Bank of Japan shocks markets by voting against more stimulus

Despite weak inflation and household spending, central bank decides against fresh measures to stimulate economy, pushing the yen up

The Bank of Japan has surprised investors by deciding against any fresh market stimulus despite shocking data that underlined the huge problems facing the country’s economy.

Related: Abenomics is in poor health after Nikkei slide – and it may be terminal

Related: The bad smell hovering over the global economy

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David Cameron and Brendan Barber: On Europe even we can agree – for British workers it’s better in

We oppose each other on many things, but we both know the poorest in our country would be badly hit by a Brexit

A former trade union leader and a Conservative prime minister have never before put pen to paper together. We do so today in very special circumstances. With the prospects for working people all across Britain at stake on 23 June, it is right that the rules of conventional politics be temporarily set aside. There are, of course, many things on which the two of us disagree. But we are united in our conviction that Britain, and Britain’s workers, will be better off in a reformed Europe than out on our own.

While staying in Europe offers workers in the UK the best prospects of rising prosperity, leaving poses what we call a triple threat: to working people’s jobs, to their wages and to the prices we all pay in the shops. Let us take each in turn.

Related: Brexit could cost £100bn and nearly 1m jobs, CBI warns

Related: George Osborne: Brexit would leave UK ‘permanently poorer’

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Federal Reserve hints at June interest rate hike with new faith in US economy

The policy-setting committee, including chair Janet Yellen, softened language regarding the global economy’s impact and implied openness to raising rates

US interest rates will remain unchanged until at least June, the Federal Reserve’s open market committee (FOMC) announced on Wednesday. Signaling faith in the strengthening US economy, the Fed’s policy-setting committee softened its language regarding the global economy’s impact and implied openness to raising interest rates in the near future.

On Wednesday, the US central bank left interest rates unchanged at 0.25% to 0.5% for a third time this year. After the Fed raised rates from near zero for the first time in almost a decade in December, it was expected to hike rates four times this year. Since then, the forecast has been adjusted to just two hikes in 2016.

Related: US interest rates: Merle Hazard tries to cheer up Fed watchers

Related: Federal reserve was split over decision to delay interest rate hike

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