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Features

  • Trichet’s hawkish comments keeps focus on interest rates

    Earlier in the week, European Central Bank president Jean Claude Trichet reinforced interest rate expectations for a rate rise as early as next month. Mr Trichet said that the eurozone inflation rate is “durably” above the central banks’...

  • MIA registers record profitability

    MIA registers record profitability

    The 12.8 per cent increase in passenger numbers passing through the airport terminal during 2010 boosted the financial performance of Malta International Airport plc. The airport operator recently announced a 20 per cent increase in pre-tax...

  • Community patent and its enforceability

    Community patent and its enforceability

    The ministers of economy of 25 member states of the European Union have given the green light for the adoption of a Community Patent. This patent will be valid in 25 EU member states and is expected to enter into force in 2014. The idea of a...

  • G7 countries intervene to reduce yen’s volatility

    Last Friday, the G7 announced there would be a coordinated currency intervention in respect of the JPY. This announcement triggered a spike, from levels around Friday’s open of 79.08, up to 81.48. The USD/JPY currency pair than continued its drive...

  • Go’s dividends slashed by 50%

    Go’s dividends slashed by 50%

    Go plc’s announcement on March 15 that dividends to shareholders have been halved to a net distribution of €0.05 per share was yet another disappointing piece of news for the local market. Within the space of a few weeks, financial markets...

  • No outright ban on online sales

    No outright ban on online sales

    An outright ban imposed by a manufacturer on its distributors from selling products over the internet falls foul of the competition rules, the ECJ’s Advocate General Ján Mazák recently declared. Each case has to be examined on its own merits in...

  • Japan in the spotlight – yen strengthens

    Attention has shifted from the Middle East/North African unrest onto Japan for most of this last week. As if having to face an 8.9-magnitude earthquake and a devastating tsunami was not enough, Japan has had to struggle with a massive nuclear...

  • Lombard’s profits just shy of 2008 record level

    Lombard’s profits just shy of 2008 record level

    Lombard Bank Malta plc published its 2010 financial statements on March 10 revealing a 12.9 per cent increase in profit after tax to €8.3 million. The profitability level achieved during 2010 was just shy of the all-time record of €8.4 million...

  • Gender-based insurance to be phased out

    Gender-based insurance to be phased out

    Equality between men and women is a fundamental principle of the European Union. This is established in the Treaty of the EU and in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU, which prohibit any discrimination on grounds of gender and require...

  • Eurozone sovereign debt back in focus

    The euro rally from the back end of last week to early Monday morning took a pause on Tuesday as resurfacing of eurozone debt following Moody’s downgrade of Greece’s debt rating appeared to be weighing on the single currency. The rally in the euro...

  • FimBank announces profits of $6.7 million

    FimBank announces profits of $6.7 million

    FimBank plc’s financial statements published last week reveal that the trade finance specialist generated a profit after tax of $6.7 million during 2010. This represents a significant increase over the previous year as the group “cautiously...

  • Focus on small businesses

    Focus on small businesses

    The recent review of the Small Business Act for Europe by the European Commission provides a ray of hope for European small and medium sized enterprises that not all will be gloom and doom in the years to come. Less bureaucracy, improved access to...

  • EU meetings in March could be market moving

    March will be filled with major events for the euro. This week, the planned banking stress test criteria (banks should be tested in the first half of this year) are being discussed by the European Banking Association, and today the ECB holds its...

  • The future of the MSE as global bourses merge

    The future of the MSE as global bourses merge

    While in the past two weeks the turmoil in Libya has been dominating the news and sentiment across global financial markets has inevitably been hit, a few days earlier the wave of proposed mergers among international stock exchanges was hitting...

  • ‘Crown jewels’ sporting events

    ‘Crown jewels’ sporting events

    Hot on the heels of the Advocate General’s recommendation that the territory-by-territory licensing by Premier League of its television broadcasting rights across the EU is to be considered contrary to EU law, two landmark judgements handed down...

  • ‘Safer’ major currencies take the lead

    With the United States on market holiday last Monday, EUR/USD price moves were fairly neutral throughout the day; the pair opened at 1.3692 and closed at 1.3678. Data was supportive for the euro on Monday with PMI numbers from France, Germany and...

  • HSBC 2010 dividend payment set at 55 per cent

    HSBC 2010 dividend payment set at 55 per cent

    The financial statements of HSBC Bank Malta plc published last Friday afternoon reveal that the HSBC Malta Group returned to profitability growth after two years of declines from the record profits registered in 2007. Pre-tax profits generated by...

  • No discrimination between EU nationals

    No discrimination between EU nationals

    The European Court of Justice has once more gone all the way to reinforce the fact that EU member states have to tread carefully when distinguishing between persons residing in their own territory or their own citizens and other EU citizens.

  • Eurozone debt concerns regain the limelight

    From Thursday to the earlier part of this week the euro was generally weaker hitting lows, last Monday, at 1.3428 against the US dollar. Resurfacing eurozone debt concerns weighed on the single currency – as the Egyptian concerns faded away they...

  • Football of choice

    Football of choice

    An eagerly-awaited opinion of Euro­pean Union Ad­vo­cate General Juliane Kokott has been recently given in two legal battles between FA Premier League on the one hand and Karen Murphy, a publican and a decoder supplier QC Leisure on the...

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