WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. job growth increased briskly in December, further strengthening the economy's fundamentals and opening the door wider to an interest rate increase from the Federal Reserve this year despite a gloomy world economy.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were lower on Friday, after a two-day rally in equities put the S&P 500 back in positive territory for the new year and ahead of a key report on the labor market.
FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The European Central Bank is considering a dual approach to government bond purchases which would involve both it buying debt and sharing the risk across the euro zone and, in a nod to German qualms, separate purchases by national central banks.
HONG KONG (Reuters) - Asia's richest man, Li Ka-shing, is restructuring his business empire to create two listed companies, one focusing on property and the other on telecoms, retail and energy, in a bid to boost their value and attract more investors.
BEIJING (Reuters) - The People's Bank of China will continue to maintain "prudent" monetary policy in 2015, keeping credit growth stable while having its hands free to fine-tune policy when necessary, the regulator said in an online statement on Friday.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Starbucks Corp on Thursday said Chief Operating Officer Troy Alstead, who as finance chief helped lead the coffee chain's extensive restructuring a few years ago, is taking an extended unpaid leave to spend more time with his family.
MILAN/ROME (Reuters) - The European Central Bank (ECB) has asked Monte dei Paschi di Siena to raise its core capital level to 14.3 percent as it sets new, tougher requirements for riskier lenders to bolster their financial strength.