The Chancellor will cut the official economic forecast for 2009 to around -4.75%, from the Budget's forecast of a 3.5% contraction, according to Treasury sources.
The sources told the Telegraph output had fallen faster than expected at the start of the year, but added that they still expected the economy to start growing again before the end of 2009.
The downgrade will be an embarrassment to the Chancellor, who is also likely to have to increase his borrowing projection marginally, since tax revenues have disappointed expectations this year. Full story...
THE US dollar yesterday hit a 14-year low against the Japanese yen with low interest rates in the US making the greenback less attractive to investors.
The dollar fell to 86.28 yen in early Thursday trading, it's lowest level since 1995, before recovering to 86.61.
The US has indicated it is unconcerned about the dollar's slide, and will not intervene to strengthen it. Full story...
JAPAN'S Prime Minister yesterday sounded an official alarm that his country risked falling back into a "double-dip" recession - the clearest warning yet from a major economy that that the recent recovery may have been a false dawn.
With the bedrock of Japan's export industry ravaged by the soaring yen, Yukio Hatoyama said that "measures are required so that the economy will not fall into a double-dip recession", the Times writes.
The Prime Minister's comments are expected to send shockwaves around the world, where other governments have begun to face the possibility that the worst may not be over. Full story...
CHINA AUCTIONED on Friday its first ever 50-year government bond at the low end of market expectations, mainly buoyed by demand from insurers and pension funds in the world's fastest expanding major economy.
The Ministry of Finance sold Rmb20bn ($2.9bn) of the super-term bonds at a yield of 4.3 per cent, partly with the aim of adding to the Chinese government's bond offerings as the longest maturity was previously 30 years. Full story...
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