bookmark_borderEuropean stock markets rise as the political situation in Italy stabilizes

European shares were trading between a flat quote and a slight upward bias early Monday, while Italian stocks were recovering after a series of sales driven by political nerves, while all eyes were on the meeting this week of the European Central Bank.

The Italian stock market performed better than the rest after suffering its worst day in months on Friday, as political tensions prompted speculation of early elections that would increase uncertainty for investors, but could also lead to a coalition of center-right more favorable for the market.

After ending last week with a marginal rise, in the hope that the US Federal Reserve would reduce interest rates by a more aggressive half a percentage point next week, the benchmark index of euro zone values ​​rose around 0.05% at 0732 GMT.

The main Milan index showed a similar rise but the broader pan-European index that includes London and other non-euro markets was marginally lower.

The ECB meets on Thursday, and the money markets estimate that there is more than a 50% chance that interest rates will be reduced by 10 basis points. Analysts estimate that the Fed’s decision for next week will determine whether the rebound in shares since May will continue or be paralyzed.

The results continued to flow, with the Dutch health technology company Koninklijke Philips NV rising 2.7% after having exceeded comparable sales estimates for the second quarter.

Energy values ​​remained green, following the increase in oil prices due to tensions in the Middle East.

bookmark_borderThe return of the heat wave will worsen the drought that was already affecting France

France will know, from Monday, July 22, a new episode of heat wave that may worsen the drought in the country – seventy-three departments are already subject to water restrictions.

In an interview with the Parisian, the Minister of Agriculture, Didier Guillaume, announces a “plan of general mobilization”: a series of measures to help farmers and ranchers, the main victims of this aridity. “We need to help struggling farmers get through this difficult milestone, especially those who are struggling to feed their animals or already using the hay stocks that were to be kept for this fall and winter,” said Mr. Guillaume.

Among the main announcements of the minister, is a request for early release of a portion of European aid, to grant “a billion euros cash advance”. France will therefore ask the European Union to ensure that 70% of aid granted under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is paid in mid-October, instead of 50% usually. The mechanism of agricultural calamity, which had last year to “unlock 196 million euros in favor of farmers,” will be activated again, added Mr. Guillaume.

Other emergency aid: nine additional departments will be affected by the force majeure clause “to allow farmers to mow fallows, to be able to feed their animals, because there is simply no more grass in the pastures for them. to feed ” . These are Cantal, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, Alpes-Maritimes, Loiret, Haute-Savoie, Jura, Nièvre, Haut-Rhin and Loir-et-Cher, where must surrender Didier Guillaume on Monday.

The government also wants to establish “solidarity flows” between departments with fodder and those threatened by scarcity. The chambers of agriculture will be in charge of coordinating this solidarity, but the logistics and transport of fodder will be financed by the State.

bookmark_borderWhy does Banxico accelerate the withdrawal of money from the market?

The Bank of Mexico makes the largest sale of Cetes so far this year, via extraordinary auctions, which involves subtracting liquidity, removing money from circulation in order to avoid upward pressure on interest rates or the speculative purchase of dollars to the same one that diminishes the potential to the demand of goods and services to have a greater control over the inflation.

The central institute carried out this Wednesday an extraordinary auction of Cetes for terms of 182, 259 and 336 days, placing all of the up to 40 billion pesos offered. While the demand for these instruments was reported in 66 thousand 442 million pesos in Cetes, according to data from the Bank of Mexico.

The relation between those offered in Cetes by the central institute and those demanded by the participants in the extraordinary auction was 1.66 times, although it showed marked contrasts between the terms.

“Despite the more dovish bias in the Bank of Mexico minutes published last week, the operation showed a modestly weaker demand to our expectations with a total coverage ratio of 1.66 times” according to those expressed in a document by the analysts of Banorte.

Where a greater appetite was observed was within a year, when the relationship between supply and demand was 2.04 times.

The yields were located at 8.20, 8.16 and 8.05 percent in the terms of Cetes auctioned at 182, 259 and 336 days, respectively.

So far in July, it is the second time that this mechanism has been used to reduce liquidity, in the midst of both external and internal tensions, for an amount that involved a withdrawal of money from the market for 75 billion pesos. greater so far this year.

Through the sale of debt paper, in this case of short term, such as the Cetes, the central institute seeks to balance the surplus of liquidity , of money, to avoid that they derive in pressures of rise in the interest rates in the secondary market or that in some of them the exchange market is oriented to the purchase of dollars.

