Senators criticised the law adopted on Saturday by the Lower House aimed at diluting the influence of politicians over Czech Television's output, saying it did not bring the row any closer to resolution. Thirty-six senators voted to reject the law, 35 wanted to adopt it. The Lower House is expected to easily override the veto since the two main parties, the Social Democrats and Civic Democratic Party, control a solid majority. If the Lower House does override its senior partner, the bill would then go straight to the president, who also has the right to veto it.
Czech retail sales growth slowed in November from the previous month, posting the second-slowest annual growth for last year, as car and fuel sales declined, the Czech Statistical Office reported. Retail sales rose by 1.1% from November 1999, following a revised 5.3% annual growth rate in October. That is slower than expected. The median estimate of 12 analysts polled by Bloomberg forecast a 4 percent growth rate, with estimates ranging from a 2.6% to 8.3%. Retail sales have been growing for a year, indicating the Czech economy has pulled out of a recession. On the other hand, the data shows inflation may remain in check this year, as domestic demand still appears subdued.
The Czech koruna fell below the 35.600 barrier for the first time in three months on Wednesday due to poor state budget and retail sales figures. The koruna opened weaker against the euro at around 35.400/430 and quickly dropped to 35.632/662 after the statistical bureau reported November retail sales. In late afternoon trading it had rebounded somewhat to 35.522/541. The koruna/dollar was at 38.158/188 after 37.884/928 in early trade and 37.684/714 late on Tuesday.
The longest state 6.40/10 firmed 10 basis points to 96.05/35, yielding 6.99/6.94 percent. The state 6.75/05 rose 15 basis points to 101.05/101.35, yielding 6.44/36 as the low retail sales data showed inflationary pressures remain in check, putting off any possible rate moves by the central bank.