Greece says IMF is flexible about reformsTsipras/Putin in Moscow: agendaGreece: Germany owes us €279bn in war reparations
UK services PMI suggests economy grew by 0.7% in Q1 Eurozone’s private sector boosts economic outlookEuropean markets rise
Before we close up, here is a summary of the day’s main events.
European markets have also built on earlier gains, boosted by a strong set of PMI surveys from the UK and eurozone this morning.
US markets have opened up.
The International Monetary Fund has published part of its spring outlook this afternoon, ahead of the full publication next week.
It says t world’s major economies risk a long period of low growth unless governments do more to overcome the after-effects of the financial crisis and the longer term problem of ageing populations.
Highlighting Germany, Canada and Japan as three of the worst affected countries, the IMF said that only by adopting a list of policy reforms that include greater spending on research and development, infrastructure projects and workers’ skills could potential output be raised to nearer levels seen before the 2008 crash.
It said governments should also consider action that also includes “better designed tax and expenditure policies to boost labour force participation, particularly for women and older workers”.
Germany’s economy minister has said his country is ready to help Greece and stay within the eurozone but it wasn’t clear how Germany could help further.
Speaking at the economy ministry in Berlin, Sigmar Gabriel said:
This country is ready to help Greece get back on its feet – moreover in my firm opinion in the euro and not outside the euro.
How one can do that, does still not appear to me to be very clear.
#Greece a lot of wary western diplomats in Athens on eve of #AlexisTsipras visit to the kremlin for talks with #vladimirputin
Helena Smith, the Guardian’s correspondent in Athens, has more details on the agenda for the Moscow meeting between Putin and Tsipras on Wednesday.
The Greek government has announced that prime minister Alexis Tsipras will fly to Moscow, accompanied by a delegation of officials, at 4pm today.
The far-left leader will meet president Vladimir Putin at 1pm local time, followed by a working lunch between the two men at 2pm.
The Greek finance ministry has given a few more details following Yanis Varoufakis’s meeting with IMF boss in Washington.
Mrs Lagarde … stressed that, in Greece’s case, the Fund is willing to show utmost flexibility in the way in which the government’s reforms and fiscal proposals will be evaluated.
A spokesman for Vladimir Putin, has reportedly been making comments ahead of the Russian President’s meeting with Greek PM Alexis Tsipras on Wednesday.
There is no need to limit everything to credit and financial issues. Russian-Greek relations are quite multifaceted.
They are much broader, and the entire range of relations will be discussed tomorrow.
We do not rule out that these issues will also be raised.
Sticking with Greece, there has been no let up on its insistence that it is owed reparations by Germany for the Nazi occupation of Greece during the war.
Speaking on Monday, Greece’s deputy finance minister Dimitris Mardas said that Germany owes the country nearly €279bn (