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Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
- Asian markets were up in overnight trading with the Shanghai Composite up 1.23%. Major European indices are in the green and U.S. markets have opened positive.
- German banks and the government have reportedly agreed on a proposal to roll over Greek debt holdings, though it could be changed during a meeting with finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble today. German banks and insurers hold €2 billion of Greek sovereign debt set to expire by 2014, and another €4 billion by 2020. Meanwhile, the Greek parliament is expected to approve legislation implementing a 5-year austerity plan today. Now here are the 15 countries most buried under debt >
- Eurozone inflation rose 2.7% in the year to June, but below market estimates of 2.8%. European Central Bank president Jean-Claude Trichet hinted at a rate hike next week by saying the monetary policy was “accommodative” and that they maintained “strong vigilance.”
- Unemployment fell for the 24th straight month in Germany, with the unemployment rate dropping to 7% in June. Retail sales, however, fell 2.8% in May from the previous month when adjusted for inflation. Forecast was for a gain of 0.5%.
- Initial jobless claims came in slightly worse than expectations. Read about it here >
- Vodafone has said it may get an annual dividend of $5.5 billion from its 45% stake in Verizon Wireless. Vodafone has not received a dividend from its U.S. partner since 2005 while it has been focused on repaying its debt.
- UK public-sector workers have gone on strike today to protest pension reforms that push government employees to contribute more to the pensions and retire later. 750,000 members from four unions are reported to be staging a one-day strike. Now here are the biggest entitlement spenders in the world >
- S&P has said it will cut its U.S. credit rating from AAA to its lowest level ‘D’, and Moody’s said it will reduce its ranking to the Aa range or within three steps of the highest level, if the government fails to increase the debt limit and defaults. Don’t miss: The 10 weirdest cuts in the GOP spending plan >
- Chicago PMI grew a better than expected 61.1 points in June >
- A new poll by The New York Times has found that 9 out of 10 Americans still believe home ownership is a crucial part of the American dream. 45% of those polled thought the government should do more to help homeowners. Check out the 10 cities still getting killed by foreclosures >
- BONUS: Denise Richards adopted a baby girl from the U.S. and has named the child after her mother Joni Richards who passed away from cancer in 2007.
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