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Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras again asked his country to say no to austerity in the referendum on Sunday and said that an assessment by the International Monetary Fund justified the government's position.

In a televised address on Friday, Tsipras said Greeks must "say no to ultimatums and division" and to vote in the July 5 referendum with a cool head.

Citing the IMF report released earlier in the day, which suggested that Greece required debt relief, Tsipras said it vindicated the government's call to reject austerity.

He also reiterated that a 'no' in the referendum does not mean Greece's exit from the euro and the European Union.

by RTT Staff Writer

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Spain's service sector continued to expand in June, but the pace of growth eased unexpectedly to the weakest so far this year, survey data from Markit Economics showed Friday.

The Purchasing Managers' Index for the service sector dropped to 56.1 in June from 58.4 in May. It was forecast to remain at 58.4.

The indicator signaled a sharp overall expansion of business activity in the service sector. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

As with activity, the rate of growth in new business remained substantially strong in June, but was only slightly weaker than the previous month.

Service providers lifted the pace at which they took on extra staff for the seventh straight month to the steepest since September 2007.

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Italy's service sector growth increased unexpectedly in June at the fastest rate in twelve months, survey figures from Markit Economics showed Friday.

The headline Markit/ADACI services purchasing managers' index rose to 53.4 in June from 52.5 in May. Economists had expected the index to fall slightly to 52.3. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion in the sector.

Business activity rose at the fastest rate for a year in June and also pointed to the second-fastest rate of growth since November 2010, behind that seen in June 2014. The latest reading signaled an acceleration in growth at the end of the second quarter.

New orders increased for the fourth straight month in June, but the rate of growth was the slowest in this sequence.

At the same time, the volume of work outstanding at service providers decreased in June. Moreover, the reduction was in line with the trend seen in ten of the past eleven months and the cut was more marked than in the prior month.

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Turkey's consumer prices increased at a slower-than-expected pace in June, figures from the statistical office Turkstat showed Friday.

The consumer price index increased 7.20 percent year-over-year in June, which was slower than economists' expectations for a 7.75 percent increase.

In April, prices had risen 8.09 percent. The latest rate of inflation was the smallest since May 2013, when the price growth was 6.51 percent.

Prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages increased 9.28 percent annually in June and utility costs rose by 8.39 percent.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices dropped 0.51 percent in June, in contrast to the 0.56 percent rise in the previous month. Economists had expected prices to fall 0.03 percent.

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Romania's retail sales increased in May, but at a slower pace from the previous month's 10-month high, figures from the National Institute of Statistics showed Friday.

Retail sales, excluding automobile trade, rose a working-day-and-seasonally adjusted 4.2 percent annually in May, following the revised 7.4 percent rise in April.

The sales growth of automotive fuel in specialized stores eased to 8.3 percent in May from 13 percent in the preceding month. Non-food products sales fell 1.7 percent, in contrast to a 2.2 percent increase in April.

On the other hand, food products, beverages and tobacco sales growth quickened to 9.4 percent from 8.6 percent.

However, retail sales declined 0.8 percent month-on-month in May, in contrast to 3.1 percent increase in the previous month. In March, sales had fallen 0.5 percent.

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Hungary's retail sales growth quickened in May, but the pace was less than that expected by economists, preliminary data from the Hungarian Central Statistical Office showed Friday.

Retail sales advanced by a calendar-adjusted 5.2 percent year-on-year in May, faster than the 5.0 percent increase seen in April. Economists had expected an annual growth of 5.5 percent.

The sales volume of food, drinks and tobacco rose 1.1 percent, slower than April's 1.6 percent increase, while sales growth of non-food products quickened to 9.7 percent from 7.1 percent. Automotive fuel retailing rose 5.6 percent, slower than the previous month's 9.3 percent growth.

On an unadjusted basis, retail sales growth quickened to 4.2 percent from 4.1 percent in the prior month.

During the January to May period, the retail sales volume logged an annual growth of 6.1 percent.

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The U.K. service sector logged strong growth in June following a temporary lull in May linked to the recent election.

The headline Markit/Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply Purchasing Managers' Index rose to 58.5 in June from a five-month low of 56.5 in May. It was forecast to rise to 57.5.

Data suggests that the second quarter of 2015 was the strongest on average since the third quarter of 2014.

