The People's Bank of China may have tripled its gold stockpile since April 2009, when it last gave an official number, which Bloomberg Intelligence estimates to be 3,510 metric tons, second to United States 8,133.5 tons of gold.
The ruble gained 1.5 percent against the dollar Thursday, reaching 56.08, the best performance since December 2014. The Russian currency was buoyed by rising oil prices, but experts warn crude could be a false friend for the currency.
Brent and WTI added more than 4 percent after Saudi Arabia and its allies launched a military operation in Yemen against Shiite Houthi rebels. Saudi Arabia is the biggest oil supplier in the region, and southern Yemen is home to many LNG hubs.
MPs have voted in favor of the introduction of standardized cigarette packaging throughout the UK on Wednesday, meaning that from 2016 all packets would display graphic health warnings in place of brand designs.
British arms manufacturer BAE Systems says the growing involvement of Middle Eastern states in the battle against the Islamic State has caused a spike in demand for the support services it provides for aircraft and weaponry sold in the region.
EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom’s visit to London to promote the EU-US Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) has been met with protest, as MPs say more transparency is needed to address public concern.
The government has reversed its decision to accept new fracking restrictions, meaning shale gas firms will be able to drill horizontally under National Parks, provided the wells start outside their borders.