Stricter rules and tougher sanctions for market manipulation and financial fraud

The plenary session of the European Parliament followed yesterday a motion of the Economic and monetary affairs Committee and adopted in ‘the first reading’ the text of a draft Regulation providing for tougher sanctions for financial markets manipulation. This is an ordinary legislative procedure repealing Directive 2003/6/EC. According to a Parliament Press release issued afterwards […]

Commission’s feeble response to financial benchmarks fraud

On Wednesday 18 September the European Commission is expected to propose a draft legislation on financial benchmarks to protect their setting from fraud and collusion. The stakes are so big that surpass the wildest imagination. For example Libor, the London market interest rate benchmark, is used as a base for interest rates settlements all over […]

Eurozone banks are unable to support real economy’s dawning growth

Industrial production in the European Union is definitively in a virtuous path as statistical data confirm business managers’ assessment, that their order books are as full as they have never been in the past. The same is true for industrial production. According to a press release published yesterday by Eurostat – the EU statistical service […]

Who and why want the EU-US trade agreement here and now

In the brief period of one week the European Union and the United States concluded last Friday in Washington the first round of talks for a major Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) that is their bilateral free trade agreement. The time schedule of this grandiose endeavour is unbelievably short, given the magnitude of the […]

Commission: Do it like the Americans in the food sector

Only some weeks after the European Union consumers learned that they were eating low quality and contaminated with phenylbutazone horse meat, having paid for it as if it was prime quality beef, the Commission chooses to release its proposal for a new Directive, providing for less controls and higher fines and charges. The new legislation […]

Commission and ECB prepare new financial mega-tool in support of SMEs

Yesterday the two most important institutions of the European Union, the European Commission and the European Central Bank, separately unveiled their intentions to seriously engage in an effort to create a new policy tool in support of the Union’s Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and defragment Eurozone’s financial markets .The Commission issued an announcement entitled, […]

EU car manufacturers worry about an FTA with Japan

The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA), had expressed reserves over the EU Council and Commission initiative to start negotiations with Japan in order the two sides to conclude a far reaching Free Trade Agreement (FTA). ACEA was founded in 1991 and represents authentically the interests of the fifteen major European car, truck and bus manufacturers […]

Managers’ pay under fire

The European Parliament approved on Thursday 21 March, new rules capping fund manager bonuses. Undertakings for collective investments in transferable securities (UCITS), which gather assets from ordinary retail investors and pool them to buy bonds, shares or other financial products, must from now on operate under stricter rules, to protect investors in them properly, said […]

High-technology manufacturing saves the EU industry

According to a study by Eurostat, the EU statistical service, high and medium technology industries saved the manufacturing sector from a much larger fall during the difficult crisis years from 2008 until 2010. Still, the industrial sector has not yet fully recovered and in January 2013 compared to December 2012, seasonally  adjusted overall industrial production fell […]

Switzerland to introduce strict restrictions on executive pay

Michel Barnier, European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services, speaking recently during the 11th Annual Conference of the European Financial Services, revealed his frustrating experience from this years’ Davos gathering. On that occasion Barnier had the opportunity to meet the leaders of the world financial industry. Talking with them, he said he understood they are […]

Commission considers anti-dumping duty on Chinese solar glass imports

The European Commission launched today (Thursday 28 February), an anti-dumping investigation into imports of solar glass from China. According to the relevant official announcement, “The initiation is based on a complaint lodged by the association European Union ProSun Glass, which claims solar glass from China is being dumped in the EU at prices below market […]

EU Parliament raises burning issues over the FTA with the US

Yesterday, the European Parliament’s International Trade Committee discussed for the first time, the much advertised joint announcement by the EU and the US, to start negotiations for the conclusion of a bilateral Free Trade Agreement. As the European Sting predicted the FTA negotiators would be confronted with two very old and very thorny issues. According […]

German banks suffer of nausea amidst rough seas

Earlier this week, Dr Andreas Dombret, Member of the Executive Board of the Deutsche Bundesbank, responsible for financial stability and risk controlling, delivered an open lecture in Hamburg, entitled “In the year 2013 – Challenges from a financial stability perspective” . Apart from the burning questions he posed for a number of Eurozone countries’ sovereign debt, […]

Trying to cure bank cancer with analgesics

Last week the European Central Bank issued a press release welcoming the EU Commission’s initiative to regulate the banking industry’s setting of benchmark interest rates, like the Euribor. Interbank interest rate benchmarks are systemic and vital to the entire financial system. Any failures may cause losses for investors, distort the real economy and undermine market […]

Why the financial scandals multiply?

Deutsche Bank discharged yesterday a number of medium ranking dealers, related to the Libor fixing ring, while along with other major European lenders Deutsche appears ready to pay fines of hundreds of millions. Yesterday the Royal Bank of Scotland, another “systemic” financial group, agreed to pay $600 million in fines to US and British authorities […]

European markets itchy with short-term disturbances

European markets had a very bad day yesterday, Monday 4 February. During the first hour of business bourses all over Europe, the euro included, had a discouraging start. The largest losses were monitored in the Paris stock exchange, with the CAC index losing around 3%, a large percentage change  for a prime market. In view […]

Eurozone’s credibility rock solid

The European Stability Mechanism (ESM) issued yesterday its first short-term debt paper (bills), which met an unprecedented success in this capital market auction. The bid/cover ratio was 3.2. This means that for every euro of this debt issue, investors offered 3.2 euros. The bills mature on 4 April 2013. In detail this ESM’s bill issue […]

A very good morning in European markets

Despite the fact that the American Congress endorsed the agreement needed for the US to avoid the “fiscal cliff”, the dollar didn’t seem to recover and continued on its mild downward tendency with the euro, a path that started three weeks ago, with the finalisation of Greek package. In the US the agreement negotiated between […]

The Chinese solar panels suddenly became too cheap for Europe

On 6 September 2012 the European Commission introduced an anti-dumping investigation on imports of solar panels and components originating from China. Understandably the present market conditions, including selling prices of solar panels in the European Union, have been there for many years. More than ten. That is, from the moment that a number of EU […]

Markets are more sensitive to Greece’s woes than Merkel

    Greece’s three official creditors, the International Monetary Fund,  the European Central Bank and the European Union are actually two and in last analysis only one, the ECB. In reality all the other sixteen Eurozone governments plus the EU institutions and the IMF, haven’t given away not even one cent to Greece. They have only issued guarantees […]