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IFX Darika
post Sep 17 2009, 06:26 PM
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US Dollar Stable Ahead Of August Housing Starts, Weekly Jobless Claims Reports
The U.S. Census Bureau will release a report on housing starts for August at 8:30 am ET. Economists estimate housing starts of 580,000 for the month.

At the same time, the Labor Department is due to release its customary jobless claims report for the week ended September 12th. Economists expect a modest increase in claims to 555,000.

The US dollar stabilized against most of its major opponents ahead of the reports. As of now, the greenback is quoted at 91.4 against the yen, 1.653 per pound, 1.032 versus the Swiss franc and 1.472 against the euro.

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IFX Darika
post Sep 21 2009, 04:25 PM
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US Dollar Soars To New Multi-day Highs Against Majors
During early European deals on Monday, the US dollar rose to new multi-day highs against its major counterparts as a fall in most Asian and European stocks boosted demand for the safe haven greenback.

The dollar and the yen are viewed as safe-haven currencies and both currencies gain, when investors turn risk averse and fall when risk appetite improves.

Most of the stock markets were modestly lower today as investors look to this week's Federal Reserve meeting for more clues about the strength of the U.S. Recovery.

Early in Europe, Britain's FTSE 100 lost 0.4 percent, Germany's DAX fell 0.8 percent and France's CAC-40 dropped 0.3 percent.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng fell 150.60 points, or 0.7 percent, at 21,472.85 in back-and-forth trade, while South Korea's Kospi lost 0.3 percent to 1,695.50. China's Shanghai benchmark was up 0.2 percent at 2,967.01 and Australia's benchmark shed 0.3 percent.

Japanese financial markets are closed today for public holidays. Financial markets in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore were also closed Monday for holidays.

World markets posted more gains last week as U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said recession in the world's largest economy was "likely over."

This week, investors will watch closely what the Fed has to say about the economy and the scale of the recovery after a two-day meeting that wraps up Wednesday.

At its August meeting, the FOMC decided along the expected lines and maintained the fed funds futures rate unchanged. In its post-meeting policy statement, the Fed noted that economic activity is leveling out, an improvement from its previous opinion that the pace of contraction is slowing. There weren't any major changes to the references the committee made towards other measures.

Regarding its Treasury securities purchasing program, the central bank said the committee would gradually slow the pace of these transactions. The central bank anticipates the full amount of $300 billion to be purchased by the end of October. The FOMC reiterated its commitment to retain interest rates at exceptionally low levels for an extended period.

Against the European currency, the US dollar edged higher during early deals on Monday. At 2:35 am ET, the dollar reached a 6-day high of 1.4639 against the euro, compared to 1.4704 hit late New York Friday. The next upside target level for the dollar is seen around 1.437.

The US currency that closed Friday's North American session at 1.6246 against the British pound rose to a 19-day high of 1.6137 at 2:35 am ET Monday. The pound-dollar pair is currently trading at 1.6168 with 1.603 seen as the next target level.

British house prices increased in September on rising confidence and dwindling stock of property, results of a closely watched survey showed Monday.

Average asking prices were up 0.6% in September from August as autumn sellers raised price expectations, the property website Rightmove reported. House prices had declined 2.2% in August after rising 0.6% in July.

Meanwhile, the latest Quarterly Bulletin from the Bank of England showed today that sustainable rebalancing in the UK and the global economy depend on structural forces, including the extent to which consumers in deficit nations remain restrained and domestic demand in surplus countries pick up.

Against the Swiss franc, the greenback traded higher during Monday's early deals. At 5:15 am ET, the dollar-franc pair climbed to a 4-day high of 1.0357, compared to Friday's closing value of 1.0305. If the pair gains further, 1.055 is seen as the next target level.

The Swiss National Bank said today in a report that the M3 money supply increased 7.7% year-on-year in August, unchanged from the previous month. A year ago, the M3 money supply was up 2.5%. The M2 money supply climbed 41.8% on an annual basis in August, faster than the 41.3% growth in the previous month.

The dollar that closed Friday's New York deals at 91.46 against the Japanese yen advanced to 92.21 at 5:15 am ET. This set a 11-day high for the dollar. On the upside, 93.4 is seen as the next target level for the dollar-yen pair.

