The US economy is continuing to show its resilience. A report on Thursday showed that retail sales in the US rose 0.3 percent in November, rebounding from a 0.3 percent decline in October. Excluding autos, gasoline and building materials, retail sales rose 0.5 percent last month after having been flat the previous month.
Another report from the US on Thursday showed that producer prices fell 0.8 percent in November with energy in particular falling by the most since March 2009.
Recent Japanese economic data have not been so good but on Wednesday, a report showed that machinery orders rose 2.6 percent in October, the first increase in three months.
There has been little respite for the euro area though. On Wednesday, a report showed that industrial production fell 1.4 percent in October after having fallen 2.3 percent in September.