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January 21, 2013
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  Top Stories 

  • U.S. debt-ceiling deadline may be moved back 3 months
    Tensions over the U.S. debt ceiling eased as Republicans proposed a three-month extension, putting off a budgetary confrontation with Democrats and the White House. The proposal for a new mid-April deadline, which requires House approval, also includes no specified spending cuts. The Wall Street Journal (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • More data due this week on rebounding U.S. housing market
    Investors will get a further reading on the apparent rebound in the U.S. housing market, and by extension the economy, with figures due this week on December's sales of new and existing homes. Signs of further strength in the sector are considered crucial to the economy as other indicators, including business hiring and manufacturing, have been lackluster. MarketWatch (1/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Eurozone economy is seen contracting; Greece might need more funds
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    It is more vital than ever for eurozone nations to proceed with reforms as the region's economy continues to contract, said European Central Bank Executive Board member Peter Praet. "Unfortunately, we are still in a phase were the economy in Europe is shrinking. ... There are some positive signs, but it is not yet clear whether we are at a turning point," Praet said. Separately, the International Monetary Fund is warning that €9.6 billion more may be needed in the current rescue plan for Greece even if the country meets its obligations. Reuters (1/20) , Financial Times (tiered subscription model) (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • U.K. is expected to mark triple-dip recession
    An expected report this week showing that the U.K. economy shrank 0.1% in the fourth quarter would mean the worst such final-period performance in five years and a triple-dip recession for the country, a first. It would also finish out the worst full year for the U.K. since 2009. The Independent (London) (1/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • HSBC settles for $249 million in U.S. foreclosure scandal
    HSBC Holdings has become the latest mortgage servicer to join what now totals more than $9 billion in settlements over U.S. foreclosure irregularities. The $249 million penalty includes $96 million in direct payments to 112,000 wronged homeowners. Bloomberg (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Market Activities 
    Shares in Europe edged down Friday on mixed signals from the U.S. and China, and U.S. shares gained moderately with a continued investor focus on earnings reports. The Stoxx Europe 600 lost 0.11% to end at 287.03, and the S&P 500 added 0.34% to 1,485.98, its highest finish since December 2007. Here is a continuously updated list of global stock indexes. The Wall Street Journal (1/21) , The Wall Street Journal (1/18) , CNNMoney (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Asian shares add strong finish to an up week
    Strong economic numbers in China and the U.S. and the prospect of major stimulus in Japan boosted shares across Asia on Friday and for the full week. On Friday, the Nikkei gained 2.86% to 10,913.30, the Hang Seng rose 1.12% to 23,601.78, the Kospi added 0.69% to 1,987.85 and the S&P/ASX was up 0.31% to 4,771.20. Bloomberg (1/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Upbeat Indian market is due for more earnings results
    India's Sensex closed above 20,000 for the first time in two years last week. And this week the market's main test is likely to the come in the form of fiscal third-quarter earnings results for major companies. Another factor, however, may be volatility associated with prospects for a rate cut by the central bank, an event considered unlikely amid stubbornly high inflation. The Economic Times (India)/Press Trust of India (1/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Economic Trends & Outlook 

  • Confidence rises among businesses in China
    China's business confidence index registered its first gain in a year in the fourth quarter, and a separate measure of entrepreneurial confidence was also up, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. But those sentiments might soon be tested, as economists in Europe predict that slack global demand, particularly from the EU, is likely to be the biggest drag on China's economy this year. China Daily (Beijing) (1/19) , China Daily (Beijing) (1/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • China's wealth gap remains dangerously wide
    China's Gini coefficient, which gauges wealth disparities, has been lowered in recent years but remains dangerously high at 0.474, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. "China's Gini coefficient, between 0.47 and 0.49 during the past decade, was still relatively high, indicating the country must accelerate its income distribution reform to narrow the rich-poor gap," said Ma Jiantang, China's leading statistics official. China Daily (Beijing) (1/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • No deep budget cuts are in store as Australian economy slackens
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    Despite the Australian government's early pledge to deliver a budget surplus, it is now ruling out deep cuts in a late bid to fulfill that promise as the economy struggles with weak growth and a strong currency. "It would not be responsible for any government to make deep spending cuts to try and fill a hole in tax revenue when that would put growth and jobs at risk," said Treasurer Wayne Swan. Bloomberg Businessweek (1/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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