The Conference Board is scheduled to release a report on the U.S. leading index for August at 10 AM ET. The consensus estimate calls for a 0.7% increase in the leading indicators index for the month.

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IFX Tatyana
post Sep 22 2009, 03:28 PM
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SECO Upgrades Swiss GDP Outlook; Sees Sluggish Recovery
Tuesday, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs raised Switzerland's economic outlook, while forecasting the recovery to remain sluggish next year.

The expert group of the Federal Government expects the economy to shrink 1.7% during 2009, better than the 2.7% decline estimated in June, the agency said. With the global economy running out of steam again in the course of 2010, the government expects the economy to post a moderate growth of 0.4% next year compared to the previous forecast for a 0.4% fall.

While making the assessment, the expert group assumed that the current strong global economic upswing dynamics will loose a great deal of its momentum in 2010 with fiscal impulses fading out. But, cyclical upswing dynamics would continue for a longer period following the previous sharp drop in demand.

Recession in Switzerland was relatively mild compared to international scale due to a stable domestic demand which partly offset losses in the export industry and the finance sector. Strongest negative impulses on GDP came from a sharp decline in the value added in the financial sector.

With momentum picking up slowly, the prospects for the labor market remain bleak. Employment is likely to fall in the coming quarters and would not start to increase before late 2010. The jobless rate is set to rise to an annual average of 5.2% next year from this year's 3.8%.

Regarding consumer prices, SECO expects the phase of negative consumer price development to halt within the coming few months as the price decreasing effects resulting from crude oil prices will disappear in the coming months. Consumer prices are expected to rise 0.9% in 2010.

On September 17, the Swiss National Bank kept its key interest rate unchanged at 0.25% for the second rate-setting session in a row. Also, the bank revised its economic outlook for 2009 citing improvements in the global economy and at home. It now expects the economy to shrink between 1.5% and 2% this year.

The revisions of SECO and the central bank were in contrast to the assessment of the Zurich-based KOF. The think-tank sees a contraction of 3.3% in 2009, worse than its March's forecast of a 2.4% shrinkage. For 2010, the research institute expects a GDP decline of 0.6%, while it had predicted a 0.3% contraction in March.

Elsewhere, the Federal Customs Administration reported a decline in the Switzerland's trade surplus for August. The surplus stood at CHF 1.79 billion, down from CHF 2.21 billion in July.

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Nick'Otin
post Sep 23 2009, 05:11 PM
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British Pound Climbs To New Multi-day Highs Against Franc And Yen
The British currency advanced further against its Swiss and Japanese counterparts in New York morning trading on Wednesday. At 9:45 am ET, the pound climbed to new multi-day highs of 1.6851 against the franc and 150.41 versus the yen, which may be compared to yesterday's closing values of 1.6753 and 149.08, respectively. Currently, the sterling is trading near 1.6832 against the franc and 150.10 versus the yen.

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Nick'Otin
post Sep 23 2009, 05:14 PM
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US Dollar Higher Against Most Majors
Wednesday morning in New York, the greenback firmed up against most of its major counterparts. The greenback advanced to 91.55 against the Japanese yen, 1.0264 versus the Swiss franc and 1.4755 against the euro by 10:00 am ET. The greenback that closed yesterday's deals at 91.11 against the yen, 1.0239 versus the Swiss franc and 1.4792 against the euro is presently worth 91.42, 1.0251 and 1.4773, respectively.

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IFX Darika
post Sep 23 2009, 05:48 PM
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Singapore Consumer Prices Fall Further In August

Singapore's consumer price index dropped 0.3% year-on-year in August, slower than than a 0.5% fall in the preceding month, a report by Statistics Singapore said Wednesday. Economists expected a 0.4% fall.

Housing costs fell 1.6%, due to lower electricity and gas tariffs and cheaper liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). Transport and communication costs fell 0.4%, mainly due to cheaper petrol prices. Excluding accommodation costs, the consumer price index declined 0.9%.

Month-on-month, consumer prices were up 0.4%, owing to higher costs of transport and communication, clothing and footwear, as also housing and stationery items. Excluding accommodation costs, consumer prices were up 0.5%. Meanwhile, after adjusting for seasonal effects, consumer prices were up 0.4% on a monthly basis in August.

