Polish retail sales slumped in April according to figures released on Friday, falling by an annual 0.2 per cent, worse than consensus which had been for a 1.1 per cent increase, in yet another indication of the severity of the slowdown hitting the Polish economy. Continue reading »
A note from Capital Economics on Friday suggests the economies of central and eastern Europe may finally be emerging into the light.
Or at least its title does (Emerging Europe: Slump in regional growth may be bottoming out). Its message, though, is that while recent GDP figures may have given grounds for that kind of hope, growth is extremely weak and any recovery is likely to be sluggish and uneven. Continue reading »
The Warsaw Stock Exchange is tightening the screws on its often-unruly younger sibling, the New Connect alternative market for small companies, by halting trading in 14 companies that failed to file their quarterly reports on time.
The earliest the 14 can return to the trading floor is Thursday – if they get their paperwork in no later than the end of Tuesday. Continue reading »
Jesus never came across as a big fan of markets – as he showed when he chased the moneychangers from the Temple – but now a group of Polish monks is looking to enter, albeit indirectly, into Mammon’s unholy precincts by floating on the Warsaw Stock Exchange.
A company called Produkty Klasztorne (Monastery Products), which pays Cistercian monks a licensing fee to use their trademark, recipes, and raw materials, is listing on the exchange’s smaller companies’ alternative market.
Continue reading »
Bad GDP figures from the eurozone on Wednesday but there’s a pleasant surprise from an unexpected quarter: Hungary’s economy contracted by only 0.9 percent in annual terms in the first three months.
Doesn’t sound like good news. But investors had been expecting a drop of as much as 1.4 per cent. With hopes of further improvement in the rest of 2013 buoying the Budapest market, the forint gained 1 per cent against the euro. Continue reading »
Poland’s economy expanded by only 0.4 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2o13, according to a flash estimate issued Tuesday by the country’s statistical agency, which will increase pressure on the central bank to accelerate rate cuts.
The worst quarterly growth number since 2001 suggests the Polish economy has not yet hit bottom as it battles slumps in both consumption and investment. Continue reading »
Rarely has a forecast been cut so fast. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development on Friday slashed its 2013 growth forecast for the emerging economies of central and eastern Europe and North Africa from 3.1 per cent in January to just 2.2 per cent.
While the effects of the eurozone crisis have abated, economic activity is slowing faster than expected in the region’s biggest two markets – Russia and Poland. Structural reforms are needed, and needed now, says the bank. But it always says that. Continue reading »
Monoethnic and monocultural Poland is becoming a more interesting place as it becomes wealthier, with the latest sign of its growing international attraction being the plans of a Vietnamese bank to start operations in Poland.
Vietinbank, the second largest partly private bank in Vietnam, is planning on expanding its foreign network, which currently includes two branches in Germany and one in neighbouring Laos. Continue reading »
Poland’s hopes of weaning itself off Russian natural gas suffered another blow on Wednesday when two foreign energy companies – Canada’s Talisman and Marathon of the US – said they were pulling out of the hunt for shale gas in the country. Continue reading »
Poland’s slowing economy prompted the central bank’s Monetary Policy Council to cut rates by a quarter point to a record low of 3 per cent on Wednesday, surprising a majority of analysts who had expected the council to stay put after a recent easing cycle that had seen the bank’s benchmark rate come down from 4.75 per cent near the end of last year. Continue reading »
Poland’s central bank on Wednesday surprised the markets with a 25 basis-point cut in its benchmark interest rate to a record low of 3 per cent.
The bank had said that it was all but finished with rate cuts after reductions totalling 150 basis points. But clearly the latest evidence of economic slow down has disturbed and worried policymakers. Continue reading »
Should Poles be getting out their umbrellas, or will a simple spring coat suffice? That’s the question as a debate begins over whether the clouds hanging over the Polish economy are merely grey or a much darker hue.
The gloomier forecast comes form the European Commission, which sees Polish growth slowing to 1.1 per cent this year followed by a recovery of 2.2 per cent in 2014. It correct, that lacklustre growth rate will have dire consequences for the country’s public finances. Continue reading »
Terrible news out of Poland on Thursday morning as Polish manufacturing showed signs of a steepening downturn, posting the worst results since the depths of the first wave of the economic crisis in 2009.
April’s purchasing managers index, compiled by Markit Economics for HSBC, hit 46.9, far below analysts’ expectations of 47.8 and the worst since July 2009. PMI figures of less than 50 denote a contraction of manufacturing, and Poland has been posting them for 13 successive months, the grimmest performance in a decade. Continue reading »
The global battle between Austerians and Spendanigans has opened a front in central Europe and the Spendanigans appear to be gaining ground.
In an interview with the FT, Robert Fico, the centre-left prime minister of Slovakia, came down firmly on the side of encouraging growth and concentrating less on belt-tightening. Continue reading »
Grazyna Piotrowska-Oliwa was fired Monday as head of PGNiG, the former Polish gas monopoly, as a bizarre preliminary agreement to expand Russian pipelines on Polish territory claimed yet another high profile victim.
Mikolaj Budzanowski, the former treasury minister, was defenestrated just over a week ago over the same issue: the signing of an agreement that could see a new leg added to the Yamal pipeline carrying Russian gas west to European markets. Continue reading »