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European Stocks Slump at Open

Europe's leading stock markets dropped sharply at the start of trading on Monday on growing concerns for the world economy illustrated by the Eurozone debt crisis, poor U.S. data and a slowdown in China.

With London closed for the jubilee bank holiday, the German blue-chip DAX stock index fell below the key psychological level of 6,000 points for the first time since January at the start of trade on Monday.

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Minister: UAE Economy Grew 4.2 Percent in 2011

The United Arab Emirates economy grew by 4.2 percent in 2011 but is expected to expand at just three percent this year as oil prices decrease, the Gulf country's economy minister said Monday.

Gross domestic product jumped from 1.3 percent in 2010 to "4.2 percent in 2011," Sultan bin Saeed al-Mansouri told reporters.

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Asian Markets Hit by Poor U.S. Jobs Figures

Asian markets tumbled further on Monday as poor U.S. jobs data added to already weak sentiment caused by Spain's banking crisis and political uncertainty in Greece.

Dealers were also digesting a string of manufacturing figures from Asia to the United States that pointed to a global economic slowdown.

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WTO Funds $3mn Project to Boost Tourism in S.Leone

Sierra Leone on Friday launched a $3 million (2.5 million euro) project funded by the World Trade Organization (WTO) to help develop its tourism sector, officials said.

The head of the National Tourism Board, Cecil Williams said: "The fund will be used to formulate an eco-tourism policy and action plan for Sierra Leone and review the Development of Tourism Act."

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Fiat Offers Cheap Fuel Price for Italian Buyers

Italian vehicle company Fiat offered new car buyers Friday the chance to purchase fuel at one euro (around $1.24) a liter, about half the current price in Italy, for up to three years.

The offer, running through June and July, only applies to Fiat cars bought in Italy, and does not apply to other brands owned by the group, which include Alfa Romeo, Lancia, Maserati and Ferrari.

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U.S. Auto Sales Rise 20% in May

With Toyota and Honda leading the way, U.S. car sales rose by more than 20 percent in May from a year ago, juiced up by increased incentives amid a slow U.S. economy, industry figures showed Friday.

In total, 1.33 million new cars and trucks were sold in the United States last month, according to market researcher Autodata.

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Ireland Backs EU Fiscal Pact with Clear Majority

Irish voters have backed the EU fiscal pact by a large majority, final referendum results showed Friday, in what Prime Minister Enda Kenny hailed as a "powerful signal to the world".

Sixty percent of voters were in favor of Ireland ratifying the pact, which is designed to shore up the turmoil-hit Eurozone by penalizing countries that fail to keep their deficits in check.

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Debt Market Pounds Spain as Concern Spreads to Regions

Spain's debt risk premium shattered euro-era records Friday as the government scrambled to find the money to rescue crisis-torn regions as well as the banks.

Investors fearing imminent financial breakdown sent the interest rate on Spanish 10-year government bonds spiking to 6.621 percent -- a rate considered unsustainable for Madrid over the longer term.

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Indian Government Savaged over Shock GDP Figures

India's central bank warned Friday economic growth could fall further after the country's worst quarterly figures in nine years, as business leaders and newspapers blasted the government over the slump.

Data for the January-March quarter released on Thursday showed growth in gross domestic product of just 5.3 percent, high by the standards of developed countries but a severe disappointment in once-booming India.

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Brent Oil Price Slumps to Eight-Month Low under $100

Brent oil prices sank under $100 a barrel on Friday for the first time in eight months, hit by weak Chinese and U.S. data and Eurozone debt tensions centered on Spain.

At about 0910 GMT, Brent North Sea crude for July delivery tumbled $2.27 to strike $99.60 a barrel, which was the lowest level since October 4, 2011.

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