Europe Business

Kenya Airways seeks financial help from the government

31/03 Kenya Airways has sought an undisclosed amount of cash from the government to help it cover critical costs such as payment of staff salaries, its chairman, Michael Joseph, said on Tuesday.  Full story

European stock index futures slide as coronavirus damage grows

08h08 European stock index futures fell more than 3% on Wednesday as dismal economic data from Asia underlined the damage to the economy from the coronavirus pandemic and fanned fears of a deep global recession.. . .  Full story

Russian manufacturing activity, confidence shrink in March -PMI

08h00 Russian manufacturing activity shrank in March for the 11th straight month and at its sharpest pace since November as the coronavirus outbreak and falling client demand affected production, a survey of businesses showed on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Italy's EconMin sees 6% fall in 2020 GDP as "realistic" estimate - paper

07h53 Italy's Economy Minister Roberto Gualtieri said on Wednesday that the business lobby's forecast of a 6% fall in gross domestic product due to the coronavirus emergency this year is realistic.. . .  Full story

(OFFICIAL)-Oil worker in BP's Alaska facility tests positive for coronavirus

06h27 A worker at BP Plc's operation in Alaska's North Slope has tested positive for the novel coronavirus that has killed more than 42,000 people worldwide, the company confirmed on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Gold rises on flight to safety driven by pandemic fears

06h19 Gold rose on Wednesday as fears over a worsening coronavirus pandemic triggered a flight to safety, with expectations of further monetary easing by central banks adding support. Spot gold. . .  Full story

Germany reports 5,453 additional coronavirus cases, 149 more deaths

06h17 The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany has risen to 67,366 and 732 people have died of the disease, statistics from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

Oil prices fall as U.S. inventory build-up heightens oversupply concerns

05h51 Global crude oil prices slid further on Wednesday, following their biggest-ever quarterly and monthly losses, as a bigger-than-expected rise in U.S. inventories and a widening rift within OPEC heightened oversupply fears.. . .  Full story

LME copper falls on grim demand outlook as coronavirus paralyses markets

04h39 London copper prices fell on Wednesday, as the fast-spreading coronavirus pandemic threatens to tip the world into a deep recession, hurting sentiment and demand for the metal. The United States warned. . .  Full story

UK banks scrap dividends on coronavirus fears, pressure on bonuses

04h36 Britain's top banks said on Tuesday they would suspend dividend payments after pressure from the regulator, saving their capital as a buffer against expected losses from the economic fallout from the coronavirus.. . .  Full story

Asahi wins conditional Australia nod for $11 bln AB InBev unit buy

03h24 Japan's Asahi Group Holdings Ltd won conditional approval from Australia's competition regulator for its $11 billion purchase of Anheuser-Busch InBev's domestic operations after agreeing to sell five beer and cider brands.. . .  Full story

Coronavirus paralyses S.Korea's March factory activity - PMI

02h30 South Korea's factory activity fell at its fastest pace in 11 years in March, a private sector survey showed on Wednesday, as the coronavirus pandemic paralysed global demand and supply chains.. . .  Full story

Irish manufacturing posts sharpest ever month-on-month drop - PMI

02h05 Irish factory activity posted its sharpest ever monthly drop in March as the coronavirus pandemic disrupted supply chains and caused a collapse in demand, a survey showed on Wednesday.. . .  Full story

COLUMN-Lead's viral resistance carries a lesson for other metals: Andy Home

02h00 The demand shock rippling around the world as the new coronavirus spreads has upended the industrial metals complex.. . .  Full story

Paris Club creditors agree to cancel $1.4 billion of Somali debt

01h24 The Paris Club of creditor nations agreed on Tuesday to restructure Somalia's debt, including immediately canceling $1.4 billion owed by the impoverished Horn of Africa country.. . .  Full story

Paris Club to cancel $1.4 bln owed by Somalia in debt restructuring

00h26 The Paris Club of creditor nations agreed on Tuesday to restructure Somalia's debt, including immediately cancelling $1.4 billion owed by the impoverished Horn of Africa country.. . .  Full story

