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Aleksandar Vasovic

Serbia wants billions in foreign loans to invest in infrastructure: minister

Jul 12 2019

BELGRADE Serbia plans to borrow billions of euros from China and other foreign countries in the coming years to fund investment in regional projects, its infrastructure minister Zorana Mihajlovic said on Friday.

Kosovo Serbs close shops to protest import tariffs

Jul 01 2019

BELGRADE/PRISTINA Shops, restaurants and bakeries in Serb-dominated northern Kosovo closed their doors on Monday to protest against a 100% tax the country has imposed on goods imported from Serbia, in a move that could further sour ties between Belgrade and Pristina.

Serbia places forces on alert after Kosovo police operation in Serb-populated north

May 28 2019

BELGRADE/PRISTINA Serbia ordered its troops on full alert on Tuesday and Russia accused Kosovo of provocation after a Kosovan police anti-crime operation in a region populated mainly by Serbs led to clashes.

Accept reality, Serbia does not control Kosovo: Vucic

May 27 2019

BELGRADE Serbia needs to accept that it has lost control over Kosovo, its former southern province, and it must seek a compromise to normalize ties with Pristina, President Aleksandar Vucic told parliament in unusually blunt terms on Monday.

CEE MARKETS-Forint, Hungarian bonds ease ahead of expected CPI rise

May 08 2019

* Forint eases though Hungary's industrial output surges * Hungarian CPI data due on Thursday seen showing further rise * Hungarian government bonds miss firming of European peers * Serbian seen keeping rates on hold (Adds underperformance of Hungarian government bonds, new analyst comment) By Sandor Peto and Aleksandar Vasovic BUDAPEST/BELGRADE, May 8 Hungary's forint traded near 5-month lows on Wednesday as robust industrial output data did not change market expectations that the central bank (NBH) will not rush into further monetary tightening despite a continued rise in inflation. The forint eased a shade to 324.2 against the euro by 1301 GMT, staying near its weakest levels since November, set at 324.85 last week. Hungary's 10-year government bond yield was fixed at 3.33 percent, up 1 basis point, returning to its highest level in almost six months, a day before the government's bi-weekly bond auctions. Poland's corresponding yield, meanwhile, dropped further by 4 basis points to 2.93 percent as investors bought government bonds in Europe and the United States amid worries over economic growth. Hungary's April inflation data due on Thursday are expected to show a rise in the annual inflation to around 4 percent, the top of the NBH's 2-4 percent target range. The forint weakened more than 3 percent in the past seven weeks as the NBH increased its overnight deposit rate slightly at its March meeting but dropped its guidance for gradual monetary tightening. Surging wages have been boosting domestic demand in Central Europe, fuelling a rise in consumer prices, but an economic slowdown and persistent low interest rates in the euro zone have dampened inflation pressure. Data released by Hungary on Wednesday showed that industrial output surged by an annual 8 percent in March, exceeding all forecasts, but the forint failed to benefit from the figures. "Pressure on the forint is not easing as the NBH insists on its loose monetary policy despite the rising inflation backdrop," Erste analysts said in a note. Germany also released better-than-expected March industrial output data on Wednesday, but the outlook remained gloomy. The data and some rebound in the euro did not provide support for the forint, but the zloty firmed a shade to 4.289. Elsewhere, the dinar firmed slightly ahead of the Serbian central bank's Thursday meeting where it is expected to keep its benchmark rate on hold at 3 percent as inflation remains within its target despite robust economic growth. The bank has been buying the dinar in the market this year to stem its strengthening, partly driven by increased domestic spending around Easter by Serbians who work abroad. "Also there were several issuances of dinar-indexed T-bonds which boosted demand," one dealer said, adding that the currency could weaken to around 118.5 soon. Czech domestic markets were closed for a national holiday. CEE SNAPSHOT AT MARKETS 1501 CET CURRENCI ES Latest Previous Daily Change bid close change in 2019 Czech <EURCZK= 25.7160 25.7410 +0.10% -0.03% crown > Hungary <EURHUF= 324.2000 324.1200 -0.02% -0.96% forint > Polish <EURPLN= 4.2909 4.2919 +0.02% -0.03% zloty > Romanian <EURRON= 4.7590 4.7565 -0.05% -2.21% leu > Croatian <EURHRK= 7.4085 7.4095 +0.01% +0.02% kuna > Serbian <EURRSD= 117.8800 117.9700 +0.08% +0.36% dinar > Note: calculated from 1800 CET daily change Latest Previous Daily Change close change in 2019 Budapest 41379.08 41084.57 +0.72% +5.72% Warsaw 2225.19 2233.80 -0.39% -2.26% Bucharest 8395.90 8419.18 -0.28% +13.71% Ljubljana <.SBITOP 874.91 881.04 -0.70% +8.78% > Zagreb 1838.53 1838.28 +0.01% +5.13% Belgrade <.BELEX1 735.03 736.38 -0.18% -3.50% 5> Sofia 568.50 567.70 +0.14% -4.37% BONDS Yield Yield Spread Daily (bid) change vs Bund change in Poland 2-year <PL2YT=R 1.6790 0.0040 +230bps +1bps R> 5-year <PL5YT=R 2.2980 -0.0260 +277bps -2bps R> 10-year <PL10YT= 2.9480 -0.0370 +300bps -2bps RR> FORWARD RATE AGREEMEN T 3x6 6x9 9x12 3M interban k Czech Rep 2.25 2.26 2.26 2.21 <PRIBOR= > Hungary 0.38 0.54 0.72 0.16 Poland 1.74 1.75 1.78 1.72 Note: FRA are for ask prices quotes ************************************************* ************* (Reporting by Sandor Peto; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne and Frances Kerry)

