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  #241  
Old 25-02-2021, 20:39
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February 25. US stock exchanges decline after the release of statistics on the GDP

US stock exchanges are falling on Thursday after the release of statistics on GDP and the labor market.

In particular, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) fell by 0.14% to 31,918.08 points, the NASDAQ high-tech index – by 0.25% to 13564.49 points, and the S&P 500 broad market index – by 0. 22%, up to 3916.6 points.

Investors drew attention to the statistics on the US economy: in the IV quarter, the country's GDP, according to the second estimate, grew by 4.1% on an annualized basis (if the GDP grew at the same pace for four quarters in a row). The indicator turned out to be higher than the first estimate of growth by 4%, but worse than the forecast of growth from analysts at 4.2% in annual terms.

At the same time, the US Department of Commerce kept the estimate of the fall in GDP in 2020 at 3.5%.

Labor market statistics turned out to be better than expected: the number of initial applications for unemployment benefits in the United States fell to a minimum since November 2020, and the rate of decline in the indicator became the fastest since August of the same year. The number of such applications decreased by 111 thousand, to 730 thousand.
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Old 26-02-2021, 21:43
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February 26. Germany has announced four options for the future «Nord Stream 2»

The German authorities have proposed four options for the future of the «Nord Stream 2» project in order to come to a compromise with the United States and «end the grueling showdown» around the pipeline.

The first course of action proposed by Berlin is the US refusal from threats of sanctions if the «danger» for Ukraine is removed or at least reduced. This option provides for the possibility of stopping gas supply in the event that Russia stops transportation through the territory of Ukraine.

Another option is to suspend the construction of the pipeline for the purpose of negotiations. The FRG authorities note that the United States can create a special commission with the participation of Europeans, whose task will be to develop specific solutions.

Germany sees the third decision to provide investment assistance to Ukraine, which will soften Washington's position. And the fourth scenario is the continuation of the construction of the gas pipeline in spite of all countermeasures to the project.

Let us remind you that «Nord Stream 2» is a gas pipeline from Russia to Germany, laid along the bottom of the Baltic Sea. Now the facility is 95% ready, and the cost of its construction is estimated at $11 billion.
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  #243  
Old 02-03-2021, 07:23
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March 01. Cardano takes the lead in cryptocurrency rally

Cryptocurrency Cardano last week renewed all-time highs and came in third after Bitcoin and Ethereum in terms of market capitalization, which now exceeds $46.5 million.

Cardano's value has risen 2000% over the past year, gaining 300% in the last month alone. The digital currency has unexpectedly left behind major competitors, including Polkadot (DOT) and Ripple (XRP).

Experts note that the rise in price of the digital currency was facilitated by the fact that the project of its developers plans to roll out the Goguen update this week. The update will implement important changes that will help the platform enter the decentralized finance segment.

«Cardano is a rising star in the cryptocurrency sector,» said Nigel Greene, CEO of deVere Financial Advisory Group.
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  #244  
Old 02-03-2021, 21:38
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March 02. China's financial regulator announced a «bubble» in global stock markets

The China Banking and Insurance Supervision and Control Committee (CBIRC) said the rally in the US and other stock markets resembles a «bubble» and will eventually move to a correction. The head of the committee, Guo Shuqing, also noted that the American and European markets are moving in the opposite direction compared to the economy.

CBIRC comments did not support sentiment on the Hong Kong stock exchange, and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 1.2% on Tuesday. Moreover, experts believe that such statements may create even greater concern about the further tightening of China's monetary policy.

The regulator also announced a «bubble» in the real estate market in China itself. This is because many people buy houses for investment or speculative purposes, which is «very dangerous.»

The economic recovery, a surge in lending and fears of missing out on buying a home have boosted demand for real estate in major Chinese cities. As a result, the authorities have retaliated, including a new mortgage lending facility. Despite this, housing prices in the secondary market, which is less regulated by the state, jumped in January to a maximum in a year and a half.
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  #245  
Old 03-03-2021, 18:58
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March 3. Gold falls in price on lower demand for «safe-haven» assets

On Wednesday, the price of gold declines against the background of investors leaving defensive assets in the light of the prospects for an improvement in the economic situation in the world. In addition, the high yield on US government bonds and the expensive dollar continue to put pressure on gold quotes.

The current price of the April futures for precious metals on the New York Comex exchange is $1,710.40 per troy ounce.

Analysts note that investors are more inclined to acquire risky assets amid general optimism in the markets regarding the prospects for the development of the global economy. In addition, the continuation of mass vaccinations in countries around the world gives hope for a speedy recovery.

