Business

Putin orders to end trade in US dollars at Russian seaports
Putin orders to end trade in US dollars at Russian seaports
Russian President Vladimir Putin has instructed the government to approve legislation making the ruble the main currency of exchange at all Russian seaports by next year, according to the Kremlin website.

Business snaps

  • Stocks inch up, dollar weakens as Fed focus grows

    Global stock markets edged higher on Tuesday and the dollar dipped as investors waited for signals from the US Federal Reserve on when it will hike interest rates again and start shrinking its balance sheet. The dollar index fell 0.12 percent. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 26.82 points, or 0.12 percent, to 22,358.17, the S&P 500 gained 0.89 points, or 0.04 percent, to 2,504.76 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.33 points, or 0.01 percent, to 6,454.97. The S&P 500 and Dow had both hit new peaks on Monday. The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index rose 0.08 percent and MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe gained 0.15 percent. US crude fell 0.2 percent to $49.81 per barrel and Brent was last at $55.11. (Reuters)

  • Hungary flags more easing, cuts deposit rate

    Hungary’s central bank cut its overnight deposit rate and announced further steps to ease monetary conditions on Tuesday, seeking to boost stubbornly below-target inflation. The bank also said it was ready to loosen monetary policy further with unconventional, targeted tools in order to drive longer government bond yields lower as soon as possible. In the meantime, it cut the deposit rate by 10 basis point to -0.15 percent. The bank will also boost the stock of its swap facilities, which pump forint liquidity into the market. The forint traded at 308.33 versus the euro, stronger than 309.35 just before the announcement. It has lost about 2 percent of its value since the central bank raised the prospect of further easing last month. (Reuters)

  • Wall St little changed ahead of Fed’s policy meeting

    US stocks were little changed in morning trading on Tuesday as investors avoided taking major bets ahead of the two-day Federal Reserve meeting that is expected to roll out a plan to pare the central bank’s bond holdings. The Dow, however, managed to climb to a fresh record after open, helped by Chevron’s 0.9 percent rise. At 9:38am ET (1338 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 21.79 points, or 0.1 percent, at 22,353.14, the S&P 500 was up 1.13 points, or 0.04 percent, at 2,505 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 4.18 points, or 0.06 percent, at 6,458.82. Five of the 11 major S&P sectors were higher, led by 0.33 percent gain in the energy index as oil prices edged up to trade close to five-month highs. (Reuters)

  • US current account deficit hits $123.1bn

    The deficit in the broadest measure of US trade rose to the highest level in more than eight years this spring, reflecting in part a drop in fines and penalties paid by foreign companies. The deficit in the current account increased to $123.1 billion, up 8.5 percent from an imbalance of $113.5 billion in the first quarter, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. It was the biggest deficit since a gap of $150 billion in the fourth quarter of 2008. The current account is the most complete measure of trade because it includes not only goods and services but investment flows and other payments between the United States and the world. (AP)

  • US housing starts fall for 2nd straight month; outlook murky

    US homebuilding fell for a second straight month in August as a rebound in the construction of single-family houses was offset by persistent weakness in the volatile multifamily home segment. The report from the Commerce Department on Tuesday  showed building permits racing to a seven-month high. Permits for single-family homebuilding, which accounts for the largest share of the market, dropped. Housing starts slipped 0.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.18 million units. Building permits surged 5.7 percent to a rate of 1.30 million units, the highest level since January. Single-family homebuilding jumped 1.6 percent to a rate of 851,000 units in August. Single-family permits fell 1.5 percent to a 800,000-unit pace. (Reuters)

  • Hong Kong shares down as investors eye Fed meeting, China economy

    Hong Kong stocks dipped on Tuesday as traders awaited the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting this week and as recent China economic data kept risk appetite subdued, defying Wall Street’s bullish lead. The Hang Seng index fell 0.4 percent, to 28,051.41, while the China Enterprises Index lost 0.6 percent, to 11,125.71 points. Most sectors fell, led by energy and resource shares. Caution reigned in Hong Kong’s equity market, after the Hang Seng’s 28 percent surge this year, even as the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 closed at record highs again on Monday. (Reuters)

  • Sterling steadies above $1.35 after nosedive on Carney comments

    Sterling steadied above $1.35 on Tuesday, recovering some ground following a nearly 1 percent slide after Bank of England governor Mark Carney said interest rates rises in coming months would be limited and gradual. In early London trade, the pound climbed as high as $1.3552, up 0.4 percent on the day. It traded flat at 88.54 pence per euro, after losing almost 1 percent versus the single currency after Carney’s comments. The pound rose as much as 3.3 percent last week, jumping more than four cents to $1.3618 on the back of hawkish messages from the BoE and Gertjan Vlieghe, one of the Bank’s rate-setters normally considered a dove. (Reuters)

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$20 trillion US debt is: