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Most businesses plan increase in capital investment: survey

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Economists at a broad swath of U.S. businesses expect their firms will ramp up capital investments over the next year, a positive sign for the long-term economic growth outlook. A National Association for Business Economics (NABE) survey published on Monday found 61 percent of the firms surveyed planned to increase capital spending, which includes investments in buildings and equipment. The quarterly survey was conducted between March 18 and April 1.

Spanish banks face tough rivalry in small companies bet

By Sarah White and Jesús Aguado MADRID (Reuters) - Across Spain, the message is hard to miss in office windows showcasing offers: banks want to lend to small companies again. After gorging on property lending in the run-up to a financial crisis, banks are looking to revive high-margin loans to businesses as the economy emerges from a prolonged slump and bond-trading income slumps.

Bankers win friends again in Europe with lure of easy money

By John O'Donnell BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Jacques de Larosiere says he is an isolated and modest man. Yet the 84-year-old former head of the International Monetary Fund is one of the most influential voices in European and global finance. An eminence grise as respected among France's political elite as in the heart of the law-drafting European Commission, de Larosiere finds himself at the nexus of finance and rulemaking, treading a fine line between lobbying and advice.

U.S., Europe top foreign investors in S. Korea last year

SEOUL, April 21 (Yonhap) -- Foreign investment in South Korea rose 3.8 percent last year, led by U.S. and European investors who mostly increased their purchase of local stocks and bonds, the central bank said Monday. Outstanding foreign investment in Asia's fourth-largest economy amounted to a record US$991 billion as of the end of 2013, compared with $954.7 billion the previous year, according to data by the Bank of Korea (BOK). The data covered foreigners' direct investment, portfolios and other types of investment.

Japan logs record trade deficit of 13.75 tril. yen in FY 2013

Japan logged a record trade deficit of 13.75 trillion yen in fiscal 2013, up 68.5 percent from a year earlier, as a surge in energy imports amid the prolonged halt of nuclear power plants dwarfed growth in exports, the Finance Ministry said Monday. It was also the first time that Japan's trade balance remained in deficit for a third year in a row since comparable data became available in fiscal 1979, the ministry said in a preliminary report.

Japan export growth slows in warning about overseas demand

By Tetsushi Kajimoto TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's annual export growth slowed sharply in March due to weaker shipments to China, casting doubt that a recovery in external demand could help offset the impact of the April 1 sales tax hike. Ministry of Finance data showed that exports rose 1.8 percent in March from a year earlier, following a 9.8 percent annual gain in the previous month. That was well below a 6.3 percent increase expected by economists in a Reuters poll.

Japan logs record $134 billion trade deficit in fiscal 2013 on surging costs for imported fuel

TOKYO - Japan's trade deficit surged nearly 70 per cent to a record 13.75 trillion yen ($134 billion) in the last fiscal year, the third straight year of deficit, as exports failed to keep pace with surging energy costs. The Finance Ministry reported Monday that exports in the year that ended March 31 rose 10.8 per cent over the year before to 70.8 trillion yen ($690.5 billion) while imports climbed 17.3 per cent to 84.6 trillion yen ($825 billion).

Japan trade deficit quadruples on-year in March to $14 bn

Japan's trade deficit quadrupled on-year in March to $14 billion as a weak yen pushed up post-Fukushima energy bills and other import costs, government data showed Monday. Japan logged a deficit of 1.45 trillion yen ($14 billion) against the year-before shortfall of 356.9 billion yen, the finance ministry said. Exports rose 1.8 percent to 6.38 trillion yen, thanks to higher shipments of cars and processed fuel products. But imports grew a much faster 18.1 percent to 7.83 trillion yen due to higher imports of crude oil and liquefied natural gas.

Japan trade deficit quadruples on-year to $14bn

Japan's trade deficit quadrupled on-year in March to $14 billion, data showed Monday, with a weak yen compounding surging imports as consumers rushed to buy ahead of a rise in sales tax. Japan imported 1.45 trillion yen ($14 billion) worth of goods more than it exported in the month, the finance ministry said, compared with a shortfall of 356.9 billion yen in March 2013. Exports rose 1.8 percent to 6.38 trillion yen, thanks to higher shipments of cars and processed fuel products.

Japan trade deficit quadruples on-year to $14bn

Japan's trade deficit quadrupled on-year in March to $14 billion, data showed Monday, with a weak yen compounding surging imports as consumers rushed to buy ahead of a rise in sales tax. Japan imported 1.45 trillion yen ($14 billion) worth of goods more than it exported in the month, the finance ministry said, compared with a shortfall of 356.9 billion yen in March 2013. Exports rose 1.8 percent to 6.38 trillion yen, thanks to higher shipments of cars and processed fuel products.
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