Germany faces big H1 growth hit, H2 recovery possible - minister

00h00 The German economy faces a major setback in the March-May period but there is still a chance it could make up some of that lost ground in the second half of the year, Economy. . .  Full story

Garment exporter Bangladesh faces $6 bln hit as world retailers cancel orders

31/03 Bangladesh, the second-largest apparel producer after China, is set to lose roughly $6 billion in export revenue this financial year amid cancellations from some of the world's largest brands and retailers, two major industry bodies. . .  Full story

Oil ends March with biggest monthly and quarterly losses ever

31/03 Crude oil benchmarks ended a volatile quarter with their biggest losses in history, as both U.S. and Brent futures were hammered throughout March on the global economic freeze due to the coronavirus pandemic and. . .  Full story

Union of Russia, Kazakhstan bans sunseeds, rye exports until June 30 -RIA

31/03 The Eurasian commission, which unites the customs zones of Russia and Kazakhstan, has decided to restrict exports of sunflower seeds, buckwheat, rice and rye until June 30 due to the coronavirus outbreak, the RIA. . .  Full story

Glencore delays dividend payment decision as coronavirus risk mounts

31/03 Glencore said on Tuesday it had deferred a decision on its proposed $2.6 billion dividend pay out for this year and said there could be material disruption to production due to the coronavirus epidemic.. . .  Full story

UK coronavirus deaths rise by 27%, minister laments "shocking" toll

31/03 The number of deaths from coronavirus in the United Kingdom rose by 27% in the space of a day, according to new figures on Tuesday that a senior cabinet minister described as shocking and. . .  Full story

UniCredit says top managers to forego entire 2020 bonus pay

31/03 Italy's biggest bank by assets, UniCredit SpA, said on Tuesday its top managers had decided to waive their entire 2020 bonus pay and that the bank would donate an equivalent amount to the UniCredit. . .  Full story

Italy frets over lockdown, eyes eventual staggered re-opening

31/03 Italian health officials warned on Tuesday it was too soon to consider lifting lockdown restrictions, saying a deceleration in new cases of coronavirus should not raise hopes that the crisis was near an end.. . .  Full story

EU presses on with tighter 2030 climate target despite pandemic

31/03 The EU executive kick-started its plan to set a tougher 2030 emissions target on Tuesday, a move that could help maintain the bloc's focus on climate change despite pressure to soften its green ambitions. . .  Full story

Fiat Chrysler does not see delay in PSA merger, FIOM union says

31/03 Fiat Chrysler did not mention any possible delay in the merger process with France's PSA during a call with unions on Tuesday, metal workers' union FIOM said.. . .  Full story

Teenage boy dies in London after testing positive for coronavirus

31/03 A 13-year-old boy in London who tested positive for coronavirus has died, a hospital said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

SocGen, Natixis skip 2019 dividends, may consider payments in H2

31/03 French banks, Societe Generale and Natixis joined a cohort of European peers that announced plans to skip 2019 dividends following the European Central Bank's guidance to direct profits towards supporting the economy during the coronavirus. . .  Full story

Court finds Helsinki had right to scrap Siemens contract in metro dispute

31/03 The city of Helsinki had the right to scrap its contract with Siemens over the failed automation of the Finnish capital's metro, but both sides broke agreements, a Helsinki district court ruled on Tuesday. . .  Full story

Portugal's flag carrier TAP to temporarily lay off 90% of staff in coronavirus crisis

31/03 Portugal's flag carrier TAP will temporarily lay off around 90% of its employees because of the coronavirus crisis that led to a collapse in demand for travel, according to an email sent by the. . .  Full story

First ventilators from new UK production run due this weekend

31/03 The first medical ventilators which Britain has recently ordered from businesses will be ready this weekend and available to the National Health Service next week, as the country seeks to boost capacity in the. . .  Full story

Austria's AMS wraps up $1.8 bln share sale to fund Osram buy

31/03 Austrian sensor maker AMS completed a 1.75 billion Swiss franc ($1.8 billion) rights issue on Tuesday which it needs to help finance its 4.6 billion euro ($5.1 billion) takeover of German lighting group Osram.. . .  Full story

