Business

Morning business round-up: Interest rate warning

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

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) has warned that low interest rates across the globe are a threat to world financial stability.

The BIS warned the low cost of borrowing had resulted in a credit and property price boom that was fuelling inflation, especially in emerging economies.

The French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, has said that his country's banks are prepared to relend 70% of the money that Greece owes them.

The move is an important part of a second bail-out being put together for the stricken eurozone lender in order to head off the imminent risk of a default.

Oil prices continue to slide in international markets, with US sweet, light crude dropping to $90 a barrel as worries over Greece and over the health of the US economic recovery continue to mount.

A strike by pilots at Virgin Atlantic would leave "an indelible scar on the company", founder Sir Richard Branson has warned.

The Balpa union is due later this week to announce dates for industrial action, in a dispute over pay.

In a letter to the pilots, Sir Richard said he was "extremely sad" about the threat of strikes, and that he would be happy to meet them for private talks.

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The Swedish carmaker Saab has announced a big order from a Chinese company, which means it now can afford to pay its staff.

Last week, the company said it was too short of cash to make the payments.

Now it has said that the pre-payment on a 13m euro ($18m; £12m) order for 582 Saab vehicles would give it the short-term funding it needs.

Nissan Motor's chief executive Carlos Ghosn has outlined a six-year growth plan that aims to raise the Japanese car firm's global market share.

The firm plans to have 8% of the world car market by March 2017, and wants to raise operating profits to 8% of sales in the same period, the company said.

In 2010 Nissan had a global market share of 5.8% - its highest yet.

Finally, cigarette firm Philip Morris is threatening to sue the Australian government over plan to introduce plain, brandless packing for cigarettes.

To hear about some of the wider trends in the world of business, listen to our Business Daily podcast which looks at why so many Greeks are still opposing the government's austerity package, despite what is at stake.

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