Germany has many public holidays, some of which vary from state to state. Since most things are closed then, it's best to check dates before you make any plans.
Public Holidays in 2014
Germany's borrowing costs have fallen to a record low on an EU decision to impose new sanctions against Russia. While investors flee to the safe haven of German debt, they are selling shares in firms exposed to Russia.
The EU has for the first time adopted new sanctions against Russian oil companies, banks and defense firms over the Kremlin's support of separatist violence in Ukraine. Similar measures from the US could soon follow.
The South American trade alliance Mercosur is trying to strengthen its clout worldwide. A free trade agreement with the EU is in the works, but some member states' domestic agendas are proving distracting.