A look at economic developments around the globe

AP News
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Posted: Oct 11, 2010 1:43 PM
A look at economic developments around the globe

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

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STOCKHOLM _ Two Americans and a British-Cypriot economist won the 2010 Nobel economics prize for developing a theory that helps explain why many people can remain unemployed despite a large number of job vacancies.

Federal Reserve board nominee Peter Diamond was honored along with Dale Mortensen and Christopher Pissarides for their analysis of the obstacles that prevent buyers and sellers from efficiently pairing up in markets.

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MUMBAI, India _ A surging tide of foreign cash has helped drive stocks in Indonesia and the Philippines to record highs, while India's market has been flirting with a lifetime peak.

That rush of money _ replicated across emerging Asia as investors seek a haven of high-growth amid miserably low returns in the developed world _ has pushed the Indian rupee and other Asian currencies to export-bruising highs. Policymakers in the region have started to intervene to keep their exchange rates competitive, especially as China keeps a tight rein on its yuan. Many fear a quiet trade war is brewing, fought not through tariffs but through currency.

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LONDON _ In Europe, the FTSE 100 index of leading British shares and Germany's DAX each rose 0.3 percent and the CAC-40 in France ended 0.1 percent higher.

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BEIJING _ Chinese stocks extended their post-holiday gains in robust trading, amid expectations that global inflation will boost resource prices. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index gained 2.5 percent. Elsewhere, Hong Kong's Hang Seng index closed 1.2 percent higher and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.3 percent, while South Korea's Kospi dropped 0.4 percent. Japan's financial markets were closed for a public holiday.

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PARIS _ It's showdown time for President Nicolas Sarkozy and France's labor unions as they try to stop his government from raising the retirement age by two years to save money.

Train drivers are launching an open-ended strike Monday night. They will be joined by workers from throughout the French economy on Tuesday. Both groups are angry at a pension reform the Senate is expected to pass by week's end.

Street protests also are being planned by labor unions on Tuesday and Saturday. Last month, such action brought 1 million people to the streets of France.

After months of battle over the retirement age, this could be the decisive week.

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LONDON _ Heathrow Airport reported its busiest September ever, bolstering hopes of a resurgence in the aviation industry.

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BRUSSELS _ The European Union said it was examining whether Ireland's nationalization of the country's largest building society EBS violated state-aid rules.

The probe comes after the European Commission in June temporarily approved an euro875 million capital injection for the Educational Building Society, which brought the firm under government ownership.

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SINGAPORE _ A logistics unit of Singapore state investment fund GIC said it plans to raise about $2.6 billion in one of the island's largest-ever public initial public offerings.

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BRUSSELS _ European Union seed funds to offset the recession after the 2008 financial crisis are breathing life into major _ and sometimes long-ignored _ energy projects, raising hope that another midwinter Russia gas cutoff won't leave many West Europeans shivering.