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Reuters | Equities.com |

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Europe’s biggest bank, HSBC has cut already bleak global growth forecasts even further, as lockdown restrictions extended through April and tentative economic re-openings drag on a return to business, trade and spending.The bank lowered its 2020 global gross domestic product forecast to a contraction of 4.8%, according to a note from chief economist Janet Henry dated May 12 and published on Friday.It had forecast a 3.3% contraction for the year in early April. Many large ...


Reuters | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. retail sales endured a second straight month of record declines in April as the novel coronavirus pandemic kept Americans at home, putting the economy on track for its biggest contraction in the second quarter since the Great Depression.The Commerce Department said on Friday retail sales plunged 16.4% last month, the biggest decline since the government started tracking the series in 1992. Data for March was revised to show receipts at retailers falling 8.3% instead o...


AP News | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly 3 million laid-off workers applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week as the viral outbreak led more companies to slash jobs even though most states have begun to let some businesses reopen under certain restrictions.Roughly 36 million people have now filed for jobless aid in the two months since the coronavirus first forced millions of businesses to close their doors and shrink their workforces, the Labor Department said Thursday.Still, the...


Reuters | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. producer prices fell by the most since 2009 in April, leading to the largest annual decline in nearly 4-1/2 years, which could bolster some economists’ predictions for a brief period of deflation as the novel coronavirus depresses demand.The Labor Department said on Wednesday its producer price index for final demand tumbled 1.3% last month, the biggest decline since the series was revamped in December 2009, after slipping 0.2% in March. In the 12 m...


Reuters | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, in a sober review of where the U.S. economy stands on the cusp of its reopening, said on Wednesday the country could face an “extended period” of weak growth and stagnant incomes, pledged to use more Fed power as needed, and issued a call for more fiscal spending.For a central banker who spent part of his career as a deficit hawk and has tried to avoid giving advice to elected officials, the remarks marked an extraor...


AP News | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (AP) — The economic paralysis caused by the coronavirus led in April to the steepest month-to-month fall in U.S. consumer prices since the 2008 financial crisis — a 0.8% drop that was driven by a plunge in gasoline prices.And excluding the normally volatile categories of food and energy, so-called core prices tumbled 0.4% last month, the Labor Department said Tuesday in its monthly report on consumer inflation. That was the sharpest such drop on records dating ...


Reuters | Equities.com |

NEW YORK/SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Negative interest rates in the United States were once unimaginable. The coronavirus has changed that. While the Federal Reserve has all but ruled it out, the sweeping economic and financial-markets impact of the pandemic has forced investors to give serious thought to the implications of such a drastic policy shift. Rate options, which gauge monetary policy expectations, on Monday implied a 23% probability that the key ...


AP News | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (AP) — China’s direct investment in the United States fell last year to its lowest level since the Great Recession, even before the coronavirus pandemic shut down much of global commerce.The decline in Beijing’s investment in the United States reflected tensions between the world’s two biggest economies and Chinese government restrictions on overseas investment.A report out Monday from the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations and the Rhodium Group consultancy found that ...


AP News | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. unemployment rate hit 14.7% in April, the highest rate since the Great Depression, as 20.5 million jobs vanished in the worst monthly loss on record. The figures are stark evidence of the damage the coronavirus has done to a now-shattered economy. The losses reflect what has become a severe recession caused by sudden business shutdowns in nearly every industry. Almost all the job growth achieved during the 11-year recovery from the Gr...


Reuters | Equities.com |

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Millions more Americans sought unemployment benefits last week, suggesting layoffs broadened from consumer-facing industries to other segments of the economy and could remain elevated even as many parts of the country start to reopen.The Labor Department’s weekly jobless claims report on Thursday showed initial jobless claims for state unemployment benefits totaled a seasonally adjusted 3.169 million for the week ended May 2, down from a revised 3.846 million in the prio...