Times Staff and Wire Reports

Argentina Gets IMF Loan Package: The government announced that it has put together a financing package that will give it an extra $11.1 billion to back the peso's fixed 1-to-1 link to the U.S. dollar. The package includes a renewed loan from the International Monetary Fund worth $2 billion and a similar amount pledged by local business people and foreign banks, Economy Minister Domingo Cavallo told a news conference in Buenos Aires. Cavallo, who has pledged never to follow the trail of devaluation blazed by Mexico and Brazil, announced that the rest of the money will come from the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank and a planned fiscal surplus of $4.4 billion. Cavallo said he would announce today tax hikes that will help achieve the surplus.

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