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An interest rate hike "may be warranted" this year, as long as the U.S. economic recovery is sustained, Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen said Friday afternoon. "With continued improvement in economic conditions, an increase in the target range for that rate may well be warranted later this year,"...

CONSUMER-RETAIL_27Mar15.jpg Consumer sentiment in the U.S. deteriorated by less than previously estimated in the month of March, according to a report released by the University of Michigan on Friday. The report showed that the final reading on the consumer sentiment index for March came in at 93.0.

GDP-032715.jpg Economic activity in the U.S. grew at an unrevised rate in the fourth quarter of 2014, according to the final estimate released by the Commerce Department on Friday. The report said gross domestic product increased by 2.2 percent in the fourth quarter.

UKHousePrice-032715.jpg U.K. house price growth softened for the seventh consecutive month to an 18-month low in March, the Nationwide Building Society reported Friday. House prices advanced 5.1 percent year-on-year in March, slower than February's 5.7 percent increase and a 5.3 percent rise forecast by economists. This was the slowest rate of growth since September 2013.

japantrade-042110.jpg Overall consumer prices in Japan gained 2.2 percent on year in February, the Ministry of Communications and Internal Affairs said on Friday - below forecasts for 2.3 percent and down from 2.4 percent in January. Core CPI, which excludes the volatile prices of food, added an annual 2.0 percent. That...

Japan is scheduled to release a raft of data on Friday, setting the pace for an otherwise light day in Asia-Pacific economic activity. On tap are February numbers for inflation, household spending, unemployment and retail sales. Inflation is expected to rise 2.3 percent on year, easing from 2.4 percent...

JoblessClaims-032615.jpg After reporting a modest uptick in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits in the previous week, the Labor Department released a report on Thursday showing that initial jobless claims pulled back by more than expected in the week ended March 21st.

St. Louis Fed President James Bullard on Thursday said the Federal Reserve should normalize interest rates as the economy continues to improve. Speaking in Germany, Bullard stood by the Fed's decision last week to remove its pledge to remain patient before hiking interest rates. "By removing 'patient',...

UKRetailSales-032615.jpg British retail sales continued to expand in February at a faster-than-expected pace, suggesting strong support from domestic spending to economic growth in the first quarter. Retail sales increased at a faster pace of 0.7 percent in February from January, when it gained 0.1 percent, data from the Office for National Statistics revealed Thursday.

GermanConsumer-032615.jpg German consumer confidence is set to improve further to its highest level in more than 13 years in April, as weak euro and low inflation function as mini stimulus to the economy, survey data from the market research group GfK showed Thursday. The forward-looking consumer sentiment index rose to 10 in April from 9.7 points in March. This was the highest score since October 2001.

Hong Kong will on Thursday release February figures for import, exports and trade balance, highlighting a busy day in Asia-Pacific economic activity. Imports are expected to gain 4.7 percent on year after climbing 7.9 percent in January. Exports are called higher by 3.0 percent after gaining 2.8 percent...

Consumer confidence in South Korea slipped in March, the latest survey from the Bank of Korea showed on Thursday, with an index score of 101.0 - down from 103.0 in February. Consumer sentiment on current living standards was up one point at 90, while that for their outlook remained unchanged at 98....

DurableGoodsOrders-032515.jpg With orders for transportation equipment showing a notable pullback, the Commerce Department released a report on Wednesday showing that new orders for U.S. manufactured durable goods unexpectedly decreased in the month of February.

GermanIFo-032515.jpg German business morale improved for the fifth straight month to an eight-month high in March as firms expressed greater optimism about future developments. The business climate index rose more-than-expected to 107.9 in March from 106.8 in February, the results of a survey by Munich-based Ifo Institute showed Wednesday. This was the highest score since July 2014 when the reading was 108.

At least one Federal Reserve policy maker sees no need to raise interest rates at a time when inflation is so low. "I see no compelling reason for us to be in a hurry to tighten financial conditions until then," Chicago Fed President Charles Evans said to the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions...

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