Australia's economy defied expectations with stronger-than-expected expansion in January-March, driven by net exports and household spending, to take annual growth to its highest level in recent years. Economic growth expanded by 1.1 percent in first quarter for an annual year-on-year reading of 3.1 percent, far above economists' forecasts of 0.8 percent and 2.9 percent, the Australian Bureau of Statistics figures showed. The Australian dollar, which had already jumped by half a cent following strong exports data on Tuesday, rose again by another half a cent from 72.38 US cents before the data to 72.90 US cents.
Recent satellite images reveal multiple indicators that North Korea is preparing, or has already begun, to reprocess plutonium for additional nuclear weapons at its main atomic complex, a US think tank said. When operating at full capacity, the main five-megawatt reactor at Yongbyon is understood to be capable of producing six kilos (13 pounds) of plutonium a year -- enough for one or two bombs.
RICHMOND, Texas (AP) — Residents of some rural southeastern Texas counties were bracing for more flooding along a river that reached a record high Tuesday as more rain was expected in the coming days.