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Here's What Markets Are Watching Today

Here's What Markets Are Watching Today

1) Oil Rout Could Mean Vicious Cycle For US Economy

Cheap oil means more money in consumers' pockets, but the forces behind the price collapse could spell trouble for the US economy, the Wall Street Journal reports. Cutbacks in the oil patch have so far “swamped whatever benefits you had on the consumer side,” Lewis Alexander, chief US economist at Nomura Securities says. [WSJ]

Here's What Markets Are Watching Today

2) Toxic Chinese Loans Threaten Global Growth

Troubled loans in China could hit $5 trillion, around half of the country's annual output, causing banks to pull back on lending, the New York Times reports. “We believe it has directly or indirectly impacted nearly every asset price in the world," Charlene Chu, an analyst in Hong Kong for Autonomous Research says. "Which is why the market is so jittery about the idea that credit problems in China could unravel.” [NYT]

3) Dollar Keeps On Falling

The dollar's decline continued yesterday, as currency investors chuck their greenbacks amid concerns the Fed won't go through with more interest rate hikes this year, the Wall Street Journal reports. Low rates weigh on the currency, making the dollar less attractive to yield-seeking investors. The dollar has now dropped 2.6% in February against a basket of currencies. [WSJ]