Correspondent, Brussels
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Jun 10, 2014

UK’s ICAP told it might have broken EU antitrust rules over Libor

BRUSSELS/LONDON, June 10 (Reuters) – The European Commission
has told Britain’s ICAP it might have broken antitrust
rules by taking part in cartels that helped rig benchmark
interest rates, the European Union’s antitrust enforcer said on
Tuesday.

The EU probe of ICAP is part of a global investigation into
the manipulation of Libor and Euribor, central cogs in the
financial system used to help price loans and swaps worldwide.
Authorities have already fined 10 banks and brokerages $6.0
billion and charged 16 people.

Jun 5, 2014

ECB hurls cash at sluggish euro zone economy, seeks to force bank lending

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank launched a raft of measures on Thursday to fight low inflation and boost the euro zone economy, cutting rates, imposing negative interest rates on its overnight depositors and offering banks new long-term funds.

The ECB cut all its main rates to record lows in a drive to fight off the risk of Japan-like deflation and bring down the euro’s exchange rate. For the first time, it will charge banks 0.10 percent for parking funds at the central bank overnight.

Jun 5, 2014

ECB cuts rates below zero to buoy euro zone economy

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank launched a raft of measures on Thursday to fight low inflation and boost the euro zone economy, cutting rates, imposing negative interest rates on its overnight depositors and offering banks new long-term funds.

The ECB cut all its main rates to record lows in a drive to fight off the risk of Japan-like deflation and bring down the euro’s exchange rate. For the first time, it will charge banks 0.10 percent for parking funds at the central bank overnight.

May 28, 2014

ECB says investors’ gamble for profit could backfire

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank said on Wednesday that investors’ pursuit of higher profits could be generating new price bubbles, sounding the alarm as financial markets chase quick gains.

In a strongly-worded message that underscored concerns in Frankfurt about the downside to runaway market enthusiasm, the ECB cautioned that the dash for higher returns could suddenly unravel, sending the investor herd charging in the opposite direction.

May 27, 2014

ECB goes on 300 mln euro spending spree for bank watchdog

FRANKFURT, May 27 (Reuters) – The European Central Bank will
spend 300 million euros ($410 million) this year and next in
building an elite group to monitor top banks, with the lion’s
share spent on generous pay for many of its staff.

While the new watchdog is funded by a levy on the banks
rather than by taxpayers, the wage bill could reignite a debate
about salaries for European Union officials after protest
parties triumphed in elections to the European Parliament in
France, Britain and elsewhere.

May 15, 2014

Europe’s anti-EU protest vote leaves business cold

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Industry lobbyists fear the rise of protest parties and anti-EU rebels in European elections threatens to leave them, and the businesses they represent, out in the cold.

Europeans frustrated by economic hardship are likely to vote to give one in four of the European Parliament’s 751 seats to eurosceptics and protest parties of both left and right.

May 11, 2014

Ukraine casts shadow as investors take pulse of fragile economy

BRUSSELS, May 11 (Reuters) – U.S. and euro zone data will
help investors take the pulse of the global economy this week,
but the crisis in Ukraine threatens to spoil any improvement.

Steady prices and good retail sales are expected to show the
U.S. economy in a more flattering light this week, in
encouraging news for the Federal Reserve as it pares back the
stimulus that has buoyed financial markets for the last few
years.

May 8, 2014

Draghi, worried by strong euro, says ECB poised to act as soon as June

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Central Bank is ready to take action next month to boost the euro zone economy if updated inflation forecasts merit it, its president said on Thursday, warning outsiders not to pressure the bank into action.

Stressing that the euro’s strength was “a serious concern”, ECB chief Mario Draghi said the exchange rate would have to be addressed, adding that the bank’s policymakers held a discussion about “all instruments” at their meeting in Brussels.

Apr 29, 2014

Ukraine separatists seize second provincial capital, fire on police

LUHANSK, Ukraine, (Reuters) – Hundreds of pro-Russian separatists stormed government buildings across one of Ukraine’s provincial capitals on Tuesday and opened fire on police holed up in a regional headquarters, a major escalation of the rebellion in defiance of new Western sanctions.

Meanwhile Russian share prices rose in relief at the mildness of the newly announced U.S. and European sanctions over Moscow’s involvement in the crisis, which amounted mainly to adding a small number of names to existing blacklists while putting off threats to take more serious measures.

Apr 29, 2014

EU imposes more sanctions on Russia over Ukraine crisis

BRUSSELS/MOSCOW (Reuters) – The European Union announced asset freezes and travel bans on 15 Russians and Ukrainians over Moscow’s actions in Ukraine, but the measures were seen as less aggressive than sanctions imposed this week by the United States.

The EU list published on Tuesday included senior Russian politicians but did not extend to companies, several of which were singled out by Washington when it extended its sanctions list on Monday.

    • 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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