George Hay coordinates European financial coverage and writes about macroeconomics, the euro zone and UK/European financial policy. He covered European banks for Breakingviews during the financial crisis, and has also worked as a correspondent for AFX News and at United Business Media. He attended Edinburgh University and his work has been recognised at the UK’s Business Journalist of the Year Awards. Follow George on Twitter @gfhay
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The UK insurer’s 2014 results showed rising excess cash from operations. That’s reassuring, given tricky times for the sector and a 21 pct dividend hike. While the integration of Friends Life is a risk, Aviva doesn’t look to be doing the deal to cover up operating weakness.
The European Court of Justice has nixed the central bank’s efforts to locate central counterparties in the euro zone. The ECB’s desire to closely monitor clearing is understandable. But undermining the EU single market would have been a practical and political mistake.
The Spanish bank has already bid 1.1 bln euros for its Portuguese peer, but fellow BPI investor Isabel dos Santos wants a merger with local rival BCP. That would create competition issues. But dos Santos’ blocking stake suggests Caixa may have to pay up – if it can afford it.
- Austria finds apt target for landmark bank bail-in
- Lloyds investment case hinges on its next dividend
- HSBC tax storm exposes flawed succession policy
- Barclays bonus headache pounds into second year
- Sweden shows ultra-easy policy is contagious
- ING looks good in band of 2008 EU bank disasters
- Raiffeisen’s capital-raising has further to go