ECONOMY

In Brief

Michaniki submits lowest bid for project Michaniki SA, a Greek builder, submitted the lowest bid to build an 8 kilometer-section of a roadway in Greece, according to an Athens bourse filing. The project has a budget of 46.9 million euros and will be completed in 36 months, according to the statement. (Bloomberg) Investors should favor Greek bonds, says ING Investors should favor long-dated Greek and Italian government bonds, according to ING Groep NV. «We see an outperformance of the back end of the curves of the periphery vis-a-vis core,» said Wilson Chin, a fixed-income strategist in Amsterdam at the bank, the biggest Dutch financial-services company. «The huge demand for the re-opening of the 10-year Greek bond yesterday and the new 10-year Spanish bond last week signals a further tightening is on the cards. We favor the back-ends of Greece and Italy.» (Bloomberg) Turkish measures Turkey’s government will announce fresh stimulus measures today to battle record unemployment in the wake of the financial crisis and help alleviate chronic poverty in the country’s southeast. The measures come despite warnings from economists and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that unchecked spending could put upward pressure on Turkey’s debt, inflation and long-term interest rates and hit investor confidence and Turkish assets. «An extension of recent temporary tax cuts [could] add to concerns over the widening fiscal deficit and would dampen odds, already low, of a near-term IMF deal,» Royal Bank of Canada said in a research note. Turkey has been locked in fruitless negotiations with the IMF since its last loan deal expired in May last year, with both sides now at odds over levels of government spending. Turkish newspapers have said stimulus measures include cutting corporate tax from its current 20 percent in poorer areas and hiring hundreds of thousands of new public sector workers. (Reuters) Oil storage JPMorgan Chase & Co, the second-largest US bank by deposits, hired a newly built supertanker to store heating oil off Malta, shipbrokers reported, in the company’s first such booking in at least five years. The bank hired the Front Queen for nine months, according to daily reports from Oslo-based SeaLeague A/S and Athens-based Optima Shipbrokers Ltd. David Wells, a spokesman for JPMorgan in London, declined to comment. JPMorgan, which has never hired an oil tanker based on data compiled by Bloomberg going back five years, follows companies, including Citigroup Inc’s Phibro LLC unit and BP Plc, in hiring ships to store crude or oil products at sea. The firms are seeking to take advantage of higher prices later in the year. (Bloomberg) Nabucco pipeline Austria’s OMV, the leading shareholder in the Nabucco gas pipeline, is confident Romania remains committed to the European Union-backed project, its chief executive said yesterday. In Romania to launch the construction of a power plant by local refiner Petrom, OMV Chief Executive Wolfgang Ruttenstorfer also said he hoped an agreement on the 7.9-billion-euro project would be reached this summer, as expected. (Reuters)