Economy

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The Atlanta Fed GDPNow model forecast for real GDP growth in Q4 2017 rose to 5.4% on February 1, up from 4.2% on January 29 spurred by manufacturing ISM Report increased forecasts spending and real private fixed-investment growth.

With Australia's economy picking up and commodities soaring to some it is no surprise Australia is attracting more high net worth individuals (HNWI) as migrants than any other country. To others with the Manus island and Australia Day controversies this may surprise.

The Estonian and Swedish governments are both planning to publish a brochures to help prepare residents and households in the event of major crisis or a war. Both countries are critical to free passage for the Baltic Sea and historically have endured threats from Russia.

Australia saw much stronger than expected jobs growth in December 2017. However the unemployment rate edged up to 5.5% with jump in participation, suggesting unexpected spare capacity in the labor market.

Should the U.S. government move to disband the NAFTA the affect on Canadian rail giants Canadian Pacific $CP and Canadian National Railways $CN the affect will be immediate.

Retail Sales in November were at their most brisk in five years fueled by Black Friday sales and the launch of the new Apple iPhone8 and iPhoneX. The surge in full time jobs and consumer confidence proved a boon for Apple.

Canada post a gain of 79,000 in December a headline cheering jobs number, market reacts nicely but the devil is in the details.

The U.S. December employment report came out with non farm payrolls just 148,000 new jobs v's 190,000 expected but with wage growth and unemployment in line, with steady wage growth the mood was sanguine.

Commodities and the Australian dollar have been on a tear leading into the November Trade balance for Australia. The result was a shocker, surplus of AUD 550 mil was expected, a deficit of  AUD  -628 mil reported.

Bank of Canada says scheduled minimum wage increases in Canada would reduce the level of gross domestic product by roughly 0.1 per cent by early 2019 and boost CPI inflation by about 0.1 pp. While the net impact on labour income would be positive, employment would fall by 60,000.

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