Also, traders are waiting for additional support for the economy from the US authorities. As you remember, last Saturday the House of Representatives of the US Congress approved a stimulus package in the amount of 1.9 trillion dollars. Now the relevant bill has yet to be passed by the Senate and signed by President Joe Biden.
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  #246  
Old 05-03-2021, 11:14
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04.03. Construction of Nord Stream 2 postponed until September

The construction of the Russian gas pipeline Nord Stream 2 was again postponed, this time for six months. Now, work on laying two lines of the gas pipeline in the exclusive economic zone of Denmark is going to be completed in September 2021, although the deadline was previously planned for the end of April.

Initially, the project was supposed to be completed at the end of 2019, however, the construction of the pipeline was prevented by sanctions from the United States, due to which European companies began to leave the project. Washington is hindering the construction of the facility, as American liquefied natural gas competes with Russian pipeline fuel for the European market.

As of early March, the pipeline is 98% ready, and its cost is estimated at $11 billion. Russia does not abandon plans to complete the construction of the facility, however, certification and insurance of the route still remain unresolved problems.

Also today it became known that the financial partner of the project, the German concern Uniper, announced that it would no longer finance the project. It is known that as of November, Uniper has allocated 700 million euros to finance the construction of the gas pipeline. Earlier, the completion of financing was also announced by the German oil and gas company Wintershall Dea.
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  #247  
Old 07-03-2021, 21:53
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March 5. OPEC+ ministerial meeting outcomes

On Friday, Brent crude rose to $68.60 for the first time since January 2020. The prices were supported by the results of the meeting of the ministers of the OPEC+ countries, according to which the organization unexpectedly refused to increase oil production in April by 500 thousand barrels per day.

Moreover, Saudi Arabia extended its own voluntary restrictions of 1 million bpd for another month, promising to return these volumes to the market when it sees fit.

Russia and Kazakhstan again received the right to increase production from April by 130 thousand and 20 thousand barrels per day, respectively.

The results of the OPEC+ meeting indicate that the participants in the energy pact have chosen a cautious approach to assessing the recovery in demand, given the still remaining concerns about the pace of global economic growth.
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  #248  
Old 08-03-2021, 22:17
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March 8. US stock markets open in the red

Investors are encouraged today that the Senate passed President Joe Biden's $ 1.9 trillion stimulus bill this weekend. Minor amendments were made to the bill, reducing unemployment benefits from $ 400 to $ 300. He must now return to the House of Representatives, which will approve the revised version and finally unlock the funds.

The approval of the bill to stimulate the economy further contributed to the growth of US Treasury bonds, which, in turn, negatively affects the stock indices. The Nasdaq 100, S&P 500 and Dow Jones all started trading in the red today due to low investor interest in the stock at the moment.

Stocks in China are also declining in light of last week's announcement of a lower-than-expected growth outlook. This signals to the markets that the government may withdraw some stimulus from its economy to offset the growth in borrowing.

Oil prices continued to rise after OPEC + agreed not to increase its quotas in April last week. In addition, there has been an attack on Saudi Arabia's oil facilities, although the country has reported that production is unlikely to be affected. Nevertheless, oil managed to rise above $ 70 a barrel.
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  #249  
Old 09-03-2021, 16:51
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March, 09. Bitcoin capitalization exceeded $1 trillion again

In the morning trading session on Tuesday, bitcoin rose to $54348.57, reaching a 24-hour high. At the same time, the market capitalization of the cryptocurrency rose again above the $ trillion level.

After that, bitcoin lost some of its achievements and the current quotation of the digital asset is $54185.

Note that recently, bitcoin has experienced a dizzying rally: since the beginning of 2021, it has grown by more than 80%, and over the past 12 months, it has risen by more than 570%. It was also at an all-time high of $58,332.36.

There are several reasons behind Bitcoin's rise, including the investment in this digital currency by large investors and significant purchases by corporations such as Tesla, Square, and MicroStrategy Incorporated.
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  #250  
Old 11-03-2021, 20:12
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March 11. ECB kept monetary policy unchanged

A meeting of the Board of Governors of the European Central Bank (ECB) took place today, following which monetary policy remained unchanged. The base interest rate on loans was kept at zero.

The rate on deposits also remained at the same level – minus 0.5%, the rate on short-term loans from the ECB – at 0.25%. The regulator expects key interest rates to remain at or below current levels until the inflation forecast steadily approaches below 2%.

