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European stocks decline as the Bank of Japan’s policy of weakening risk appetite by Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A chart of the German stock price index DAX is pictured at the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, Germany, December 19, 2022. REUTERS/Staff

by Amruta Khandekar

(Reuters) – European stocks fell on Tuesday, dragged down by real estate stocks, after the Bank of Japan rattled global markets with a sudden policy shift that would allow long-term interest rates to rise further.

The regional index was down 0.5 percent by 0914 GMT, but retreated from a one-month low hit earlier in the session.

The Bank of Japan decided to allow the 10-year bond yield to move 50 basis points either side of its 0% target, wider than the previous range of 25 basis points, in a move aimed at mitigating some of the costs of prolonged monetary stimulus.

The policy adjustment was widely seen as the beginning of a potential end to Japan’s ultra-loose monetary policy, and comes as hawkish messages from other major central banks last week dampened hopes of ending monetary policy tightening anytime soon.

“It’s a very minor policy adjustment. It’s just the first adjustment from the Bank of Japan in a very long time, and they’re probably acknowledging that some of the inflation that they’re seeing, they’ll probably need to respond to in the future,” said Jerry Fowler, head of European equity strategy at UBS.

“It’s a moment when the market realizes that the direction of travel even for the BoJ is the prospect of higher yields at least in a precautionary way in case they need to deal with persistent inflationary pressures.”

The index fell 0.3% as German 10-year bond yields jumped to their highest in more than a month. Data showing producer prices fell for the second month in a row in Europe’s largest economy did not calm market tensions.

As markets head into the holiday season, the festive cheer has subsided due to the prospect of interest rates staying high for longer and hopes for a year-end rally have dimmed.

Interest rate-sensitive real estate stocks led the losses in the STOXX 600, falling 2.5 percent to their lowest in more than six weeks. Automakers followed suit, with losses of 1.4%.

The real estate sector also fell through shares of Aroundtown SA and Derwent London, which fell 11.4% and 3.5%, respectively, after Berenberg lowered their price targets.

Miners fell 0.3% as prices fell amid concerns about demand from China after new COVID-19 cases hit industrial activity in the country. [MET/L]

Among individual stocks, Orange shares fell after the French telecoms group said its executive vice president and chief financial officer would be leaving the company.

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Red Flags That Your Spouse Is Hiding Money (And What To Do About It)

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Marriage can be hard enough without one spouse hiding money from the other.

When financial infidelity occurs in the form of “hidden cash,” a marriage or a live-forever relationship can easily be ended.

The truth is About 30% of American couples suffer from financial infidelity. Other evidence shows that more than 75% of couples describe the hidden money situation as negative and common 10% of these scenarios end in divorce.



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US judge orders Norwegian Cruise Line to pay $110m for use of Cuba port By Reuters

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© Reuters. Norwegian American Airlines cruise ship Marina arrives in Havana Bay, Cuba on March 9, 2017. REUTERS/Alexander Meneghini/File/File Photo

Written by Brian Ellsworth

MIAMI (Reuters) – Norwegian Shipping Line (NYSE) has to pay $110 million in compensation for the use of a port confiscated by the Cuban government in 1960, a US judge said Friday, marking a significant milestone for Cuban Americans. Who are seeking reparations for the Cold War era. Assets confiscation.

The decision by US District Judge Beth Bloom in Miami follows her decision in March that use of the Havana Cruise Terminal constituted smuggling of forfeited property belonging to the plaintiff, Delaware-registered Havana Docks Corp.

The decision read: “The judgment is made in favor of Plaintiff Havana Docks Corporation and against Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Ltd.”

“The plaintiff was awarded $109,848,747.87 in damages,” it says, adding that the Norwegian must also pay an additional $3 million in legal fees and costs.

Norwegian Cruise Line did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel has sharply criticized the Helms-Burton Act, calling it an extraterritorial violation of international law.

Havana Docks also sued Carnival Cruise Lines (NYSE: ), Royal Caribbean (NYSE:) and MSC under the Helms-Burton Act, which allows US citizens to sue over the use of property seized in Cuba after 1959.

The ruling could fuel more lawsuits by Cuban exiles pursuing claims, worth $2 billion, according to one estimate, over asset seizures under late Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

It may also serve as a reminder to multinational companies of the complexities that can come with doing business in Cuba.

In 2016, US cruise ships began traveling to Cuba for the first time in decades after a détente negotiated by former President Barack Obama eased some provisions of a Cold War US embargo.

But the Trump administration in 2019 ordered a halt to all such cruises amid efforts to pressure Cuba over its support for Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, Washington’s ideological foe.

The Trump administration has also allowed US citizens to sue third parties for using property seized by Cuban authorities, a provision of the Helms-Burton Act that every previous president has waived since the law was passed in 1996.

Havana Docs says Cuba, which has been under a US trade embargo for decades, has never compensated it for taking the drug.

The four cruise lines sued in 2019 in the US District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Bloom in March held the companies liable for damages under the Helms-Burton Act, also known as the Libertad Act.

According to the US-Cuban Economic and Trade Council, a nonprofit organization that provides information on relations between the two countries, 5,913 validated claims related to property seized in Cuba represent an estimated liability of nearly $2 billion.

Forty-four lawsuits have been filed under Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, the organization says.

“For the current plaintiffs of Cuban descent, (the decision) will give them a moment of relief,” said John Cavulich, the group’s president. “It will give them a moment to say ‘You can run but you can’t hide,'” Cavulich said.

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Is a Royal Caribbean or Carnival beverage package worth it?

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An all-inclusive beverage package that gives you access to beer, wine, liquor, bottled water, soda, specialty coffee, and even shakes/juices may cost more than your cruise fare.

This is especially true right now when many cruise cabins are being sold at discounted prices while the drinks package prices have gone up.

Deciding whether to purchase a drink package is a challenge because you have to estimate whether you will be drinking enough to cover the cost. Or, more importantly, whether you’d spend more if you decided not to purchase a drink package.



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