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Chase Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals, Bans International... Before you read this report, remember to sign up to for 100% free stock alerts Chase Bank has moved to limit cash withdrawals while banning business customers from sending...

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Richemont chairman Johann Rupert to take 'grey gap... Billionaire 62-year-old to take 12 months off from Cartier and Montblanc luxury goods groupRichemont's chairman and founder Johann Rupert is to take a year off from September, leaving management of the...

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Cambodia: aftermath of fatal shoe factory collapse... Workers clear rubble following the collapse of a shoe factory in Kampong Speu, Cambodia, on Thursday

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Spate of recent shock departures by 50-something CEOs While the rising financial rewards of running a modern multinational have been well publicised, executive recruiters say the pressures of the job have also been ratcheted upOn approaching his 60th birthday...

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UK Uncut loses legal challenge over Goldman Sachs tax... While judge agreed the deal was 'not a glorious episode in the history of the Revenue', he ruled it was not unlawfulCampaign group UK Uncut Legal Action has lost its high court challenge over the legality...

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Money markets sheltered by bank stimulus

Category : Business

The problems in Cyprus and Italy haven’t dented investors’ confidence largely thanks to the actions of central banks

The near collapse of Cyprus, avoided only by draconian and unprecedented measures including a raid on savers’ bank accounts, and political turmoil in Italy after February’s inconclusive elections should have sent ructions through global stock markets last week.

In fact, with the exception of continuing jitters on European exchanges, investors showed remarkable calm through the latest instalment of the neverending eurozone crisis. In America, the S&P 500 even soared to a record close on Thursday, surpassing levels last seen in 2007 and following in the footsteps of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which had reached its own peak on 5 March. The FTSE 100, currently less than 10% shy of its own record, ended the week virtually unchanged.

Markets have partly been buoyed by signs of recovery in the global economy, particularly in the US. But the main support for shares has been the continuing actions by central banks to provide a lift to the economy through stimulus measures such as quantitative easing and bond buying. Investors, who are struggling to find decent returns in a low-interest-rate environment, have decided to stick with equities for the moment, betting that the money tap will not be turned off in the immediate future. But with Cyprus coming close to the precipice, in danger of default and leaving the eurozone, that optimism was severely tested during the week. The danger of contagion spreading elsewhere, to Slovenia, Spain, Italy and even France, was enough to make Cyprus the No 1 economic worry. So while a last-minute deal to bail out the Mediterranean island provided some relief, the imposition of capital controls and the losses forced on depositors with more than €100,000 in the bank meant the situation remained volatile.

Eurogroup head Jeroen Dijsselbloem hardly helped matters with remarks that were interpreted as suggesting that the Cyprus bank raid could be a template for other bailouts, although there was later some half-hearted backtracking from the idea.

And as Cyprus reopened its banks on Thursday after 12 days shut, there was no sign of the feared scramble by investors to withdraw their cash. The capital controls and limits on how much could be taken out of accounts meant there was little point in savers swarming into the banks in a panic.

So markets – mostly – kept their cool. The FTSE 100 finished up 24.18 points at 6411.74 on Thursday (its last day of trading before Easter), up from 6392 on Monday. Since the start of the month the index has gained 1% and since the turn of the year the rise is an impressive 8.7%.

The S&P 500, which had been hovering at record levels for more than two weeks, finally achieved the target on Thursday, a 6.34 point rise to 1569.19 being enough to do the job. Asian shares also closed in positive territory with the Nikkei 225 up 0.5% yesterday, up marginally on the week.

In Europe, perhaps unsurprisingly, the picture was more downbeat, although it was hardly a panic. Germany’s Dax dipped around 1.5% on the week to 7795 while France’s Cac slipped 1% to 3731. In two countries where there is most uncertainty and the risk of contagion is real, Italy’s FTSE MIB fell 4% to 15,338 and Spain’s Ibex lost nearly 5% to 7920. And with the situation in Cyprus keeping the spotlight on Greece, the Athens market was down more than 6%.

Clearly European markets are being more influenced by the continuing crisis in the region than by central bank intervention, while the reverse is true for the UK, US and Asian exchanges. Overall, analysts said the Federal Reserve was likely to continue giving support for the moment. Chris Beauchamp, market analyst at IG said: “This may be a Fed-inspired rally, but it is a rally nonetheless; over the course of the last three months markets have taken almost everything in their stride, be it US budget crises, inconclusive Italian elections or a bailout of yet another eurozone member. Having had such a good start to the year, the question is now whether the run can be sustained. Cynics will point to the abundance of problems, but the underlying theme today remains the same as at the end of 2012; a supportive Federal Reserve is not to be trifled with.”Meanwhile Bruce McCain, chief investment strategist at Key Private Bank in Cleveland, told Reuters the new peak on the S&P reflected the fact that many of last year’s anxieties had receded. But he added: “However, this could be the start to a more realistic look at the problems that still haven’t gone away. Some degree of caution is probably still merited, with the problems in Cyprus probably only the beginning to what we could see in coming months.”

Monti ‘available to lead Italy’

Category : Business, World News

Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti says he is not siding with any party in the next elections, but remains available to head a future government.