New business and employment remained strong, leading to further optimism regarding prospects for future growth.

However, new order growth eased slightly, contributing to the first monthly decline in backlogs of work since March 2013. Meanwhile, input costs and output charges continued to increase in June.

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Russia's services sector contracted unexpectedly in June as ongoing growth in new business proved insufficiently strong relative to capacity levels, survey data from Markit Economics showed Friday.

The seasonally adjusted services Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, fell to 49.5 in June from 52.8 in May. The score was lower than the 50.8 level forecast by economists. The reading fell below 50 indicates for the first time in three months.

The composite output index, which combines services and manufacturing to 49.5 in June from 51.6 in the previous month. A marginal decrease in manufacturing output weighed on the composite index.

New business at services firms increased for the third straight month in June on firmer demand and positive response to marketing strategies. However, the rate of growth in new business was down since the previous month.

In contrast, manufacturers record a slight fall in new orders, thereby limiting the degree to which overall private sector new business rose during June. Ongoing growth in new work was insufficient to offer any test on capacity at service providers' units.

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Greece requires at least EUR 36 billion from Eurozone over the coming three years on concessional terms to maintain its finances sustainable, the International Monetary Fund said in a report.

In the preliminary draft of Greece's debt sustainability analysis, the IMF said the funding requirement is projected to reach around EUR 50 billion from October 2015 to end 2018, requiring at least EUR 36 billion from European creditors on highly concessional terms.

Greece needed to come back on track to ensure that debt is sustainable with high profitability and the maturities of existing European loans would need to be extended significantly. Moreover, the new European financing for the coming years would need to be provided on similar concessional terms, the IMF said.

"But if the package of reforms under consideration is weakened further—in particular, through a further lowering of primary surplus targets and even weaker structural reforms—haircuts on debt will become necessary," IMF said in the release.

It is assumed that Greek authorities could take until September for completing necessary assurances on financing. Until then needs could be met from already committed European funds.

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Ireland's service sector expanded at the fastest pace in almost nine years in June, driven by continued gains from improvements in economic conditions, survey figures from Markit Economics and Investec showed Friday.

The Investec services Purchasing Managers' Index rose to 63.3 in June from 61.4 in the previous month. A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the sector. The services activity increased at the strongest pace since September 2006.

New orders increased at a faster pace for the third straight month in June, with the rate of expansion the sharpest in the year-to-date. Furthermore, the recent weakness of euro against sterling paved the way to secure new business in the UK.

On the other hand, new export orders increased at a weaker pace than last month, but was still stronger than the series average.

Companies raised their payroll numbers again in June, with job creation linked to anticipated growth of workloads in coming months. However, the rate of growth was slightly weaker than May's five-month high.

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South Korea's official foreign reserves increased in June from the previous month, figures from Bank of Korea showed Friday.

Official reserves rose to $374.7 billion in June from $371.5 billion in the previous month. Securities grew to $339.2 billion from $335.5 billion in the prior month.

SDR's increased to $3.52 billion in June from $3.15 billion in May. At the same time, gold reserves remained unchanged in June at $4.79 billion.

However, total deposits fell to $25.82 billion from $26.6 billion. Reserve position with IMF also declined slightly to $1.45 billion in June from $1.46 billion in May.

by RTT Staff Writer

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Malaysia's exports decreased at a slower-than-expected pace in May, figures from the Department of Statistics showed Friday.

Exports dropped 6.7 percent year-over-year in May, slower than economists' expectations of a 8.7 percent plunge.

Shipments of electrical and electronics products, which accounted for 34.9 percent of total exports, declined 0.6 percent annually in May.

Due to a decline in both export volume and average unit value, exports of liquefied natural gas slumped by 47.9 percent and exports of refined petroleum products tumbled by 28.3 percent.

Imports also dipped in May, down 7.2 percent from the previous year, slower than economists' expectations of a 8.5 percent drop. The decrease in imports was mainly attributed to intermediate goods and capital goods.

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India's private sector contracted for the first time in more than a year in June, survey data from Markit showed Friday.

The Nikkei composite output index fell to 49.2 in June from 51.2 in May. The reading dropped below the 50 threshold for the first time since April 2014.

Reductions in activity were centered at service providers, as manufacturing production rose in June. The services Purchasing Managers' Index came in at 47.7 in June, down from 49.6 in May to its lowest level since March 2014.

