Global economic recovery is gaining momentum but could be cut off by a “sword of protectionism” now threatening global trade, International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said. Her prepared remarks did not specifically mention U.S. President Donald Trump’s “America First” trade agenda that aims to restrict imports into the United States. Source Reuters
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Turkey rejected a call from four Arab states on Friday to shut down its military base in Qatar, saying the base was a guarantor of security in the Gulf and demands for its closure represented interference in its ties with Doha. Source Reuters
The European Central Bank pulled the plug on two troubled Italian banks, sending them into insolvency proceedings and pushing ahead with efforts to clean up weak banks holding back the economy. The two banks, Veneto Banca and Banca Popolare di Vicenza, have struggled to overcome high levels of loans that were not being paid back.Source ABC
The ECB has approved the yuan as a reserve currency. This is a symbolic but historic step for China, which can now establish its currency in Europe as a counterweight to the US dollar, says DW’s Frank Sieren. Source Deutsche Welle