1. Danish Energy Sale to Goldman Sachs Meets Resistance

    Danes are critical of the partial sale of their national energy company to an American investment bank.

    Years of conservative rule ended in Denmark with the 2011 election of Social Democrat leader Helle Thorning-Schmidt, whose coalition also included the Social Liberal Party and Socialist People's Party. Two years later, the Socialist People's Party left the coalition over the decision to sell…
  1. Brussels Warns: Spain’s Labor Legislation Punishes Temporary Workers

    The European Commission urges Spain to eradicate the duality in its labor market.

    By Ana López-Varela The Spanish labor market is bearing its teeth toward temporary workers by penalizing them excessively. That is the verdict of the European Commission, who highlight concerns in a recent report titled "Wage Adjustment in Spain: slow, inefficient and unfair?" (PDF) published by the…
  1. America, Japan Block Trans Pacific Partnership Progress

    Protectionism in both countries is preventing progress on what could be a huge trade agreement.

    What could be one of the world's most comprehensive trade agreements, encompassing twelve nations that jointly account for 40 percent of global commerce, remains mired in disputes that have less to do with trade than domestic politics. The most recent Trans Pacific Partnership talks in Sydney, Australia…
  1. Russia Demands Guarantees Before Resupplying Gas to Ukraine

    Russia wants the European Union to guarantee that it will pay Ukraine’s gas bills before resuming supplies.

    Ukraine failed to unblock deliveries of Russian natural gas on Thursday when Russia demanded firmer commitments from European Union member states to help pay for Ukraine's gas bill. Talks in Brussels collapsed, Russian energy minister Alexander Novak told Russian media,…
  1. Did France, Italy Just Get Away with Breaking the Rules?

    France and Italy make relatively minor budgets adjustments to avoid a confrontation with the European Commission.

    The European Commission provisionally accepted France's and Italy's budget proposals for 2015 on Tuesday, saying it could not "immediately identify cases of 'particularly serious noncompliance' which would oblige [it] to consider a negative opinion at this stage in the…
  1. India’s Modi Relaxes Labor Inspections, Reduces Compliance

    The conservative prime minister makes it easier for businesses to comply with rigid and numerous labor laws.

    India's conservative prime minister, Narendra Modi, introduced a new system for labor inspections on Thursday that he said would be the first step in liberalizing the country's notoriously inflexible jobs market. Under the new regime, a computerized…
  1. French Economy Minister Seeks to Buy Time with Deregulation

    Emmanuel Macron hopes reforms can convince the rest of Europe to give France more time to reduce its deficit.

    France's economy minister, Emmanuel Macron, unveiled a series of economic reforms on Wednesday that are meant to convince the country's European Union partners it is committed to liberalization even as it fails to meet the bloc's…
  1. All Is Not Well in Germany But Merkel’s Coalition Slow to Act

    To sustain its competitiveness, Germany needs to invest. But the government has different priorities.

    When Marcel Fratzscher published Die Deutschland Illusion last month, it set off quite a bit of self-reflection in Europe's largest economy. But whether its central message -- that although Germany is now outperforming its peers, its future growth prospects could be dim --…
  1. Unwilling to Reform, France, Italy Miss Budget Targets

    Slow to structurally overhaul their economies, France and Italy continue to miss their fiscal targets.

    France and Italy on Wednesday announced separately that they would fail to meet their budget targets before 2017 in a setback for the austerity and economic liberalization agenda of Europe's largest economy, Germany. In a statement accompanying its draft…