CEE MARKETS-Robust output fails to support forint, Serbian rates seen on hold

May 08 2019

* Forint eases though Hungary's industrial output surges * Hungarian CPI data due on Thursday seen showing further rise * Serbian central bank meets, seen keeping rates on hold By Sandor Peto and Aleksandar Vasovic BUDAPEST/BELGRADE, May 8 Hungary's forint edged towards 5-month lows on Wednesday as robust industrial output data did not change market expectations that the central bank (NBH) will not rush into further monetary tightening despite a continued rise in inflation. The forint eased 0.1 percent to 324.4 against the euro by 0815 GMT, approaching its weakest levels since November, set at 324.85 last week. Hungarian government bond yields rose by 1-2 basis points, with the 10-year paper trading at 3.33 percent. April data due on Thursday are expected to show a rise in the annual inflation to around 4 percent, the top of the NBH's 2-4 percent target range. The forint weakened almost 4 percent in the past seven weeks as the NBH increased its overnight deposit rate slightly at its March meeting but dropped its guidance for gradual monetary tightening. Surging wages have been boosting domestic demand in Central Europe, fuelling a rise in consumer prices, but an economic slowdown and persistent low interest rates in the euro zone have dampened inflation pressure. Data released by Hungary on Wednesday showed that industrial output surged by an annual 8 percent in March, exceeding all forecasts. Analysts attributed the jump to a pick-up in the auto industry, after wage strikes at the local plants of companies including Audi cut production early this year. The figures herald economic growth of around 5 percent this year, ING analyst Peter Virovacz said in a note. "The big question, however, is when the reappearing bogey of trade war and the weakness of Germany's industry will have an impact," he said, adding that Hungary's industry could grow by about 6 percent this year. The U.S.-China trade war has been weighing on mood in emerging markets. The region's blooming vehicle industry, a key driver of growth, could get a hit if Washington introduces tariffs on car imports from Europe. Germany also released better-than-expected March industrial output data on Wednesday, but the outlook remained gloomy. The data and some rebound in the euro did not provide support for the forint, but the zloty firmed a shade to 4.289. Elsewhere, the dinar firmed slightly ahead of the Serbian central bank's meeting where it is expected to keep its benchmark rate on hold as inflation remains well within its target despite robust economic growth. The bank has been buying the dinar in the market this year to stem its strengthening, partly driven by domestic spending by Serbians who work abroad. "Also there were several issuances of dinar-indexed T-bonds which boosted demand," one dealer said, adding that the currency could weaken to around 