German economic growth loses swing

Frankfurt  - After a strong start to the year, German economic growth has lost momentum in recent months, the nation's central bank said in its monthly report released Monday.

While the Bundesbank stepped back from predicting a second-quarter growth rate, the Frankfurt-based bank said it expected a slumping building sector as well as weak private consumption and a fall in exports to have undercut the performance of Europe's biggest economy.

German bank workers increase pressure for more pay

GermanyFrankfurt - Workers in the German banking sector embarked on brief token strikes Thursday in support of demands for higher pay. In the main banking centre of Frankfurt, some 500 clerks held a demonstration called by services union Verdi.

Verdi, Germany's second-largest union with some 2.2 million members, called the so-called "warning strikes" ahead of a third round of talks with employers set for Tuesday next week in Frankfurt.

"We are demanding a respectable rise. It is urgently necessary," Verdi spokesman Leonhard Regneri said, pointing to inflation in Germany running at well over 3 per cent.

Continental shares surge on takeover talks

Frankfurt  - Shares in giant German tyre maker Continental AG rocketed by more than 20 per cent Monday after the group confirmed that it had held takeover talks.

US mortgage rescue plans buoys European shares

Frankfurt - The US Government's move to shore up two key mortgage lenders hit by America's subprime market crisis has helped to ease the pressure on European markets with shares opening up Monday.

Oil price hits all-time high

Frankfurt - Oil prices surged to a record high Friday amid supply worries and an outbreak of international tensions surrounding Iran, a key oil producer.

European counterfeit banknotes jump

European Central Bank Frankfurt  - The European Central Bank (ECB) said Thursday that the num