In the first eight months, consumer prices rose 0.5% compared to last year.

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Nick'Otin
post Sep 24 2009, 05:15 PM
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Weekly Jobless Claims Show Unexpected Decrease
Thursday morning, the Labor Department released its report on initial jobless claims in the week ended September 19th, showing that first-time claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly decreased compared to the previous week.

The report showed that jobless claims fell to 530,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 551,000. Economists had been expecting jobless claims to edge up to 550,000 from the 545,000 originally reported for the previous week.

With the unexpected decrease, jobless claims fell to their lowest level since mid-July, when seasonal issues in the auto sector skewed the data artificially lower. Excluding the July data, jobless claims were at their lowest level since early January.

Additionally, the Labor Department said that the less volatile four-week moving average edged down to 553,500 from the previous week's revised average of 564,500.

Continuing claims, which measure the number of people receiving ongoing unemployment help, also declined in the week ended September 12th, the latest week for which the government has data.

While continuing claims fell to 6.138 million from the preceding week's revised level of 6.261 million, Peter Boockvar, equity strategist for Miller Tabak, noted that evidence still suggests that the decrease has more to do with people not finding new jobs and exhausting their benefits.

Boockvar pointed to another increase in the number of people claiming Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC), which rose to a new record high of 3.224 million in the week ended September 5th, an increase of 82 thousand from the prior week.

The report also showed that those that are receiving extended benefits past the EUC rose by about 3 thousand to 438,000.

Boockvar said, "This is evidence that many people that are falling out of the Continuing Claims category is not because they found a new job but because they've exhausted their initial 26 weeks of benefits."

"So the trend continues, a slowdown in the pace of firing but a reluctance on the part of businesses to hire," he added.

Next Friday, the Labor Department is due to release its report on employment in the month of September. Economists expect the report to show a continued slowdown in the pace of job losses.

While non-farm payroll employment is expected to fall by about 188,000 jobs in September following a decrease of 216,000 jobs in October, the unemployment rate is expected to edge up to a new twenty-six year high of 9.8 percent.

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Nick'Otin
post Sep 24 2009, 05:23 PM
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Brazil IPCA Inflation Eases In September - IBGE
Thursday, Brazil's statistical office IBGE announced that the national index of consumer price large, IPCA - 15 rose 0.19% month-on-month in September, slower than the 0.23% increase in the previous month. Economists' were looking for an increase of 0.17%.

Food and beverages prices increased 0.13% in September, after falling 0.28% in August. At the same time, prices for clothing increased 0.31%.

Year-on-year, consumer prices increased 4.27% in September, slower than the 4.34% growth in August.

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IFX Tatyana
post Sep 29 2009, 04:02 PM
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Pound Climbs To Multi-day Highs Against Majors.
Extending its early European session rally, the UK currency advanced further against its major counterparts ahead of the North American session on Tuesday.

The pound jumped to a 5-day high of 0.9106 against the euro and 1.6617 versus the Swiss franc by 8:00 am ET, compared to 0.9207 and 1.6408, respectively hit late New York Monday.

The pound also advanced to a 4-day high of 1.5992 against the US dollar and 143.85 versus the Japanese yen around this time, compared to yesterday's closing values of 1.5887 and 142.44, respectively.

As of now, the sterling is trading at 143.65 against the yen, 1.597 versus the greenback, 1.6597 versus the Swiss franc and 0.9116 against the euro.

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IFX Darika
post Sep 29 2009, 05:40 PM
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Malaysia Trying To Broaden Tax Base: PM

Tuesday, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said the government intends to reduce operating expenditure and to broaden its tax base. However, the reduction in expenditure would not affect the efficiency of the government, said Najib.

The government's pump priming measure is currently costing a billion ringgit a month. The government is set to present its 2010 budget next month.

Najib, who is also the finance minister, told reporters that the government is mindful of the need to rein in the fiscal deficit. The government expects the budget deficit to fall to 7.6% of GDP this year.

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IFX Darika
post Sep 30 2009, 06:51 PM
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Euro Mixed In Trading Against Majors Amid French PPI Report

Following the release of the French August PPI report, the euro showed mixed trading against its major counterparts. While the euro fell against the pound and the yen, it rose versus the franc. Against the dollar, the euro was little changed during this time.

