Contrite Woods keeps return to competition on hold

Superstar golfer Tiger Woods set no date for his return to competition on Friday, keeping sponsors and fans in a waiting game as he apologized to his family and fans for cheating on his wife and said he was continuing to get treatment. “I do plan to return to golf one day. I just don’t know when that day will be. I don’t rule out that it will be this year,” Woods said in his first public appearance since revelations of repeated infidelity caused his spectacular fall from grace late last year. Woods, the world’s No. 1 golfer and most marketable figure in sports, bowed out of the game in a bid to repair his marriage. His wife, Elin, was notably absent from his tightly -controlled appearance at the headquarters of the U.S. PGA Tour in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. The event was carried live on U.S. television and was widely watched. [Read the full article]

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* Tame US inflation data reinforces low interest rate view * U.S. dollar gains dissipate after discount rate rise * JPMorgan EMBI+ unchanged, LatAm stocks marginally higher By Daniel Bases NEW YORK, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Latin American currencies gained on the U.S. dollar while stocks in the region edged up after U.S. inflation data came in tamer than expected, giving weight to the U.S. Federal Reserve’s stance on an “extended period” of low interest rates. The U.S. consumer price data helped calm fears that interest rates were on the way up after the Federal Reserve late on Thursday raised the discount interest rate it charges on emergency loans to banks. The U.S. Consumer Price Index rose 0.2 percent in January, and the core CPI, which excludes food and energy costs, dropped for the first time in 27 years. Ultra-low interest rates in the United States, which have been near zero percent since December 2008, put the U.S. dollar at a disadvantage against higher yields in Latin America. [Read the full article]

Mexico’s peso jumped to a more than four-week high on Friday after tame inflation data in the United States backed views that the U.S. Federal Reserve will keep its benchmark interest rates low for some time. The peso MXN= MEX01 gained 0.48 percent to 12.814 per U.S. dollar. The benchmark IPC stock index .MXX closed flat at 32,172.11 points. Mexico’s central bank left its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 4.50 percent on Friday, as expected, saying recent tax hikes were not unduly boosting inflation. [ID:nN19116612] Traders said it had little effect on the peso. Investors were rattled by a surprise move by the U.S. Federal Reserve to raise the interest rate it charges banks for emergency loans on Thursday. The move stoked concerns that an end is in sight for ultra-loose monetary policy in the United States. But lower-than-expected U.S. inflation data for January on Friday calmed fears the Fed could hike its benchmark rate soon. [Read the full article]

* C$ hits February high at 96.26 U.S. cents * Highest against euro since Oct 2007 * Bonds drop as rate, inflation fears linger By Claire Sibonney TORONTO, Feb 19 (Reuters) – The Canadian dollar hit its highest level against the U.S. currency in nearly a month on Friday after U.S. inflation data showed prices rose less than expected, calming markets made jittery by Thursday’s surprise hike in the U.S. discount rate. The U.S. Federal Reserve said late on Thursday it would increase the discount rate to 0.75 percent from 0.50 percent, effective Friday, although it left the benchmark federal funds rate, its main policy tool, unchanged near zero.  The move pushed the U.S. dollar higher on speculation that the Fed could move sooner than expected to raise its benchmark rate. But U.S. [Read the full article]

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