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

 


While you were sleeping: Bernanke signals support

While you were sleeping: Bernanke signals support

Feb 27 (BusinessDesk) – US Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke and the latest economic data provided the right mix for investors – further stimulus to underpin an accelerating recovery.

Reports on US consumer confidence and the housing market were better than anticipated. The Conference Board's consumer sentiment index rose to 69.6 this month, from a downwardly revised 58.4 in January, while new home sales jumped 15.6 percent to a 437,000 annual pace.

“Housing is now kicking into higher gear,” Ryan Sweet, a senior economist at Moody’s Analytics in West Chester, Pennsylvania, told Bloomberg News. “The next few months are still going to be a struggle for households as fuel prices are elevated, but the improvement in confidence reduces the risk of the worst-case scenario.”

Both Home Depot and Macy's provided evidence of strength in their latest earnings and outlook. Shares of Home Depot were last up 5.7 percent, while those of Macy's were last 3.4 percent stronger.

Bernanke's testimony to the Senate Banking Committee in Washington today allayed concern raised last week by the release of the latest Fed meeting minutes that central bank officials might ease or end their record stimulus measures sooner than previously thought.

"We do not see the potential costs of the increased risk-taking in some financial markets as outweighing the benefits of promoting a stronger economic recovery and more rapid job creation," Bernanke said today.

In afternoon trading in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.83 percent, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index gained 0.29 percent, while the Nasdaq Composite Index added 0.16 percent.

"What Bernanke is saying, bottom line, indicates that there will not be a reversal anytime soon in the stimulus program," Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global Capital in New York, told Reuters.

The Fed chief also reminded lawmakers that the federal spending cuts set to kick in on March 1 if Congress does not reach agreement to avoid them will hamper the economic recovery.

The good news in the US eased concern about the euro zone as Italy is trying to deal with elections that resulted in a split parliament, which risks hampering progress towards solving its national debt crisis and may reignite Europe's sovereign debt crisis too.

Italy's stocks and bonds dropped. The MIB Index tumbled 4.9 percent. The yield on Italy's 10-year benchmark bond surged 40 basis points.

Europe's Stoxx 600 Index finished the day with a decline of 1.3 percent from the previous close.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Trade Agreements: TPP Minus US Starting To Gain Ground

The Japanese government is picking up the pace on reviving the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade and investment deal, with talks scheduled next month among the 11 countries left in the pact after the withdrawal by the US after the election of president Donald Trump. More>>

ALSO:

PACER:

Prices Up 2.2%: Annual Inflation Highest In Over Five Years

"Rising petrol prices along with the annual rise in cigarette and tobacco tax lifted inflation," prices senior manager Jason Attewell said. "Petrol prices in New Zealand are closely linked to global oil prices, and cigarettes and tobacco taxes rise in the March quarter each year". More>>

ALSO:

Undertaxed? NZ Income Tax Rate Second Lowest Among Developed Nations

New Zealand workers pay the second smallest portion of their income to the government among developed nations and less than half the average ratio of their Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development peers. More>>

ALSO:

Cyclone Cook: Round Up Of This Week’s Weather

One of the significant impacts this week was flooding due to excessive rainfall amounts. Rainfall amounts topped out at 350mm over the past 60 hours in parts of northwest Nelson, with 200mm+ measurements recorded about Coromandel Peninsula, and between 150-200mm in the Kaimai Ranges. Rainfall amounts of between 30-50mm were commonplace elsewhere. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier: Batten Down The Hatches For Cyclone Cook

Although fast-moving, Cyclone Cook will be destructive and MetService Expert Meteorologists have issued Severe Wind Warnings for the whole of the North Island apart from Northland... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news