ECONOMY

In Brief

Economists see CPI at 1.6 percent in November Greek consumer price inflation is seen rising in November to an annual pace of 1.6 percent, mainly due to unfavorable base effects in energy prices, economists said yesterday. The median forecast of five economists surveyed by Reuters showed Greece’s headline CPI rate rising from an annual pace of 1.2 percent in October. The index had dropped to a 41-year low of 0.5 percent in May and June. «Headline inflation is expected to accelerate in November as favorable base effects in energy prices become increasingly weaker,» said economist Nikos Magginas at National Bank. An increase of taxi fares by 25 percent is also expected to weigh on the inflation reading, according to Magginas. The eurozone returned to inflation in November, with consumer prices rising 0.6 percent year-on-year, as more expensive oil boosted consumer prices by more than expected, after five straight months of decline. (Reuters) Hochtief shows interest limited to industries Hochtief Concessions, which failed to lure buyers to what would have been Germany’s largest initial public offering in two years, is casting doubt on whether investors will back a nascent recovery in European IPOs. Hochtief AG, Germany’s largest builder, had sought to sell as much as 49 percent of the unit that runs toll roads and airports to raise as much as 1 billion euros ($1.5 billion). The Essen, Germany-based company shelved the offering yesterday, citing the debt crisis in Dubai and «resulting disturbances in the international capital markets.» European share sales were rebounding from a two-year slump just as Dubai’s move to delay debt repayments sparked the biggest jump in stock price swings since 2008. Private equity firms are counting on share sales to let them return cash to investors by selling investments, while companies from France’s PPR SA to British insurer Aviva Plc are turning to the equity market to sell units, boost capital, or finance expansion. «The IPO market in Europe is still limited to certain companies and certain industries,» Julie Teigland, a Frankfurt-based partner at Ernst & Young, said in an interview. «It’s so early we can’t speak of a recovery just yet. We’ll see a window opening up in the first or second quarter of next year, but it won’t be for everyone.» (Bloomberg) Italian tax dodgers Half of Italians declare annual income of less than 15,000 euros ($22,600) and tax evasion contributes to a black market economy worth about 19 percent of gross domestic product, a report said. Only 2.2 percent of taxpayers say they earn more than 70,000 euros, Rome-based research institute Censis said yesterday in an annual report. About half declared income of less than 15,000 euros, keeping them in the lowest tax bracket of 23 percent, and about a third earned between 15,000 euros and 26,000 euros. Tax evasion is weighing on Italy’s economy as it struggles to shake off the worst recession since World War II. Italy ranks fourth among nations with the highest tax burden, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Unpaid taxes amount to 275 billion euros a year, more than the size of Portugal’s economy, Censis said in the report, based on 2009 figures. (Bloomberg)