World Bulletin / News Desk
A fire burned for a third day in two fuel storage tanks at Venezuela's biggest refinery on Monday, putting in doubt plans to restart the facility quickly after one of the world's most deadly oil industry accidents.
Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez told state TV the blaze remained contained to the storage tanks. He has insisted that the Amuay refinery can be restarted within two days, once the flames have been extinguished.
A gas leak caused an explosion and then a fire before dawn on Saturday at the 645,000 barrel-per-day facility, part of the world's second biggest refinery complex - obliterating homes nearby, killing at least 41 people and wounding dozens more.
State oil company PDVSA said that none of Amuay's production units was affected, and that Venezuela has enough stocks to meet its commitments to the domestic market and keep up exports.
President Hugo Chavez promised a full investigation into the tragedy during an emotional visit to the scene on Sunday.
Consumer prices increased by 1.6 percent year-on-year last month, Destatis reported in preliminary data.
The single currency powered to more than one-year highs Wednesday after European Central Bank boss Mario Draghi offered a more hawkish outlook for the eurozone than expected, with traders brushing off later attempts by his officials to play down his remarks.
The euro reached $1.1388 Wednesday, the highest level since a year earlier.
The IMF warned that "significant policy uncertainties imply larger-than-usual" risks to the US outlook on either side, since spending cuts could lower growth, while tax cuts could provide stimulus and expand the economy.
Now the VNO-NCW is calling for the Dutch parliament to reverse a 2015 decision to introduce a cap of 20 percent of annual pay on the bonuses which can be paid out to top managers in the banking industry.
The state-owned energy trading firm Lietuvos Duju Tiekimas said it signed the deal with the Texas company Cheniere Energy.
Adding to the upward pressure for oil is the crisis in the Middle East, where a Saudi-led blockade of Qatar has fuelled concerns of possible conflict.
Bourses in both Paris and Frankfurt dipped after a report from data monitoring company IHS Markit showed Eurozone private sector business activity slowed sharply in June while staying in expansion mode.
Analysts said that while the downturn in the headline readings was disappointing, the economy continued to put in a strong performance.
Crude prices stabilised after diving more than two percent on Tuesday on increasing fears of a global supply glut, as continued production in the US and elsewhere offsets an OPEC output cut deal.
Move estimated to save company $1B in investment costs
However, most other regional markets struggled after Monday's healthy gains, despite being given a positive lead from Wall Street where the Dow and S&P 500 closed at fresh record highs.