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Chase Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals, Bans International... Before you read this report, remember to sign up to for 100% free stock alerts Chase Bank has moved to limit cash withdrawals while banning business customers from sending...

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Richemont chairman Johann Rupert to take 'grey gap... Billionaire 62-year-old to take 12 months off from Cartier and Montblanc luxury goods groupRichemont's chairman and founder Johann Rupert is to take a year off from September, leaving management of the...

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Cambodia: aftermath of fatal shoe factory collapse... Workers clear rubble following the collapse of a shoe factory in Kampong Speu, Cambodia, on Thursday

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Spate of recent shock departures by 50-something CEOs While the rising financial rewards of running a modern multinational have been well publicised, executive recruiters say the pressures of the job have also been ratcheted upOn approaching his 60th birthday...

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UK Uncut loses legal challenge over Goldman Sachs tax... While judge agreed the deal was 'not a glorious episode in the history of the Revenue', he ruled it was not unlawfulCampaign group UK Uncut Legal Action has lost its high court challenge over the legality...

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Japanese bra promises economic uplift

Category : Business

The ‘Branomics Bra’ is a playful take on prime minister Shinzo Abe’s ‘three-arrow’ economic revival plan

The Japanese division of lingerie maker Triumph International unveiled on Wednesday an “Abenomics” bra, a special edition it says offers a “growth strategy” and a potential lift towards Japan’s elusive inflation target.

Launches of Triumph’s concept bras in Tokyo have become a regular event over the past quarter of a century and are an important publicity tool for the 127-year-old, Swiss-headquartered company.

The latest “Branomics Bra” follows earlier solar-powered, recycled and “husband-hunting” models but, like its predecessors, will not go on sale.

The “Branomics Bra” is a playful take on prime minister Shinzo Abe’s “three-arrow” economic revival plan that combines monetary strategy aiming to reach 2% inflation in two years and pro-growth reforms.

It features a rising trendline and arrows as motifs and promises a 2% increase in volume with extra padding.

“We hope that, as the Japanese economy grows, we can also help bust sizes to get bigger,” said Triumph spokeswoman Keiko Masuda.

Its benefits for Japan’s policymakers were less clear.

If not now, when will ECB cut rates?

Category : Stocks

Stuck in recession, with inflation rates tumbling and unemployment rising, the eurozone looks set to get its first cut in interest rates in 10 months this week.

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Japan boosts economic forecasts

Category : World News

The Bank of Japan raises its forecast for both economic growth and inflation this year in its twice yearly report.

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VIDEO: Hugh’s review: Making sense of the stats

Category : Business, World News

The BBC’s Hugh Pym is joined by guests to discuss what this week’s inflation, retail and unemployment figures mean for the UK economy.

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UK inflation steady at 2.8% in March

Category : Business, World News

UK consumer price inflation stays at 2.8% in March for the second month in a row, the Office for National Statistics says.

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Japanese central bank doubles money supply in fresh bid to spur inflation

Category : Business

New Bank of Japan governor seeks to end long spell of deflation which has hindered investment and economic growth

The Japanese central bank has said it will massively expand the country’s money supply to spur inflation as it strives to get the world’s third-largest economy out of its slump.

The Bank of Japan (BoJ) on Thursday vowed to achieve a 2% inflation target at “the earliest possible time”.

To do so, the central bank has launched “a new phase of monetary easing both in terms of quantity and quality” that will double the money supply, it said in a statement.

The new BoJ governor, Haruhiko Kuroda, has vowed to meet the inflation target within two years, heeding demands from the prime minister, Shinzo Abe, to once and for all end a long spell of deflation which has hindered investment and economic growth.

Abe’s government, which took power late last year, accused the previous central bank governor, Masaaki Shirakawa, of balking at undertaking bold enough monetary easing to get the economy back on track. The steps announced on Thursday under the first policy meeting chaired by Kuroda were in line with expectations and are likely to reassure jittery financial markets of Japan’s resolve to push ahead with its “reflationary” strategy.

The announcement pulled the Nikkei 225 stock average out of the red and sent the yen lower against the US dollar.

The BoJ will conduct money market operations to increase the monetary base by about ¥60tn to ¥70tn (£420bn to £490bn) a year. At the same time it plans to increase purchases of Japanese government bonds to total ¥50tn a year to encourage interest rates to decline, which it hopes will facilitate more lending.

The central bank is also extending the average remaining maturity of the bonds it purchases from three years to an average of seven years. Meanwhile, bonds with all maturities up to 40 years will be eligible for purchase.

As expected, the bank also extended the range of assets it can purchase, to include more risky real estate investment trusts and exchange-traded funds.

As part of the new strategy, the BoJ will end its current asset-purchasing programme, absorbing it into the future purchases of bonds, it said.

Answering concerns that the stimulus programme would further raise Japan’s public debt, the statement said that the government bond purchases would be “executed for the purpose of conducting monetary policy and not for the purpose of financing fiscal deficits”.

The BoJ will “examine both upside and downside risks to economic activity and prices and make adjustments as appropriate”, it said.

Shop price inflation on the rise

Category : Business

Consumers under pressure as the cost of non-food goods increased for the first time in 15 months and shop prices rose at their fastest rate since December

Shop prices last month rose at their fastest pace since December as the cost of non-food goods increased for the first time in more than a year, new figures show.

Overall shop price inflation rose to 1.4% in March from 1.1% in February, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC).

Food price inflation remained stubbornly high at 3.5% in March, piling more pressure on cash-strapped consumers, while prices of non-food goods started rising for the first time in 15 months.

Prices rose across health and beauty products, stationery and DIY and gardening goods and books, the BRC said.

It added that the rate of year-on-year price deflation in shoes, footwear and electrical goods slowed to 2.2% from 4.2% in February.

That meant overall non-food inflation stood at 0.2% in March, compared with 0.4% deflation in February.

Helen Dickinson, BRC director general, said the figures suggest “demand is strengthening and promotions are less widespread than last year”.

She said: “Total inflation is at its highest rate since December, again reflecting that many retailers went into the new year with less stock to clear so discounting is less extensive compared with 2012.”

Food prices continue to be driven by higher inflation in fruit, fish and meat, which is offsetting slower inflation for vegetables and dairy products.

But the BRC said the prolonged spell of cold and wet weather could lead to deeper discounting on spring lines emerging in figures for April.

Mike Watkins, head of retailer and business insight at Nielsen, said: “As discretionary spend for the next few months is expected to remain flat at best, what upward pressure there is on prices is not coming from the consumer at the moment.”

Fuel costs push inflation to 2.8%

Category : World News

UK consumer price inflation rises to 2.8% in February thanks in part to rising energy prices, including household fuel bills.

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E-books added to inflation basket

Category : World News

E-books have been added to the basket of goods used to calculate the UK’s rate of inflation, but champagne loses its fizz.

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Grants to aid students rising by 1%

Category : Business

Maintenance loans and grants for students in England will rise by 1%, in 2014-15 – less than the rate of inflation, the government says.

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