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NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The top Greek diplomat in Washington says his nation's first budget surplus in more than a decade should go a long way toward persuading international creditors to ease up on some of the austerity measures that have been forced on Athens.
The chorus of optimistic forecasts is growing. The Federal Reserve's Beige Book reported moderate growth from November to the end of 2013, and that "the economic outlook is positive in most districts."
While the historically low interest rates in the U.S. and many other developed economies have been the source of ongoing concerns about future inflation, an increasing threat of deflation is receiving global attention.
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — New figures show that European banks are lending less to companies — another sign the continent's economic upswing remains less than robust.
Ask any leftist for the solution to any problem, and the answer is invariably, "spend more money." This comes out of the fairy tale that blowing it is what money was made for. Ireland, like the rest of us, loves fairy tales. It took the tax-and-spend route and landed in a crisis of choking debt. Now the Irish are sobering up. The Irish government last week thumbed its nose at the taxaholic recommendations of the European Union, and said Dublin would restrain spending while restraining corporate tax rates at the current low levels. It's a choice that could put the country back on the path to recovering lost prosperity.
International use of the euro slipped last year because of the debt crisis in Europe, but the U.S. dollar held its own as the world's leading currency for reserves held by central banks.
The stock market bounced around Thursday as traders reacted to news from Europe and looked ahead to the government's monthly employment report.
Weak earnings from Pfizer and other companies held back major market indexes on Tuesday as the Standard & Poor's 500 flipped between slight gains and losses.
Along with the cherry blossoms, hordes of bureaucrats descended on Washington for the spring meeting of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The meeting concluded with, among other things, a communique from the International Monetary and Financial Committee urging the United States and the European countries, including the United Kingdom, to keep the money spigots flowing and ease up on austerity.