An index of executive and consumer confidence in the eurozone hit 103.9 in April, up from its yearlong low of 103.0 in March, the European Commission reported Thursday. European Central Bank President Mario Draghi says there are still risks to the outlook for the euro region, but some economists are more optimistic. "Sentiment improved especially in the domestically oriented services sector, showing that we should not give up on eurozone domestic demand just yet," said Teunis Brosens, an economist at ING Bank in Amsterdam.
A spokesman for Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem confirmed that Eurogroup finance ministers have agreed to hold a special meeting on 9 May to discuss the status of Greece's bailout. The meeting could lead to the release of billions of dollars to Greece. Disagreements between the International Monetary Fund and Greece's international creditors have delayed the release.
The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision's new capital requirements will restrict businesses that use futures and cleared swaps to manage risks, FIA President and CEO Walt Lukken said Thursday at a House subcommittee hearing. "This harms farmers seeking to manage commodity price fluctuations, commercial companies wishing to lock in prices as they distribute their goods and pension funds using derivatives to enhance workers' retirement benefits," he said.
A key objective of the House Smart Transportation Caucus is making sure cybercriminals can't take control of autonomous and connected vehicles. Some experts say carmakers are putting digital features in cars without making them secure from hackers.
Wipro Ventures, Wipro's investment arm, has invested venture capital in cybersecurity startup Vectra and is receiving a minority stake in the firm. "Wipro completed this investment in March 2016 and plans to go to market with Vectra jointly with its cyber security and risk services practice offerings," Wipro said.
London has passed Singapore to become the second-largest offshore renminbi-clearing center behind Hong Kong, SWIFT says. "The UK's rise to become the largest offshore yuan hub outside Hong Kong reflects the importance that European companies are placing on their commercial relationships in China," said Eddie Norton of HSBC.
The plan to phase in Europe's second Markets in Financial Instruments Directive will result in just 3% of corporate bonds being subject to the new trading and transparency rules in 2018. At first implementation, corporate bonds will have to trade 15 times a day to be deemed liquid, and therefore will be subject to the trading rules. In 2022, when the rules are fully phased in, bonds traded twice in one day, about 38% of corporate bonds, will fall under the rules.
Currency trading volumes have fallen 20% over the past 18 months, with trades at three of the largest platforms falling to $538 billion per day in March, down from $669 billion in September 2014. Regulations have led banks to limit their market-making activities, and the boost in electronic trading has increased the speed at which the market moves, both of which make the market more susceptible to swings.
A group of eight British economists challenged the UK Treasury's report on the potential economic effects of Britain leaving the EU. They claim the UK's GDP would grow 4% in 10 years if it accessed the European market under World Trade Organization terms. The Treasury estimated that Britain would lose 7.5% of economic output in 15 years under the WTO trade arrangement.
Euro-denominated money-market funds are growing this year despite yields hitting negative 0.33% in April, according to iMoneyNet. Negative interest rates leave investors with few alternatives, fund managers say.
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