Morning business round-up: Greece vote lifts markets


What made the business news in Asia and Europe this morning? Here's our daily business round-up:

Stock markets have reacted positively after Greece approved a controversial package of austerity measures.

They were demanded by the eurozone and IMF in return for a 130bn euro ($170bn; £110bn) bailout but tens of thousands took to the streets to protest in Athens.

The vote was carried by 199 in favour to 74 against. Coalition parties expelled more than 40 deputies for failing to back the bill.

Elsewhere in Europe, employers' group the CBI has predicted the UK will avoid a double-dip recession, as it expects growth of 0.9% in 2012 and 2% next year.

In other UK news, the number of mortgages agreed for first-time house buyers picked up at the end of 2011, the Council of Mortgage Lenders said.

And public sector bonuses are to face new restrictions amid anger over pay levels at taxpayer-subsidised organisations.

In Asian news, Japan's economy shrank more than expected between October and December as a rising yen and floods in Thailand hurt businesses.

Gross domestic product shrunk by 2.3% during the period from a year earlier, much worse than 1.4% contraction that analysts had forecast.

Olympus, the Japanese cameramaker, reported a loss for the nine months to the end of December 2011 as it battles an accounting scandal.

The firm made a 33.09bn yen (£269m; $426m) loss over the period, compared with a 5.84bn yen profit over the same time in the previous year.

Olympus has admitted to hiding losses of $1.7bn for as long as 20 years.

Boeing said it expects the region's carriers to order planes worth $1.5tn (£950bn) over the next 20 years.

The planemaker has forecast air traffic in the region will grow by 6.7% per year during the same period.

Media caption,
Biz Heads

And Japan's stricken Tokyo Electric Power Company, owner of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, is to be given another $9bn by Japan's government.

The additional aid is aimed at helping the firm pay compensation to victims of radiation leaks at the plant.

The leaks, which happened after the earthquake and tsunami in March last year, resulted in some 80,000 people being evacuated.

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