Czech government approves more aid to ease economic burden of coronavirus

31/03 The Czech government approved more aid for companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak on Tuesday, an effort to prevent massive layoffs because large parts of the economy have ground to a halt.. . .  Full story

Bulgaria expects coronavirus to shrink economy, plans new debt

31/03 Bulgaria will have to raise 4.2 billion levs ($2.36 billion) in extra debt this year to fund a fiscal gap expected to emerge from falling revenues and the help it has pledged for businesses. . .  Full story

Amid criticism, Macron vows to raise medical gear output to tackle coronavirus

31/03 President Emmanuel Macron pledged on Tuesday to make France self-sufficient in protective masks by year-end and learn lessons from the coronavirus emergency, firing back at growing criticism of his government over painful equipment shortages.. . .  Full story

European Commission approves Orlen plans to take over Energa

31/03 The European Union's executive body has agreed to Polish oil refiner PKN Orlen's plans to take over utility Energa, Orlen said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Papua New Guinea confirms outbreak of African swine fever - OIE

31/03 Papua New Guinea has confirmed its first cases of African swine fever among village pigs, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said.. . .  Full story

Greece to sell majority stakes in four ports -document

31/03 Greece plans to sell majority stakes in four ports as part of a privatisation plan agreed with its lenders after the country exited the bailouts in 2018, a document of its privatisation agency (HRADF). . .  Full story

Worker at Russia's Nornickel vessel tested positive for coronavirus

31/03 Russian nickel and palladium producer Norilsk Nickel said on Tuesday that a mechanic at one of its vessels tested positive for the coronavirus.. . .  Full story

Coronavirus clampdown prompts British professional services to cut costs

31/03 Britain's coronavirus lockdown began taking its toll on London's financial heartland on Tuesday as accounting and consulting group Grant Thornton and law firm Allen & Overy sought to cut costs, including pay, and bolster capital.. . .  Full story

UK coronavirus death toll shocking, not known when peak will be - Gove

31/03 The number of people in Britain who have died as a result of the coronavirus outbreak is shocking and it is not possible to predict when the peak of the epidemic will come, Cabinet. . .  Full story

FTSE 100 ends worst quarter since 1987 with a slight bounce

31/03 Britain's top share index ended its worst quarter since 1987 on a positive note on Tuesday, as a recovery in oil prices and a surprise expansion in Chinese factory activity stoked modest hopes for. . .  Full story

European stocks edge up for the day, but mark worst quarter in 18 years

31/03 European stock markets ended higher after sporadic moves on Tuesday, clocking their worst quarter in nearly 18 years following a brutal sell-off on the heels of the coronavirus outbreak.. . .  Full story

Poland's parliament approves coronavirus economic rescue package

31/03 Poland's parliament on Tuesday approved a coronavirus rescue package to support the economy but rejected many changes proposed by the opposition such as mandatory weekly coronavirus tests for medical workers.. . .  Full story

Social distancing slowing UK coronavirus spread, but can't relax now - Gove

31/03 There are signs that social distancing measures are starting to slow the spread of coronavirus in Britain but that does not mean that the new rules should be relaxed, Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove. . .  Full story

Copper suffers worst quarter since 2011 as coronavirus crushes demand

31/03 Copper prices rose on Tuesday after data showed an unexpected rebound in factory activity in China, but were set for their worst quarter since 2011 as the coronavirus outbreak shut down swathes of the. . .  Full story

Plant shutdowns hit 1.1 mln auto workers in Europe -ACEA

31/03 The coronavirus crisis and plant shutdowns have affected the jobs of at least 1,1 million Europeans working in automobile manufacturing, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Britain's Tesco recruits 35,000 workers to get through coronavirus crisis

31/03 Britain's biggest retailer Tesco said on Tuesday it had recruited 35,000 additional workers in the last 10 days to help get it through the coronavirus emergency, which has triggered a dramatic increase in demand for. . .  Full story

