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PMI Survey: Eurozone Business Rally Falters

Eurozone business activity slowed in October, coming off a 27-month high in September to highlight concerns the economy is recovering only slowly from recession, a survey showed on Thursday.

The closely-watched Composite Purchasing Manager's Index (PMI) compiled by Markit Economics fell to 51.5 points in October from 52.2 in September.

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Jobless Rate Dips as Spain Fights Way out of Recession

Spain announced Thursday a dip in its towering unemployment rate in the latest sign that the eurozone's fourth-largest economy is battling its way out of recession.

The jobless rate eased for the second straight quarter to 25.98 percent in the third quarter of 2013, a report by the National Statistics Institute showed.

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HSBC: China Manufacturing Index Hits Seven-Month High

China's manufacturing activity expanded at its strongest pace in seven months in October, British banking giant HSBC said Thursday, adding to evidence the world's second-largest economy is recovering.

HSBC's preliminary purchasing managers' index (PMI) for this month hit 50.9, a significant improvement from September's 50.2 and the highest since 51.6 in March.

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IMF Says Brazil Needs Investment, Competitive Boost

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Wednesday praised Brazil for producing prolonged macroeconomic stability.

But the IMF says Latin America's biggest economy must act more decisively on bolstering investment and increase competitiveness if it is to revive growth.

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Central Bank: Spain Exits Recession, Job Losses Ease

Spain escaped from its two-year recession in the third quarter of this year with timid growth as job destruction eased, the country's central bank said on Wednesday.

After nine straight quarters of contraction in the second trough of a double-dip recession, the eurozone's fourth-biggest economy grew by 0.1 percent, the Bank of Spain said in a report.

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Germany Bullish on Economy, Jobs for 2014

Germany said Wednesday its robust economy would fuel record employment this year and next as well as boost consumer spending and industrial investment.

The economy ministry said in its autumn forecast that gross domestic product would expand 0.5 percent this year and 1.7 percent next year, confirming reports from sources on Tuesday and underlining the rude health of Europe's top economic power.

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Bank of England United on Policy

Bank of England policymakers recently voted unanimously to maintain record-low interest rate and the amount of cash stimulus for the improving British economy, minutes showed on Wednesday.

The central bank's Monetary Policy Committee voted 9-0 to keep its key lending rate at 0.50 percent and maintain its bond-buying quantitative easing (QE) scheme at £375 billion ($607 billion, 441 billion euros), according to minutes of a meeting held in early October.

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Australia Inflation Jumps, Dashes Rate Cut Hopes

Australian inflation rose by a stronger-than-expected 1.2 percent in the July-September period compared to the previous quarter, official data showed Wednesday, reducing expectations of further monetary easing this year.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics data showed the consumer price index (CPI) was up 2.2 percent through the year to September -- above economists' expectations of a 1.8 percent annual rise.

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Medvedev: China, Russia Agree to Oil Supply Deal

Russia has signed an $85 billion deal to supply oil to China, visiting Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Tuesday, expanding energy trade between the giant neighbors.

The two governments also agreed to jointly construct an oil refinery in Tianjin east of Beijing, Medvedev said in comments posted on the website of the government's Xinhua News Agency. Xinhua said he made them during an online forum with Internet users.

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China, Singapore to Allow Direct Trading between Currencies

China and Singapore have agreed to allow direct trading between each other's currency, Singapore's central bank said Tuesday.

The move, along with other agreements on financial cooperation, is expected to bolster Singapore's status as a leading offshore trading center for the Chinese yuan, officially called the renminbi(RMB).

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