Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Taking the worlds temperature

Russia today promised a 4 billion euro (£3.11bn) loan to support Iceland's foreign exchange reserves, whilst the the same time its President Dmitry Medvedev was unveiling new measures to prop up Russia's shattered banking system, injecting billions of rubles to ease a liquidity shortage one day after the country's stocks suffered their worst-ever day of trading.

Meanwhile on th eother side of the world Japanese shares dropped to their lowest level in almost five years amid growing fears over the widening financial crisis.

Dropping South, Australia's central bank has cut its official interest rate by a bigger-than-expected 1% today to ease credit concerns amid the global financial crisis.

But back in Europe German car maker Adam Opel AG today said it was shutting down production at its Eisenach plant for three weeks as the chaos had led to flagging demand for its vehicles. According to reports yesterday demand for new cars in the UK has dropped by 21% in the last six months.

And the EU finance ministers have agreed to back individual accounts of up to £38,900 at their meeting in Luxembourg. Whether this will be enough to persuade banks to start lending to banks again remains to be seen.

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