By withdrawing money from circulation through the sale of Cetes, in this case, it also helps to moderate the demand for goods and services, which gives us the possibility of better control over inflation.

Purchase and sale operations of securities are one of the main instruments that the Bank of Mexico has to manage liquidity in both a short and long-term horizon, either withdrawing money or injecting it into the market.

bookmark_borderBrussels files Amazon for possible abuses in the use of data

The European Commission announced on Wednesday the opening of an in-depth investigation to the American multinational Amazon to clarify if there have been monopolistic abuses in the use of commercial data of those who sell their products through the online platform.

The formal file opened by Brussels will serve to clarify whether Amazon violated European rules on competition, for example in the way in which it used sensitive data from third parties obtained through its ‘marketplace’ (or points of sale) or the treatment of the data of the winners of the ‘Buy Box’ of the platform.

They will also examine in detail the impact on this selection of Amazon’s use of sensitive information about the sales points of the vendors included in the list.

The ‘Buy Box’ appears visibly on the Amazon site and allows customers to add items from a specific merchant directly to their shopping cart, so gaining this advantage is essential for sellers, since in the end the Most sales go through this transaction.

“Online sales have increased the possibilities of choice for users and lower prices, we must ensure that large platforms do not eliminate these advantages with anti-competitive behavior,” said Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.

Therefore, explained Vestager, has taken the decision to “examine in detail the commercial practices” of Amazon and its dual role played by the platform, as a retailer and as a point of sale.

The community rules do not establish closed deadlines for the conclusion of the investigation, of which the Community Executive has informed not only Amazon but other competitors and if it concludes that the platform violated European standards could result in a multi-million dollar fine.

bookmark_borderDcoop asks to order the oil sector to avoid a structural crisis

The agri-food group Dcoop, heir to the old Hojiblanca, which produces 15% of Spain’s olive oil, fears that the current low-price crisis may become a structural problem , for which it claims to encourage consumption and better regulation of the sector. Its president, Antonio Luque, has indicated, in an interview with Efe, that there is “much to be done” in the coming years to “order” the oil market, which is experiencing a crisis of low prices after a record harvest of 1,800,000 tons in Spain.

According to Dcoop, the production of olive oil can increase by 500,000 tons in five years , which threatens to turn the current problem into a structural one. This cooperative, which is the world’s largest producer of olive oil, is committed to regulate the sector and encourage consumption to achieve a balanced price for farmers and consumers.

Among the causes of the current situation, Luque points out the atomization of supply, since most of the 1,800 existing oil mills are not grouped . “There is an important percentage in which the farmer sells the oil when he decides”, which “distorts” the market, explains the president of Dcoop. In his opinion, it has gone from a demand market, in which an oil truck was sold without problems, to another supply, which lowers prices, because “there are operators who take advantage of that situation.”

Price balance

Luque is committed to finding a “balance” in prices so that they are acceptable both for producers – to ensure the viability of the product – and for consumers – so that consumption does not decline. When the protests began due to the oil crisis, the price had dropped to 1.70 euros per kilo, which had “passed the red light in an important way,” says Luque. Now he is recovering and at the end of the year he can be on average between 2 and 2.5 euros, he predicts.

The sector “has to work so that the price of olive oil can be between 2.5 and 3 euros per kilo in origin, ” says Luque. “If the oil were at a structural value of 3.5 or 4 euros, as some say it should be worth, thousands of hectares of olive trees would be put in” not only in Spain, but also in other countries, with what “we could – has warned- to die of success, “he adds.

We must maintain a balance because “we can not continue to increase our olive oil production to save year after year, ” argues Luque, who defends both the mechanisms of market regulation and storage aid in the face of crop fluctuations and boost consumption.

According to the president of Dcoop, at the end of September “some 700,000 tons of this crop are going to be left over, oil that” will be needed “next year, in which between 1.1 and 1.3 million tons are expected , so “it would be a pity to have to sell” the product and that in 2020 it will cost “an excessively high price to the consumer”.

The strategy of the agro-food cooperative Dcoop, which accounts for around 15% of the production of olive oil in Spain, is to boost consumption to sell more, especially in other countries, such as the United States, France, Germany, England, Brazil, Russia, China and Japan. For the existing plantations, in the world is going to happen in the coming years of a production of 3 million tons of olive oil to 4 million, so “we need that increase in consumption”, has advanced.

