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Home > Blogs > QFINANCE Editor > QFINANCE: News Briefing (March 16– 22, 2012)

QFINANCE: News Briefing (March 16– 22, 2012)

Each week brings you some of the biggest news stories from the past five days in finance and business – essential reading to keep you up to date with latest topics.

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Friday March 16

Eurozone exports are still rising for the third month, as the statistic agency Eurostat announced on Friday a trade deficit of €7.6 billion ($9.94 billion) in January. This is of course way lower than the €16.1 billion gap recorded in January 2011 yet higher than the €7 billion shortfall expected by the analysts.  In the sphere of business, an important report was written by Tim Breedon on Friday underlining the funding levels available to SMEs and calling for further alternative funding solutions.
More on WSJ
More on CreditToday

Monday March 19

London is maintaining its leading position as a global financial centre according to a research published by the FT on Monday. While Shanghai, Beijing and Shenzhen are declining considerably, New York and Hong Kong are also amongst the top three. Also on the FT, QF contributor Catherine Howarth made an appearance on Monday, noting on fiduciary duty that there has been “so much myth and muddle (around it) that legislation is needed to bring clarity and to help trustees.”
More on The FT

Tuesday March 20

Newly published statistics on the British economy revealed the UK inflation is slowing less than expected. The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) dropped from 3.6% in January to 3.4% last month according to the ONS. In the world of business, Apple announced plans to pay its first dividends in 17 years predicting to go over $100bn. The American giant guaranteed to return approximately $45bn to its shareholders in the next 3 years.
More on The BBC
More on the FT

Wednesday March 21

In the UK Chancellor Osborne handed a “pro-business” budget for the coming year on Wednesday, breeding strong criticism from the opposition.  Among the main points of the new budget was the limitation of the top 50p rate of tax down to 45p, and the reduction of corporate tax to 22% by 2014. The mostly criticized decision of this announced budget was the freezing of allowances for those aged over 65 which made Osborne earn the nickname of the “granny-robber”.
More on the FT

Thursday March 22

Wall Street opened with very low stocks on Thursday morning as a consequence of negative data on the US labor market as well as soft manufacturing in the eurozone and rising concerns about China. The euro dropped 0.4 percent and the pan-European FTSE Eurofirst 300 FTEU3 fell to 1,079.61. There is a fear that France and Germany are the glue keeping the eurozone together which increases concerns about its global stability.
More on Reuters

Featuring events

Building a financial data management strategy according to all market requirements and needs is a must. The Financial Data Management Forum (Amsterdam, 22-23 of May 2012) was designed to deliver new approaches and proven strategies of financial data management to comply with regulatory requirements and minimize systemic risk. This event will feature four case studies and an interactive workshop - Portfolio Management in Financial Institutions Using Advanced Intelligent Methods.

8th Annual Project Finance Forum. In lieu of the current Euro-crisis and Basel III  implementation project finance in the Middle East has seen a setback due to the volatile liquidity situation in regards with funding as most of the projects were backed by major lenders in the EU. This Forum will look into cases where the industry has worked out alternative solutions to keep funding their projects

Internal auditing is crucial for organizations trying to adapt, as it's designed to identify and address significant challenges. The 6th Annual Internal Audit for Financial Institutions Conference (Radisson Blu Hotel, Amsterdam, 24-25 May 2012) will unveil the major challenges of Internal Audit in the context of the Euro crisis, featuring a special appearance by Jon Shatford, former Metropolitan Police officer (New Scotland Yard), now Head of Investigations at JP Morgan.

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

Tags: banking , budget , central banks , China , corporate governance , economic recovery , European Central Bank , eurozone , Federal Reserve , financial crisis , France , George Osborne , Germany , inflation , international differences , regulation , sovereign debt , stocks and shares , UK , UK Budget , US , US economy
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