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Ruble falls, hit by Ukraine crisis and faltering economy

The Russian ruble and stock market fell on Monday under the pressure of rising tension between pro-Russia forces and the Kiev authorities in eastern Ukraine, and as the Russian economy flirts with recession. "Today emotions broke out on the markets with new force," said Denis Davydov, an economist at Nordea bank, quoted by the Interfax news agency. "The further development of events in eastern Ukraine will have a decisive effect on the market trading as long as the outflow of ruble assets continues," Davydov said.

Eurozone industrial output edges up in February

Eurozone industrial output edged higher in February, official data showed Monday, in line with recent data showing a very modest economic recovery in the single currency bloc. The activity of the industrial sector is closed watched in the eurozone where there is deep concern in some countries about the low competitiveness of industry, particularly on export markets. Industrial output in the 18-nation eurozone rose 0.2 percent compared with the level in January when it was flat, the Eurostat statistics agency said.

Citigroup cuts 200-300 jobs

US bank Citigroup has cut between 200 and 300 additional jobs, most in the global markets business, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday. Some of the employees were fired, while others left voluntarily. Among them was Steve Prince, the younger brother of former chief executive Charles Prince, according to the newspaper. Prince's LinkedIn profile says he is a senior vice president for marketing and advertising. The cuts account for about two percent of the global markets business, it added, citing a person familiar with the matter.

'Great Stretch' to secure Greek debt return

By Paul Taylor PARIS (Reuters) - Call it the Great Stretch. Two years ago, Greece's debt crisis almost brought the euro zone crashing down. Now European partners are preparing to ease Athens' debt burden without writing off their loans but by stretching them out into the distant future, extending maturities from 30 to 50 years and further cutting some interest rates, EU officials say.

Tensions over money flows bode poorly for global economy

By Jason Lange WASHINGTON (Reuters) - For a bunch of people who just agreed the global economy is doing better, top officials from the world's rich and poor nations sound rather worried. For poor nations, the easy monetary policies in advanced economies are leading to big swings in capital flows that could destabilize emerging markets. For rich countries, the hoarding of currency by developing nations is blocking progress toward a more stable global economy.

Europe's top banks cut 80,000 more staff in post-crisis overhaul

By Laura Noonan and Joshua Franklin LONDON (Reuters) - Europe's largest banks cut their staff by another 3.5 percent last year and the prospect of a return to pre-crisis employment levels seems far off, despite the region's fledgling economic recovery. Spurred into action by falling revenue, mounting losses and the need to convince regulators they are no longer "too big to fail", banks across the globe have shrunk radically since the 2008 collapse of U.S. bank Lehman Brothers sparked the financial crisis.

Europe's top banks cut 80,000 more staff in post-crisis overhaul

By Laura Noonan and Joshua Franklin LONDON (Reuters) - Europe's largest banks cut their staff by another 3.5 percent last year and the prospect of a return to pre-crisis employment levels seems far off, despite the region's fledgling economic recovery. Spurred into action by falling revenue, mounting losses and the need to convince regulators they are no longer "too big to fail", banks across the globe have shrunk radically since the 2008 collapse of U.S. bank Lehman Brothers sparked the financial crisis.

Oil, coffee prices rally

Oil prices rose this week on uncertainty over energy supplies passing through Ukraine to the West, while coffee futures rebounded on tight supplies following drought conditions in Brazil. OIL: Prices rose as tensions over Ukraine and upbeat US energy demand offset poorly-received Chinese data and the prospect of a return to normal Libyan crude exports, analysts said. Oil prices retained upside pressure from signs of robust gasoline demand in the United States, the world's biggest economy.

Greek bond yields rise as market comeback euphoria fades

By John Geddie and Marius Zaharia LONDON (Reuters) - Greek bond yields rose on Friday as investors booked profits on the rally that preceded Greece's return to debt markets, with even its sought-after new five-year bond succumbing to selling pressure. Athens, which had been locked out of capital markets for four years and was bailed out to the tune of 240 billion euros ($333 billion) as its economy faltered, received bids seven times the amount in its first sale of a new bond since before its bailout in 2010.

Cheap funding costs a boon for French firms

By Blaise Robinson and Leigh Thomas PARIS (Reuters) - As economic prospects in western Europe improve, French companies whose shares are still reeling from the euro zone debt crisis are enjoying rock-bottom financing costs, a boost to their bottom lines that has yet to be fully reflected in their stock prices.
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