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Jan 23, 2012

France, Germany say Greek debt deal taking shape

PARIS, Jan 23 (Reuters) – France and Germany said on
Monday that a deal with private sector investors to reduce
Greece’s debt burden was “taking shape” but Athens needed to
stick to its reform promises to secure a new EU/IMF programme
needed to avoid default by March.

Private creditors said on Sunday they had come to the limits
of the losses they could concede in a Greek debt swap, putting
the ball in the court of the EU and the IMF.

Jan 20, 2012

Time running out for Iran diplomacy: Sarkozy

PARIS (Reuters) – French President Nicolas Sarkozy said on Friday that time was running out to avoid a military intervention in Iran and he appealed to China and Russia to support new sanctions to force Tehran to negotiate over its uranium enrichment program.

France has led international efforts for tougher measures to increase pressure on Iran to halt its nuclear program since talks between Tehran and six world powers — the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany — stalled.

Jan 6, 2012

Sarkozy, Merkel urge unity over euro crisis

PARIS, Jan 6 (Reuters) – Italian Prime Minister Mario
Monti warned the European Union on Friday not to let divisions
over managing its debt crisis blow up into serious splits, and
President Nicolas Sarkozy warned that a euro collapse could
trigger instability.

Sarkozy, who met Monti in Paris ahead of his talks in Berlin
on Monday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, said Rome and
Paris shared a “perfectly identical view” on Europe’s future and
on how the crisis of confidence in the bloc should be resolved.

Jan 5, 2012

French debt sale solid but euro stress remains

PARIS (Reuters) – France drew solid demand at its first debt auction of 2012 with yields rising only slightly despite fears for its AAA rating, but that was not enough to prevent most European debt markets weakening as investors fretted about the euro zone’s periphery.

Debt sales next week by more fragile euro zone economies Italy and Spain may provide a stronger test of investor appetite for the battered region.

Jan 5, 2012

French costs rise but demand solid at debt sale

PARIS, Jan 5 (Reuters) – French borrowing costs rose
slightly when the euro zone’s second-largest economy sold debt
for the first time this year on Thursday but demand was solid
despite concerns the country could lose its AAA credit rating.

With a heavy schedule of debt redemptions in the first
quarter, market fears about euro states’ ability to fund their
debts remains high. France, which has a slowing economy and a
presidential election looming in April, is seen by many to be at
greater risk from ebbing investor confidence than regional
powerhouse Germany.

Jan 5, 2012

Solid demand for French 10-year bonds seen at auction

PARIS (Reuters) – France was expected to draw solid demand for its 10-year bonds at an auction on Thursday, despite the lingering threat of a downgrade to its AAA credit rating, as yields offer an attractive premium to benchmark German bunds.

The country kicks off its 2012 long-term debt issuance program with a regular-sized auction of 7 to 8 billion euros of 10- to 30-year OAT bonds, a day after Germany saw demand pick up at its first auction of the year on Wednesday.

Dec 23, 2011

France, UK issue clashing advice on breast implants

PARIS (Reuters) – France and Britain issued conflicting advice on Friday to tens of thousands of women caught up in a scandal over French-produced breast implants that were made with cheap industrial silicone and exported around the world.

The French government urged 30,000 women in France to seek removal of the implants, made by now-defunct company Poly Implant Prothese (PIP), because of the danger they could rupture and cause inflammation and irritation. There was no evidence of any increased cancer risk, it said.

Dec 23, 2011

France recommends removal of suspect breast implants

PARIS (Reuters) – The French government urged 30,000 women in France on Friday to seek removal of defective breast implants that a now-defunct company exported worldwide but it said there was no evidence that the product raised the risk of cancer.

The government said public healthcare funds would be used to finance the removals, which were recommended because of the risk of ruptures that could cause inflammation and irritation, at a cost which health officials estimated at 60 million euros.

Dec 22, 2011

French breast implant fears spread around world

LONDON/PARIS (Reuters) – Fears over the safety of silicone breast implants made by a now defunct French firm spread to Australia, South America and across Europe on Thursday as French officials prepared to decide if thousands of women should have their implants surgically removed.

The silicone gel implants, made by a company called Poly Implant Prosthese (PIP) which was shut down in 2010, appear to have an unusually high rupture rate and have sparked an investigation in France into possible links to cancer.

Dec 7, 2011

Reuters poll: Economists see France losing AAA in 3 mths

PARIS (Reuters) – France will lose its AAA credit rating early next year regardless of last-ditch efforts by President Nicolas Sarkozy to resolve the euro zone crisis at an EU summit this week, a Reuters poll of economists showed on Wednesday.

The snap survey of 13 economists found that 11 of them think France will be downgraded by one of the major ratings agencies within the next three months.