BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Nationalised Franco-Belgian lender Dexia (DEXI.BR: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) posted a second year of heavy losses in 2012 after fire sales, higher funding costs and asset writedowns, and forecast another loss this year.
The company, once the world’s largest municipal lender, is almost an irrelevance as an investment, with shares that are hardly traded valued at just 0.04 euros, compared with a May 2007 peak of 22.56 euros.
BRUSSELS/BERLIN, Feb 14 (Reuters) – The euro zone slipped
deeper than expected into recession in the last three months of
2012 after its largest economies, Germany and France, shrank at
the end of a wretched year for the region.
It marked the currency bloc’s first full year in which no
quarter produced growth, extending back to 1995. For the year as
a whole, gross domestic product (GDP) fell by 0.5 percent
BRUSSELS, Feb 14 (Reuters) – Anheuser-Busch InBev,
the world’s largest brewer, has revised the terms of its $20.1
billion takeover of Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo to
overcome U.S. government objections that it would have
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit to
block the deal on the grounds that it removed an independent
competitor and could have led to higher U.S. beer prices.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The United States and European Union aim to start negotiating a vast Transatlantic free trade pact by June, though the plan confirmed on Wednesday faces many hurdles before it might help revive the world’s top two economies.
A deal would be the most ambitious since the founding of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1995, embracing half of world output and a third of all trade. It reflects impatience with the lack of a new global agreement to cut tariffs and ease commerce.
BRUSSELS, Feb 13 (Reuters) – The United States and the
European Union agreed on Wednesday to push for the launch by the
end of June of talks to create the world’s biggest free trade
alliance, which could be a benchmark for global competitors to
Such a deal would be most ambitious attempted since the
founding of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in 1995,
encompassing half the world’s economic output and a third of
global trade flows.
BRUSSELS, Feb 13 (Reuters) – Heineken, the world’s
third-largest brewer, beat expectations for 2012 profit and said
Africa, Asia and the Americas should drive continued volume and
revenue growth, offsetting weak European markets.
Europe’s largest beer maker also said on Wednesday that
savings that should outweigh rising costs.
BRUSSELS, Feb 12 (Reuters) – EU ministers and the European
Commission urged ArcelorMittal on Tuesday to postpone
planned capacity cuts until they firm up proposals to
reinvigorate Europe’s steel sector.
Industry Commissioner Antonio Tajani said the world’s
largest steelmaker should delay restructuring in Europe until
the Commission produced an action plan by June.
BRUSSELS, Feb 7 (Reuters) – Belgian speciality materials
group Umicore forecast a further decline in operating
profit this year, warning of a squeeze in its recycling business
and no marked improvement in other activities.
Its shares dropped to their lowest level in six months.
The recycling business, including recovery of precious
metals from old computers and mobile phones, delivered 28
percent of Umicore’s sales and 61 percent of operating earnings
in the past year and was the only business not to suffer a
decline in profit in the second half.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – ArcelorMittal (ISPA.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the world’s largest steelmaker, forecast improving demand and earnings this year, after a wretched 2012 in which sliding European consumption and a Chinese slowdown drove it to a deep net loss.
The Luxembourg-based company said global steel consumption – a gauge of the world economy – would grow by 3 percent in 2013 after a 2 percent increase last year, driven by faster growth in Brazil and China, while Europe would not weaken as much.
BRUSSELS, Feb 6 (Reuters) – ArcelorMittal, the
world’s largest steelmaker, forecast improving demand and
earnings this year after a wretched 2012 in which sliding
European consumption and a Chinese slowdown drove it to a deep
The Luxembourg-based company said on Wednesday that global
steel consumption would grow by 3 percent this year after a 2
percent increase last year, with accelerating growth in China
and Brazil while Europe would not be as weak as before.