Currently, the euro is worth 0.9095 against the pound, 1.4618 against the dollar, 131.20 against the yen and 1.5114 against the franc.

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IFX Tatyana
post Oct 2 2009, 03:51 PM
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Unemployment Hits 26-Year High As Job Losses Soar In September.
Job losses in September were sharper higher than economists had expected, driving the unemployment rate to its highest level in 26 years and pushing the number of people out of work above 15 million.

The U.S. Labor Department revealed Friday that non-farm payrolls dropped 263,000 in September. Economists had expected a decline of 170,000 jobs, though some disappointing employment news over the last few days raised doubt about whether the result could meet expectations.

The report included revised data for the last couple months as well, showing that payrolls dropped by 201,000 in August and 304,000 in July.

The unemployment rate for September came in at 9.8% compared to 9.7% in the previous month. This represented the highest unemployment rate since mid-1983.

September saw the number of unemployed rise to 15.14 million, compared to 14.93 million in August. There were about 7.6 million unemployed at the end of 2007, when the recession officially began.

The construction sector lost 64,000 jobs in September, while manufacturing lost 51,000. There was a 38,000-job decline in retail. Professional and business payrolls slipped 8,000 and job in the leisure and hospitality sector declined by 9,000.

There were losses on the government payroll as well, with a decline of 53,000 for September.

Education and health jobs were up slightly in the month, edging higher by 3,000.

The average work week dipped to 33 hours after coming in at 33.1 in August. Average hourly earnings ticked up to $18.67 from $18.66.

Earlier this week, payroll processor ADP released its figures for private-sector employment. The report came in worse than expected, with payrolls dropping 254,000.

This was followed on Thursday by a disappointing report on weekly jobless claims. A Labor Department report showed that the number of people filing first-time unemployment claims climbed 17,000 last week to 551,000. Economists were looking for a reading around 535,000.

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IFX Tatyana
post Oct 6 2009, 03:34 PM
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German Construction Sector Drops In September.
Germany's construction sector activity dropped for a nineteenth straight month in September, a report by the Markit Economics said on Tuesday.

The seasonally adjusted Construction Purchasing Managers' Index or PMI rose to 43.8% from 43.6 in August. The PMI reading above 50 indicates expansion, while a reading below 50 signals contraction.

In September, the construction companies were again pessimistic about the twelve-month outlook for activity, the Markit said.

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IFX Tatyana
post Oct 9 2009, 11:56 AM
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UK Sept. Output Prices Rise Unexpectedly.
Friday, the Office for National Statistics said UK's output prices rose 0.4% in September from the previous year, reversing a fall of 0.3% in August. Consensus forecast was for a 0.1% fall.

Reflecting price rises in petroleum and other manufactured products, output prices climbed 0.5% month-on-month, larger than the 0.3% increase seen in August and 0.1% expected by economists.

The input price index for materials and fuels purchased by manufacturing industry fell 6.5% annually in September, following a 7.7% drop in August. On a monthly basis, input prices slipped 0.5% in September. Economists were expecting an annual 6.8% fall and a monthly drop of 0.8%.

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IFX Tatyana
post Oct 15 2009, 02:33 PM
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Euro Eases From 14-month High Against Dollar.
In European deals on Thursday, the euro eased from a 14-month high against the dollar amid a report that showed Euro-zone's annual CPI fell in September. The euro also plummeted to a 6-day low against the pound and an 8-day low against the franc.

But the euro strengthened to a fresh 3-week high against the yen due to across the board weakening of the latter.

The Eurostat said in a final report that Eurozone's consumer price index or CPI dropped 0.3% year-on-year in September, after falling 0.2% in August. The statistical office confirmed its preliminary estimate for inflation.

The core inflation, which excludes food and energy prices, remained at 1.2% in September, slower than the 1.3% growth the previous month.

On a monthly basis, the CPI remained unchanged in September, while core inflation stood at 0.2%.

The euro, which closed yesterday's trading at 0.9346 against the pound slipped to a 6-day low of 0.9196 in early deals on Thursday. The next downside target level for the euro-pound pair is seen at 0.908.

The pound rose on speculation the Bank of England policy makers may pause their asset-purchase program in the near future as the economy shows signs of recovering from the recession.

