IMF and World Bank spring meetings / Italian coalition update / Wells Fargo not feeling fine

By Billy

Good morning, here’s your Friday morning briefing to set you up for the day ahead. Look out for these three things happening around the world today.

IMF and World Bank have their spring meetings in Washington DC

Global financial institutions the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank have their spring meetings in Washington DC today.

The big question mark hanging over the World Bank’s meeting is whether shareholding countries will agree to a multi-billion dollar capital increase for the institution.

Meanwhile, the IMF yesterday warned governments to avoid harming trade and investment which have been key drivers of the global economic recovery.

The meetings come as risk of international conflict is on the rise and the international community is searching to bring some stability to fragile regions.

Italy’s President gets an update on the country’s coalition talks

Italy’s Senate speaker Maria Casellati will today report back to the country’s President Sergio Mattarella on whether she has made any progress in fostering a coalition government.

However, there does not appear to be much evidence talks have moved at all. The 5-Star party gambit to entice the far-right Northern League into government and separate it from its Forza Italia partner looks to have failed.

Unless there is a last-minute breakthrough, the president is likely to take a few days to decide what to do next.

Regional elections over the next two Sundays could, depending on the outcome, also change the dynamic and point to a way out of the deadlock, Reuters reports.

Wells Fargo braces for $1 billion fine over misselling scandal

US regulators are preparing to fine banking giant Wells Fargo around $1 billion for misbehaviour in its auto and mortgage businesses, according to media reports.

The fine, which could be announced as soon as today, will punish years of selling unnecessary products to customers by the bank.

For years Wells Fargo was regarded as one of the country’s best-run banks but lately has been reeling from a string of self-inflicted crises.