Morning business round-up: EU forecasts 'mild' recession

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

The 17-member eurozone is set for a 'mild' recession, the Commission said.

It added that the economies of the larger grouping of 27 countries that make up the European Union would stay more or less flat.

The figures are compiled by the Ifo Institute, which said it was demand within Germany that was protecting businesses from the worst effects of the eurozone debt crisis.

The German economy shrank by 0.2% in the last three months of 2011, but economists are confident that it will grow in the first three months of 2012, narrowly avoiding a recession.

Media caption,

Biz Heads

Credit Agricole is France's third-largest bank and its rivals Societe Generale and BNP Paribas both posted profits last week.

The bank said that it would write down 75% of the value of these investments.

Also on Thursday, Germany's Commerzbank posted flat profits.

Commerzbank is amongst the most exposed to Greek debt out of any German bank.

In Japan, the yen fell to a seven-month low against the dollar after the Bank of Japan (BoJ) introduced measures to stimulate the economy.

The BoJ introduced the measures on the 14th of February, since when the yen has fallen by 3.7% against the greenback.

Chancellor George Osborne said RBS was "cleaning up the mess after the biggest bank bailout in history".

In the latest edition of Business Daily Ed Butler asks if the surging price of oil might yet make paupers of us all.

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