In addition, the central bank will continue the bond buyback program (PEPP) in connection with the pandemic totaling € 1.85 trillion. The reinvestment of the main payments on the securities purchased under the PEPP is planned to continue until at least the end of 2023.

The regulator will also continue the program of asset repurchase (APP) in the amount of € 20 billion monthly, as well as reinvestment of payments on securities purchased under this program.

The next meeting of the European Central Bank will be held on April 22.
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  #251  
Old 13-03-2021, 10:10
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March 12. Biden signs incentive package act

US President Joe Biden signed into law a $1.9 trillion stimulus package a day earlier than expected. The economic stimulus provides direct one-time payments of $1,400 for most Americans, as well as tax breaks for millions of families.

The Democratic Party is now planning a two-week campaign to keep voters' memory of this decision until the next election. By signing the bill, Biden promised that the money would help rebuild America's economy and support workers and the middle class.

Also, the new head of the White House said that he intends to speed up the process of national vaccination and return to normal life by the 4th of July holiday. Such statements have strengthened confidence in the recovery of the US economy this year, which has led to higher yields on the dollar and US bonds.

In particular, the yield on benchmark 10-year bonds returned to 1.61%, the highest since February last year. The dollar index rose 0.6% to 91.93.
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  #252  
Old 15-03-2021, 15:26
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March 15. Oil hits $70 maximum on strong data from China

Brent crude hit a high of $70 per barrel on Monday, boosted by data from China, which indicated a recovery in the economy, improving the outlook for demand from the world's largest oil importer. Activity in China's industrial and retail sectors surged in the first two months of 2021, exceeding analysts' expectations.

Additional support for the quotes of «black gold» was provided by the OPEC report published last Thursday, according to which world oil demand in 2021 will reach 96.3 million barrels per day. Now experts of the oil cartel expect an increase in world oil demand by 5.9 million barrels per day.

On the side of buyers, there is also general market optimism caused by new fiscal stimulus measures, worth $1.9 trillion, in the US, which were finally agreed at the end of last week. Market participants believe that the injection of such huge money into the economy will significantly accelerate the recovery of economic activity, which will have a favorable effect on the demand for energy resources.

However, Brent failed to gain a foothold in the area of ​​highs. The current quotation of the commodity asset is $ 68.75 per barrel.
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  #253  
Old 17-03-2021, 18:50
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March 16. British currency falls on fears over AstraZeneca vaccine

The pound sterling declines against the euro and the dollar on Tuesday amid news of the suspension of coronavirus vaccinations developed by AstraZeneca in Germany, Italy and France. Previously, this vaccine has already been abandoned by Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark and a number of other countries.

Germany, France and Italy announced on Monday that they will suspend the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine against COVID-19 after cases (including fatal) cases of thrombosis have been recorded in those vaccinated. At the same time, the World Health Organization (WHO) says that the connection between the vaccine and complications has not been proven and there is no reason for panic.

Experts note that if fears about the safety of the AstraZeneca vaccine are confirmed, it could jeopardize the rapid vaccination program for the UK population.
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  #254  
Old 22-03-2021, 19:04
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March 22. German economy falls due to antivirus restrictions

The Bundesbank said today that the German economy is likely to contract sharply in the first quarter of this year, as due to pandemic restrictions the service sector has suffered significantly and the development of the construction industry has slowed down. Experts point out that a hike in sales tax, which was temporarily cut last year, likely contributed to a significant reduction in construction volumes in January.

In its monthly report, the German central bank did not update its forecast for the spring economic recovery and dropped references to the coronavirus vaccination campaign, which was undermined by news of possible side effects. The authorities had previously expected the economy to recover in the spring thanks to a decrease in the incidence of coronavirus and mass vaccinations.

The regulator also noted that measures to contain the pandemic in the current quarter are on average more stringent than in the previous one, so a stronger decline in economic production can be expected. Industrial production also declined in the first month of the year, but orders were high and merchandise exports increased.
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  #255  
Old 23-03-2021, 21:03
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March 23. Bitcoin can rise to $300 thousand, but then – fall by 80-90%

Co-founder and former CEO of BTCC crypto exchange Bobby Lee said that today bitcoin is in a «bull market» and may rise to $300 thousand. At the same time, he warned that the «bubble» could burst after reaching a peak, and the cryptocurrency would fall within the so-called «bitcoin winter», which can last for years.

