Spain’s government is set to increase the retirement age today in a renewed bid to restore investor confidence after its 20 billion euro ($27 billion) plan to shore up savings banks failed to tame the nation’s borrowing costs.
The Socialist government plans to pass the bill at a Cabinet meeting that starts at 9 a.m. in Madrid, and will be followed by a news conference at 1:45 p.m.
WHAT TO WATCH: *La Caixa, a Spanish savings bank that is the largest shareholder in Criteria Caixacorp SA, reports fourth-quarter earnings in Barcelona after announcing a reorganizing of its banking business. *Criteria gives a webcast presentation at 9:30 a.m.
ECONOMY: *Spain’s National Statistics Institute will release fourth- quarter unemployment figures at 9 a.m. CET. *The Cabinet meets at 9 a.m. to discuss the pension overhaul.
EQUITIES: *La Caixa will turn its holding company Criteria Caixacorp SA into a bank, called CaixaBank, as it seeks to comply with new banking rules. Criteria will maintain its current stakes in Telefonica SA and Repsol YPF SA, it said. Grupo Catalana Occidente SA will pay a third 2010 gross interim dividend of 10 euro cents per share on Feb. 10, it said in a filing to regulators yesterday. Iberdrola SA plans to spend $365 million to build a cogeneration power plant in Mexico’s Guanajuato state and a wind farm in the state of Oaxaca, according to a statement from President Felipe Calderon’s office.
MARKETS: *The IBEX 35 Index advanced 1.5 percent to 10,828.7. *The spread between Spanish and German 10-year borrowing costs closed at 229.4 basis points.
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