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German bank Helaba ensures state help ahead of Basel III

The owners of German regional bank Helaba agreed this week to adapt their participation in profit, loss and any liquidation proceeds so the entity can comply with the future requirements of banking supervisory law Basel III. Landesbank Hessen-Thueringen (Helaba) is owned by the State of Hesse, the Free State of Thuringia and the Savings Banks and Giro Association Hesse-Thuringia (Sparkassen und Giroverband Hessen-Thueringen SGVHT). Following the accord, instead of a fixed…


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Técnicas Reunidas, from Hungary to… Australia?

Spanish firm Técnicas Reunidas has been selected as prime contractor of the Százhalombatta’s CCGT (combined cycle gas turbine) power plant by MOL and CEZ Group joint venture MOL-CEZ Hungary Ltd. European Power. The agreement has been valued at €455mn. This will expand Técnicas Reunidas’ experience, which has already been tested in the power generation sector having taken part in power plant projects with capacities over 40GW. Madrid’s financial city has welcomed the…


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De Jager: “Definitive summit? The Anglo-Saxon press made that up”

Passing on a clarifying (!?) note from Citi analysts… “The first comments, which anticipate a much discussed and possibly without clear conclusions summit in Europe today, were disappointing. Especially on two, at the moment, important issues: banking and the EFSF. Also, the markets themselves were disappointing. Gold has again gone up sharply ($ 1,714 an ounce) as well as raw materials (crude oil $ 111.35 per barrel). This rise is…


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De Jager: "Definitive summit? The Anglo-Saxon press made that up"

Passing on a clarifying (!?) note from Citi analysts… “The first comments, which anticipate a much discussed and possibly without clear conclusions summit in Europe today, were disappointing. Especially on two, at the moment, important issues: banking and the EFSF. Also, the markets themselves were disappointing. Gold has again gone up sharply ($ 1,714 an ounce) as well as raw materials (crude oil $ 111.35 per barrel). This rise is…


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The US new battle arena: tax policy

NEW YORK | Every Republican candidate is trying to get as much political momentum as possible these days. And the tax code renewal is particularly inspiring the frontrunners. Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 tax proposal (9 percent federal sales tax, a 9 percent income tax and a 9 percent levy on businesses) has been a big point of focus, both because of his claims of the plan’s simplicity, as well as the…


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Zero interest rate and other myths of the Great Depression’s U.S. monetary policy

By Miguel Navascués, in Madrid | H. Clark Johnson, professor at Yale University, identifies in a paper titled Monetary policy and the Great Recession, what he calls the six myths of U.S. monetary policy during the Great Depression. The paper not only explains the cause of the hole we’re in, but also the reasons why zero interest rate does not imply monetary expansion. In the latter case, the reason is simple:…


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Zero interest rate and other myths of the Great Depression's U.S. monetary policy

By Miguel Navascués, in Madrid | H. Clark Johnson, professor at Yale University, identifies in a paper titled Monetary policy and the Great Recession, what he calls the six myths of U.S. monetary policy during the Great Depression. The paper not only explains the cause of the hole we’re in, but also the reasons why zero interest rate does not imply monetary expansion. In the latter case, the reason is simple:…



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A US super-committee for a US super-comedy

WASHINGTON | No more than a 1% of U.S. citizens accumulate 20% of the income and 35.6% of the wealth (in assets, labor income and capital), which constitutes the largest concentration of wealth on the richest hands since the existence of statistics in this country. But at the same time, they contribute a 38% of federal tax income. In addition, there are 43 states that have their own income tax. In…


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Now, who'd take advantage of Libya?

LONDON | Cheering the crude end that military dictator Muammar Gaddafi met on Wednesday, Libyans in the British capital gathered late in the evening outside the Libyan Embassy near Knightsbridge: they are not the only ones closely watching their freed country. The shots that made history in Misrata will soon open the race among European and US companies to land in Libya and begin doing business, too. Or to renew existing deals. Oil…