Lee also noted that Bitcoin bull market cycles occur every four years, and this summer, the value of the digital currency could easily rise to the level of $ 100,000 or more. Two of these «bullish market cycles» have already occurred over the past eight years: in 2017, when the price of bitcoin surged from $ 1,000 to almost $ 20,000 in a year, and in 2021, when the price of cryptocurrency sharply reached $ 60,000.

The economist warned that the bubble could burst when the price of bitcoin declines. In the crypto industry, this is called bitcoin winter, and it can last anywhere from two to three years. Moreover, the value of a currency may fall by 80-90% of its value at its historical peak.
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  #256  
Old 25-03-2021, 12:03
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March 24. Suez Canal blocked: 12% of world trade in question

One of the largest container ships in the world, owned by the Taiwanese company Evergreen Marine, ran aground in the Suez Canal, completely blocking traffic on the most important trade route connecting Europe, Asia and the United States to the Middle East.

Experts note that about 12% of world trade passes through this channel, 30% of the world's container ships' capacity per year, and about 600 thousand barrels of crude oil from the Middle East to Europe and the United States every day. Moreover, the Suez Canal remains the main source of income for Egypt.

At the moment it became known that at the entrance to the canal tankers with oil and liquefied natural gas, container ships with various goods and dry cargo vessels are accumulating. If congestion continues until the end of this week, it will affect the transit of 15 LNG tankers and disrupt the entire shipping schedule. Unblocking of the channel is expected to take several days at best.
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  #257  
Old 25-03-2021, 22:54
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March 25. The backlog of vaccinations in the EU was estimated at 123 billion euros

Economists believe that the lag of the EU countries from the approved vaccination calendar against coronavirus could cost the European economy about 123 billion euros. The EU is currently seven weeks behind schedule.

It is noted that by the end of summer, the EU countries should vaccinate 70% of the population. And in order to achieve this, vaccination must be significantly accelerated. However, problems with the supply of vaccines from AstraZeneca and the refusal of residents of many European countries to vaccinate with this particular drug call into question the success of this campaign.

According to experts, France is also seven weeks behind the vaccination schedule, and each week of lag could cost the country's economy 3 billion euros.

The current difficulties with vaccination will be discussed at the summit on Thursday by the heads of state and government of the EU countries. It is assumed that politicians will discuss measures to increase vaccine production and accelerate vaccination of the population.
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  #258  
Old 28-03-2021, 21:58
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March 26. Experts believe that cars will rise in price because of the Suez Canal blocking

Experts believe that blocking the movement of ships through the Suez Canal will inevitably lead to higher prices for cars.

It is noted that the incident involving the container ship Evergreen mainly affected the European Union. For three days, a queue of more than 200 ships gathered near the blocked canal. Another part of the tankers headed by a roundabout route around Africa – and this will move the delivery dates by 15 days.

Analysts also note that the situation in the Suez Canal may affect the cost of some industrial goods from Europe, including automotive products. The fact is that the increase in costs due to the additional time spent in chartering ships is approximately $8,000 for each container from China. Although this is a small amount, the main problem is timing.

Currently, the European markets are already experiencing assembly problems due to the lack of chips. And 15 days of delay can lead to an increase in the cost of cars by 1-2%.
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Old 30-03-2021, 22:52
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March 30. Consumer Confidence in the US in March rose to its highest in a year

According to the analyst firm Conference Board, the consumer confidence index in the US in March rose to 109.7 points from the revised February index of 90.4 points. Analysts had forecast growth in the indicator to only 96.9 points from the initial February value of 91.3 points. In addition, the index has reached its highest value in a year.

The index of economic expectations in March jumped to 109.6 points from the revised February index of 90.9 points. The index of economic conditions in March also rose to 110 points from the revised value of 89.6 points in February (originally the indicator was 92 points).

The US dollar reacted to such statistics with even greater growth. For example, the exchange rate of the main currency pair EUR/USD is 1.1700, which is the lowest value since November last year.
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Old 01-04-2021, 15:03
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March 31. ECB sees opportunity to launch digital euro by 2025

The head of the European Central Bank (ECB) Christine Lagarde said that the regulator could launch the digital euro around the middle of this decade, in 2025.

In her interview, Lagarde noted that the main task of the ECB is to ensure the correct approach to the process of creating a digital European currency, which can take several years. «This is a technical project and also a fundamental change. We have to make sure we don't break the system, but we will improve it», Lagarde said.

The ECB intends to publish an analysis of the 8,000 responses received in a public consultation on a potential digital currency launch. Further, the analysis will be sent to the European Parliament, and then – to the ECB Governing Council, which by the middle of this year will decide whether to continue this experimental work. The final decision on whether to introduce digital currency at all will be made six months or a year after that.