118.5 soon. CEE SNAPSHOT AT MARKETS 1015 CET CURRENCI ES Latest Previous Daily Change bid close change in 2019 Czech <EURCZK= 0.0000 25.7410 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! crown > Hungary <EURHUF= 324.4000 324.1200 -0.09% -1.02% forint > Polish <EURPLN= 4.2890 4.2919 +0.07% +0.01% zloty > Romanian <EURRON= 4.7579 4.7565 -0.03% -2.18% leu > Croatian <EURHRK= 7.4070 7.4095 +0.03% +0.04% kuna > Serbian <EURRSD= 117.8900 117.9700 +0.07% +0.35% dinar > Note: calculated from 1800 CET daily change Latest Previous Daily Change close change in 2019 Prague 1063.50 1063.500 +0.00% +7.80% 0 Budapest 41273.50 41084.57 +0.46% +5.45% Warsaw 2239.89 2233.80 +0.27% -1.61% Bucharest 8407.66 8419.18 -0.14% +13.87% Ljubljana <.SBITOP 882.21 881.04 +0.13% +9.69% > Zagreb 1831.84 1838.28 -0.35% +4.75% Belgrade <.BELEX1 737.89 736.38 +0.21% -3.12% 5> Sofia 567.99 567.70 +0.05% -4.45% BONDS Yield Yield Spread Daily (bid) change vs Bund change in Czech spread Republic 2-year <CZ2YT=R 1.6070 -0.1710 +221bps -18bps R> 5-year <CZ5YT=R 1.7400 -0.0020 +219bps -2bps R> 10-year <CZ10YT= 1.8660 -0.0010 +189bps -1bps RR> Poland 2-year <PL2YT=R 1.6850 0.0100 +229bps +0bps R> 5-year <PL5YT=R 2.3290 0.0050 +277bps -1bps R> 10-year <PL10YT= 2.9740 -0.0110 +300bps -2bps RR> FORWARD RATE AGREEMEN T 3x6 6x9 9x12 3M interban k Czech Rep 2.25 2.26 2.26 2.21 <PRIBOR= > Hungary 0.37 0.53 0.70 0.16 Poland 1.75 1.76 1.78 1.72 Note: FRA are for ask prices quotes ************************************************* ************* (Reporting by Sandor Peto; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne)

Thousands rally in Belgrade to support Serbia's president Vucic

Apr 19 2019

BELGRADE Thousands of people from all over Serbia flocked to Belgrade's city center on Friday in a show of support for President Aleksandar Vucic, who has faced five months of opposition protests.

Mirjana Markovic, widow of Serbia's late strongman Milosevic, dies aged 76

Apr 15 2019

BELGRADE Mirjana Markovic, the widow of Serbian strongman Slobodan Milosevic who played a key role in her husband's policies during the violent breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1990s, has died in Russia aged 76, state-run RTS TV reported.

Delays in Kosovo talks could destabilize Balkans, Serbia's president says

Mar 21 2019

BELGRADE The failure to revive talks between Serbia and Kosovo on normalizing relations could destabilize the Western Balkan region still recovering from the wars of the 1990s, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said on Thursday.

Thousands march in Montenegro capital to demand president resign

Mar 16 2019

PODGORICA Thousands marched through Montenegro's capital Podgorica on Saturday, the fifth such rally in two months, to demand the resignation of President Milo Djukanovic and his government over allegations of abuse of office, graft and cronyism.

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