Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


While you were sleeping: Fiscal cliff looming larger

While you were sleeping: Fiscal cliff looming larger

Dec 14 (BusinessDesk) – Wall Street declined as US House Speaker John Boehner renewed concern about the lack of progress in talks aimed at preventing US$600 billion in tax increases and spending cuts taking effect on January 1.

"Unfortunately, the White House is so unserious about cutting spending that it appears willing to slow-walk our economy right up to the 'fiscal cliff,'" Boehner told a news conference.

Failing to reach a deal to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff could push the world's largest economy into recession next year, the non-partisan Congressional budget office has forecast. Further evidence of the glacial pace of negotiations has increased uncertainty about the outlook for the economy and corporate profits.

"There's a lot of confusion. Nobody knows what's going to happen with the cliff," Tom Schrader, managing director of US equity trading at Stifel Nicolaus Capital Markets in Baltimore, told Reuters.

In afternoon trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.44 percent, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index shed 0.56 percent, while the Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 0.75 percent.

Positive economic data, while welcome, did little to help the mood. New claims declined 29,000 to a seasonally adjusted 343,000, according to the Labor Department.

"The labour market might be improving a bit quicker than expected," David Sloan, an economist at 4Cast in New York, told Reuters.

And two separate reports from the Commerce Department showed that retail sales increased 0.3 percent last month, following a 0.3 percent slide in October, while business inventories gained 0.4 percent in October.

Shares of Best Buy soared, last up 14.9 percent, after a report in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune newspaper that company founder Richard Schulze will offer to buy the consumer electronics retailer by the end of the week.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index ended the day with a 0.4 percent drop from the previous close. That was its first drop this month, according to Bloomberg. National benchmark stock indexes declined in Frankfurt, Paris and London, falling 0.4 percent, 0.1 percent and 0.3 percent respectively.

Standard & Poor's today cut its crediting rating outlook for the UK to negative from stable.

Meanwhile, UBS faces a fine of about US$1 billion next week to settle charges of rigging the Libor interest rate benchmark, Reuters reported, citing a person familiar with the situation.

"The global settlement is about US$1 billion," the source told Reuters on Thursday. "It's expected early next week -- on Monday or Tuesday."

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: Wheeler Downplays Scope For ‘Large’ Rates Fall

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler says some market commentators are predicting further declines in interest rates that would only make sense for an economy in recession, although some easing is likely to be needed to maintain New Zealand’s economic growth. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha Dam: Consent Conditions Could Mean Reduced Intensity

Legal advice sought by the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council on the Ruataniwha Dam consent conditions has confirmed that farmers who sign up to take water from the dam could be required to reduce the intensity of their farming operation to meet the catchment’s strict nitrogen limit. More>>

Health And Safety: Bill Now Sees Rules Relaxed For Small Businesses

Health and safety law reform sparked by the Pike River coalmine disaster has been reported back from the industrial relations select committee with weakened requirements on small businesses to appoint health and safety representatives and committees. More>>

ALSO:

Bearing Fruit: Annual Fruit Exports Hit $2 Billion For First Time

The value of fruit exported rose 20 percent (up $330 million) for the June 2015 year when compared with the year ended June 2014. Both higher prices and a greater quantity of exports (up 9.0 percent) contributed to the overall rise. More>>

ALSO:

Interest Rates: NZ Dollar Jumps After RBNZ Trims OCR

The New Zealand dollar jumped more than half a US cent after Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler cut the official cash rate by a quarter-point and said the currency needs to be lower, while dropping a reference to criteria that justified intervention. More>>

ALSO:

Drones: New 'World-Class' Framework For UAVs

The rules, which come into effect on 1 August, recognise the changing environment and create a world-class framework that accommodates ongoing development while still ensuring the safety of the public, property and other airspace users. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news