Swiss bank watchdog toughens stance on dividends

31/03 Switzerland's bank watchdog on Tuesday toughened its line against banks paying dividends, saying that capital relief to promote lending during the coronavirus crisis would be cut for any new dividend payments approved after March 25.. . .  Full story

Eight countries ask EU to halt trucking reforms amid pandemic

31/03 Eight countries have asked the European Union to support road transport firms hit by the coronavirus outbreak and halt work on reforms to truck drivers' working conditions, which they said would leave vulnerable companies worse. . .  Full story

Grounded cabin crew get hospital training as Sweden battles coronavirus

31/03 Furloughed crew from crisis-hit Scandinavian airline SAS are taking a three-day course in basic hospital duties to help plug gaps in a Swedish healthcare system strained by thousands of coronavirus cases.. . .  Full story

Swiss coronavirus deaths rise, gov't says infection wave could last into summer

31/03 The peak of Switzerland's coronavirus epidemic could stretch into later this spring or summer, the head of the Swiss government's communicable diseases division said on Tuesday, as the country's death toll continued to rise.. . .  Full story

Pro-government businessman buys into top Hungarian news portal's funding stream

31/03 Pro-government businessman Miklos Vaszily has acquired significant control over the funding of Hungary's largest independent news outlet,, raising fears of interference with the web site to favour Prime Minister Viktor Orban.. . .  Full story

Greek National Bank's profit hit by bad loan provisions, weak trading income

31/03 Greece's National Bank (NBG) reported sharply lower net profit in the fourth quarter compared to July-to-September on the back of weaker trading and net interest income and higher provisions for impaired loans.. . .  Full story

Italy's business lobby sees GDP down 6% in 2020 with coronavirus, up 3.5% in 2021

31/03 Italy's business lobby Confindustria said on Tuesday the coronavirus outbreak will translate into a serious recession in 2020, biting as much as 6% off gross domestic product (GDP).. . .  Full story

Traders scramble to unload cheap crude cargoes as glut grows

31/03 Oil traders across the globe are offering cargoes far in advance as rapidly vanishing demand drives key physical crude prices to multi-decade lows, with some U.S. oil valued at roughly $10 a barrel.. . .  Full story

Italian bonds 'encouragingly' steady as debt auction flies

31/03 Italian government bond yields held steady as the country successfully sold 8.5 billion euros of debt in an auction amid hefty ECB stimulus and hopes the country's efforts to contain the spread of the. . .  Full story

EU states step in where trade credit insurers fear to tread

31/03 European Union states are giving guarantees to credit insurers in a bid to keep coronavirus-hit companies afloat, as some firms cut cover for trade involving bloc members such as Italy and Spain, sources said.. . .  Full story

Portugal accelerates debt issuance due to coronavirus, mandates 7-yr bond

31/03 Portugal has mandated a pool of banks for a syndicated launch of seven-year bonds and said on Tuesday it would accelerate debt issuance this year due to expected extra funding needs for the coronavirus. . .  Full story

Georgian economy grows at annual 3.7% rate in Jan-Feb

31/03 Georgia's economy expanded 3.7% year-on-year in January-February, down from 4.1% in the same period of 2019, preliminary data showed on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Dutch finance minister: Failed to show compassion in Europe remarks

31/03 The Netherlands' Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra on Tuesday backtracked from recent remarks made about Dutch readiness to participate in European programmes to help countries stricken by coronavirus, saying they apparently showed "too little compassion.". . .  Full story

Spain blocks utilities from cutting off non-paying customers

31/03 Spain will bar utility companies from cutting off water and electricty to customers over unpaid bills as part of measures aimed at helping vulnerable groups hit by the coronavirus outbreak, Deputy Prime Minister Pablo Iglesias. . .  Full story

Swiss bank Vontobel plans to open Milan office, eyes business after epidemic

31/03 Vontobel plans to open a new advisory office in Milan in 2020, the Swiss private bank said on Tuesday, as it aims to add clients in a region hard hit by the coronavirus who. . .  Full story

