Viktor Orbán: Hungarian stock markets rose 2% on Thursday as polls predict the prime minister will lead the government for a third term after Sunday’s elections.
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Viktor Orbán likely to win a third term, SRB issues bonds warning, Commission expands cancer protection, Puigdemont bail, Garcia perplexed. Delano’s breakfast briefing for Friday 6 April.
Investors back Orbán victory at polls
Hungary goes to the polls on Sunday with prime minister Viktor Orbán, the EU’s second-longest-serving government leader after Angela Merkel, seeking a third consecutive term. Opinion polls indicate that Orbán’s right-wing Fidesz party is likely to win the elections, but Hungary’s electoral system makes precise predictions difficult. 106 seats at the 199-seat parliament are dedicated to individual constituencies in a first-past-the-post system, while the remaining 93 seats are filled by the winners of a vote for party lists. Winning candidates in the individual constituencies also have their surplus votes added to national party lists. Much will depend on the mobilisation of opposition party voters. Reuters reports some pollsters predicting a turnout above 70% may cause Fidesz to lose its parliamentary majority. But the Hungarian stock market seems sure of an Orbán victory, with Nasdaq’s news source saying that Budapest's main stock index rose 2% on Thursday as investors backed a “clear win” for Fidesz.
Brexit bond warning
Elke König of the Single Resolution Board banking watchdog has issued another warning to banks to “plan for any possible outcome in the ongoing [Brexit] negotiations.” Reuters cites König speaking at a news conference on Thursday at which she said that Euro zone banks that have issued bonds under English law may face capital shortfalls if the UK and the EU failed to mutually recognise financial rules. König says that conservative estimates put the outstanding bonds issued by euro zone banks under UK law at around €100 billion. “One topic will be the question of how to deal with bonds issued by euro area banks under UK law. These will become third country issues and might no longer be eligible for MREL,” she said.
EU expands worker health protection
The European Commission on Thursday announced new measures to limit workers' exposure to five cancer-causing chemicals. This is in addition to the 21 substances that have already been limited or proposed to be limited. This will improve protection for over 1 million workers in Europe and help create a healthier and safer workplace,” said Marianne Thyssen, the Belgian Commissioner for employment, social affairs, skills and labour mobility. The move could prevent over 22,000 cases of work-related illness, according to the Commission. It will affect workers in sectors including battery manufacture, foundries, glass, laboratories, electronics, chemicals, construction, healthcare, plastics and recycling. Data from the European Union information agency for occupational safety and health shows that 52% of annual work-related deaths are due to cancer.
Bail set for Puigdemont
A district court in Schleswig-Holstein has set bail of €75,000 for Carles Puigdemont, the former Catalan president. The Guardian reports that the court has rejected claims to extradite Puigdemont on charges of rebellion. But proceedings on whether he should be extradited on the other charge, the misuse of public funds, will continue. The dropping of the rebellion charges extradition case means that “the risk of flight is substantially lessened,” the court said in its ruling on the bail appeal.
Garcia’s can’t explain Masters nightmare
Defending champion Sergio Garcia says he felt like he hit a lot of good shots, but that “unfortunately the ball just didn’t want to stop” after taking 13 strokes at the par-five 15th at Augusta on the first day of the 2018 Masters. Garcia’s round of 81 was the highest ever by a defending champion in Masters history. Jordan Spieth, who shot a 66, leads the competition by two strokes after 18 holes.