Two prominent Czechs, Ivan Pilip and Jan Bubenik, jailed in Cuba for meeting anti-Castro dissidents, arrived home on Tuesday night after a public confession earned their release.
Austria's Erste Bank said on Tuesday that it has completed its acquisition plans with the purchase of Slovak Sporitelna and will now focus on the restructuring and profitability of its new units.
Eneko Landaburu, EU's Director General for Enlargement, said on Tuesday the EU could accept well prepared new members earlier than in 2004, a target date for enlargement set by the December EU summit in Nice.
The Czech Republic will reduce its ballooning public sector deficit in time to meet economic membership criteria of the Europen Union in two to three years, Czech Prime Minister Milos Zeman said on Tuesday.
The Czech koruna followed euro/dollar movements on Tuesday and was unaffected by the release of central bank board minutes showing members had voted unanimously to keep rates unchanged at a January 25 meeting. Late on Tuesday the koruna was trading flat at the morning's level 34.69/74 to the euro and from 34.78/80 late on Monday. The koruna/dollar had fallen to 37.25/28 from the morning's 37.01/05 and 37.06/09 late Monday.
State bond prices dipped on the news with the state 6.40/10 off 30 points from Tuesday's open at 98.70/00, yielding 6.59/6.54 percent and the state 6.75/05 down 20 basis points at 102.70/00, yielding 5.97/89 percent.