From VOA Learning English, this is In the News.
Stock prices in the United States and Japan rose sharply in 2013. The rising prices were evidence of investors welcoming efforts to push down interest rates. Low interest rates help to reduce the cost of homes, equipment and other goods.
The leading measure of Japanese stock prices was up 57 percent last year. That was the best performance for Japan's Nikkei Index in many years. In the United States, another stock index, the S&P 500, rose almost 30 percent in 2013. Another measure of stocks, the NASDAQ Composite Index, rose 38 percent.
The share prices were up, in part, because of actions by the US and Japanese central banks. The US Federal Reserve cut short-term interest rates to almost zero a few years ago. More recently, the Federal Reserve has been working to push down long-term interest rates. The central bank has been buying billions of dollars' worth of bonds and other government securities.
The bank recently announced it would reduce that program because the economy no longer needs so much help.
Nick Ventura is with Ventura Wealth Management, a financial investment company in New Jersey. He calls some of the actions by central banks a "global gamble" that has worked, at least so far. In 2013, the American economy grew and housing prices rose.
At the same time, the jobless rate fell a little.
Mr. Ventura says the improving economy meant fewer wild movements in stock prices, and fewer worried investors.
"Every time that there was the slightest pullback in stock prices it was rewarded with a fresh round of buying. So there is a growing confidence in the U.S. recovery and I think that's what really perked up the U.S. economy."
Experts say they saw improvements in consumer and investor confidence toward the end of last year. That sense of trust seems to be making investors more willing to take small risks by purchasing shares of stock.
The Wall Street Journal says investors are simply looking for stocks with low prices and a likelihood of strong earnings.
Another newspaper, The Financial Times, reports that investments said to offer safety in troubled economic times saw fewer buyers. These investments include gold and government bonds. Some experts predict stock prices will continue to climb in 2014, but at a slower rate than last year.
Over in Turkey, a deepening political crisis is affecting the country's stock market. By the end of 2013, Turkey's stock market had fallen more than 20 percent, while the value of Turkish money hit new lows.
Concerns are growing about the effects of the power struggle between the government and the judiciary. More than 20 people,including state officials, have been arrested on corruption charges.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan dismisses the investigation as part of a plot to bring down his government.
Last week, protesters gathered in several cities to demand the resignation of the prime minister. Thousands of supporters of Mr. Erdogan held separate demonstrations.
And that's In the News from VOA Learning English. I'm Steve Ember.
There's been a sharp rise in the rate of inflation...
2.pullback n. 撤退，拉回
Does that mean that we will see a much harsher pullback for sure?
3.reward vt. 酬谢，奖赏；报答
The company is only just starting to reap the rewards of long-term investments...
4.likelihood n. 可能，可能性
I don't think there is any likelihood of his agreeing to it.
5.improvement n. 改进，改善，改良
Despite signs of an improvement in the economy, there is no room for complacency.
6.affect vt. 影响
This may affect your entitlement to compensation.
7.dismiss vi. 解散，驳回
An American judge yesterday dismissed murder charges against Dr Jack Kevorkian.
1.The rising prices were evidence of investors welcoming efforts to push down interest rates.
When miners sell forward their production, they help push down prices.
2.The share prices were up, in part, because of actions by the US and Japanese central banks.
The employment outlook for the next year is based in part on contracts signed this year.
3.The bank recently announced it would reduce that program because the economy no longer needs so much help.
We can no longer support the President's continuance in office.
4.So there is a growing confidence in the U.S. recovery and I think that's what really perked up the U.S. economy.
House prices could perk up during the autumn...
2013年，美国和日本股票价格大幅上涨。股票价格上涨证明投资者对降低利率的举措表示欢迎 。较低的利率帮助降低了房产，设备和其他货物的成本 。
去年，日本股票价格主要指数上涨了57%。这是多年来日经股指的最佳表现 。在美国，另外一个股票指数，标准普尔500指数在2013年上涨了接近30% 。另外一个股票指数，纳斯达克综合指数上涨了38% 。
股票价格上涨的部分原因是美国和日本中央银行采取的措施。几年前，美联储将短期利率降低至接近零的水平 。最近，美联储致力于降低长期利率 。美国中央银行购买了价值数十亿美元的债券和其他政府股票证券 。该银行最近宣布会逐渐削减该项目，因为经济不再需要如此多的帮助 。
尼克·凡土拉是新泽西州金融投资公司凡土拉财富管理公司工作人员。他称中央银行一些举措是一场“全球性的博弈”，至少目前来看起到了作用 。2013年，美国经济增长，房价上涨 。同时，失业率轻微下降 。
华尔街日报表示，投资者们只是选择价格较低，回报可能性更高的股票。另外一份报纸，金融时报报道称，经济低迷时期比较安全的投资购买者减少 。这些投资包括黄金和政府债券 。一些专家预测2014年股价将继续攀升，但是上升幅度小于去年 。
以上就是今天的美国之音慢速学英语新闻报道。我是Steve Ember 。