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Oct 3, 2014

ECB targets bundled-debt market to boost economy

NAPLES Italy (Reuters) – The European Central Bank laid out plans on Thursday to buy rebundled packets of debt within weeks to shore up the flagging euro zone economy and its president said the bank would do more if needed.

It was, nonetheless, one of the last arrows in the ECB’s quiver before the broad buying of assets known as quantitative easing.

Oct 2, 2014

ECB to begin buying secured debt, bundled loans from mid-month

NAPLES Italy (Reuters) – The European Central Bank will buy bundles of loans and other forms of secured debt from mid-month in an attempt to kick start a languishing euro zone economy, despite misgivings in Germany and elsewhere.

After cutting interest rates last month to what it said was “the lower bound”, the ECB left its main refinancing rate at 0.05 percent on Thursday.

Oct 2, 2014

ECB to flesh out asset-purchase plan it hopes will buoy euro zone

NAPLES Italy (Reuters) – The European Central Bank will present details on Thursday of a new asset-buying plan with which it hopes to revive the flagging euro zone economy and see off the specter of deflation.

The ECB plans to buy asset-backed securities (ABS) – packages of reparcelled loans – with a view to spurring the market for such credit and supporting lending to the small- and mid-sized firms that form the backbone of the euro zone economy.

Sep 26, 2014

Italy data disruptions underscore budget, labour market woes

ROME, Sept 26 (Reuters) – Recent disruptions to economic
data releases by Italy’s official statistics bureau ISTAT are
the latest symptom of tough budget constraints of Matteo Renzi’s
government and the urgent need for reform of the labour market.

ISTAT workers occupied the press room of the institute three
times this week, preventing the normal briefings and causing
delays to the publication of data including gross domestic
product, retail sales and business confidence.

Sep 24, 2014

Adecco sticks to margin target, with nervous eye on Europe

ROME, Sept 24 (Reuters) – Employment agency Adecco’s
profitability target for next year requires a pick-up
in European economic growth, the company said after reporting
disappointing trading in key markets.

Companies such as Adecco and Dutch rival Randstad
are viewed as barometers of economic health, given that
businesses tend to hire temporary workers at the start of a
recovery before it gathers sufficient momentum to prompt them to
take on more full-time staff.

Sep 18, 2014

IMF cuts Italy growth outlook, hikes deficit, debt

ROME, Sept 18 (Reuters) – Italy’s economy will shrink in
2014 for a third year running, while the public debt will
continue to rise, the International Monetary Fund said on
Thursday, calling on Matteo Renzi’s government to follow through
on promised reforms.

Gross domestic product will fall this year by 0.1 percent
following declines of 1.9 percent in 2013 and 2.4 percent in
2012, the IMF said, cutting its previous forecast for growth of
0.3 percent, made at the end of July.

Sep 15, 2014

OECD’s Italy forecasts make chilling reading for Renzi

ROME (Reuters) – When Italy’s center-left Prime Minister Matteo Renzi took power in February by ousting his predecessor Enrico Letta in an internal party coup, he was expecting to benefit from a strengthening economic recovery.

After dismal data in recent weeks, that assumption now looks badly wrong and on Monday the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development forecast the economy would shrink for the third consecutive year and stagnate in 2015 as well.

Sep 13, 2014

Spain urges common stance as euro zone at odds over ABS guarantees

MILAN (Reuters) – Spain called on Saturday for the euro zone to find a common stance on whether to provide guarantees for the European Central Bank’s debt-buying program after governments dragged their feet and the ECB said the program risked being less effective.

As part of efforts to spur lending in the euro zone and revive its stagnating economy, the ECB has pledged to buy senior tranches of repackaged debt issues, or asset-backed securities (ABS).

Sep 12, 2014

Draghi promises ‘big’ ABS program but says reforms key

MILAN Italy (Reuters) – European Central Bank President Mario Draghi promised on Friday that the ECB’s planned asset purchase program would be “big” but stressed that only structural reforms by governments could revive the moribund euro zone economy.

The ECB has committed to buy asset-backed securities (ABS)and covered bonds as well as offering more cheap loans to banks targeted at boosting lending to companies.

Sep 9, 2014

Italy PM Renzi says growth will be around zero this year

ROME, Sept 9 (Reuters) – Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi
said on Tuesday that the country’s economic growth would be
about “zero” this year, a sign the euro zone’s third-biggest
economy is struggling to climb out of its third recession in six
years.

Renzi’s forecast is far lower than the government’s
previous prediction for a 0.8 percent increase. Renzi also
signalled that Spending Review Commissioner Carlo Cottarelli
would likely be leaving his post soon.