LONDON (Reuters) - Europe’s corporate recession is expected to accelerate, according to the latest forecasts, as companies struggle with uncertainties from Brexit, the protracted U.S.-China trade spat and Germany’s manufacturing recession.
Companies listed on the STOXX 600 regional index are now expected to report a drop of as much as 5.3% in third-quarter earnings, worse than the 3.7% fall expected a week ago, according to I/B/E/S data from Refinitiv.
That compares with growth of 14.4% in the year-earlier quarter and would be the worst EPS in at least three years.
Companies in the region have been in an earnings recession since the second quarter when earnings dropped 2.1%, their second straight quarterly fall.
Consensus for revenue improved slightly with forecasts for 0.1% growth, compared with a 5.9% rise a year ago and 3.3% growth in Q2.
Reporting by Joice Alves, editing by Karin Strohecker
The joy in planning a vacation in Europe comes from booking Mediterranean boat trips or researching restaurants in Paris, not the boring details of how you pay for those experiences. But there I was, stuck in a parking lot in Lerici, Italy, because I had forgotten to set up a personal identification number on my credit card (many unmanned kiosks in Europe, like parking ticket machines, require one). That I write about such things for a living only makes the story more embarrassing, so the following checklist has been a crucial part of my European travel prep ever since.Bring at least two credit cards from different networks
A well-chosen travel credit card should be your main form of payment in Europe. From the London Tube to a neighborhood patisserie, the fraud protection a card offers is unbeatable: You would rather have a thief using your card for their Mitte district shopping spree in Berlin than depleting your actual bank account with your A.T.M. card. Also, the larger spending limit won’t crimp your style if a hotel or a rental-car company places a 200 euros hold on the card.
Pick a credit card that does not charge a foreign transaction fee and you’ll save yourself up to 3 percent of each purchase. And if you have an American Express or Discover card, carry a Visa or Mastercard too, since these cards are more widely accepted abroad.
Before you leave, alert your bank that you’ll be traveling, either with a phone call or through its app. This should let you use your card without incident, although overly cautious financial institutions sometimes mess up and ping you with a fraud alert anyway. While in touch with your bank, see if it allows you to set a P.I.N. on the card (some cards, like the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card, give you the option). If you don’t have a P.I.N., you should still be able to use your credit card in person, and some unmanned kiosks sometimes allow you to skip this step. Chase, which issues Wirecutter’s favorite travel rewards card, recommends you push the Enter, Continue, or Cancel button when asked for your P.I.N. If these don’t work, you’ll have to pay in cash.Bring one debit card that you can use at European A.T.M.s
Smaller shops may not accept cards or might “pass on the extra processing fees associated with credit cards to customers,” said Aaron Klein, a Brookings Institution fellow.
So if you want to pay for that pieróg in cash, consider opening a checking account that doesn’t nickel-and-dime you abroad. The ideal option doesn’t charge A.T.M. fees, reimburses A.T.M.-operator expenses worldwide, and forgoes foreign transaction fees. Ken Tumin, founder of DepositAccounts.com, recommends the Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking Account, which gives you those benefits. (You need a Charles Schwab brokerage account to get that checking account, but neither one requires a minimum balance.)
If you don’t want to set up a bunch of accounts just to avoid fees, check your bank’s international A.T.M. partners. Bank of America customers can avoid fees in a host of countries by using designated partner machines (Deutsche Bank in Germany, for example). You likely get better exchange rates at an A.T.M. than you do at a currency-exchange window, or from your bank before you depart.Bring your mobile wallet
Apple Pay and other digital wallets are picking up steam abroad, and these mobile contactless payment systems (where you wave your phone in front of a payment terminal) could save you a lot of hassle — especially if you lack cash or don’t want to fumble with your wallet.
Make sure you’ve loaded your cards with no foreign transaction fees on your phone before you take off. Apple Pay should work even if you’re in airplane mode, so you don’t need a local SIM card to use it.
Taylor Tepper is a senior staff writer at Wirecutter, a New York Times company that reviews and recommends products. A version of this article also appears at Wirecutter.com.
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Thousands of years ago, two massive armies fought at the Tollense River Valley in north Germany, not far from the Baltic Sea. During the battle, a soldier who had trekked all the way from southcentral Europe was killed, his body falling into the river. Now, a new study highlights that the soldier’s belongings were discovered resting eight feet down on the bottom of the river, perfectly preserved in the mud.
A scuba diving archaeological team found the objects — a collection of bronze tools, cylinders and scraps — among the bones of 140 warriors while exploring a new area of the river back in 2016.
“Our ‘diving heroes’ documented a considerable number of human bones and Bronze finds on the ground of the river in their original position,” Thomas Terberger, of the Lower Saxony State Office for Cultural Heritage in Hanover and co-author of the study, told Fox News. “This made it possible to better understand the context of the finds- we can see there that the human bones are directly associated with arrowheads, three dress pins, bronze tools, a valuable belt box and the scrap metal find, which we can interpret as the belonging of a warrior.”
ANCIENT BRITONS HAD GIANT WORMS IN THEIR KIDNEYS, STUDY SHOWS
The tightly packed cluster of objects (sans the bag or box they came in, which had long ago decayed) consists of 31 pieces of bronze. Also included were a small sword, knife, awl and chisel.
According to the study, the bundle is the first of its kind to be found this far north. The discovery allegedly offers up evidence that soldiers traveled hundreds of miles to meet for battle, indicating a high level of social organization.
“The presence of foreign goods in burials, settlement and depositions does not necessarily mean the movement of many people, [however] the case is different at the Tollense Valley Battlefield site,” Terberger added. “In this extraordinary case, the objects found in the valley are related to the individuals of the battle who ended up in the river. The Bronze finds might have been connected to the battle and the equipment of the dead; it is also possible that offerings of equipment took place after the battle.”
The team identified parallels for the new find with objects more commonly discovered in areas like eastern France or the Bohemia region of the Czech Republic. Bronze arrowheads and dress pins used by warriors for their clothes were also recovered, which are typically found in burials in southern central Europe.
“The only Bronze sword (type Riegsee) found in the river is also an outlier in Northeast Germany,” Terberger continued. “This type is only typical for southern regions such as southern Germany to Bohemia.”
MYSTERIOUS MEDIEVAL SKELETON AT PRAGUE CASTLE REVEALS ITS SECRETS
Also recovered were three gold spiral rings, which were worn by Bronze Age elite warriors in southern Central Europe. In addition to the artifacts, bones found scattered about on the riverbed at the site had strontium levels that weren’t consistent with isotopes found in the bones of locals.
Combined, these factors seem to show that Bronze Age people were able to communicate over long distances, enough so to organize a meeting place for battle — quite a feat to do so on such a large scale before more modern forms of communication.
Thousands of remains have been found at the Tollense Valley battlefield since a conservationist happened upon a bone with a protruding arrowhead back in 1996. It’s estimated that up to 4,000 men battled it out around 1250 B.C.
“[The Tollense Valley Battlefield] is the first evidence of a Bronze Age battlefield site and, according to our knowledge, the only prehistoric battlefield of that time in Europe or probably the world,” Terberger said. “The extension and scale of the battle does completely change our image of the Bronze Age in Central Europe. The new finds fit well to the more general evidence from the site: this was not a local conflict but (also) warriors from more distant, southern regions were involved.”
The study was recently published in the journal Antiquity.
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