- The African swine fever disease has reached Southeast Asia and parts of Europe, including the world’s biggest producer of Pork, China. A prediction from the Japanese bank Nomura, is that this could cause prices to rise by 78% in China by 2020, to 33 yuan per kilogram from 18.5 yuan
- Senior US and China officials to organise more face-to-face trade talks, aiming to reach a deal by early May and to sign at the end of that month
- North Korea claims it has test-fired a new weapon with a ‘powerful warhead’, its first test since Kim Jong-Un and Donald Trump’s talks which ended without an agreement
- Pinterest, expected to start trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday, announced its IPO at $19 a share, higher than its original price range between $15 and $17.
- Asia Pacific markets decline, with the Nikkei 225 falling 0.62 percent, Hang Seng decreasing by 0.6 percent, Shanghai composite and Shenzhen component dropping 0.23 percent and 0.34 percent respectively, and the Shenzhen composite declining 0.261 percent.
- Facebook announce it could have ‘unintentionally uploaded’ email contacts of up to 1.5million users who signed up since May 2016 without permission or knowledge
Asian overnight: Asia followed US markets lower, as the global equity rally paused for breath, while weakening export demand in Japan hit sentiment there, causing a 0.9% drop for the Topix. Chinese markets also fell, but the Aussie rose after the Australian economy added more jobs than forecast in March.
UK, US and Europe: Global PMIs come into focus today, with eurozone and US figures released in the wake of a poorer Japanese number this morning. Pinterest has priced its IPO at $19 per share, above the previously indicated range but still lower than in private funding rounds two years ago..
South Africa: Weaker than expected US corporate earnings have seen the US lead global equity markets slightly lower this morning. Newswires are reporting that the US and China are looking to sign a new trade deal early on in May. The dollar has strengthened and with it we see commodity prices trading mostly lower and the rand slightly weaker. Tencent Holdings is down 1% in Asia, suggestive of a negative start for major holding company Naspers. The BHP Group is down 00.2% in Australia, suggestive of a flat to marginally lower start for local miners.
Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT)
Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar
8.15am – 9am French, German, eurozone PMIs (April, flash): German mfg PMI to rise to 45 from 44.1. Markets to watch: EUR crosses
9.30am – UK retail sales (March): sales to rise 3.3% YoY. Markets to watch: GBP crosses
1.30pm – US retail sales (March): expected to rise 0.3% from -0.2%. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses
2.45pm – US mfg & services PMI (April, flash):manufacturing PMI to fall to 51.8 from 52.4, and services PMI to fall to 52.6 from 55.3. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses
Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades
- Unilever expects full-year underlying sales growth to be in the lower half of the 3-5% range previously forecast, as Q1 sales grew 3.1%.
- Funding Circle reported a 23% rise in originations for Q1, while loans under management rose 44% to £3.4 billion.
Countryside upgraded to neutral at JPMorgan
ING FP raised to overweight at Morgan Stanley
Ludwig Beck upgraded to buy at Montega
Vopak upgraded to hold at Bank Degroof Petercam
ASML downgraded to hold at Nord/LB
Ericsson Downgraded to Sell at SEB Equities
Nordex downgraded to neutral at Goldman
Proximus downgraded to neutral at JPMorgan
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