A look at economic developments and activity in major stock markets around the world Friday:

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ATHENS, Greece _ Greece's future in the eurozone faced more uncertainty as protests again turned violent and dissent grew among its lawmakers after European leaders demanded deeper spending cuts.

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BERLIN _ The German Parliament is set to hold a special session on Feb. 27 to vote on the second bailout for Greece, a senior lawmaker said.

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LONDON _ Stock markets and the euro fell sharply after Greece's crucial bailout was put on hold by its partners in the 17-nation eurozone and the leader of a small partner in the country's coalition government said he would vote against the new austerity measures.

The benchmark index in Athens close 3.2 percent lower. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares ended 0.7 percent lower while Germany's DAX slid 1.4 percent. The CAC-40 in France lost 1.5 percent.

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TOKYO _ In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 index fell 0.6 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 1.1 percent and South Korea's Kospi dropped 1 percent.

However, mainland Chinese shares edged higher with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index gaining 0.1 percent. The Shenzhen Composite Index gained 0.5 percent.

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BUCHAREST, Romania _ Shippers say they are losing millions in trade because a lengthy stretch of the Danube River is stuck in the longest freeze in its recent history.

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MADRID _ Spain's new conservative government approved sweeping labor market reforms as part of a drive to retool a sick economy and solve Europe's worst unemployment nightmare.

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LISBON, Portugal _ Portugal's attempts to get some breathing space in its austerity and reform program appear to have won the support of Germany's finance minister.

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GUANGZHOU, China _ Canada wants to sell more oil to China but won't shy away from raising the issue of human rights as economic ties between the two strengthen, the Canadian prime minister said.




TOWNHALL MEDIA GROUP