State-backed Lloyds Banking Group is planning a reduction in the workforce of 625 units, in agreement with the unions as part of a cost cutting program. The cut of the jobs are in the back office and partly in IT, which should be moved to India. "United has made it clear that 'efficiency' can not simply mean axing more jobs while expecting the same work to fall on fewer shoulders," United said. "The bank forgets that relentless these cuts have a human cost."
The US is caught up in the classic tragic cycle and is heading for a fall. The three parts of the cycle are overweening pride (hybris), which begets surfeit (ate), which is followed by retribution (nemesis). The Doom and Gloom Club has been predicting that the economic downfall of the American economy is nigh for some time, but the tone has become shriller and shriller recently.
Switzerland published its March Trade Balance this morning and this one was catastrophic. The figure came out at CHF 2.16bn vs CHF 4.02bn previously. Switzerland did not publish such a low figure since February 2015, so more than a year.
In line with market expectations, the Swedish central bank has kept to -0.5% the reference rate, announcing at the same time an increase in the program of 'quantitative easing purchases' in order to prevent an appreciation of the crown that would discharge the 'long-awaited goal of a resurgence of inflation. The Stockholm interventions in the field of monetary policy are repeated in recent years, to react to a situation that is growing at such a pace as to risk overheating, while inflation remains well below the target set by the central bank at 2%.
The managing director of the state company Pemex Mexican, José Antonio González Anaya, met yesterday in Mexico City her equal role of Eni, Claudio Descalzi. During the meeting, it said in a statement issued last night by the Italian company, Descalzi outlined the company's strategy in the country, focused on the consolidation and growth of its presence in Mexico, where it was the first international majors to acquire a block (Area 1) following an international tender, which took place last September.
The jobless total in the UK increased for the first time in almost a year. The UK unemployment rose by 21,000 to 1.7 million between December and February, and that was the first increase since the May-July period of the last year, the Office for National Statistics reported. The number of people claiming unemployment-related benefits increased by 6,700 in March to 732,100, the first monthly rise since last August. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate remained at anticipated 5.1%, which is still down by 0.5% on a year ago and the lowest since 2005.
Iraq is carrying out the project to issue government bonds worth 2 billion dollars in the next three months, focusing on international aid that will lower the costs of borrowing, said Ali al-Alak, governor of the Iraqi Central Bank, in an interview yesterday in Baghdad reported by Reuters. Iraq - said the governor - hopes that the yield decreases to 5% from 11% initially requested by investors. There is in fact a precedent that had scuppered a similar attempt: October 2015 Baghdad had canceled a dollar bond issue Americans for not paying a yield of 11 percent. This time the operation - which should be handled by some banks including Standard Chartered, Deutsche Bank and Citi - would result in a plan devised in December 2015, cost cutting should be possible thanks to successes against the Islamic State and the 'aid to central Bank and international Monetary Fund. A 5% return which would have even less than that paid by Greece for its bonds (ranging 9-12%).
Quarterly mixed results for Coca-Cola. The US giant of the most popular beverage in the world reported in the first three months of the year net income of $ 1.48 billion ($ 0.34 per share), down from 1.56 billion ($ 0.35 per share), in the corresponding period of 2015. Excluding exceptional items, net income amounted to $ 0.45 per share, above analyst estimates steady at $ 0.44. Slightly below expectations however the revenues were down 4% to 10.28 billion dollars (consensus 10.30 billion). For the entire 2016, Coca-Cola expects revenue growth of 4-5% and 4-6 percent growth in earnings per share on a constant-currency basis.
Google is abusing its dominant position. The EU Commission for Competition, Margrethe Vestager does not mince words and points the finger at the American giant: "A year ago - he says - we announced the opening of an investigation on Google and Android, today we can say that its practices they are contrary to European law in terms of free competition ". In fact for Brussels on Google behavior denies consumers a wide selection of apps and services and prevents innovation of the other competitors, in violation of EU rules.
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