In an interview to the Financial Times newspaper, Paul Fisher, Bank of England's executive director for markets said he feels more confident now that the asset purchase programme is having the scale and speed of impact that was hoped for when the programme was started.

"But we are still only seven months into the programme from when it started with the first purchases, so it is still very early days," he told the newspaper. According to him, the increase in unemployment is still "pretty dreadful". But it is just not as bad as it could have been, given a 6% fall in output. And that may be one of the aspects of the asset purchase scheme working, he said.

During early trading on Thursday, the euro declined to an 8-day low of 1.5131 against the Swiss franc. This may be compared to Wednesday's close of 1.5150. If the euro-franc pair drops further, it may test support around the 1.509 level.

The franc advanced as Switzerland's ZEW economic expectations index continued to rise in October. The economic expectations index for Switzerland increased to 65 in October from 58 points in the previous month, results of a survey conducted by the Centre for European Economic Research and Credit Suisse revealed today.

The euro weakened against the dollar after reaching a 14-month high of 1.4969 at 2:10 am ET Thursday. Presently, the euro-dollar pair is trading at 1.4913, down from yesterday's close of 1.4930. The near term support for the pair is seen at 1.487.

In early deals on Thursday, the euro surged up to a new 3-week high of 134.32 against the yen. On the upside, 135.5 is seen as the next target level for the European currency. At yesterday's close, the euro-yen pair was quoted at 133.50.

The Bank of Japan upgraded its economic assessment for the second consecutive month, the latest Monthly Report of Recent Economic and Financial Developments showed today.

The BoJ said the Japan economy has started to pick up compared to its last month's view that economic conditions are showing signs of recovery. Looking forward, the central bank said economic conditions are likely to improve gradually. Last month, the BoJ said economic conditions are likely to start improving in the near future.

In the upcoming North American session, the U.S. consumer price index for September, weekly jobless claims report for the week ended October 10th and the results of the New York Federal Reserve's empire state manufacturing survey for October are scheduled for release.

The results of the Philadelphia Federal Reserve's manufacturing survey are due out at 10:00 am ET.

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IFX Darika
post Oct 20 2009, 03:12 PM
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Dollar Edges Lower Versus Euro, Sterling

The dollar touched a fresh yearly low versus the euro on Tuesday, even after European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet and finance ministers of the sixteen Eurozone countries expressed "worries" about forex movements and voiced support for a strong U.S. dollar.

Its been a brutal stretch for the dollar of late, particularly against the euro. Amid expectations that the interest rate gap between the US and other industrialized nations will widen rapidly once the economic recovery takes hold, the dollar has fallen almost 25 cents from its 2009 highs against the euro, set back in March.

Late Monday night, the dollar dropped to 1.4993, its lowest level in more than fourteen months. The pair was little changed from that mark approaching 8 am ET.

The dollar barely budged versus most other majors ahead of data on US housing starts and producer prices. The Bank of Canada's interest rate decision may also be in focus.

While most economists expect the BoC to maintain its current overnight call rate, Australia, another resource-based economy, surprisingly hiked its key interest rate earlier this month.

Earnings news will also garner attention as participants continue to look for signs that corporations are able to grow revenues.

The dollar was stuck in the mud versus the loonie ahead of the BoC decision, inching slightly higher to C$1.0320. A surprise from central bankers in Ottawa could drive the dollar to parity with the loonie.

Against the sterling the dollar extended its 6-week low, touching 1.6446. With the loss, the buck moved further away from last week's 5-month high near 1.5700.

Choppy trading kept the dollar above the 90 mark versus the yen. Speculation that Japanese officials may intervene to weaken the yen has helped the dollar rebound after testing a 1995 low of 87.08.

Japan's leading index stood at 83.2 in August, down from the initial estimate of 83.3, the Cabinet Office reported Tuesday. However, the leading index improved for the sixth month in a row. In July, the reading was 82.5.

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IFX Tatyana
post Oct 29 2009, 10:24 AM
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Japan's Vehicle Production Drops Further In September.
Japan's vehicle production dropped 21.6% in September from a year earlier to 830,140 units, the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association said Thursday. This represents the 12th consecutive month of decline in production.

At the same time, motorcycle production slipped 61% on a yearly basis to 45,646 units, reflecting the 25th consecutive month of decline.

