A roundup of news in finance, economics and business from around the world:
MANILA - Philippine communist guerrillas have warned three mining companies that they may be attacked again if they continue to use methods the rebels say harm the environment.
BRUSSELS - The euro zone is considering temporarily raising the size of its debt rescue mechanism to 940 billion euros ($A1.20 trillion) and then lowering the amount, two European sources close to the discussions said Wednesday.
FRANKFURT - The European Central Bank (ECB) says the flow of credit to businesses slowed in February - a sign that the bank's massive loans to the financial system have yet to spur a fragile eurozone economy.
MADRID - Spain will likely need emergency help from international lenders this year to shore up its banks and public finances, a leading economist at major financial group Citi says.
VIENNA - Austria's parliament approved Wednesday a new 27.9 billion euros ($A35.71 billion) austerity package aimed at balancing the budget by 2016 and winning back the country's top triple-A credit rating.
PARIS - Greek banks, hit badly by the bailed-out country's latest debt rescue accord, will be allowed more time to report their 2011 results, the finance ministry says.
JOHANNESBURG - Ratings agency Standard & Poor's has cut South Africa's outlook from 'stable' to 'negative,' citing slow economic growth and persistently high unemployment rates.
PARIS - France's government says it is considering releasing oil from its strategic reserves as part of a US-led effort to increase supply to bring down high prices.
LONDON - A flare is still burning on the North Sea offshore platform that has been leaking gas for days, operator Total says, though it claimed there was no threat of an explosion under current weather conditions.
TRIPOLI - Oil production in Libya has reached 1.45 million barrels per day, government spokesman Nasser al-Manaa told a news conference on Wednesday.
LEON - Mexico and China have signed an agreement aimed at preventing cheap Asian-made footwear from flooding the Mexican market, Economy Secretary Bruno Ferrari says.
LONDON - Lloyd's of London has reported a big loss for 2011, which proved to be the second-costliest year ever in terms of natural catastrophe claims for the global insurance industry.
LONDON - New technology has helped the British arm of Rupert Murdoch's publishing company, HarperCollins, post its highest revenue figures in three years, says a report released in London.
NEW YORK - NEW YORK, March 28 AFP - Falling energy and commodity shares have pulled US markets lower amid growth concerns and talk of strategic oil stocks releases by Western powers.
LONDON - European stocks have closed lower, with investors hesitant after recent gains on concerns over China and the eurozone and data showed the British economy in worse shape than first thought.
HONG KONG - Asian markets mostly edged lower after a slip on Wall Street and on profit-taking after the previous day's strong showing.
WELLINGTON - New Zealand shares were mixed, with the NZX 50 Index edging up 0.1 per cent led by gains in Chorus and Contact Energy.
WELLINGTON - The New Zealand dollar has risen to a five-month high against the Australian dollar as fears of a slowdown in China bolster the relative appeal of the kiwi.
SYDNEY - The Australian dollar is more than a third of a US cent lower after global stock markets dropped overnight.
SYDNEY - The Australian market looks set to open lower following tumbles on Wall Street and the European markets amid news that Britain's economy fared worse than expected last year.
CANBERRA - Federal Treasurer Wayne Swan has threatened to wield the axe at government programs in order to find extra budget savings.
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