The double-digit pricing returned following hefty legislation
The cost of a right to emit a ton of carbon dioxide in Europe moved last Wednesday into double figures for the first time since 2012, news wires reported. EU carbon dioxide allowance futures prices under the Emissions Trading System (ETS) for delivery in December 2018 rallied as high as €10.02/mt, up from €9.90/mt at the close Tuesday. The return to double-digit carbon pricing follows more than two years of legislative work in Brussels to overhaul Europe's flagship cap-and-trade system, following years of oversupply that led to carbon prices sinking as low as €2.50/mt in 2013.
More money for defence, wall with Mexico and opioid prevention tabled
President Donald Trump presented last Monday his budget proposal for fiscal year 2019, seeking to bolster military spending and requesting funds for infrastructure, construction of a wall along the border with Mexico and opioid treatment programmes, news wires reported.
The airline would buy up to 36 A380s worth $16bn, ensuring production
Airbus and Emirates Airline signed a contract for 20 A380 planes and an option for 16 more worth $16bn at list prices, firming up an earlier memorandum of understanding, the two companies announced last Sunday. The order would guarantee that the giant jet production will continue for at least another decade, news wires reported citing the statement.
Eastern economies spur EU growth
The EU economy grew at its fastest pace in a decade last year, Eurostat figures have confirmed. The EU-28 expanded by 2.5% in 2017, its strongest performance since 2007 when it grew by 2.7%. But this growth is to a certain extent due to the strong performance of the Eastern economies, Bloo­m­berg claims.
US oil surge could overtake demand: IEA
The Paris-based IEA raised its forecast for oil demand growth in 2018 to 1.4m barrels per day (bpd), from a previous projection of 1.3m bpd, after the IMF upped its estimate of global economic growth for this year and next.
IMF urges Arab countries to reduce public spending
Christine Lagarde urged, IMF chief, Arab countries to slash public wages and subsidies in order to rein in spending, achieve sustainable growth and create jobs.
Eurostar starts direct train to Amsterdam
Eurostar, the company running trains between London, Paris and Brussels, brings the Netherlands into its network for the first time.
Tui offsets winter losses with selling several hotels
German Tui, the world's largest travel company, has sold three hotels in order to overcome seasonal losses for 2017 last quarter as a result of the airline Niki going bust, news wires reported. In the three-month period October-December 2017, the company reported that net loss in the winter period shrank by 15% to €99.6m compared to the same quarter in 2016.
In Brief
Italy's rail company inks sale contract with an US fund
Following clearance from the European anti-trust authorities, the private Italian rail company Italo-NTV last Monday signed a sale contract with an American fund, ANSA reported. A week ago, Italo shareholders accepted a €1.98bn offer from America's Global Infrastructure Partners to buy 100% of the capital of the rail operator, so they scrapped plans for listing the company on the Milan bourse. Italo was launched in 2006 with the aim of challenging the state-owned Ferrovie dello Stato on high-speed routes all over Italy.

Opel plans to build next Corsa version in Spain
Opel, the German carmaker now owned by France's PSA Group, said a new version of its Corsa city car would be built exclusively in Zaragoza, Spain, from 2019 on. This includes a fully electric version that will start rolling off the production line in 2020. Opel said a new contract about working conditions struck with the plant at the end of January paved the way for further investment in the production there. The Opel Corsa city car has been made in Spain since 1982.

Amazon is cutting hundreds of corporate and retail jobs
Amazon is to cut hundreds of corporate jobs, most of which are in the company's retail division and in its Seattle headquarters. The exact number has not been announced, but according to a media report it's expected to be “several hundred”. With more than 566,000 employees as of December worldwide, Amazon is the second-largest employer in the US. Seattle headquarters alone employs over 40,000 people. Amazon said that the employees in the positions being cut were given the option to be reassigned to another division of the company.

China's R&D spending went up by 11.6% in 2017
China's spending on research and development (R&D) grew faster in 2017 as the country continued to push for innovation-driven development. Preliminary calculations showed that R&D spending rose 11.6% year-on-year to 1.75tn yuan ($280bn) in 2017, one percentage point higher than in 2016, the National Bureau of Statistics said on 13 January. The spending accounted for 2.12% of China's GDP. Chinese enterprises spent more than 1.37tn yuan on R&D last year, up 13.1% from 2016, while R&D spending at government institutions and colleges increased 7% and 5.2%, respectively.