Domestic sales of automobiles stood at 477,818 vehicles, up 0.2% from last year. However, exports dropped 35.7% to 396,163 units. Moreover, factory shipments of motorcycles stood at 40,512 units, down 28.4% from last year. Exports of motorcycles dipped 65.5% to 30,406 units.

For the first half of the fiscal year 2009, automobile production fell 33.5%, while motorcycle production declined 47.7% during the same period.

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IFX Darika
post Oct 29 2009, 05:38 PM
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IMF Upgrades Asia's Growth Outlook

Thursday, the International Monetary Fund raised Asia's economic outlook saying that the region is rapidly rebounding from the depth of the global crisis.

In its latest regional economic outlook, the Washington-based IMF said it expects Asia's gross domestic product to grow 2.8% this year and by 5.8% next year. In May, the lender had forecast Asia's growth to decelerate to 1.3% in 2009 before rebounding to 4.3% in 2010. The new forecasts are short of the 6.7% average growth recorded over the past decade.

"The primary driver of Asia's recovery has been a progressive return towards normalcy following the abrupt collapse in global trade and finance at the end of 2008," the IMF report said. According to the report, the other key driver of Asia's recovery has been the region's rapid and forceful policy response.

"The "green shoots" of recovery appear more firmly rooted in Asia than in other regions," the report said. "Now Asia is leading as the world pulls out of recession."

While raising its world economic outlook on October 1, the IMF said the world economy is expected to grow 3.1% next year, more than the 2.5% growth forecast in July. The lender expects the Japanese economy to contract 5.4% this year and to grow by 1.7% next year. Australia's growth is forecast to touch 0.7% this year and 2% next year. New Zealand's economy is predicted to shrink 2.2% in 2009 and to expand by 2.2% next year.

China is likely to log the fastest growth in the region, 8.5% this year and 9% in 2010. India is set to follow, with growth projected at 5.4% in 2009 and at 6.4% next year. Meanwhile, South Korea's economy is predicted to shrink 1% before expanding by 3.6% next year.

At the same time, the IMF today revised its outlook for Singapore to show a 4.3% expansion in 2010 after a 1.7%contraction this year. In its world economic outlook, the organization had forecast Singapore GDP to rise 4.1% in 2010 after falling 3.3% this year.

The IMF said Asian policymakers consequently face two major challenges - to maintain policy stimulus until the recovery becomes self-sustaining and to devise a way to return to sustained, rapid growth in a new global environment. It also said Asia will need to be willing to live with smaller current account surpluses and more flexible exchange rate management. Moreover, it said output in the large G7 economies is forecast to grow by 1.3% next year, recouping only half the contraction estimated for 2009, because private demand in these countries remains constrained by the legacy of the crisis.

Asia's V-shaped recovery may be the sharpest on record and may turn into a square-root-shaped recovery soon, DBS Bank economist David Carbon said in a note on Wednesday. "That is, a sharp drop, a sharp rise, and then a palpable turn sideways." The DBS economist expects growth to be back to "normal" for most of the countries in the region by the first quarter of 2010.

Carbon also expects key central banks in the region to hike rates in the first quarter. The bank forecasts India to hike rates as early as January and South Korea in the first quarter. China is expected to start pushing rates up in the second quarter as well as allow its currency to appreciate against the U. S. dollar.

Earlier in the month, Australia became the first G-20 central bank to raise key interest rate after the global financial crisis. India's central bank became the second in the group to start exiting from an easy monetary policy, though it retained key interest rates.

News are provided by InstaForex.



Regards, news editor Darika Isakova


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IFX Darika
post Nov 3 2009, 07:49 PM
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Dollar Fighting Back Versus Euro As Focus Turns To Fed

The dollar surged ahead versus the euro Tuesday morning in New York as the Federal Reserve prepared to meet amid growing anxiety that the economic growth seen over the summer may not be sustainable without continued support measures.

With the US consumer still on edge as unemployment approaches 10 percent, many analysts are pointing out that while the third quarter figures on the economy are somewhat encouraging, organic growth is unlikely until the jobs situation improves.

The safe haven dollar has managed recover versus the euro over the past week, prompting the rally in global equities to run out of steam.