Global airlines expect crisis to persist to late 2020

31/03 Global airlines will not start to recover from their worst-ever crisis until the last quarter of this year and any rebound will be short-lived if there is a new winter wave of coronavirus, the. . .  Full story

Neptune Energy to cancel dividend, cut spending plans by around $300 mln

31/03 Private equity-backed gas producer Neptune Energy plans to cut its budget for development projects by around $300 million this year and will not pay a cash dividend to its owners Carlyle and CVC Capital Partners,. . .  Full story

Coronavirus resurgence could scupper hopes of airline recovery - IATA economist

31/03 A resurgence of the coronavirus may scupper forecasts of a recovery in air passenger demand by the end of the year and strong growth in 2021, the chief economist of a global airline trade. . .  Full story

Germany to extend coronavirus help for mid-sized firms - sources

31/03 The German government is planning to expand its support for mid-sized companies with more than 10 employees hit by the coronavirus, government sources said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Europe sends medical goods to Iran in trade test

31/03 France, Germany and Britain have exported medical goods to Iran in the first transaction conducted under a trade mechanism set up to barter humanitarian goods and food after the U.S. withdrawal from a 2015. . .  Full story

Russia ditches 2020 borrowing limits as coronavirus outbreak weighs

31/03 Russian lawmakers on Tuesday cleared the government to raise state borrowing this year beyond budgeted limits, as the country scales up its crisis response to the coronavirus epidemic.. . .  Full story

Around 470,000 firms in Germany applied for short-time work - Labour Office

31/03 Around 470,000 companies in Germany have applied for a government short-time work scheme in March due to coronavirus, the Federal Labour Office said on Tuesday, adding requests had come from many sectors, especially retail, hotels. . .  Full story

Italy's Intesa halts dividends, says crisis boosts case for UBI deal

31/03 Italy's Intesa Sanpaolo on Tuesday suspended dividend payments to comply with regulatory demands and said the coronavirus crisis strengthened the case for its proposed takeover of rival UBI Banca.. . .  Full story

Poland tightens restrictions further against coronavirus

31/03 Poland will impose further restrictions on public life, including closing parks and hotels, to curb the spread of coronavirus and avoid the fate of Italy and Spain, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said.. . .  Full story

Polish fashion retailer LPP cuts management pay to almost zero

31/03 Polish fashion retailer LPP will cut pay for its management board members to a symbolic one zloty ($0.2406) in a move seen as a solidarity gesture with employees facing layoffs caused by the crisis triggered. . .  Full story

Virgin Money delays branch closures and job cuts due to coronavirus lockdown

31/03 British bank Virgin Money said on Tuesday that it will halt until further notice the planned closure of 52 branches and 500 job losses, as it grapples with the fallout from the coronavirus outbreak.. . .  Full story

Lead's viral resistance carries a lesson for other metals: Andy Home

31/03 The demand shock rippling around the world as the new coronavirus spreads has upended the industrial metals complex.. . .  Full story

Russia's Putin to discuss spring grain sowing with government

31/03 Russia's President Vladimir Putin plans discuss the spring grain sowing with the government on Wednesday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

INEOS to build third European hand sanitiser plant in 10 days

31/03 Chemicals manufacturer INEOS said on Tuesday it will build a hand sanitiser plant in France in 10 days to help meet a European shortage and has begun production at its new British and German. . .  Full story

EU warns Hungary on flouting democracy with coronavirus laws

31/03 The European Union's executive warned Hungary on Tuesday that emergency measures adopted by governments to fight the coronavirus crisis must not undercut democracy.. . .  Full story

Carnival to raise $6 bln in debt, equity to weather coronavirus storm

31/03 Carnival Corp on Tuesday said it was raising about $6 billion in combination debt and equity and suspending its dividend payouts to strengthen its balance sheet as it reels from the fallout of the. . .  Full story

Monzo CEO waives salary for a year as bank prepares for coronavirus downturn - source

31/03 The boss of British digital bank Monzo has volunteered to forego his salary for a year, while other senior staff will take a 25% pay cut, as part of measures the lender is taking. . .  Full story