The major factor for the contraction in services activity was new orders, which fell at the fastest pace since December 2013. Nonetheless, service providers raised employment further in June.

On the price front, the survey showed that the pass on of rising services costs was reflected in a further increase in output prices in June. Input prices faced by Indian services firms rose at a softer pace in June.

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The services sector in China continued to expand in June, but at a slower pace, the latest PMI from HSBC Bank showed on Friday, with a PMI score of 51.8.

That's down from 53.5 in May, although it remains above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

The composite index came in at 50.6, down from 51.2 in the previous month and touching a 13-month low.

"Latest PMI data signaled a further loss of growth momentum in China's economy at the end of the second quarter. In the service sector, business activity, new orders and employment all expanded at slower rates, while optimism towards the business outlook also moderated," said Markit economist Annabel Fiddes.

The slowdown in services activity growth reflected softer new business gains in June, with service providers signaling the slowest increase in new orders in 11 months. Slower growth of activity and new orders led service sector companies to raise their staff numbers at a weaker rate in June.

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The services sector in Japan continued to expand in June, and at a faster rate, the latest Nikkei Services PMI showed on Friday, with an eight-month high score of 51.8.

That's up from 51.5 in May, and it moves further above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

The composite index came in at 51.5, easing from 51.6 in the previous month.

"Latest survey data indicated an improvement in business activity in June. Activity growth reached a nine-month high, alongside a marked increase in new orders. Furthermore, business sentiment strengthened from May's 14-month low in June and was in line with the average seen so far in 2015," said Markit economist Amy Brownbill. New business at service sector providers rose for the third consecutive month in June, while the rate of growth reached a seven-month high.

Meanwhile, pressure on capacity was evident at Japanese services firms, as backlogs of work accumulated, in line with further increases in both activity and new orders. Moreover, the rate of accumulation picked up from the prior month and was faster than the average seen in the first half of this year.

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The total value of retail sales in Australia gained a seasonally adjusted 0.3 percent on month in May, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Friday - coming in at A$24.154 billion.

That was shy of forecasts for an increase of 0.5 percent following the downwardly revised 0.1 percent decline in April (originally flat). Sales were up 0.2 percent in March.

Among the individual components, food retailing added 0.2 percent, along with clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (0.8 percent), household goods retailing (0.3 percent) and other retailing (0.2 percent).

Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services were flat, as were department store sales.

By region, sales in New South Wales and Victoria both added 0.3 percent, along with Queensland (0.2 percent), South Australia (0.3 percent), the Australian Capital Territory (0.3 percent) and Tasmania (0.2 percent).

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The services sector in China continued to expand in June, albeit at a slower pace, the latest PMI from HSBC Bank showed on Friday, with a PMI score of 51.8.

That's down from 53.5 in May, although it remains above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

Among the individual components, service sector activity growth eased to a five-month low, while manufacturing output contracts slightly.

It marked the slowest increase in new business at service providers in 11 months, while new work rose only slightly at manufacturers.

by RTT Staff Writer

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The services sector in Japan continued to expand in June, and at a faster rate, the latest Nikkei Services PMI showed on Friday, with a score of 51.8.

That's up from 51.5 in May, and it moves further above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

Among the individual components, new business expanded at the quickest rate since November 2014.

Inflationary pressures persisted at both manufacturers and service providers, the survey showed, while business sentiment strengthened from May's 14-month low.

by RTT Staff Writer

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The total value of retail sales in Australia was up a seasonally adjusted 0.3 percent on month in May, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Friday - coming in at A$24.154 billion.

That was shy of forecasts for an increase of 0.5 percent following the downwardly revised 0.1 percent decline in April (originally flat).

Among the individual components, food retailing added 0.2 percent, along with clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (0.8 percent), household goods retailing (0.3 percent) and other retailing (0.2 percent).

Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services were flat, as were department store sales.

by RTT Staff Writer

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The service sector in Australia swung to expansion in June, the latest survey from the Australian Industry Group showed on Friday, with a Performance of Service Index score of 51.2.

That's up from 49.6 in May, and it moves back above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

Among the individual components, consumer services got a boost from increased housing market growth and low interest rates - while household income and consumer confidence continue to lag.

by RTT Staff Writer

For comments and feedback: editorial@rttnews.com

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