The Indian prime minister's economic advisory panel dropped its economic-growth projection for this fiscal year to 5.3%, from 6.4%. The central bank and private economists predict a growth rate of about 5%.
The European Commission's proposed reform of the telecommunication industry has received a mixed reception. The industry welcomes some ideas, but executives are concerned that only measures that hurt companies financially will become law.
Japan's Nikkei 225 inched up 0.1% on Friday, while most other Asian-Pacific markets declined, as traders awaited results from a key meeting of Federal Reserve officials. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.4%. South Korea's Kospi dropped 0.5%. China's Shanghai Composite decreased 0.6%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index lost 0.3%. India's Sensex was down 0.1%.
An initial public offering by the British government for its stake in Royal Mail could be one of the largest in U.K. history. The sale could be worth £3 billion, analysts say, but how much of the government's stake will be sold has not been determined.
Lyxor has launched on the London Stock Exchange exchange-traded funds that offer exposure to Taiwan, South Africa, Turkey and other emerging markets. The Societe Generale subsidiary says the ETFs "typically offer lower costs and greater efficiency" because they are synthetic, instead of physically backed.
China reportedly has given six foreign hedge fund management companies permission to raise yuan domestically to invest abroad. The companies reportedly have been given a total quota of $300 million, out of a net $5 billion under the Qualified Domestic Limited Partner program.