Austrian economy to shrink 3.2% in 'moderate' coronavirus scenario - ONB

31/03 Austria's economy will shrink 3.2% this year in the case of a "moderate" pandemic scenario, the country's central bank said on Tuesday, estimating that each week of lockdown cuts annual output by more than. . .  Full story

UK energy firms seek state help to offer payment breaks amid coronavirus

31/03 British energy suppliers have asked the government to provide support so they can offer payment breaks to households and businesses struggling to pay bills because of the impact of the coronavirus.. . .  Full story

Airlines ground flights, count mounting costs of the coronavirus shock

31/03 Airlines across the globe are feeling the pain as travel demand withers because of the coronavirus outbreak, scrapping flights and ditching financial forecasts.. . .  Full story

Ukraine grain firm says has 100,000 tonnes of wheat for domestic needs

31/03 State-run Ukrainian grain firm DPZKU has around 100,000 tonnes of wheat in stock and is ready to ensure domestic needs for flour are met amid a surge in demand caused by the coronavirus. . .  Full story

Polish economy may shrink in 2020 due to coronavirus - PM

31/03 Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said he cannot rule out that Poland's economy will shrink this year due to coronavirus-driven crisis.. . .  Full story

Oil to stay below $40 in 2020 on virus shock, OPEC+ deal collapse

31/03 Oil prices will stay below $40 a barrel this year, as measures aimed at halting the rapid global spread of the coronavirus cripple demand and the collapse of an OPEC+ deal adds to a. . .  Full story

Head of German state of Bavaria rejects 'corona bonds'

31/03 The premier of the German state of Bavaria on Tuesday rejected the idea of so-called "corona bonds", effectively eurobonds, to help European partners during the coronavirus crisis. Markus Soeder said he wanted to help Germany's. . .  Full story

German minister: We need a law to ensure supply of medicines in future

31/03 Germany needs a law in future to ensure the supply of medicines in the country, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer told Bild newspaper on Tuesday as the world is in the grips of a coronavirus. . .  Full story

Russia to sell half of grain stockpile amid coronavirus

31/03 Russia will sell 1 million tonnes of grain from its state stockpile on the domestic market to ensure supplies and keep prices down amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Agriculture Ministry said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Slovenia expects sharp economic contraction due to coronavirus

31/03 The Bank of Slovenia expects the country's economy, which mainly relies on exports to other European Union states, to shrink by 6.2% to 16.1% this year, depending on the longevity of the coronavirus outbreak,. . .  Full story

ECB's Holzmann sees small but real risk of deflation

31/03 There is a small but real risk that the euro zone will tip into deflation, European Central Bank policymaker Robert Holzmann said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

German minister prioritizes face masks for critical workers

31/03 Asked about the possibility of introducing an obligation to wear protective face masks, Finance Minister Olaf Scholz said on Tuesday that the masks Germany has are for critical workers such as medical staff.. . .  Full story

Intesa Sanpaolo Suspends Dividend Proposal

31/03 Intesa Sanpaolo SpA:. . .  Full story

France to seek debt moratorium for the most fragile countries

31/03 France will seek a debt moratorium for the poorest countries as part of a package of measures to help them cope with the coronavirus crisis, France's finance minister said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

ECB's Holzmann dodges issue of 'coronabonds' for now

31/03 European Central Bank Governing Council member Robert Holzmann, faced with ECB President Christine Lagarde supporting the idea of so-called 'coronabonds' and an Austrian government that opposes them, declined to comment on the issue on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Norwegian Air former CEO, chairman cut their stake to under 5%

31/03 The founder and former chairman of Norwegian Air have reduced their shared stake to 4.64% from 9.99% a week ago, Bjoern Kjos and Bjoern Kise said on Tuesday.. . .  Full story

Danish banks skip dividends, share repurchases after government spur

31/03 Several Danish lenders say they have suspended share repurchases and dividend plans for 2019, heeding calls by authorities to ensure adequate liquidity in uncertain times due to the coronavirus outbreak.. . .  Full story