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Money Daily Brief: Asian stocks highest in a year

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(Read caption) Passersby look at a large screen displaying India's benchmark for stocks, the Sensex index of the Bombay Stock Exchange. The index hit a 52-week high on Oct. 14.

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•Rising Asian stocks: Asian markets climbed with the benchmark MSCI Asia-Pacific Index reaching a 13-month high and the Indian Sensex climbing 1.3 percent to hit a 52-week high. The plummeting dollar is encouraging investors to pour more money in emerging markets like China and India, which have outpaced the rise in gold, despite the precious metal's new high.

•Oil prices soar: They jumped above $75 a barrel for the first time this year, spiked largely by a weakening US dollar and strong China growth data, which suggests a strong rebound in the world’s No. 2 oil consumer.

Eurozone's output up: Industrial output rose 0.9 percent in the 16-nation region in August. With July's production figure also revised upward, it suggested that a gradual recovery began in the third quarter.

•In my backyard: In a new corruption scandal that exposes India’s endemic corruption, Meera Shankar, India’s ambassador to the US, has alleged that eight American firms paid huge kickbacks worth millions of dollars to Indian bureaucrats in exchange for for lucrative contracts. India's prime minister has assured a full inquiry into the matter. Five government departments have been asked to submit a report on action taken against the corrupt officials.

Anuj Chopra is a Monitor correspondent in Pune, India. For a look at the rising debate over US healthcare costs see Would healthcare premiums go up under Senate Finance bill?


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