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BUSINESS NEWS APRIL 9TH, 2016


DIFFICULT BUT MANAGEABLE

Italian banks can deal over the next two to three years with a pile of bad loans that grew during a deep recession, the country's economy minister said, adding that the situation of their balance sheets was "difficult but manageable". "A two, three-year horizon is a reasonable time frame," Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan told a business conference on Saturday. "Following the crisis, banks' balance sheets are in a difficult situation - some more than others - but it's a manageable situation." Italian banking stocks have lost 40 percent this year as investors fret about high bad loans amid negative interest rates which are hurting profits.

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WALL ST. ENDS HIGHER

A sharp rally in crude oil and energy shares lifted U.S. stocks on Friday, but indexes registered losses for the week. U.S. crude oil CLc1 settled more than 6 percent higher after data showed lower U.S. stockpiles, driving gains of 2 percent in the S&P energy index .SPNY. In the latest comments from Federal Reserve officials, Fed Chair Janet Yellen said late on Thursday the U.S. economy was on "a solid course," while New York Fed President William Dudley said on Friday a cautious and gradual approach to raising rates was appropriate.

Investor focus should shift next week from oil and the Fed to quarterly reports, said Peter Kenny, senior market strategist at Global Markets Advisory Group, in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey.

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