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Asian Equities Sell-Off; Oil Plunges - EMEA Brief 25 Mar

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  • Shares in Asia fell more than 2% amid growing fears that a recession is on the horizon, Japan's Topix was impacted the most as the index dropped 2.5% at the close. The Hang Seng, ASX 200 and the Shanghai Composite followed and all fell by at least 1%.
  • Numerous reports over the weekend suggested that senior ministers were plotting to oust Theresa May as doing so could enhance support of her Brexit deal, although this has been denied. Mrs May is set to meet cabinet ministers today to update them on her strategy for Brexit.
  • Special Counsel Robert Mueller has concluded that Donald Trump did not collude with Russia during his 2016 Presidential campaign which lead to Trump tweeting "No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total Exoneration". Although, the summary by the Attorney General William Barr contradicts Trump's tweet as the findings were "inconclusive".
  • Brent crude plummeted 0.7% from its previous close down to $66.56 per barrel whilst WTI futures slipped 0.9% to $58.52 due to the yield curve inverting, which can be seen as a strong signal that a recession is looming.
  • Gold saw a 0.2% rise to $1,316.51.

South Africa: Global equity markets are are trading lower this morning as fears of a global economic slowdown reemerge. US Index Futures are continuing Friday's decline and Asian Indices trade 1.5% to 2% lower on the day. The rand now trades back at its worst levels of the last few weeks. Gold is trading modestly higher, copper is significantly lower and Brent crude has given up around 0.5%. Tencent Holdings is down 3% in Asia, suggestive of a similar start for major holding company Naspers. BHP Group is down 1.3% in Australia, suggestive of a soft start for local resource counters.

Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT)

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Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar

Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades

  • British satellite operator Inmarsat has been sold for $3.4bn to a private equity consortium.
  • Uber is set to acquire Careem, a Dubai based rival taxi company, for a reported $3.1bn.
  • Majestic Wine is closing down its stores and will re-brand themselves as Naked Wine, CEO Rowan Gormley explained "Naked Wines has the potential for strong sustainable growth, and we will deliver the best results for our shareholders".

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