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UPDATE 1-Mexico economic growth slows in Q4 as agriculture contracts

(Adds details, background) MEXICO CITY, Feb 22 Mexico's economy cooled in the fourth quarter from the previous three-month period, as the agricultural sector contracted and services slowed, the national statistics agency said on Wednesday. The country's gross domestic product grew at a rate of 0.7 percent, down from a revised 1.1 percent in the third quarter, according to seasonally adjusted data from national statistics agency INEGI. Compared with the fourth quarter of

UPDATE 1-Brazil inflation eases less than expected in mid-February

(Adds table, background on central bank decision) BRASILIA, Feb 22 Brazil's annual inflation rate eased less than expected in mid-February and remained above 5 percent, moderating expectations for a deeper interest rate cut by the central bank later on Wednesday. Consumer prices as measured by the IPCA-15 consumer price index rose 5.02 percent in the 12 months through mid-February, slowing from an increase of 5.94 percent to mid-January, statistics agency IBGE said. The

UPDATE 2-Canada retail sales drop in Dec amid weak holiday spending

OTTAWA, Feb 22 Canadian retail sales declined unexpectedly in December, marking the biggest drop in nine months as consumers bought fewer new cars and spent less during the holiday shopping season, putting a damper on expectations for economic growth at the year's end.

India banking bailout cost "manageable" - IMF

NEW DELHI, Feb 22 The cost of recapitalising India's struggling banks would be affordable even under a negative scenario, the International Monetary Fund said on Wednesday, urging government steps to strengthen the financial system.

Naira firms on black market after central bank action -traders

LAGOS, Feb 22 Nigeria's naira firmed 1.1 percent to 510 on the black market on Wednesday, bureau de change (BDC) traders said, after the central bank started to supply dollars for retail transactions in a bid to narrow the spread with the official exchange rate.

Trump and Brexit not affecting German economy, Ifo economist says

MUNICH, Feb 22 The leadership of U.S. President Donald Trump is not having any impact on the German economy and Britain's looming departure from the European Union is not affecting the mood in corporate boardrooms either, an economist at the Ifo institute said.

German Ifo business morale brightens in February

BERLIN, Feb 22 German business morale brightened unexpectedly in February, matching December's 33-month high, a survey showed on Wednesday, suggesting company executives are more upbeat about the growth prospects of Europe's largest economy.

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Trump's new security advisor differs from him on Russia, other key issues

WASHINGTON U.S. President Donald Trump has shown little patience for dissent, but that trait is likely to be tested by his new national security adviser, Army Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster.