NUSA DUA, Indonesia, Dec 7- The World Trade Organization reached its first ever trade reform deal on Saturday to the roar of approval from nearly 160 ministers who had gathered on the Indonesian island of Bali to decide on the make-or-break agreement that could add $1 trillion to the global economy.» Read More
German retail sales posted their steepest decline in October since a value-added tax increase sent them plunging at the start of the year, in a sign that consumers are increasingly worried about higher energy and food prices.
Higher energy and food prices saw Japan's core consumer prices record their first annual rise in 10 months in October, but the modest 0.1 percent gain only slightly boosted expectations of a rate hike early next year.
The dollar rallied against most major currencies Thursday, buoyed by demand from U.S. corporations seeking to square their books by the end of the month.
Oil rose slightly Thursday, giving back nearly all of its early gains after Enbridge Pipeline said its fire-damaged crude pipeline in Minnesota could restart within days.
Online brokerage E-Trade Financial Corp, which has been pounded by credit woes in the mortgage business, said on Thursday that it was getting a $2.55 billion cash infusion from investors led by Citadel Investment Group.
Softer-than-expected new-home sales and a surge in jobless claims heightened fears of a steep U.S. economic slide.
The White House lowered its U.S. economic growth forecast for 2008 Thursday because of trouble in the housing and credit markets, but said the economy remained resilient and a six-year expansion would continue
"This outcome represents a victory for U.S. manufacturers and their workers," U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab said in a statement.
The U.S. economy grew at a robust 4.9% rate in the third quarter, but a surge in jobless claims last week signaled a major slowdown in the fourth quarter.
The Bank of England will offer commercial banks emergency funds with longer repayment terms when it lends money next month, to ease potentially tight money markets at the end of the year, officials said Thursday.
Who'd have thunk it. Russia has become one of the hottest and fastest growing auto markets in the world. Now Chrysler wants a piece of the action and it may wind teaming up with a Russian automaker GAZ. Today in Michigan Chrysler executives and Michigan's governor are reportedly set to meet the president of GAZ to discuss the Russian automaker investing in the U.S.
Asian markets ended higher across the board Thursday, as risk appetite returned to the market after comments from the vice chairman of the Federal Reserve bolstered expectations for a U.S. interest rate cut.
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Australian business investment unexpectedly fell last quarter as the booming mining sector took a breather, though firms still upgraded already ambitious spending plans for coming months.
Japan's industrial production rose in October from September, signalling firm corporate activity and steady exports, but the data did little to alter views that the Bank of Japan will not raise interest rates until next year.
Bear Stearns is only the latest Wall Street firm to cut jobs. In recent months, U.S. banks and financial service companies with banking operations having been slashing tens of thousands of positions.
The Fed's No. 2 official signaled a willingness to cut interest rates further, saying renewed financial market turmoil could slow the economy more than thought.
The economy grew at a slower pace in the late fall as shoppers watched their pennies heading into the busy holiday season.
Oil prices tumbled more than 3 percent to below $92 a barrel after a U.S. government report showed crude stockpiles fell less than expected last week, easing supply concerns.
The economy may avoid a recession in the year ahead but it's almost certain that there will be months of slow growth.