The dollar jumped to a monthly high of 1.4623, rising more than a penny even as traders considered news that the European Commission expects the euro area economy to emerge from recession in the second half of 2009.

However, the economy is set to contract 4% for 2009 as a whole.

Joaquin Almunia, Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs said, "The EU economy is coming out of recession. This owes much to the ambitious measures taken by governments, central banks and the EU that have not only prevented a systemic meltdown but have kick-started the recovery. However, the road ahead is a challenging one."

The dollar firmed up a bit versus the yen, moving back above the 90 mark. The pair has been choppy over the past few weeks, with the buck finding a measure of support after testing a 1995 low in October.

Meanwhile, the dollar was steady versus its Australian counterpart even after the RBA raised its interest rate for the second straight session. The dollar rose to .8920 versus the aussie, but leveled off to .8965 approaching 8 am ET.

In October, Australia became the first G-20 member nation to hike its benchmark interest rate since the onset of the financial crisis in late 2008.

The dollar hit a weekly high versus the sterling, rising to 1.6260 before hitting resistance. On a longer term basis, the pair has been moving between 1.5700 and 1.6700 for months.

All eyes will be on Washington, DC tomorrow as the Fed wraps up its latest policy meeting. While Ben Bernanke and company are universally expected to maintain the key interest rate near zero, traders will be paying close attention to the accompanying statement, looking to see whether rates will be left alone "for some time to come," as the central bank has recently assured.

Looking at today's economic calendar, the government is releasing September factory orders at 10 am ET. Economists are looking for a September gain of 1 percent.

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Regards, news editor Darika Isakova


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IFX Darika
post Nov 11 2009, 07:10 PM
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Swiss Franc Soars To 19-day High Against US Dollar

The Swiss currency inched higher against most of its major opponents in early trading on Wednesday. The Swiss franc thus rose to a 19-day high against the US dollar, 8-day high against the pound and a 1-week high against the yen.

The Swiss franc soared to an 8-day high of 1.6692 against the pound by 6:00 am ET, up 1.7 percent from Monday's fresh 7-week low of 1.6981. On the upside, the alpine currency is likely to find resistance near the 1.667 level. The pound-franc pair that closed yesterday's deals at 1.6874 is presently quoted at 1.6738.

The pound declined following the Bank of England's latest quarterly Inflation Report revealed that British consumer prices are likely to stay below their 2 percent target at around 1.6 percent over the next two years, but would rise sharply above 2% in the short term.

Further, the BoE said the recovery in output is likely, driven by the considerable stimulus from the past easing in monetary and fiscal policy and the depreciation of sterling. "But constraints on the supply of bank credit and concerns over balance sheets will weigh on spending."

Earlier in the session, data released by the Office for National Statistics showed that the number of people claiming jobseeker's allowance in the UK increased by 12,900 to reach 1.64 million in October. This was the smallest monthly increase since April 2008, however, the total number was the highest since April 1997.

Against the European common unit, the Swiss franc stayed closer to yesterday's 2-day high of 1.51 in the Asian session and lacked a clear direction in the succeeding trading hours. The euro-franc pair is presently worth near Tuesday's closing value of 1.5106.

The Swiss franc bounced back from its Asian session's 2-day low of 88.64 against the Japanese yen in early trading on Wednesday. The franc thus rose to a weekly high of 89.67 around 6:15 am ET and a move above the 90.0 resistance may push the pair to its highest level in more than 2 weeks. The franc-yen pair, which closed yesterday's deals at 89.19, is presently trading at 89.52.

In Japan, core machinery orders increased in September by 10.5 percent over August, according to a government report released in the morning. The increase topped economists forecasts of a 2.9 percent increase. Compared to one year earlier, core machinery orders were down 22 percent.

The Swiss franc rose to a 19-day high of 1.0038 against the US dollar by 6:10 am ET and a further rally may push the domestic unit to break through its October 23rd high of 1.0035. This will lead the Swiss franc to touch its highest level in nearly 16 months. The greenback-franc pair is presently trading at 1.0045, compared to 1.0076 hit late New York Tuesday.

The US economic calendar is empty today, as all government institutions will be closed for Veterans Day. Nonetheless, traders may look to refine their positions ahead of Thursday's weekly jobs report.

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Regards, news editor Darika Isakova


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