Czech Republic

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The Czech branch of the British supermarket chain Iceland has filed for bankruptcy, Expats.cz reported. The chain was heavily impacted by the Covid pandemic and Brexit. The insolvency filing by the company ICL Czech, which operates the Czech branch, follows the news that the chain was closing its Czech stores. Much of the Czech branch's stock was imported from the United Kingdom, and the cost of importing the items increased dramatically due to the UK leaving European Union at the start of 2020.
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The Czech central bank lifted borrowing costs more than expected to the highest level since 1999 and signaled further monetary policy tightening to come as intensifying inflation pressure eclipses risks to economic growth, Bloomberg News reported. Policy makers on Thursday raised the benchmark rate by 75 basis points to 5.75% -- exceeding the forecasts of all analysts in a Bloomberg survey for a half-point move. The hike brings cumulative increases since June to 550 basis points.
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The Czech central bank raised borrowing costs to the highest level in the European Union, delivering what’s probably its last large increase and outlining a relatively dovish outlook for the rest of the year. The koruna weakened. Policy makers raised the benchmark rate to 4.5% from 3.75% on Thursday, as predicted by a majority of economists in a Bloomberg survey. The move brought the cumulative rate hikes made since June to 4.25 percentage points, the boldest policy moves since the country began targeting inflation in 1998.
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CSA, the Czech flag carrier, has lost 105 million Czech Crown ($4.6 million) in the first nine months of the year. However, it is making sufficient progress in paying off its debts, and so it will remain in the process of business restructuring and will not be declared bankrupt, SimpleFlying.com reported. The insolvency administrator of CSA announced that he was satisfied with the financial state of the Czech flag carrier in a report seen by Simple Flying. CSA will remain in the process of business restructuring and will not enter bankruptcy.
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The Czech Republic’s central bank has again sharply increased its key interest rate by a point and a quarter to 2.75%, to tackle soaring inflation amid the economy’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, the Associated Press reported. Thursday’s surprising move was the biggest single hike of the rate since 1997 and the fourth straight increase since June. Inflation jumped to 4.9% in September, well above the bank’s 2% target. The last time the bank changed its rates was Sept 30, when it increased the key interest rate by three quarters of a point to 1.5% in an effort to tame inflation.
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Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis denied any wrongdoing on Sunday in connection with an international investigative report that listed him among current and former world politicians and businessmen that it says have used offshore financial structures, Reuters reported. The Pandora Papers report, by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, said Babis moved $22 million through offshore companies to buy an estate on the French Riviera in 2009 while keeping his ownership secret. The report did not say the transactions broke the law.
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The Czech central bank pledged to keep raising borrowing costs after lifting interest rates by the most in nearly a quarter century, pushing the koruna higher and angering the government with the European Union’s most aggressive anti-inflationary campaign, Bloomberg News reported. Policy makers increased the benchmark rate by 75 basis points to 1.5% on Thursday, exceeding expectations for a half-point increase.
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The Czech Republic’s central bank has increased its key interest rate by a quarter-point to 0.75% to tackle inflation amid the economy’s rebound from the coronavirus pandemic, the Associated Press reported. It was the second such increase in about two months. Analysts had predicted Thursday’s move, and a member of the bank’s board had indicated that the rate might be hiked further later in the year as the bank considers high inflation as a major threat.
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The government leaders of Poland and the neighboring Czech Republic held intensive talks Tuesday in an attempt to solve a years-long dispute that resurfaced recently over a Polish coal mine, the Associated Press reported. The Czech government says the brown coal Turow mine, located in southwestern Poland, near the Czech and German borders, is draining groundwater from communities and causing other environmental harm to Czech citizens.
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Bond investors bracing for Czech rate hikes are finding a silver lining in the latest bond selloff, Bloomberg News reported. Primary dealers bid for more than 30 billion koruna ($1.37 billion) of Czech government bonds due in 2030 at an auction on Wednesday, the highest demand for a note with about 10 years in maturity since May. The rush reflects the juicy yield premium that the battered securities now offer over equivalent German bunds.

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