Loans to households and companies in Europe grew at a faster annual pace in May as economic growth accelerated. Loans to the private sector rose 0.2% from a year earlier after increasing 0.1% in April, the European Central Bank in Frankfurt said today. M3 money supply, which the ECB uses as a gauge of future inflation, declined an annual 0.2% in May, the same as in the previous month. A stronger global economy and a weaker euro are boosting external demand for goods made in Europe. At the same time, a sovereign debt crisis has prompted governments across the 16- nation euro area to cut spending, threatening to undermine the regions recovery from its worst recession since World War II.
Air China to buy 20 Boeing planes
Air China said late on Friday that it would buy 20 Boeing 777-800 airplanes for $1.4 billion. The planes, which will be delivered between 2013 to 2015, will boost Air Chinas fleet capacity by about 5% from December 2009, based on available metric ton km, allowing it to increase the frequency of flights, the carrier said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange.
Taiwan to sign first trade deal with China
Taiwan is scheduled to sign its first trade treaty with China on Tuesday, strengthening commercial ties with the fastest-growing major economy and the islands biggest trading partner and investment destination. The accord to be signed in Chongqing, former headquarters of Taiwans ruling Kuomintang when they battled Mao Zedongs Communists during Chinas civil war, shows how much relations with the mainland have warmed since Taiwanese president Ma Ying-jeou took office in May 2008.