Correspondent, Brussels
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Jan 30, 2013

Hungary ready to go it alone as IMF refuses credit line

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Hungary is preparing to go it alone by borrowing on global financial markets after the IMF turned down its bid for a flexible loan deal, the country’s prime minister said on Wednesday.

“Hungary asked for a flexible credit line and finally the International Monetary Fund said ‘no’,” Viktor Orban said at a seminar at Brussels think tank Bruegel, adding that his country would borrow on international markets in the coming weeks.

Jan 22, 2013

EU states to get blessing for financial trading tax

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Germany, France and nine other euro zone countries will get the go-ahead on Tuesday to push on with a financial transactions tax, a measure likely to unsettle banks but which will please voters and raise much-needed revenue.

European Union finance ministers will give their approval at a meeting in Brussels, allowing 11 states – Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Austria, Portugal, Belgium, Estonia, Greece, Slovakia and Slovenia – to prepare for a tax on trading.

Jan 21, 2013

EU states to get go-ahead for tax on trading

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Germany, France and nine other euro zone countries will get the go-ahead on Tuesday to start work on a financial transactions tax, a measure likely to unsettle banks and trading houses but which will please voters and could raise much-needed revenue.

European Union finance ministers are expected to give their approval at a meeting in Brussels, allowing 11 states – Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Austria, Portugal, Belgium, Estonia, Greece, Slovakia and Slovenia – to start preparations for imposing a tax on all financial market transactions.

Jan 21, 2013

Eurogroup bids farewell to mercurial Juncker, heralds new era

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – It started as an informal dinner among European finance ministers more than 14 years ago and has steadily gained prominence under its veteran president, Jean-Claude Juncker.

But on Monday the grey-haired Juncker, 58, handed the reins of the Eurogroup to a polished 46-year-old Dutchman, promising a new approach to how economic policy among the 17 euro zone countries is shaped and decided.

Jan 18, 2013

Euro zone splinter group seen near deal on transaction tax

BRUSSELS, Jan 18 (Reuters) – A group of euro zone countries,
led by Germany and France, looks set for a green light next week
to push ahead with a tax on financial transactions, a step
politicians hope will please voters but which critics have
warned could backfire.

The levy, based on an idea proposed of U.S. economist James
Tobin more than 40 years ago, is symbolically important in
showing that politicians, who fumbled their way through Europe’s
five-year financial crisis, are getting to grips with the banks
blamed for causing it.

Jan 18, 2013

Euro zone to tackle thorny question of aid for bank

BRUSSELS, Jan 18 (Reuters) – Euro zone finance ministers
will discuss on Monday which banks could be given direct aid
from the bloc’s bailout fund, embarking on a divisive debate
that includes doubts about whether such a step should be taken.

Direct bank recapitalisation is meant to break the vicious
circle between highly indebted governments that borrow more to
recapitalise their banks which need support because they own
bonds of those states. But the Eurogroup of euro zone ministers
will confront deep divisions on the issue.

Jan 16, 2013

EU launches search for most dangerous financial product

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – What are the world’s most dangerous financial products?

Sven Giegold, a German member of the European Parliament is on a mission to find them and stamp them out.

Dec 18, 2012

Insight: Marathon talks set Europe on path to banking union

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – When 20 European Union leaders gathered in Oslo’s sub-zero temperatures on December 10 to celebrate winning the Nobel Peace Prize, there was an unspoken item on the agenda: banking union.

France and Germany planned to hold talks on the margins of the prize-giving to see if they could find a deal that would put the European Central Bank in charge of all euro zone banks.

Dec 18, 2012

Marathon talks set Europe on path to banking union

BRUSSELS, Dec 18 (Reuters) – When 20 European Union leaders
gathered in Oslo’s sub-zero temperatures on Dec. 10 to celebrate
winning the Nobel Peace Prize, there was an unspoken item on the
agenda: banking union.

France and Germany planned to hold talks on the margins of
the prize-giving to see if they could find a deal that would put
the European Central Bank in charge of all euro zone banks.

Dec 14, 2012

Banking deal boosts EU leaders in fighting crisis

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European governments clinched a landmark deal on bank supervision and approved long-delayed aid to Greece on Thursday, trumpeting the agreements as signs the bloc is getting a grip on its problems after three years of deep crisis.

Leaders meeting in Brussels for their sixth and final summit of 2012 faced warnings about complacency however, as they gear up for a tough new year that will see Italian and German voters go to the polls, and may bring a full bailout of Spain.

    • About John

      "I am a Reuters correspondent in Brussels, writing about the European Union. I moved here last year from Germany, where I had reported about the financial crisis, turning up numerous scoops and even winning a prestigious business reporting award. Beforehand, I worked with The Sunday Times in London."
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