Chief Correspondent, Vienna, Vienna
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Nov 13, 2013

Constantia Flexibles share offer to raise up to 821 mln euros

VIENNA, Nov 13 (Reuters) – Austrian packaging group
Constantia Flexibles (IPO-COFH.VI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) plans to raise up to 821
million euros ($1.10 billion) in an initial public offering in
Frankfurt and Vienna on Nov. 27, valuing the firm at up to 1.43
billion euros.

Constantia, which ranks number two in Europe behind
Australia’s Amcor Ltd, said it would price its new
shares in a range of 19.50 to 25.50 euros each and would offer
up to 32.2 million shares for sale or 57.5 percent of the

Nov 11, 2013

Hypo bank woes heap pressure on Austrian coalition talks

VIENNA, Nov 11 (Reuters) – Nationalised lender Hypo Alpe
Adria’s urgent need for more state cash is heaping
pressure on Austria’s two biggest parties to agree coalition
terms and tackle stretched state finances.

As the Social Democrats (SPO) and the conservative People’s
Party (OVP) try to form a new government, a hole in state
finances exposes policy differences between the SPO – which
campaigned to protect public pensions and introduce a wealth tax
on millionaires – and the OVP, which wants to cut state spending
and has ruled out new taxes.

Nov 8, 2013

Fasting Austrian politician challenges stodgy status quo

VIENNA (Reuters) – A neophyte politician who summons up energy by fasting alone for days in the Vienna Woods hopes to help crack the stodgy crust of postwar Austrian politics after leading his new centrist Neos party into parliament.

Matthias Strolz said his liberal, pro-EU party’s task now was to draw on a groundswell of support for the day – not far off, he believes – when Austria’s two big parties finally lose the duopoly of power they have enjoyed since World War Two.

Oct 23, 2013

Arrest chills Swiss bankers’ travel plans

ZURICH (Reuters) – Seeing one of their select number hauled in handcuffs before a foreign court may prompt Swiss bankers to call their lawyers before they ring travel agents to book a winter break.

Arrested on a weekend trip to Bologna, former UBS man Raoul Weil now sits in an Italian jail fighting extradition to the United States – one of hundreds of Swiss bank executives caught up in accusations of helping Americans dodge their taxes.

Oct 15, 2013

Austria’s heavyweights begin coalition talks

VIENNA (Reuters) – Austria’s weakened political heavyweights began talks on Tuesday towards forming an effective new government to build a united front against the revitalized far right.

Chancellor Werner Faymann’s Social Democrats (SPO) and the conservative People’s Party (OVP), the centrist pro-Europe blocs that have dominated postwar politics and governed together since 2006, only just managed a joint majority in voting on September 29.

Oct 12, 2013
via FaithWorld

Dissident Catholic priest network pushes for grass-roots Church reforms


(Austrian priest Helmut Schueller arrives for a mass at the Nepomuk chapel in Bregenz October 11, 2013.  REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler )

A new international network of reformist Roman Catholic priests is pushing to give lay people a bigger role in a Church that Pope Francis wants to bring closer to grassroots members.

Oct 11, 2013

Dissident Catholic priests push for Church reforms

VIENNA (Reuters) – A new international network of reformist Roman Catholic priests is pushing to give lay people a bigger role in a Church that Pope Francis wants to bring closer to grassroots members.

Speaking as dissidents from six countries met in Austria on Friday for the first time, clergyman Helmut Schueller said the Church should draw on people in local parishes that are under threat of vanishing as the ranks of the priesthood dwindle.

Oct 9, 2013

Social Democrats get task to form Austrian government

VIENNA (Reuters) – Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann’s Social Democrats (SPO) got the tough task of forming a new government on Wednesday and hoped to rebuild their alliance with the conservatives to stave off the eurosceptic far right.

President Heinz Fischer asked Faymann as head of the SPO – weakened after September 29 elections but still the biggest party in parliament – to forge a new coalition, opening the door for formal talks with the People’s Party (OVP), its ally since 2006.

Oct 1, 2013

Conservative holdout puts Austria coalition in question after vote

VIENNA (Reuters) – Austria’s government formally resigned on Tuesday but will stay on in a caretaker role as wary conservatives consider whether to renew a coalition with the center-left after they suffered big losses to the far right at weekend elections.

Chancellor Werner Faymann’s Social Democrats (SPO) are putting all their efforts into forming another coalition with their People’s Party (OVP) junior partners to keep power with the mainstream parties that have dominated post-war politics.

Sep 30, 2013

Austrian political establishment on ropes after rightist surge

VIENNA (Reuters) – Austria’s pro-Europe political establishment may struggle to form a new coalition after slumping to a wafer-thin majority in elections, leaving the far right breathing down its neck over unaddressed threats to the nation’s prosperity.

With the anti-immigrant, anti-EU Freedom Party waiting in the wings, Chancellor Werner Faymann’s Social Democrats want another coalition with the conservative People’s Party. The two have dominated Austrian politics since World War Two.

    • About Michael

      "Mike has worked for Reuters for two decades and reported from more than a dozen countries on business and general news. His beats have included covering the European automotive industry, business news from Switzerland, German defense and security policy, and Hungary's transition to a market democracy after the collapse of communism in eastern Europe"
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