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Home > Blogs > QFINANCE Editor > A week in the world of business and finance (December 9–15, 2011)

A week in the world of business and finance (December 9–15, 2011)

Each week QFINANCE will endeavor to bring you some of the biggest news stories from the past seven days in finance and business, as well as some of the most fascinating websites and links that have crossed our path. We hope you'll enjoy reading it and you'll come back each Thursday to brush up on your finance and business knowledge.

Friday December 9
The end of the week was market by Europe’s great divorce as the Economist named it. In Brussels, Cameron vetoed the new EU treaty to impose new fiscal discipline, leaving Britain isolated from the other 26 EU states. The conservative euro skeptics welcomed the initiative while Labour leader Ed Miliband denounced the move, accusing Cameron of “mishandling negotiations spectacularly.” “This is the first veto in history not to stop something,” he said.
For more info: The Independent

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Monday December 12
The FSA urged the banks to improve their risk measurement systems. They insisted on the necessity of a package of reforms to forbid the takeover of hostile banks to avoid failures such as the Royal Bank of Scotland that cost UK taxpayers £45bn in equity injections. The FSA strongly advised the banks to move into slotting calculations which “requires higher risk weights,” the FSA said.
For more info: The FT

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Tuesday December 13
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) announced Tuesday that the rate of consumer prices index inflation (CPI) dropped from 5% last month to 4.8% in November in the UK. The CPI is still above the central bank’s target of 2% even though the figures showed an important drop in the past month. Terrible unemployment figures were revealed as well with an increase to 2.64m in the last three months. The ONS said unemployment is at its worst level since 2004.
For more info: BBC

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Wednesday December 14
The EU new treaty seemed to have increased optimism and economic expectations in Germany. After a strong decline in the past months, the ZEW index rose noticeably from −55.2 in November to −53.8 this month as the German economic outlook improves. Does it mean the eurozone sovereign debt crisis will be trimmed down by the recent “Merkozy” move in Brussels? On Wednesday several EU leaders were facing their parliaments, warning the many cracks and difficulties of the treaty. To be continued…
For more info: WSJ, FT

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Thursday December 15
Further depressing figures for the UK’s economy today, as Christmas high street discounts didn’t prevent the sales to fall of 0.4% in a month. According to the Office for National Statistics, retail sales fell 0.7% on the month, excluding spending on fuel. While clothes sales have improved, it seems British consumers are cutting back on jewellery and electronics.
For more info: BBC

The 6th Annual Capital Allocation & Stress Testing (January 31st – February 1st, 2012): This conference is a must for capital management and operational risk management professionals working to maximize returns through progressive stress testing and the reliable quantification of operational risk.

Come back next Thursday for another report on the world of business and finance.

Tags: banking , central banks , China , corporate governance , ECB , economic recovery , emerging markets , EU , European Central Bank , European Monetary Union , eurozone , financial crisis , inflation , regulation , sovereign debt , UK , US , US economy
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