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Italy's Renzi hails 'revolution' with public spending cuts

Italy's Prime Minister Matteo Renzi hailed a "systematic revolution under way in Italy" Tuesday as he unveiled the government's plan to ease pressure on impoverished families through cuts to public spending. Renzi, who came to power in February after ousting his predecessor in a coup, told journalists the cabinet's three-year economic programme would lower income taxes through a 4.5 billion euro reduction in public spending.

Simplify U.S. financial reform rules, Fed's Plosser urges

PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - A top U.S. central banker on Tuesday criticized the complexity of a nearly four-year-old financial-reform law, urging simpler and more transparent laws for Wall Street that would rely more on the free market to discipline banks and other firms.

Canadian housing starts, permits drop as market cools

By Andrea Hopkins TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian housing starts fell more than expected in March and building permits dropped sharply in February, according to data released on Tuesday that suggests the country's robust housing market is cooling. Volatility in the housing data and an especially hard winter may explain some of the unexpected weakness in the data, economists said. But the figures still bolstered expectations that home building was starting to slow after a boom that observers have warned is unsustainable.

IMF sees rich nations propelling global growth, but risks linger

By Anna Yukhananov WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday predicted the global recovery would strengthen this year and next as output in richer nations picked up, but it warned of rising risks in emerging economies. In its latest global economic snapshot, the Washington-based IMF nevertheless said better policies were needed in both advanced and emerging nations to avoid a prolonged period of sluggish growth.

European stocks drop further

Europe's main stock markets retreated on Tuesday after the previous day's slump, as Ukraine-Russia tensions offset robust British manufacturing data. London's benchmark FTSE 100 index dropped 0.96 percent to 6,559.46 points in afternoon trading. In Paris, the CAC 40 index lost 0.60 percent compared with Monday's closing values to stand at 4,409.39 points and Frankfurt's DAX 30 shed 0.99 percent to 9,416.84.

Fed gives banks 2 more years to ensure holdings of risky securities fit Volcker Rule

WASHINGTON - The Federal Reserve is giving U.S. banks two more years to ensure their holdings of certain complex and risky securities don't put them afoul of the new Volcker Rule. The Fed's move announced Monday didn't give banks an outright exemption for the securities from the Volcker Rule's ban on high-risk investments. Wall Street banks had sought an exemption and the leading Wall Street lobbying group expressed disappointment with the Fed's move.

Eurozone recovery edges ahead, unemployment stays high

The eurozone economy is expected to recover steadily in the first quarter of this year with growth of 0.4 percent pulled by industrial production, but then flag slightly, three top forecasting bodies said on Monday. Threats to this outlook came from a slowing of demand from emerging economies, and tension over Ukraine. But this improvement will have scant effect on high eurozone unemployment, largely because consumers' buying power has been crimped by austerity measures in some eurozone countries and by the effects of unemployment.

Big chill: US economy recovers from icy winter just as other major economies cry out for help

WASHINGTON - As a brutal winter yields to spring, the U.S. economy is showing renewed strength just as other major economies appear desperate for help. Europe is clinging to a fragile recovery. Japan just imposed a tax hike that threatens its shaky economic comeback. And China's troubles are rattling the global economy. The resilience of the U.S. economy, after a growth-chilling winter, was evident in Friday's jobs report from the Labor Department. It said employers added 192,000 jobs in March and 37,000 more than in January and February than previously thought.

Big chill: US economy recovers from icy winter just as other major economies cry out for help

WASHINGTON - As a brutal winter yields to spring, the U.S. economy is showing renewed strength just as other major economies appear desperate for help. Europe is clinging to a fragile recovery. Japan just imposed a tax hike that threatens its shaky economic comeback. And China's troubles are rattling the global economy. The resilience of the U.S. economy, after a growth-chilling winter, was evident in Friday's jobs report from the Labor Department. It said employers added 192,000 jobs in March and 37,000 more than in January and February than previously thought.

US jobs data shows steady growth exiting harsh winter

US jobs growth plodded along at a solid but unspectacular pace in March as the economy appeared to be emerging from one of the coldest winters in recent memory, government data showed Friday. The world's largest economy added 192,000 jobs in March -- a shade below analysts' average estimate of 195,000 net new jobs -- and the unemployment rate held steady at 6.7 percent, the Labor Department said. Still, the overall picture was more upbeat about a first quarter plagued by unusually bad winter weather in much of the country.
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