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Japan’s stock market soared by more than 7% on February 15 as the dollar strengthened against the yen.

Last week, the US dollar fell to a 15-month low against the yen and the Nikkei 225 index lost more than 11%.

On February 15, however, the dollar rose to 113.95 yen from 113.25 yen on February 12 in New York.

The bounce for the Tokyo market came despite official figures showing Japan’s economy had contracted by 0.4% in the three months to December.Japan stock market February 2016

The worse than expected quarter-on-quarter figures did not stop the Nikkei 225 closing 7.2% higher at 16,022.5 points – its biggest daily percentage gain since late 2008.

Last week, Japan’s markets traded sharply lower as a stronger yen against the dollar hurt the country’s big exporters.

On February 12, the Nikkei index closed down 4.8% to 14,952.6 points – below the 15,000 points level and its lowest close since October 2014.

However, a retreat of the yen on February 15 sent shares in the country’s big exporters sharply higher.

Toyota finished the trading day in Tokyo up more than 9.5%, Honda gained 8% and Nissan rose 6.7%. Sharp and Sony gained just over 7% and 8% respectively.

Analysts said the yen could continue to weaken this year, which would be good for exporters.

Elsewhere, markets in China were divided despite worse-than-expected trade numbers.

On the mainland, where markets were open after a week off for Lunar New Year celebrations, the Shanghai Composite closed down 0.6% at 2,746.2.

In Hong Kong, however, the Hang Seng jumped 3% to 18,874.5 points after finishing lower on February 11 and 12.

Trade numbers released on February 15 showed China’s exports in yuan terms fell 6.6% in January from a year earlier, while imports dropped 14.4%.

In US dollar terms, exports fell 11.2% from a year earlier and imports fell 18.8%, marking the seventh and 15th month of straight declines respectively.

The numbers mean the country was left with a record trade surplus of $63.3 billion for the month, compared to $60.9 billion in December.

Analysts said the January trade data was a reflection of slower external demand – particularly from trading partners like South Korea.

In Australia, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 finished up 1.6% to 4,843.5 points, while South Korea’s benchmark Kospi index closed up 1.5% to 1,862.2 points.

The euro has reached a nine-year low against the US dollar as investors predicted the European Central Bank (ECB) may act to stimulate the economy.

The European currency fell by 1.2% against the dollar to $1.1864, marking its weakest level since March 2006, before recovering slightly to $1.19370.

The drop follows ECB president Mario Draghi’s comments indicating the bank could soon start quantitative easing (QE).

Greek political turmoil also weighed on the currency.

Although the ECB has already cut interest rates to a record low level, and also bought some bonds issued by private companies, a full-scale program of QE has not yet been launched.

On January 2, Mario Draghi hinted in a newspaper interview that the ECB might soon start a policy of QE by buying government bonds, thus copying its counterparts in the UK and US.

The purpose would be to inject cash into the banking system, stimulate the economy and push prices higher.Euro reaches nine year low vs US dollar

In an interview with German newspaper Handelsblatt, Mario Draghi said: “We are making technical preparations to alter the size, pace and composition of our measures in early 2015.”

Political turmoil in Greece also weighed on the euro, with fears that the general election on January 25, could see the anti-austerity, left-wing Syriza party take control of the country.

The possibility has sparked fears about whether Greece will stick to the terms of its international bailout and stay in the eurozone.

On January 3, German magazine Der Spiegel magazine said Germany believes the eurozone would be able to cope with a Greek “exit” from the euro, if the Syriza party wins the Greek election.

Reacting to the Der Speigel report, a spokesman for German Chancellor Angela Merkel said there was no change in German policy and the government expects Greece to fulfill its obligations under the EU, ECB and IMF bailout.

France’s President Francois Hollande also commented, saying it was now “up to the Greeks” to decide whether to remain a part of the single currency.

“Europe cannot continue to be identified by austerity,” Francois Hollande added, suggesting that the eurozone needs to focus more on growth than reducing its deficit.

