July 4, 2014 / 12:45 PM / in 4 years

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TOP STORIES

World stocks hold at all-time high after bumper week

LONDON - World stocks are enjoying the view at an all-time high, lifted by a week of strong U.S. economic data and promises from the European Central Bank that cheap money will be sloshing around for years. (MARKETS-GLOBAL/ (WRAPUP 5), moved, by Marc Jones, 745 words)

Investors punish Erste for new emerging Europe hit

VIENNA - Investors wipe more than 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) off Erste Group Bank’s stock market value after emerging Europe’s third-biggest lender warns it will post a record loss due to fresh hits from Romania and Hungary. (ERSTE-GROUP-STOCKS/ (UPDATE 3), moving shortly, by Michael Shields, 790 words)

Italy’s Renzi says no rift with Germany, raps Bundesbank

ROME - Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi says there is no rift with Germany’s government over European fiscal policy and that Germany’s central bank should not comment on Italian government policies. (ITALY-RENZI/BBK (UPDATE 1), moving shortly, 330 words)

BT pension fund in record deal to offload longevity risk

LONDON - The trustees of BT Group’s pension scheme have taken out insurance against the costs associated with members living longer than expected, in the biggest such deal of its kind in Britain. (BT GROUP PENSIONS/, by Kate Holton and Simon Jessop, 500 words)

INSIGHT

Accusations fly in Bulgaria’s murky bank run

SOFIA - One worker at Bulgaria’s Corporate Commercial Bank knew panic was setting in when she spotted colleagues among the anxious depositors lined up to withdraw cash from the troubled bank. (BULGARIA-BANKING/ (INSIGHT, PICTURE), moved, by Matthias Williams and Tsvetelia Tsolova, 1,760 words)

In Africa, a Cube and a Parachute test consumer demand

LONDON/ACCRA - Tucked in a corner of a Guinness brewery in a run-down part of Ghana’s capital, flanked by industrial silos and crates of bottles, stands the Cube, a gleaming mini-factory that may point the way forward for global consumer goods companies in Africa. (CONSUMERS-MANUFACTURERS/AFRICA (INSIGHT, PICTURE, TV), moved, by Martinne Geller and Matthew Mpoke Bigg, 1,365 words)

INVESTMENT

No need to go Greek just pay it forward

LONDON - With interest rates and market borrowing costs at record lows, why shouldn’t heavily indebted euro zone countries should be issuing bonds hand over fist while the good times last?. (INVESTMENT-BORROWING/, expect by 1300 GMT/9 AM ET, by John Geddie and Patrick Graham, 900 words)

EU banks watchdog advises lenders to shun bitcoins

LONDON - Banks in the European Union should stop offering customer accounts in virtual currencies like bitcoins until regulatory safeguards are in place, the bloc’s banking watchdog says. (EU-BITCOIN/, moved, by Huw Jones, 520 words)

China assets warm, rather than hot for western investors

LONDON - A flurry of new initiatives is encouraging international investors into China’s off-shore and on-shore share and bond markets, though liquidity, access and performance deter some from wading in. (CHINA-OFFSHORE/YUAN, expect by 1500 GMT/10 AM ET, by Carolyn Cohn, 950 words)

ECONOMY

Political risk drags down German industrial orders in May

BERLIN - German industrial orders fell in May for the first time in two months and more sharply than expected due to a perceived increase in geopolitical risk, the Federal Statistics Office said on Friday. (GERMANY-ORDERS/, moved, 350 words)

Hungary approves measure that may cost banks $2.6-$3.9 bln

BUDAPEST - Hungary’s parliament approves legislation that the central bank estimates could cost the financial sector 600 to 900 billion forints ($2.6-$3.9 billion) in compensation for borrowers. (HUNGARY-LOANS/ (UPDATE 1), moved, by Krisztina Than, 615 words)

UK new car registrations up 6.2 pct in June

LONDON - British new car sales recorded their best first half to a year since 2005, figures show, but sales growth slows in June as consumer demand starts to level off. (BRITAIN-AUTOS/VEHICLEREGISTRATIONS (UPDATE 1), moved, 300 words)

+ See also:

- AUTOS-TAKATA/AIRBAGS (UPDATE 2), moved, by Yoko Kubota, 425 words

COMPANIES

U.S. grounds entire F-35 fleet pending engine inspections

WASHINGTON - The U.S. military says it has grounded the entire fleet of 97 Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets until completion of additional inspections of the warplane’s single engine built by Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (LOCKHEED-FIGHTER/ (UPDATE 5), moved, by Andrea Shalal, 660 words)

GM suspends South Africa production as union rejects offer

JOHANNESBURG/CAPE TOWN - General Motors suspends production at its main South African plant after a strike hit parts supplies, the U.S. automaker says, making it the latest victim of relentless labour unrest in Africa’s most advanced economy. (SAFRICA-STRIKE/ (UPDATE 3, TV, PICTURE), moved, by Ed Stoddard and Wendell Roelf, 615 words)

Club Med CEO plays champion card in battle with Bonomi

PARIS - The boss of Club Mediterranee played the national champion card in the battle for control the French all-inclusive holiday pioneer, saying a sale to Italian tycoon Andrea Bonomi would hand control to foreign investors. (CLUBMED-CEO/, moved, 360 words)

M&S to blame bedding in of new website for latest sales fall

LONDON - British retailer Marks & Spencer is expected to blame its transition to a new web platform for a 12th straight quarterly fall in underlying general merchandise sales when it gives a trading update on Tuesday. (MARKS&SPENCER-SALES/ (PREVIEW), moved, by James Davey, 465 words)

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