• 2020-01-27 11:50

    --Statistics Canada Makes Annual Revision to Labour Force Survey

    OTTAWA (MNI) - Canada's job market wasn't as bad as thought late last year with revisions Monday showing the November decline is no longer the steepest in a decade, a potential relief to a central bank that signaled it may cut rates because of persistent weakness.

    Statistics Canada published annual revisions paring the November drop in jobs to 54,400 from the original report of 71,200, which was the largest since the last recession in 2009. The revised figure is now the largest job decline since January 2018, according to MNI calculations using StatsCan's data.

    The December job gain was marked down to 27,300 from 35,200, Statistics Canada said.

  • 2020-01-23 20:01

    --Japan Dec Core CPI +0.7% Y/Y; MNI Median +0.7%; Nov +0.5%
    --Japan Dec Core-Core CPI +0.9% Y/Y; Nov +0.8%
    --Japan Dec CPI Energy Costs -0.6% Y/Y; Nov -2.1%

    TOKYO (MNI) - Japan's December annual core consumer inflation rate accelerated from the previous month's level on the back of higher certain food prices, household durable goods and service prices, data from the Ministry of International Affairs and Communication released Friday showed.

    The key points from the latest CPI data:

    -- The national average core consumer price index (excluding fresh food) rose for a 36th straight month in December, rising 0.7% y/y, accelerating from a gain of 0.5% in November and in line with the MNI median forecast of a 0.7% gain.

    -- Accelerating inflation rate was expected, as it

  • 2020-01-22 20:38

    TOKYO (MNI) - Financing demand by Japanese corporates through bank loans fell in January from the previous three months, according to the Bank of Japan's latest quarterly survey of senior loan officers at 50 banks released on Thursday.

    The index for corporate fund demand -- calculated by subtracting the number of banks reporting a decline in lending from the number of those reporting an increase -- stood at +2 in January, down from +3 in October, as demand was hit by the drop in sales and capital investment.

    The latest survey period was from December 10 to January 14.

    Other key points from the survey:

    --The index for demand from large companies rose to +1 from -4 and the index for small businesses fell to +1 from +4.

    --The index for fund demand expected

  • 2020-01-22 10:00

    By Greg Quinn

    OTTAWA (MNI) - Text of the BOC decision released Wednesday from Ottawa:

    The Bank of Canada today maintained its target for the overnight rate at 1.75 percent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 2 percent and the deposit rate is 1.50 percent.

    The global economy is showing signs of stabilization, and some recent trade developments have been positive. However, there remains a high degree of uncertainty and geopolitical tensions have re-emerged, with tragic consequences. The Canadian economy has been resilient but indicators since the October Monetary Policy Report (MPR) have been mixed.

    Data for Canada indicate that growth in the near term will be weaker, and the output gap wider, than the Bank projected in October.

  • 2020-01-22 10:00

    By Greg Quinn and Anahita Alinejad

    OTTAWA (MNI) - The Bank of Canada held its key interest rate at 1.75%, dropping a phrase about borrowing costs being appropriate to say it's watching for signs that slower-than-expected growth will persist.

    Geopolitical and trade tensions remain high and may be spreading into Canada's resilient domestic economy, adding slower job growth and consumer spending to already shaky investment and exports. The slowdown that started in the fourth quarter will extend into the first quarter of this year and move the economy away from full output, the Ottawa-based BOC said Wednesday.

  • 2020-01-22 04:34

    LONDON (MNI) - A burst of government spending has lifted year-to-date borrowing well above the full-year target, even ahead of a dose of government largesse expected in the March budget.

    The following are the key points from public sector finance data published Wednesday by the Office for National Statistics.

    - The UK's financial position has deteriorated markedly in the current financial year, courtesy of 5.0% surge in government spending on goods and services, the biggest year-to-date increase since records began in 1997.

    - Borrowing has increased by 7.9% over the first nine months of the fiscal year to GBP54.6 billion, far exceeding the Office for Budget Responsibility target of GBP47.6 billion.

  • 2020-01-20 12:04

    --Railway Strike Curbed Shipments Following UAW Strike

    OTTAWA (MNI) - Canada will likely report the fifth decline in factory sales in six months for November, with shipments disrupted again by labor strikes.

    Sales declined 0.4% according to the MNI economist median, following a 0.7% October decline. While the previous report showed disruptions from a UAW strike that hit auto production, November is hurt by a CN railway worker strike.

    The declines could again pull down GDP on the month and take fourth-quarter growth further away from the BOC's estimate to below a 1% annualized pace.

  • 2020-01-20 08:00

    TOKYO (MNI) - The International Monetary Fund on Monday upgraded its forecast for Japan's GDP growth in 2020 to 0.7% from October's 0.5%, due partly to the government stimulus measures.

    Japan's GDP forecast in 2019 was revised up to 1.0% from 0.9% made in October, while the IMF left its outlook for 2021 unchanged at 0.5%.

    "The upward revision to estimated 2019 growth reflects healthy private consumption, supported in part by government countermeasures that accompanied the October increase in the consumption tax rate, robust capital expenditure, and historical revisions to national accounts," the IMF said in the latest World Economic Outlook

    "The upgrade to the 2020 growth forecast reflects the anticipated boost from the December 2019 stimulus measures.

  • 2020-01-17 04:34

    By Laurie Laird and Irene Prihoda

    LONDON (MNI) - UK retail sales fell unexpectedly in December, suggesting that previously-resilient consumers lost their nerve in the closing months of 2019.

    The following are the key points from December retail sales data published Friday by the Office for National Statistics.

    - Retail sales contracted by 1.0% in the fourth quarter, the biggest quarterly decline since the first quarter of 2017, leaving the sector poised to subtract 0.05 percentage points from Q4 GDP.

    - The disappointing data will only raise expectations that the Bank of England could reduce interest rates later this month.

  • 2020-01-16 13:27

    By Jean Yung

    WASHINGTON (MNI) - The U.S. Department of Labor will ban journalists from using computers during the 30 minutes they are typically given to view reports ahead of release time, an effort to eliminate any unfair competitive advantage for certain high-speed algorithmic trading firms who subscribe to media feeds.

    The change is effective March 1, Bureau of Labor Statistics Commissioner William Beach said.

    "These updated procedures will strengthen the security of our data and offer the general public equitable and timely access," Beach said in a letter to media dated Thursday.