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The euro zone's trade surplus shrank more than expected in November amid a strong euro as imports grew faster than exports, the European Union's statistics office said on Thursday.
British house prices fell in December at their fastest rate since the recession of the early 1990s, a survey showed on Wednesday, raising fears the country's once buoyant housing market is heading for a sharp downturn.
Strong trade and investment powered the German economy to its second straight year of robust growth in 2007, preliminary data showed on Tuesday, but Europe's largest economy is expected to slow this year.
The European Central Bank left interest rates unchanged on Thursday amid continuing uncertainty regarding the outlook for the economy.
The Bank of England left interest rates on hold at 5.5 percent Thursday, despite clear signs of weakness in the retail and housing sectors.
The Bank of England is likely to hold interest rates steady at 5.5 percent when it meets Thursday, analysts told CNBC.com, but it looks set to resume its monetary-easing strategy in February.
The European Central Bank seems to have little choice but to keep rates on hold this time as well, despite rising inflation. Money markets are still not back to normal and there are signs of a weakening economy.
House prices in Britain recovered in December after three consecutive monthly falls, a survey by the country's biggest mortgage lender showed on Tuesday, easing fears of a precipitous decline in the property market.
Major central banks are satisfied with joint efforts to tame money market tensions around the turn of the year but will remain in close contact, policymakers said on Monday.
Euro-zone investors are the gloomiest in 2-1/2 years and their expectations for the next six months are the most pessimistic on record as the credit crunch continues to depress sentiment, a survey showed on Monday.
High oil prices, driving up the cost of transportation and other services, as well as spiraling food prices contributed to euro-zone inflation staying well above the target while Swiss inflation came in at a 12-year high, data showed on Friday.
The European Central Bank would be ready to raise interest rates again if necessary, new ECB Governing Council member Athanasios Orphanides said in a German newspaper interview published on Thursday.
After pumping in billions of euros to banks eager for cash in December, the European Central Bank on Wednesday said it would -- as expected by money markets -- remove much of that money.
European stocks had a turbulent second half in 2007 and are still in largely in recovery mode as the year draws to an end.
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown got a boost from an opinion poll on Sunday and said his priority for 2008 would be steering Britain's economy through the fallout from the global credit crunch.
The European Central Bank is determined to stop increases in oil and food prices becoming entrenched in a broader inflation rise, President Jean-Claude Trichet said in a newspaper interview published on Monday.
Britain's current account deficit hit a record high of 20 billion pounds in the third quarter, equivalent to 5.7 percent of GDP, official data showed on Thursday.
All nine members of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee voted to cut interest rates by a quarter-point in December and even discussed whether slowing economic growth meant a bigger move might be needed.
The European Central Bank and Bank of England flooded money markets with funds on Tuesday as the UK central bank chief warned of a possible "self-reinforcing" downward spiral in credit.
The euro zone had a higher-than-expected trade surplus in October despite a continued rise in the euro as exports grew faster than imports, the European Union's statistics office said on Tuesday.
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