Dcoop produces an average of 225,000 tons of olive oil each year – this harvest has reached 275,000 – of which half are exported. “If there was not a project like Dcoop’s, the price situation at origin would have been much more complicated than it is,” Luque emphasized.

bookmark_borderTokyo falls before the doubts about the business results of April-June

The Tokyo Stock Exchange fell today in the face of doubts that they are planning about the soundness of the business results of Japanese companies for the April-June quarter,

The benchmark Nikkei index , which includes the 225 most representative securities on the market, fell 50.2 points today, 0.23%, to 21,416.79.

The Topix , a broader index that groups the firms with the highest capitalization, lost 7.59 points, 0.49%, to 1,556.37 whole.

The food, agriculture, fishing and real estate sectors led the losses.

The victory of the ruling formation of the Japanese Conservative Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, in the elections to renew part of the Upper Chamber paved the way for the VAT hike to be applied in October, which would go from the current 8% to 10%, planned by the Executive.

The measure fears the impact may have for many companies in Japan, which together with the fall of Wall Street on Friday and doubts about the results that the great values ​​of the Nikkei published in the coming days, made the selective back slightly.

Retailers were among the main losers given the damage they can face with the October tax hike.

In this way, the operator of 24-hour stores and supermarkets Seven & i Holdings lost 1.3%, while the cosmetic manufacturer Shiseido fell 1.9%.

Beverage giant Asahi Group Holdings dropped 8.9% on information that it will buy the Australian brewer Carlton & United Breweries for about 11 billion dollars (about 9.9 billion euros) from Anheuser-Busch InBev.

The trading volume rose to 1.63 trillion yen today (some 13,453 million euros), down from 1.92 trillion yen (15,847 million euros) on the previous day.

bookmark_borderOil seized by Iran: London will make known its response

After a crisis meeting chaired by Prime Minister Theresa May and consultations with its European allies, the UK is scheduled to announce on Monday its response to Iran’s arrest of the British-flagged tanker in the Strait of Hormuz.
“The ship was seized under false pretenses and illegal and the Iranians should release him immediately with his crew,” the spokesman of the leader told reporters.

“We are not seeking a confrontation with Iran, but to seize a ship that is doing legitimate business by internationally recognized shipping is unacceptable,” he said, adding that the operation fueled escalating tensions. in the Gulf.

For his part, the spokesman of the Iranian government, Ali Rabii, said Monday that the seizure of the tanker “was a legal measure” necessary to “ensure regional security.”

This crisis comes in a very delicate political context for the British, since Theresa May, who failed to implement the Brexit, will leave office Wednesday.

The head of the Conservative government chaired since 0930 GMT an interministerial crisis meeting at Downing Street, during which will be addressed including the issue of “maintaining the safety of navigation in the Gulf.”

Candidate for the succession of May, the head of the British diplomacy Jeremy Hunt should inform Parliament on Monday of the “measures” that the United Kingdom intends to take.

Hunt held talks on Sunday with his French and German counterparts, with whom he agreed that “the safe passage of ships into the Strait of Hormuz is a top priority for European countries,” according to the Foreign Office.

Asked by the BBC on asset freezes, Finance Minister Philip Hammond said: “We already have a wide range of sanctions against Iran, especially financial sanctions, so it’s not clear that there are other immediate things we can do, but of course we are looking at all the options. ”

Owned by a Swedish shipowner, the tanker Stena Impero was boarded Friday by the Revolutionary Guards, the ideological army of the Islamic Republic, on the grounds that he did not respect the “international maritime code”, a version challenged by the British.

The vessel and its 23 crew members are held off the port of Bandar Abbas in southern Iran.

His arrest took place a few hours after the decision of the Supreme Court of Gibraltar, the British territory located in the extreme south of Spain, to extend for 30 days the detention of an Iranian tanker, the Grace 1. This tanker, suspected of wanting to deliver crude to Syria – which Tehran denies – in violation of European sanctions, was seized on July 4 by British forces.

bookmark_borderMicrosoft trusts the cloud to double its profits

The services in the cloud and especially the Azure platform were once again the key that allowed Microsoft to close its fiscal year 2019 with more than twice the benefits as last year, although this segment began to offer its first symptoms of fatigue.