Analysts said the euro was likely to remain volatile for the next few weeks.

The Russian ruble has fallen to a new low against the US dollar, as falling oil prices and Western sanctions continue to weigh on the country.

As of December 15, it takes more than 60 rubles to buy a single dollar.

The 60 mark is considered a “psychological barrier” for Russia’s national currency.

Since the beginning of 2014, the ruble has lost more than 45% of its value against the dollar.

Russia’s central bank has tried unsuccessfully to stabilize the currency, buying roubles in the markets and raising its main lending rate to 10.5%.

However, those efforts have been overwhelmed by the fall in the price of crude oil – one of the country’s main exports – and by concerns that international sanctions over Ukraine might be stepped up.

Russian authorities appear unable to bring down inflation either – prices are expected to be 10% higher by the end of the year.Russian ruble December 2014

In November, Russia’s central bank announced it was going ahead with a free float of the ruble by abolishing its unofficial link to the euro and the US dollar.

It also announced it was ending automatic interventions to support the currency, instead propping it up only when it was deemed necessary.

The bank had previously supported the ruble when the exchange rate against the euro and dollar exceeded certain limits.

However, last week, the bank admitted it intervened to support the ruble in foreign currency markets, spending a total of $4.53 billion.

The ruble has been heavily affected by the price of oil, which has been in steady decline in recent months.

On December 15, Brent crude fell to almost $60 per barrel – a five-year-low – before recovering to just above $61.

The dip came after the head of oil cartel OPEC reiterated at the weekend that the group would not reduce production to help shore up oil prices.

Russia’s central bank has warned that the country’s gross domestic product could contract by approximately 4.5% next year, if oil remains at $60 a barrel.

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Michael Fuller from Lexington, North Carolina, allegedly tried to go shopping at Walmart with a million dollar bill.

Michael Fuller, 53, insisted his million-dollar note was real when he was trying to buy $476 worth of items, including a vacuum cleaner, and a microwave oven, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.

Walmart employees called police after Michael Fuller insisted that the bill was legitimate, and the man was arrested.

Michael Fuller, 53, insisted his million-dollar note was real when he was trying to buy $476 worth of items, including a vacuum cleaner, and a microwave oven

Michael Fuller, 53, insisted his million-dollar note was real when he was trying to buy $476 worth of items, including a vacuum cleaner, and a microwave oven

The largest bill in circulation is $100. The US government stopped printing notes of up to $10,000 in 1969 because the public rarely used them.

The largest bill ever printed in US was $100,000 which carried a picture of President Woodrow Wilson.

The bills, which were never used by the public, were printed between December 18, 1934 and January 9, 1935, and were used for transferring money between Federal Reserve banks.

Michael Fuller was charged with attempting to obtain property by false pretense and uttering a forged instrument.

The man is in jail on a $17,500 bond, and it isn’t clear if he has an attorney. He is scheduled to be in court Tuesday.

Kweku Adoboli, the suspected UBS rogue trader said today that he was “sorry beyond words” for the record $2.3 billion losses suffered by Swiss banking giant.

Kweku Adoboli sat in the dock at City of London magistrates’ court as his barrister Patrick Gibbs QC told the court:

“He is sorry beyond words for what has happened here.

“He went to UBS and told them what he had done and he stands now appalled at the scale of the consequences of his disastrous miscalculations.”

Kweku Adoboli will face a second count of fraud in addition to two charges of false accounting over three years at UBS

Kweku Adoboli will face a second count of fraud in addition to two charges of false accounting over three years at UBS


Kweku Adoboli, 31, will face a second count of fraud in addition to two charges of false accounting over three years at UBS.

Magistrates remanded Kweku Adoboli in custody until October 20 at the first of two committal hearings.

Prosecutors allege Adoboli lost the cash while working at UBS’s global synthetic equities division, buying and selling exchange traded funds, which track different types of stocks, bonds or commodities such as metals.

Kweku Adoboli’s lawyer, Louise Hodges, of solicitors Kingsley Napley, has made no application so far for bail for her client.

