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Europe, again …


Another day, same Europe.

• From Bloomberg: Fitch Cuts Spain, Italy Credit Ratings; Outlooks Negative

Spain had its foreign and local currency long-term issuer default ratings cut to AA- from AA+, while Italy had the same set of ratings to A+ from AA-, the company said in statements today. The outlook for both countries is negative. Fitch also maintained Portugal’s rating at BBB-, saying it would complete a review of that ranking in the fourth quarter.

• From the WSJ: Moody’s Cuts U.K. Lenders

Moody’s Investors Service Friday downgraded 12 U.K. banks and building societies, and left the door open for further ratings cuts at three of the U.K.’s largest lenders as it reassesses the willingness of the U.K. government to support the institutions.

• From the WSJ: EU Steps Up Crisis Response

European Commissioner for Economic Affairs Olli Rehn on Friday revealed among other things that there are talks to fast-forward plans for a permanent rescue vehicle while he expects a solution on recapitalizing European banks to come within a few days.

“I am confident that the euro-zone summit and the European Council will be able to make a decision in mid-October on how a coordinated Europe can help to solve the distrust towards the banks’ capitalization,” Mr. Rehn told a conference in Helsinki.

His comments were echoed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who said Friday that EU leaders will discuss at the Oct. 17-18 summit how to proceed with possible bank recapitalizations.

Here are the earlier employment posts (with graphs):
• September Employment Report: 103,000 Jobs, 9.1% Unemployment Rate
• Employment Summary, Part Time Workers, and Unemployed over 26 Weeks
• Duration of Unemployment, Unemployment by Education and Diffusion Indexes
• Employment graph gallery

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