The firm of Redmond announced Thursday a net profit of 39.240 million dollars (34.794 million euros), more than double the 16.571 million (14.693 million euros) obtained in the previous year , and an increase in turnover of 14% to reach 125,843 million dollars (111,814 million euros).

As usual in recent years -especially since Satya Nadella took over as CEO of the company, replacing the historic CEO Steve Ballmer in 2014- the great engine behind Microsoft’s growth was again the cloud, which entered a 21 % more than a year ago.

Within this business segment, which the firm has dubbed “Intelligent Cloud”, the most prominent element was also once again its Azure service platform, a direct competitor of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud and whose turnover went up 64%

Although it is still very good, this percentage of growth is the lowest that Azure has experienced in the last four years (in 2018, for example, it grew 89%), a slowdown that points to a certain fatigue in the market, where only Azure, but also its competitors, have grown at a dizzying pace in recent times.

The increase in revenue in the cloud was followed by the business segment “Productivity and Business Processes”, which includes, among other software products, the popular Office package and the professional social network LinkedIn, which in 2019 had a 14 , 8% more.

Finally, ” More Personal Computing”, which hosts products and services as disparate as the Windows operating system and the revenues derived from the Xbox video game console, increased turnover by 8.1%.

The increase in revenues, however, is not the main element behind the drastic increase in profits, but this is mainly explained by the large reduction from one year to the next in terms of tax provisions.

The 19,903 million allocated by Microsoft in 2018 to pay taxes were drastically reduced this year to 4,448 million, a downward consequence of the fiscal reform promoted by the Government that presides over Donald Trump, approved in December 2017 and that began to be implemented in 2018.

On the other hand, the shareholders of the company obtained a yield of $ 5.11 per share during the last twelve months, compared to the $ 2.15 earned in the previous year.

The operating results (before interest and taxes) of the company that Bill Gates and Paul Allen co-founded 44 years ago were 42,959 million (22% more than the 35,058 in 2018), and the company managed to reduce its long-term debt up to 66,662 million with respect to the 72,242 with which it closed 2018.

“It has been a record fiscal year for Microsoft as a result of our agreements with leading companies in each sector, and every day we work together with our clients to help them build their digital capabilities,” he congratulated when the results were published by the CEO of the company. , Satya Nadella.

Precisely on Wednesday, a day before presenting results, the company revealed an agreement with the US communications giant AT & T, which will become its main provider of cloud services, an operation valued at more than 2,000 million dollars.

The data from the Windows creator were well received on Wall Street, where Microsoft shares were up 1.44% to $ 138.38 per share in electronic transactions after the closing of the New York switchboards.

bookmark_borderAfrica: a challenge for the World Bank and the IMF

On the map of the world of extreme poverty, Africa is in bright red. And this problem is likely to increase as the population grows in the coming decades.
The work of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank to combat this long-standing plague on this continent has had mixed results since its inception 75 years ago.

Today, the Bretton Woods institutions are simultaneously faced with the need for massive investments in these countries’ infrastructure, job creation to cope with the population explosion and the threat posed by climate change. in a region unable to bear the costs.

“In Africa, the problems are particularly visible”, summarizes David Malpass, President of the World Bank in an interview with AFP.

The most recent data from the institution show that extreme poverty, defined by people living with a maximum of $ 1.90 a day, has fallen sharply worldwide falling to 10% in 2015 against about 30% in 1990.

However, it continues to grow in sub-Saharan Africa, which was already four years ago, more than half of the extremely poor people.

Projections show that by 2030, nearly 9 out of 10 people living in extreme poverty will come from this part of the world, while the population of the continent will grow at the same time by 1.3 billion, or more than half of the world’s population growth.

For 2019, the IMF expects a growth of 3.5% of GDP for this part of the world, against 3% in 2018. But the expansion recorded on average in recent years remains insufficient to create the 20 million jobs that would be each year to absorb new entrants into the labor market, warned the Fund in April.

Africa’s working-age population is projected to grow from 705 million in 2018 to almost one billion by 2030, according to the African Development Bank (AfDB).

Upon his arrival in April, David Malpass emphasized the urgency of tackling poverty. And it was symbolically in Madagascar, Ethiopia and Mozambique that he then surrendered.

There are still 700 million people living in extreme poverty: “700 million too many,” he lamented.

