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  1. Tiger Woods achieved his fifth Masters victory. The victory is worth around $22,500,000 to his sponsor Nike (according to Aprx Marketing data). Asian shares crept towards nine-month high after US treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin reported a positive outlook on trade talks. The Hang Seng rose 1.2% and the Nikkei climbed 1.4% to reach it's highest level in 2019. USD/JPY dips from 112.09 high this morning (following mid week rise last week). Volkswagen unveiled the ID Roomzz at the Shaghai Auto Show. The fully-electric SUV said to compete with Tesla's Model X should be available in 2021. Gold has fallen to over to 1286, a more than one-week low. Asian overnight: The week looks set to begin with a new record high for the FTSE 100, after the MSCI Asia-Pacific index hit its highest level since June 2015. A weaker finish for the US on Friday was driven by a poor CPI number that hit the US dollar, and also caused an intensification of the rout in US 10-year yields. UK, US and Europe: Friday saw Chinese financing data and bank earnings push the S&P 500 through 2900, and the positive atmosphere has continued into the new week. The benchmark index is now just over 1% away from the all-time highs of last October, and further progress in US/China trade talks would seem likely to push the index past this peak and into unexplored territory. US bank earnings continue in focus today, with Citigroup and Goldman Sachs taking centre stage on what is an otherwise quiet start to the week, with just the Empire mfg index out later this afternoon. According to weekend comments from Treasury Secretary Mnuchin, talks between the two behemoths are progressing, but it looks like any US-China deal will see a ramp-up in trade tensions between the US and Europe. An almost empty calendar means investors will continue to focus on OPEC, with the oil ministers of Russia and Saudi Arabia having both said that further cuts would be needed in production, ideally until March 2018. This focus will only intensify as the 25 May meeting in Vienna gets closer. South Africa: The Jse Allshare Index looks set to open flat to marginally higher this morning, following on from a strong close in US equity markets on Friday and positive trade in most Asian equity markets this morning. Precious metal prices continue to trade lower with gold now below the $1290/$ mark and platinum back below the $890/$ mark. Crude oil price are slightly lower today but remain at elevated prices. The rand remains surprisingly firm as we lead up to the general enelections next month. Tencent Holdings is down 0.55% in Asia suggestive of a negative start for major holding company Naspers. The BHP Group is trading flat to marginally lower in Australia this morning, suggestive of a similar start for local miners. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 1.30pm – US Empire state manufacturing index (May): expected to rise to 13 from 5.2. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades TUI said that the loss for the first half was €308.6 million, from €394.9 million a year earlier. Turnover rose to €6.38 billion, from €6.18 billion a year ago. It said that summer trading was in line with expectations, with 10% growth in earnings still forecast. Dignity said that revenues for the first three months of the year were 15% higher at £93.3 million, while underlying profits were up 20% at £37.4 million. The firm said that deaths for the period were 167,000, up 7% from a year earlier. It continues to expect that the number of deaths in 2017 will be lower than 2016. Victrex reported a 5% rise in first-half pre-tax profit, to £50.1 million. Overall expectations for the full-year are unchanged. The dividend was boosted to 12.2p per share, from 11.73p. Edenred raised to neutral at Citi Infineon raised to buy at Goldman Kering raised to long at Evercore ISI Porsche raised to buy at HSBC Airbus cut to add at Alphavalue De Longhi cut to hold at Berenberg IMCD cut to neutral at Goldman Rhoen Klinikum cut to underperform at Credit Suisse IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  2. Donald Tusk has proposed a 12-month "flexible" Brexit extension date which would allow the UK to leave once a deal has been approved with the 12 months. The proposal would first need to be approved at a summit next week. US-China trade talks have reached "new consensus" following yesterdays talks between Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and Trump. Could the end of the trade war be in sight? Trump has suggested that that question may be answered "over the next four weeks". Asian stocks saw a tepid incline following on from trade talk positivity. The Nikkei 225 rose 0.41% and the Topix index gained 0.33%. Samsung shares fell after announcing 