Continued here: Monti ‘available to lead Italy’

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Japanese shares rise on Abe win

Category : Business

Japanese shares rise and the yen dips after Shinzo Abe-led Liberal Democratic Party won Japan’s general elections.

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Bank of Japan punts on rates amid political turmoil

Category : Stocks

The Bank of Japan left key interest rates unchanged Tuesday ahead of elections next month that could upset the political order and alter the course of monetary policy in Japan.

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Canada Closely Monitoring Ukrainian Elections

Category : Stocks, World News

OTTAWA, ONTARIO–(Marketwire – Oct. 28, 2012) - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird and International Cooperation Minister Julian Fantino issued the following statement on the parliamentary elections held today in Ukraine:

Continued here: Canada Closely Monitoring Ukrainian Elections

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The US economy debate

Category : World News

The economy debate in the US elections

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Media Advisory: Minister Fantino to Hold Media Teleconference Regarding Ukrainian Elections

Category : World News

OTTAWA, ONTARIO–(Marketwire – Oct. 27, 2012) - The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of International Cooperation, will host a media teleconference on October 28, 2012, regarding the parliamentary elections in Ukraine.

Read the rest here: Media Advisory: Minister Fantino to Hold Media Teleconference Regarding Ukrainian Elections

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The Senate yesterday authorized a $500B spending bill that will finance the government for half a year from October 1, adding to approval from the House. Congress has now broken up ahead of the elections on Nov. 6, leaving plenty of unfinished…

Category : Stocks, World News

The Senate yesterday authorized a $500B spending bill that will finance the government for half a year from October 1, adding to approval from the House. Congress has now broken up ahead of the elections on Nov. 6, leaving plenty of unfinished business. That includes measures to forestall the “fiscal cliff” and a renewal of the farm bill. 7 comments!

Continue reading here: The Senate yesterday authorized a $500B spending bill that will finance the government for half a year from October 1, adding to approval from the House. Congress has now broken up ahead of the elections on Nov. 6, leaving plenty of unfinished…

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Spain’s indebted regions feel the heat

Category : Business

Valencia became the first region to formally request a bailout, followed by Murcia – Catalonia, Andalucía, Castilla La Mancha and more are expected to join them

As markets seamlessly switch their attention from Spain’s banks to its regional governments this week, they are lurching between the country’s two biggest economic nightmares.

Spain rose above Italy in the ranking of eurozone anxiety earlier this year not just because its savings banks were awash in toxic real estate but because it spectacularly failed to meet its Brussels-set deficit target last year.

Instead of producing a deficit of 6% of GDP, it reduced its 2010 overspend by only fraction, to 8.9%.

The blame for this overshoot lay mostly on the shoulders of Spain’s seventeen semi-autonomous regional governments – which spend four out of every 10 euros of public money.

Last year there were elections in most regions, and many of the local governments spent with little thought for tomorrow.

Responsibility for delivering the welfare state lies firmly in their hands, and local politicians were not keen to cut education, health or social services as voters prepared to go to the polls.

But Spain’s housing bust, 24% unemployment and double-dip recession have also hit their income. Construction license fees and other tax income have also dwindled, making it even harder for them to pay bills.

Some have hiked their income tax, but much of the savings must come from painful spending cuts. Hospitals, schools and the elderly or disabled are all suffering as a result.

Two of the biggest overspenders were Castilla La Mancha and Valencia. The former produced a 7.3% deficit in 2011, while the latter increased its deficit from 3.6% to 4.5%.

Regional government debts are not especially high, but that makes little difference if the markets are closed to them when loans mature and must be refinanced. And they must also raise money to borrow for their deficits.

Several regions, including Valencia, have been given junk status by ratings agencies.

On Friday Valencia became the first region to formally request bailout money from a new €18bn (£14bn) government liquidity fund for regions, which will require it to present new budget adjustments. Murcia followed on Sunday. Catalonia, Andalucía, Castilla La Mancha and two or three more are expected to join them.

Tighter control of regional spending – and the threat of direct intervention if they cannot keep up interest payments to the liquidity fund – means a sudden end to the flow of power away from Madrid to the regions. Catalonia, especially, is upset. Regional president Artur Mas has threatened to call his own elections if the state takes direct control of the region’s accounts.

American, black and unemployed: people’s panel

Category : Business

The jobless rate among black Americans is above the national average. Tell us your experience with race and finding work

The latest US government figures show that unemployment among the black community not just remains the highest in the country but has now risen to 14.4% – double that of rates among whites.

As our Washington correspondent Ewen MacAskill recently reported, those rates are stunningly high in some urban pockets: Las Vegas has the highest rate, 22.6%; the Los Angeles metro area, 21.1%; Chicago, 19.1%; and Detroit, 18.1%.

As part of our people’s panel, we are asking for your experiences as an African American looking for work. Has race impacted your search, and do you feel empowered to address any problems? Where have you found support, if any? Will the economy and unemployment affect your decision on whether to vote and whom to vote for in the upcoming presidential elections?

Finally, if you are an employer, how does race affect your hiring decisions?

To participate, fill out this form by 9pm ET on Thursday, 12 July, and we’ll publish selected responses.