Wednesday, November 21, 2012

20121121 1049 Global Economy Related News.

South Korea: Department store sales weaken after economy slows
Sales at major South Korean department stores declined for a fifth month in October as the slowest economic growth in three years damped sentiment. Outlays at the three biggest chains declined 0.4% from a year earlier in October after a 0.8% drop in September, the Ministry of Knowledge Economy said. Discount-store sales declined 6.6% last month, the report showed. (Bloomberg)

China: Foreign investment falls for 11th time in 12 months
Foreign direct investment in China fell for the 11th time in 12 months as labor costs rose, an economic slowdown threatened to drag growth to a 13-year low and a territorial dispute with Japan weighed on trade. Investment dropped 0.2% in October from a year earlier to USD8.31bn, the Ministry of Commerce said in. FDI inflows in the first 10 months of the year declined 3.5% to USD91.7bn, while non-financial outbound investment rose 25.8% to USD58.2bn. (Bloomberg)

France: French downgrade no bar to Hollande as investors weigh cut
French President Francois Hollande’s government will probably be able to keep borrowing at record-low interest rates even after Moody’s Investors Service’s decision to downgrade the nation’s debt. The drop in French bonds put only a small dent in the 9.4% rally since S&P’s stripped the country of its AAA status in January. The gains are more than double the rest of the global government bond market, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch indexes, surpassing those of the US and top-rated Germany, the UK and Australia. (Bloomberg)

EU: Ministers seek near-term Greek fix, fight on debt path
European governments will try to plug an immediate hole in Greece’s finances and prevent new ones from opening in the latest installment of the debt-crisis brinkmanship rattling the euro economy. Finance ministers will battle among themselves and with the International Monetary Fund to find EUR15bn (USD19bn) through 2014 for Greece and seek an elusive formula for putting its debt on a sustainable path. (Bloomberg)

US: Home starts at four-year high boost US expansion
New-home construction unexpectedly climbed to a four-year high in October, more evidence of a revival in the industry that’s helping propel the US economy. Housing starts rose 3.6% to a 894,000 annual rate, the fastest since July 2008 and exceeding all estimates in a Bloomberg survey, Commerce Department figures showed. The median forecast of 82 economists called for an 840,000 pace. Permits for the construction of single-family homes also advanced to the highest in four years. (Bloomberg)

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