The alleged fraud offence took place between January 1 and September 14 this year.

Kweku Adoboli, son of a former Ghanaian official to the United Nations, joined the Swiss firm in a junior capacity in 2002.

The fraud charge against the rogue trader reads:

“While occupying a position, namely being a senior trader with Global Synthetic Equities, in which you were expected to safeguard, or not to act against, the financial interests of UBS Bank, you dishonestly abused that position intending thereby to make a gain for yourself, causing losses to UBS or to expose UBS to risk of loss.”

The two accusations of false accounting claim that Kweku Adoboli “falsified a record, namely an exchange traded fund transaction”

The two accusations of false accounting claim that Kweku Adoboli “falsified a record, namely an exchange traded fund transaction”


The two accusations of false accounting – which date back to 2008 – claim that Kweku Adoboli “falsified a record, namely an exchange traded fund transaction”.

After Kweku Adoboli’s first appearance in court, UBS revised upwards the cost of the rogue trading to 2.3 billion US dollars (£1.5 billion) after previously saying the incident had cost it in the range of two billion US dollars (£1.3 billion).

British Financial Services Authority and its Swiss counterpart have launched an investigation into why UBS failed to spot allegedly fraudulent trading.

UBS rogue trader arrested in London for $2 bn losses.


Kweku Adoboli is the suspected rogue trader who was arrested in London at early hours today on suspicion of losing $2 billion of UBS, the major investment Swiss bank group.

Ghanaian Kweku Adoboli, 31, was detained on suspicion of committing fraud while working at Swiss bank UBS, after police raided his home at 3.30am.

After the raid UBS shares fell by 8%, as the bank warned that the unauthorized trading could tip the firm into a third-quarter loss.

Kweku Adoboli, the rogue trader arrested in London for $2 bn UBS losses (Facebook image)

Kweku Adoboli, the rogue trader arrested in London for $2 bn UBS losses (Facebook image)


UBS CEO, Oswald Gruebel sent a memo to UBS staff yesterday that the rogue deals had been discovered within the past 24 hours.

Gruebel told staff:

“We regret to inform you that yesterday we uncovered a case of unauthorised trading by a trader in the Investment Bank. We have reported it to the markets in line with regulatory disclosure obligations.

“The matter is still being investigated, but we currently estimate the loss on the trades to be around 2 billion US dollars.”

Oswald Gruebel vowed to “establish exactly what has happened” and underscored that “no client positions were affected”.

The UBS CEO urged staff to remain focused on their clients as the investigation continues.

“We want to reassure you that we, together with the rest of the management, are working closely with the Investment Bank’s management and risk and controlling to get to the bottom of the matter as quickly as possible, and will spare no effort to establish exactly what has happened. We will keep you updated on the progress of our investigation.”

Trader Kweku Adoboli worked at the UBS’ headquarters in the very heart of London’s finance district.

UBS has around 65,000 employees worldwide, but it said the bank has recently reduced its staff by 3,500 as part of a bid to save $2.3 billion by the end of 2013.

The cuts came as it said pre-tax profits dropped 23% on the previous quarter to $2 billion at the end of June.

As well as the economic downturn, UBS said regulatory changes such as the Basel rules, which require the bank to hold more capital, were behind the need for the cost reductions.

Despite being one of the biggest wealth managers in the world, UBS has a chequered recent history.

In 2008, UBS was rescued by the Swiss state following huge losses on toxic assets held by its investment bank.

The bank then became embroiled in a serious tax evasion dispute with US authorities and was forced to hand over 300 client names and pay a $780 million fine. There was then a second case in which bank agreed to hand over data on 4,450 American clients.

A restructuring then saw UBS launch a multi-million dollars advertising campaign which used the slogan ‘we will not rest’.

UBS Investment Bank’s offices in Stamford, Connecticut boasts the largest trading floor in the world – it is the size of two American football pitches, and sees more than $1 trillion in assets traded every day.