Stability and growth pact

The stability and growth pact, or SGP, played a key role in the establishment of the euro. The initial worry – especially from Germany and France – was that some eurozone countries might get around the European Central Bank’s monetary policy by increasing public spending and running large deficits. Hence the SGP, which limits each country’s budget deficits to no more than 3% of their total economy.

Ironically, France and Germany have broken those rules in the past, cutting taxes to stave off recession, which infuriated smaller countries that kept their budgets in line.

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Bill Bonner: hold on to your cash, the real financial crisis is yet to come

Merryn Somerset Webb talks to Bill Bonner about economic cycles, and the 'catastrophic credit crisis' that will make 2008 look like a picnic.


Which investment platform?

When it comes to buying shares and funds, there are several investment platforms and brokers to choose from. They all offer various fee structures to suit individual investing habits.
Find out which one is best for you.


4 March 1890: The Forth Bridge is opened


The Prince of Wales, later Edward VII, opened the longest bridge in the world – the Forth Bridge, nine miles west of Edinburgh, on this day in 1890.