Housing starts in May fell 0.3 percent to a 1.16 million annualized rate from a 1.17 million pace the prior month, a Commerce Department report showed Friday in Washington. The median forecast of 77 economists surveyed by Bloomberg was 1.15 million. Permits, a proxy for future construction, were also little changed from April.
The Federal Reserve made a stark concession this week: The economy is likely to grow at a listless pace for the foreseeable future.
The European Central Bank is facing calls from a group of EU lawmakers to reconsider its opposition to raining-down so-called helicopter money on consumers, as the debate over whether it is pursuing the right policies to boost growth widens.
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