Latest stories
Report: CIA Collecting Records of Money Transfers

The CIA is secretly amassing records of international money transfers into and out of the United States, including operations handled by firms like Western Union, the New York Times reported Friday.

The Central Intelligence Agency is acting under the same law that the NSA uses to assemble a data base of Americans' phone records, the paper said, quoting current and former U.S. officials.

W140 Full Story
Bulgaria Returns to Growth Despite Political Turmoil

Bulgaria's economy returned to growth in the third quarter despite ongoing political tensions in the EU's poorest country, official preliminary data showed on Thursday.

Helped by a modest recovery in the eurozone that has boosted other central and eastern European emerging economies, gross domestic product (GDP) grew 0.6 percent after shrinking 0.1 percent in the last quarter.

W140 Full Story
Saudi Migrant Crackdown Closes Shops, Raises Fears

Garbage is piling up on streets around the mosque housing the burial site of the Prophet Muhammad. Grocery stores have shut their doors and almost half of Saudi Arabia's small construction firms have stopped working on projects.

The mess is because foreign workers on which many businesses rely are fleeing, have gone into hiding or are under arrest amid a crackdown launched Nov. 4 targeting the kingdom's 9 million migrant laborers. Decades of lax immigration enforcement allowed migrants to take low-wage manual, clerical and service jobs that the kingdom's own citizens shunned for better paying, more comfortable work.

W140 Full Story
French Economy Contracts in 3Q

France's economy contracted by 0.1 percent in third quarter due to weakened exports and lagging business investment, official data showed on Thursday, dealing a further blow to unpopular Socialist President Francois Hollande.

The drop comes after the economy grew by an unexpected 0.5 percent during the second quarter, pulling the eurozone's second-largest economy out of a shallow recession.

W140 Full Story
Japan Economic Growth Halves in September Quarter

Japan said Thursday that growth halved in the July-September quarter as exports weakened and consumer spending slowed, but economists were divided over what it meant for Tokyo's drive to fire up the economy.

The once-anaemic economy has lately been outpacing growth in other G7 nations as a policy blitz led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe helped push down the yen, giving a boost to exporters and sparking a stock market rally.

W140 Full Story
Bank of England Proclaims Britain's Economic Recovery

Britain's economic recovery "has finally taken hold", the Bank of England said on Wednesday as it upgraded its growth forecasts despite headwinds from the eurozone debt crisis.

The BoE added that unemployment could fall faster than expected, signalling that its key interest rate could rise from the current record-low level sooner than anticipated.

W140 Full Story
Spain Inflation at Zero for First Time in Four Years

Spanish inflation slowed to zero in October, official data showed, in line with falling rates around Europe which have raised the risk of deflation that could threaten economic recovery.

Spain's inflation rate, a measure of the rise in consumer prices, slowed by half a percentage point from the previous month to zero in October, the National Statistics Institute said.

W140 Full Story
Japan Parliament Grills Banking Officials over Mob Loans

Japanese lawmakers on Wednesday grilled the head of one of the country's biggest banks over a mob loans scandal, as another major lender admitted it may have been involved in shady dealings with gangsters.

Mizuho Financial Group President Yasuhiro Sato apologized for his firm's role in the widening scandal as lawmakers questioned him about Mizuho's surveillance and his future at the bank, after he earlier refused to step down.

W140 Full Story
IMF: Arab Spring Economies Hit by Uncertainty

The economies of Arab countries rocked by the uprisings that swept the region two years ago, remain sluggish because of unfinished political transitions, a top IMF official told Agence France Presse.

Others are suffering from the financial and social burdens imposed on them by a huge influx of refugees from the civil war in Syria, International Monetary Fund director for the Middle East and Central Asia Masood Ahmed said in an interview.

W140 Full Story
IMF Urges MENA, Central Asia Cut Gender Gap to Boost GDP

Reducing the gender wage gap could generate extra GDP of $1 trillion in a decade in the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan and Pakistan (MENAP) region, the IMF said on Tuesday.

"The gap (in the region) is three times the gap in emerging markets as a whole," said Masood Ahmed, the International Monetary Fund's Middle East and Central Asia director.

W140 Full Story