Significant welfare reform must be implemented across the Middle East and North Africa to satisfy the socio-economic demands of the Arab Spring, according to a World Bank-Gallup survey published on Tuesday.
Stronger "social safety nets" -- such as income support and temporary employment programs -- are needed in the region, where government fuel subsidies "benefit the non-poor to a much greater extent than the poor," it said.Full Story
Global credit ratings agency Moody's said on Tuesday the outlook for India's investment grade credit rating was stable, partly thanks to high investment, sparking a jump in share prices.
Moody's said that the country's Baa3 ranking was underpinned by "strong economic growth" and investment in its annual credit analysis on India.Full Story
The European Union announced Monday it was lifting its asset freeze on Egyptian and Tunisian funds, imposed as sanctions before the countries' strongmen rulers were ousted in the Arab Spring uprisings.
The EU's council of ministers said it had taken steps to "facilitate the return of misappropriated funds to the Egyptian and Tunisian authorities" now that Egypt's Hosni Mubarak and Tunisia's Zine El Abidine Ben Ali had been replaced by elected governments.Full Story
Iran is planning to build new oil storage facilities so it can store more of the fuel it is having a hard time selling due to Western sanctions over its disputed nuclear program.
State-run Press TV quoted Mahmoud Zirakchianzadeh, Director of the Iranian Offshore Oil Company, as saying nearly 8.1 million barrels will be added to Iran's crude oil storage capacity by the next summer.Full Story
Central Bank Governor Riyad Salameh opened on Monday the London Stock Exchange markets as part of his trip to England to take part in the Lebanon Capital Market Day conference.
He said at the event: “This development helps highlight the special investment opportunities that Lebanon provides.”Full Story
Swiss banking giant UBS was hit twice over on Monday for allowing a rogue trader to commit massive fraud, with British regulators imposing a nearly $50-million fine and Switzerland banning its investment bank from staging takeovers.
In yet another black mark for Swiss banking, regulators in Britain and Switzerland moved fast to punish UBS for failing to stop rogue trader Kweky Adoboli, who was sentenced last week to seven years behind bars in Britain for gambling away $2.3 billion (1.8 billion euros).Full Story
The U.S. Internet giant Amazon said on Monday that it would open a fourth dispatch center in France with the likely creation of 2,500 jobs, as it negotiates a tax dispute with the French government.
The facility would improve the handling of orders from customers in northern France but also in Europe and the world, Amazon said.Full Story
Catalonia's leader Artur Mas says the powerful region's economy can stand tall in Europe without Spain. But could Spain survive without Catalonia?
The prospect of an independent Catalonia of 7.5 million people lying to the northeast of Spain seems distant with Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's government vowing to block any referendum.Full Story
U.S. shoppers spent heavily online on the crucial Black Friday shopping day, for the first time topping a billion dollars in online sales in a single day, analysts and retailers said.
The four-day Thanksgiving holiday weekend is the kickoff to the U.S. holiday shopping season, and Black Friday has long been considered the critical day that turns retailers' books from red to black.Full Story
Share prices on the Egypt Exchange declined almost 9.5 percent by midday (1000 GMT) on Sunday, after President Mohamed Morsi assumed sweeping powers that sparked clashes and polarized the country's politics.
The main EGX-30 index shed 9.49 percent to reach 4,923.19 points, according to the Egyptian Exchange.Full Story