fell against the euro as a pre-Christmas equities rally boosted investors' risk appetite.
The European Central Bank is determined to stop increases in oil and food prices becoming entrenched in a broader inflation rise, President Jean-Claude Trichet said in a newspaper interview published on Monday.
Japan's cabinet approved an 83.06 trillion yen budget on Monday for the fiscal year from April, featuring an increase in social security spending as the population ages and a modest cut in new debt issuance.
The yen rose broadly on Thursday on worries that the worst from the U.S. subprime mortgage market fallout was yet to come after Bear Stearns recorded its first-ever quarterly loss.
The economy is continuing to show further signs of weakness and rising inflation, according to the latest government reports.
Oracle's strong earnings could give some tech names a bounce Thursday though markets are again being haunted by credit worries, and another Wall Street firm is set to report earnings before the bell.
Japan's exports rose steadily in November from a year earlier but shipments to the United States fell for the third straight month, reinforcing worries that slower U.S. growth will have a broader impact on Japan's economy next year.
Cash-strapped banks took the Federal Reserve up on its offer of $20 billion in short-term loans to help them overcome credit problems, but the interest rate wasn't as low as some had hoped.
All nine members of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee voted to cut interest rates by a quarter-point in December and even discussed whether slowing economic growth meant a bigger move might be needed.
Stocks staged a mini comeback Tuesday after a day that saw indexes seesaw on both sides of the unchanged line. The market once more fretted over the financial sector and could do the same on Wednesday.
The dollar rose against the yen on Tuesday as a modest improvement in risk appetite encouraged investors to buy stocks, but it consolidated versus the euro after recent hefty gains.
Britain's inflation rate held steady in November, wrongfooting analysts who had forecast a rise and giving the Bank of England more scope to cut interest rates should the economy weaken sharply.
Housing starts and earnings from Goldman Sachs and Best Buy are among the headlines the stock market will care about ahead of Tuesday's open.
A U.S. Federal Reserve policymaker is questioning the way the Fed describes risks to the economy in its public statements, The Wall Street Journal Online reported on Monday.
The dollar rose against the euro Monday, boosted by year-end transactions and speculation of less aggressive Federal Reserve interest rate cuts after last week's strong U.S. inflation numbers.
Stocks closed lower as fears that inflation was hampering holiday gift-buying combined with wider concerns about the state of the economy.