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Italy Says Eurobonds Would Have Prevented Crisis

The issuance of Eurobonds, something the EU is considering, would have prevented the current debt crisis enveloping the Eurozone, Italy's Finance Minister Giulio Tremonti said Saturday.

Tremonti told a press conference in Rome that there is now "a fundamental need for greater consolidation of public finances in Europe."

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World Bank Chief Says "More Dangerous" Times Ahead

World Bank chief Robert Zoellick on Saturday warned of a "new and more dangerous" time in the global economy, with little breathing space in most developed countries as a debt crisis hits Europe.

Zoellick said the Eurozone's sovereign debt issues were more troubling than the "medium and long-term" problems which saw the United States downgraded by Standard and Poor's last week, sending global markets into panic.

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Europe Short-Sales Ban Helps sentiment, Stocks Turn Firmer

European stock markets were holding onto gains Friday after another rollercoaster ride as nervous investors tried to get ahead of the curve and a short-selling ban in Europe helped the under-fire banks.

France, Italy, Spain and Belgium banned short-selling in bank stocks after rumors about their financial health saw them suffer massive losses in recent days and then Germany upped the ante by calling for a Europe-wide bar.

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Ghana, China Reach $800 Million Gas Development Deal

Ghana will borrow $800 million from China to build natural gas infrastructure, the head of the national gas company said Friday, months after the country became Africa's newest major oil producer.

"An agreement has been reached and we have secured $800 million (560 million euros) from the Chinese Development Bank for the project to take off," George Sipa-Adzah Yankey told Agence France Presse on Friday.

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Oil Falls Below $85 as Traders Eye EU Debt Crisis

Oil prices fell below $85 a barrel Friday in Asia as investors tried to make sense of a week of sharp zigzags in the equity and commodities markets.

Benchmark oil for September delivery was down $1.08 to $84.64 a barrel at late afternoon Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Crude rose $2.83, or 3.4 percent, to settle at $85.72 on Thursday.

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European Shares Recover on Big Wall Street Gains

Bank stocks recovered their poise Friday and helped European stock markets push higher as investors assessed the impact of a short-selling ban on financial shares in four eurozone countries.

The advance in Europe follows big gains on Wall Street Thursday, which helped support most markets in Asia.

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Kuwait Posts Healthy Budget Surplus on Record Income

OPEC member Kuwait posted a healthy budget surplus of 5.3 billion dinars ($19.5 billion) in the last fiscal year on record revenues thanks to high oil prices, the finance ministry said on Thursday.

Revenues in the year ended March 31 hit 21.5 billion dinars ($79 billion), the highest ever in the emirate's history, according to figures on the ministry's website.

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France Says Merkel to Meet Sarkozy over Debt Crisis

French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Thursday called a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel amid market turmoil to find solutions to the Eurozone debt crisis.

Merkel will travel next Tuesday to Paris for the meeting which is aimed at producing "joint proposals" on the governance of the Eurozone before the end of the summer, Sarkozy's office said in a statement.

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Scarred London Opens for Business After Riots

After a relatively quiet night on London's streets, life started to return to normal Thursday following four nights of rioting that have left homes and shops in ruins and four people dead.

The owners of shops and cafes in districts of the British capital where rioters looted and set fire to shops put on a brave face and opened for business.

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Gulf Markets Down after U.S. Shares Plunge

Gulf stocks dipped in early trade on Thursday after U.S. markets plunged the previous day amid European debt troubles and as worries of a new U.S. recession kept investors nervous.

The Dubai Financial Market index dropped more than one percent shortly after opening, but reduced losses slightly by 11:25 am (0725 GMT) to 0.97 percent at 1,446.81 points.

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