International
Markets News Afternoon: US initial jobless benefit claims fall; Quake of 7.4-magnitude reported off Japan
By Finfacts Team
Apr 7, 2011 - 5:11 PM

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US Initial Jobless Claims:  In the week ending April 2, the figure for seasonally adjusted initial jobless benefit claims was 382,000, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 392,000. The 4-week moving average was 389,500, a dip of 5,750 from the previous week's revised average of 395,250.

The number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending March 26 was 3,723,000, a drop of 9,000 from the preceding week's revised level of 3,732,000. The 4-week moving average was 3,745,750, a decline of 24,000 from the preceding week's revised average of 3,769,750.

Dell:  Dell Computer today announced it is increasing its investments in new technology solutions and services that will help customers innovate and drive business results in the Virtual Era. In its current fiscal year, Dell will invest $1 billion (USD) to deliver leading solutions, services and cloud-based delivery options to help customers capture the benefits from new compute and information delivery advancements.

Over the next 24 months, Dell will build multiple highly efficient data centres around the world to provide its customers access to public and private cloud technologies and its world-class IT outsourcing capabilities. Bringing together Dell’s technology and services prowess with state-of-the-art capabilities from its partners, these new data centres will allow customers to take advantage of Infrastructure-, Platform- and Virtual Desktop-as-a-Service offerings as well as IT outsourcing.

Japan: The Japanese meteorological agency has issued a tsunami warning for a wave of up to one metre after the country's stricken northeastern coast was hit by a strong aftershock. Officials say the quake was a 7.4-magnitude and hit 25 miles under the water and off the coast of Miyagi prefecture. The quake that preceded last month's tsunami was a 9.0-magnitude.

Authorities said that the nuclear power plants in the area, included the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, were already shut down and that no emergency was being issued, according to broadcaster NHK.

The Bank of Japan said today the nation's economy is under strong downward pressure due to the impact of the disaster and has decided on a ¥1trn ($12bn) loan program to support quake-hit areas.

The central bank discussed the effects of the disaster and the nuclear accident on the economy in its two-day policy board meeting.

The BOJ's statement issued after the meeting on Thursday says that Japan's economy is under strong downward pressure, mainly on the production side, due to the effects of the disaster.

It says the quake has sharply dampened production by damaging production facilities in some areas, disrupting the supply chain, and constraining the electric power supply.

The market falls 100 points and recovers after news of Japan being hit by a 7.4 magnitude earthquake, with CNBC's Tyler Mathisen & Scott Wapner. And CNBC's Sharon Epperson discusses the quake's impact on the oil markets. Gordon Charlop, Rosenblatt Securities, and Warren Myers, Warren Meyers, DME Securities, and CNBC's Rick Santelli discuss the rebound:

US Markets

In New York Thursday, the Dow fell77 points or 0.62% to 12,349.

The S&P 500 slid 0.53% and the Nasdaq slipped 0.48%.

Live US Indices

European Markets

The pan-European Dow Jones Stoxx 600 has dipped 0.19% Thursday.

In Dublin the ISEQ has declined 0.53%.

CRH is down 0.42%; Elan is up 2.27%; AIB is off 3.33% and BoI is down 4.19%; IL&P has climbed 12.50%.

European benchmarks

Irish share prices

Euribor Interest Rates

Commodities

Crude oil for May delivery is currently trading on the Chicago York Mercantile Exchange (CME/Nymex) at $109.30 per barrel up 47 cents from Wednesday's close. In London, Brent for May delivery is trading on the International Commodities Exchange at $122.01.

Currencies

The euro is trading at $1.4273 and at £0.8755.

Gold

Gold is trading at $1.456.80 per oz in New York.

The Finfacts Gold Page

Democrats and Republicans in Washington trade barbs in the budget battle. CNBC's John Harwood discusses the excuses behind the lack of an agreement as well as the American public's response:


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