China's GDP rose by 6.6% in 2018, the slowest expansion in nearly three decades, the government said. Factory activity, retail spending and investment all declined, the National Bureau of Statistics said.
The slowdown across the eurozone has surprised central bankers and risks derailing their plans to raise interest rates this year. Despite statements from policymakers that they would consider hiking rates by the end of this summer, a flow of weak economic data might prevent them from doing so until next year.
Italy's central bank expects the country's economy to grow by just 0.6% this year and 0.9% in 2020, according to its latest quarterly economic bulletin, down from earlier projections of 1% and 1.1%, respectively. Vincenzo Boccia, head of business lobby Confindustria, said the Italian government must do more to stimulate growth and cut the deficit.
Barclays CEO Jes Staley remains confident in the face of a bid from activist investor Edward Bramson to take a board seat and change the firm's strategy on investment banking.
Eurozone household debt now stands at its lowest level in 13 years, below that in the US and UK, figures from the Institute of International Finance show.
The EU's policing of its budget rules might actually encourage countries to breach its limits, writes Viktoria Dendrinou. Although the EU has reprimanded countries for breaking the Stability and Growth Pact, it has ultimately stopped short of imposing sanctions on offenders.
Ireland rejected a proposal by UK Prime Minister Theresa May to negotiate a bilateral deal over its post-Brexit border with Northern Ireland. Instead, Ireland continues to support the Brexit deal agreed upon by the British government and the EU, said Deputy Prime Minister Simon Coveney.
Implementation of the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive will be a greater focus of regulators this year after 2018 served as an informal grace period, according to a study by the Deloitte Centre for Regulatory Strategy. Among areas to fall under scrutiny are transaction reporting, payments for research and sweeteners.
Digital currency exchange operator Binance is launching a Jersey-based fiat money to cryptocurrency trading platform. The new platform will allow clients to trade sterling and the euro in pairs with either bitcoin or Ethereum, the firm said.
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