The European Central Bank has said it is considering issuing a digital euro to prepare for the digital age. The European Commission, in turn, noted that the digital euro can support the digitalization of the entire EU economy, which is one of the most important elements of the EU's development.
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Old 01-04-2021, 20:41
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April 1. Owners of container ship Ever Given will pay about a billion dollars in fines

The manager of the Suez Canal, Osama Rabia, said that the financial losses from the blocking of the trade route, which arose due to the fault of the container ship Ever Given, would amount to about a billion dollars. This amount will be collected from the owner of the vessel. According to Rabia, the money will go to offset the cost of re-floating the vessel, as well as to cover financial losses caused by the congestion in the waterway. Suez Canal navigation resumed on Tuesday 30 March.

Osama Rabia also said that all ships affected by the forced delay will be given a discount of up to 15% for passage. The discount will vary from 5% to 15%, depending on the period of time for which each vessel was forced to stand idle.

After the incident, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ordered the purchase of the most modern and large dredgers and tugs for his needs. Their cost is estimated at $500 million. The very same vessel Ever Given will remain at a stop in the lakes until the investigation is over, the perpetrators of the incident are identified, and compensation and fines are not paid.
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Old 05-04-2021, 17:36
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April 2. Non-farm Payrolls report significantly exceeded expectations

Today, the US Department of Labor released a report Non-farm Payrolls, according to which, the number of jobs outside of agriculture in March rose by 916 thousand, and the unemployment rate fell to 6%. The current increase significantly exceeded analysts' forecasts (647 thousand) and became the fastest since August 2020.

Stronger US economic growth and strong vaccination efforts fueled the job growth. Analysts note that the country's economy is recovering, restrictions are lifted, and those who have lost their jobs are returning to jobs. The only concern is the potential likelihood of another wave of Covid, which could lead to another round of closings.

In April last year, against the backdrop of the pandemic, unemployment in the United States was at the level of 14.7%, in May – 13.3%, in June – 11.1%, in July – 10.2%, in August – 8.4%. and in September – 7.9%. The actual figure of 6% clearly speaks of a significant recovery in the American labor market. In mid-March, the Fed improved its forecast for US unemployment in 2021 to 4.5% from 5%. In 2022, the indicator will be at the level of 3.9% against the previously expected 4.2%, in 2023 – at the level of 3.5% against 3.7%.
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Old 08-04-2021, 13:32
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April 7. Coronavirus and Emerging Markets

The coronavirus pandemic is having a strong negative impact on emerging markets.

India yesterday confirmed over 115,000 new cases of Covid-19, a record high in history. If the current trend continues, it means that the peak of the epidemic in India has not yet been reached. The country, which is the world's largest vaccine producer, has suspended exports to other countries in order to vaccinate its citizens.

Turkey is also seeing a rapid increase in the daily rate of Covid-19 infection. Almost 50,000 new infections were confirmed in the country yesterday, also a record high.

The economies of India and Turkey have experienced high inflation rates even before the surge in infections, so the pandemic could further exacerbate their internal economic problems.

At today's meeting, the Reserve Bank of India kept its benchmark interest rate at a record low of 4%.
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Old 09-04-2021, 20:50
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April 8. US stock markets continued their upward rally

Reports on initial and ongoing jobless claims in the US were released today, which turned out to be worse than analysts' forecasts. Moreover, today traders will follow the speech of Fed Chairman Jerome Powell at the IMF, although they do not expect important news from this speech.

More information has emerged about the tax changes planned by President Joe Biden's administration. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has previously excited the markets with statements of a minimum international tax - an idea that the EU also supports. It turned out that the 15% tax that it offers will apply only to companies with annual revenues of at least $ 2 billion, which means it will have less impact on the market than previously thought.

Tax plan adjustments are beneficial for the stock markets. Today, American stock indices continued to renew their all-time highs, despite disappointing data on unemployment in the country.

Meanwhile, AstraZeneca's share price is rising, despite the company's continuing troubles. The European Medicines Agency and the UK Medicines and Health Agency have determined that AstraZeneca vaccine, in rare cases, can contribute to a possible death from blood clotting.

Due to the rarity of this problem (20 out of 20 million vaccinations in the UK) and the severity of Covid-19, both agencies still recommend the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine. This optimism is most likely the driving force behind the rise in the pharmaceutical company's stock.
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