The former US Under Secretary of the Treasury, who has openly criticized the World Bank while still working under the Trump Administration, has set itself the goal of improving the effectiveness of the institution.

For African countries with heavy debt inherited from the mistakes of the past, he intends to encourage “good policies”, “a key element” to attract private investment.

For Masood Ahmed, who has worked for the IMF and the World Bank for a long time, the development of Africa is all the more difficult because it is weakened by climate change.

“In the next 20 years, the global economy will be twice as big as it is today, and the infrastructure we need to support this economy will have to double,” he said. AFP.

Projects will have to be carried out while reducing greenhouse gas emissions by a third.

bookmark_borderBercy wants a record fine of 117 million euros for Leclerc, accused of “abusive business practices”

To pursue at all costs its policy of the lowest prices of large distribution, in the name of the defense of purchasing power, Leclerc has again stumbled. In a statement issued Sunday (July 21st), the Minister of the Economy, Bruno Le Maire, and his Secretary of State, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, announced the judicial summons of several entities of the group to ask for a record fine of 117.3 million euros, confirming information from Le Figaro .

To justify its decision against the French number one retailer, Bercy relies on a thorough investigation of the Directorate General of Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Prevention (DGCCRF). In early 2018, it was seized by various suppliers Leclerc. They accused its French central purchasing Galec and two other bases in Belgium, Eurelec and Scabel, which include orders from super- and hypermarkets, to use illegal means to lower prices, including threats – and updates. execution – dereferencing in the rays.

Read also Bercy sues the central purchasing Leclerc
“This is a very sophisticated investigation conducted by more than twenty agents: 5,000 messages and 8,000 pages of documents were seized during the searches , which took place in February 2018, details Ms. Pannier-Runacher. The fine is high, because there are many indications of a deliberate intention to circumvent French law to impose unrequited price cuts on suppliers. ” It is, she says, ” three times the amount of overpayments received by Leclerc ” , which was 39 million.

An amount that does not include repayments of indus and without comparison with the few million claimed so far. It sends a strong signal: farmers and agri-food manufacturers consider the fines too painless to stop these bad practices.

In its defense, the retail giant recalls that the negotiations concerned do not concern SMEs or the agricultural world. “We can not forbid companies to buy in Europe , says the World CEO Michel-Edouard Leclerc, pointing out that such contracts involve outright purchases with” the twelve largest companies ” such as Nestlé, Mondelēz, Procter & Gamble or Unilever.

“A gift made to multinationals”
For the president of the E. Leclerc centers, the government “is looking for scapegoats in a media mess” and “to blame E. Leclerc for the failure of the Egalim law” on food that came into effect in January. ” And to increase prices at Leclerc,” laments the leader, who considers this assignment as “a gift to multinationals . ”

In Bercy, we reply by pointing to the growing relocation of trade negotiations to Belgium. “We went from four industry groups in 2017 to 14 in 2018 and 27 this year,” notes the Secretary of State. The government does not want to stop there to track down these abusive business practices. “We are paying particular attention to central purchasing, not just Leclerc. Further investigations are underway, ” emphasizes M me Pannier-Runacher. It is the whole philosophy of the Egalim law that is at stake: finding an economic balance between the agricultural world, the agri-food industry and large-scale distribution, in particular to allow an increase in the income of certain farmers.

E. Leclerc had been the least conciliatory of major brands in the debates preceding this law. This is not the first time he is in the line of sight of Bercy. In June 2018, he had summoned her to the Paris Commercial Court, demanding a fine of 25 million and a refund of 83 million, or 108 million.

Article reserved for our subscribers Read also Price war: how the supermarket circumvents the new rules
After three years of investigation (2015-2017), the DGCCRF discovered that the group imposed price discounts of 10% to twenty of its suppliers in addition to that provided for in their contracts, without any commercial counterpart (advertising, implementation). before products in store …). These additional rebates were imposed on manufacturers of major food brands sold at Lidl, a competitor that E. Leclerc fears low prices. Justice still has to decide on this case.

In 2015, judges had already sanctioned the sign. The court of appeal had then condemned to repay 61.3 million to 48 suppliers (Bonduelle, Ferrero, Jacquet …) for sums improperly collected at end-of-year discounts. Rebate applications which, for justice, created a “significant imbalance” between the manufacturers and the brand, for the benefit of the latter. The reimbursement of these sums was accompanied by a fine of 2 million euros.