60% drop in first-quarter profits compared to 2018. The tech giant suggested its operating profit would be around 6.2 trillion Korean Won compared to a 2018 figure of 15.64 trillion. The figure also fell below analyst expectations of 6.8 trillion won. Bitcoin prices fell back yesterday to sit below $5,000 after reaching 4.5 month high on Wednesday. Asian overnight: A light session overnight session saw an inconsistent showing, with Japan leading the way higher on optimism that the US-China trade deal is nearing its completion. However, this was offset by yesterday’s announcement from Trump that any deal will take at least four-weeks to be agreed. With Chinese and Hong Kong indices closed for a national holiday, the focus was on Japanese markets to provide the overnight gains. This comes despite a fall in both household spending and average cash earnings in Japan. UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, a quiet Europe will see markets continue to look for headlines relating to talks between Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn. With the EU suggesting a flexible 12-month extension to article 50, there is likely to be some relief as fears of no-deal are eased. Later in the day we see the latest US and Canadian jobs report, where all eyes will be on the US payrolls number after last month’s 20k figure. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 1.30pm – US non-farm payrolls (March): payrolls expected to rise by 175K, from 20K last month, the unemployment rate is expected to hold at 3.8% and average hourly earnings forecast to rise 0.3%. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses 1.30pm – Canada employment data (March): 14,800 jobs expected to have been created, from 67,400 last month. Markets to watch: CAD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades GVC said it was confident of meeting full year forecasts, after net gaming revenue rose 8% in Q1. Soft margins in Italy and the UK were countered by an improved performance elsewhere. DSV upgraded to buy at HSBC Sodexo upgraded to equal-weight at Barclays BASF downgraded to hold at Bankhaus Lampe Centrica downgraded to add at AlphaValue Dunelm Downgraded to Add at Peel Hunt Stagecoach cut to underperform at Jefferies IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  3. Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank have announced formal merger talks which could result in the combined bank holding one fifth of Germany's High Street banking business. Asian shares rose despite reported potential push back of agreement to end trade war. The Hang Seng gained 1%, the Shanghai Composite surged 2.3% and Japan's Nikkei climbed 0.6%. Trump's weekend tweets ramped up the pressure on General Motors to reopen Ohio manufacturing plant which recent's closure cut 1,700 jobs. OneWeb a UK based space internet start-up has secured £940 million in funding to speed up plan to launch global high-speed broadband network. US Department of Transportation have launched a probe into the FAA's Boeing 737 Max aircraft approval. U.S. stock index futures rise in expectation of Federal Reserve meeting. The Dow future rising 21 points. Asian overnight: Another Brexit vote and central bank decisions dominate the coming week, while the backdrop of US-China trade talks continues. Equities and the US dollar both enjoyed strong runs last week, but the gains have been built on optimism that the two largest economies will be able to strike a deal. Should this view change, then we may see risk appetite suffer. UK, US and Europe: The week begins on a quiet note, with little in the way of heavyweight data today, but investors will be gearing up for the Brexit vote tomorrow and the FOMC decision on Wednesday. South Africa: Global equity markets are continuing last week's positive momentum with all major indices trading in positive territory this morning. The Shanghai Composite in leading gains having added over 1% in early trade. Commodity prices trade mixed with base metals slightly higher, precious metal prices slightly lower and oil relatively flat on the day. The rand remains weak against the majors although is slightly firmer on the day. Tencent Holdings is up 2% in Asia, suggestive of a positive start for major holding company Naspers. The BHP Group is up 1.3% in Australia, suggestive of a positive start for local resource counters. While today's economic calendar is light, this week will see another Brexit vote in UK parliament, before Theresa May asks the EU for an extension to the Brexit deadline, as well as the US Federal Reserve guiding on monetary policy as major events to watch. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Serco has won a contract from the government of South Australia to manage a remand centre, in a deal worth £62 million. JD Sports has announced that it will buy Footasylum for £90.1 million. Alstom upgraded to buy at Kepler Cheuvreux Rolls-Royce raised to overweight at Morgan Stanley Deutsche Post upgraded to buy at Jefferies IWG upgraded to sector perform at RBC Adidas downgraded to no position at Evercore ISI EDF downgraded to hold at HSBC IMCD downgraded to hold at HSBC VAT downgraded to hold at Kepler Cheuvreux IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  4. Trump is subject of large-scale investigation by the House Judiciary Committee who have sent requests for documents to 81 individuals. The investigation will look into alleged obstruction of Justice, corruption and potential abuses of power. Despite positive outlook of US and China trade war, as parties appear closer to reaching formal agreement, U.S stocks saw a downturn after positive opening. The S&P fell 0.4% to 2,792.62, The Dow tumbled 206.67 points to 25,819.65 and the Nasdaq closed 7,577.57 down 0.2%. Oil prices rose following trade talk news and potential further Russian and OPEC output cuts. Brent futures rose 21 cents to $65.28 a barrel. Carlos Ghosn, former chairman of Nissan Motor, has been granted bail by Tokyo court after spending more than 3 months in Jail. Saleforce shares fell 3 percent yesterday after weak first-quarter revenue outlook of $3.67 compared to analyst expectations of $3.70. However co-CEO Marc Benioff remains positive stating that $30 billion revenue is "right around the corner". Disney cut CEO Bob Iger's future pay prior to annual shareholder meeting. The cut also results in loss to CEO of $8 million from proposed bonus following acquisition of Fox's entertainment assets. Asian overnight: Asia-Pacific are largely trading in the red, as Chinese growth forecasts pointed towards a slower projection for the world's second largest economy. With Chinese premier Li Keqiang laying out a target of 6-6.5% growth for 2019 (previously 6.5%), we saw a clear acknowledgement that this slowdown is unlikely to end anytime soon. UK, US and Europe: We also saw a negative led come from the US, were initial gains turned bearish, with the Dow closing down 207 points. Looking ahead, all eyes will be on the UK services sector PMI number, following on from weaker manufacturing and construction readings. With the reading on the cusp of contraction territory (50.1), it would take much to see the sector move into decline for February. Also keep an eye out for the eurozone retail sales, and US services PMI readings. South Africa: Global equity markets are trading mostly lower this morning with US Index Futures marginally down while most Asian equity indices trade lower as well (excluding the Shanghai Composite). Moves are however marginal and it would appear that markets are pausing the recent rally in anticipation of a US China trade deal. The dollar has been strong and in turn commodity price have been under pressure, in particular that of precious metal prices, platinum and gold. The rand remains well off its best levels of the past few weeks. Tencent Holdings is up nearly 4% in Asia, suggestive of a positive start for major holding company Naspers. BHP Group is down 0.85% in Australia, suggestive of a weaker start for local miners. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 9.30am – UK services PMI (February): activity expected to weaken, falling to 49.7 from 50.1. Markets to watch: GBP crosses 3pm – US new home sales (December), ISM non-mfg PMI (February): sales to fall 10% MoM, while the ISM is expected to weaken to 56 from 56.7. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades DX Group suffered a loss before tax of £5.3 million, down from £14.1 million a year earlier. Group revenues rose 7% to £157 million. NMC Health has agreed to form a healthcare joint venture with a pension fund in Saudi Arabia. Ashtead reported a 17% rise in statutory pre-tax profit to £240.9 million for Q3, thanks to strong rental demand in US and Canadian markets. Phoenix Group swung into profit for 2018, with pre-tax profit rising to £470 million, from a £28 million loss a year earlier. DWS upgraded to buy at Citi Genus upgraded to buy at Liberum Greene King upgraded to neutral at JPMorgan Mitchells & Butlers raised to overweight at JPMorgan Altice Europe cut to underweight at Barclays Iliad downgraded to equal-weight at Barclays Safestore cut to sell at Kempen & Co United Utilities downgraded to neutral at Citi IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  5. Samsung announced the Galaxy Fold the first consumer available phone to feature a folding display. The new phone also comes with a $1,980 price tag. Barclays report full-year net profit of £1.4 billion for 2018, pulling back from 2017's significant losses. Theresa May reports positively about Brussels talks but is it too little too late after three Tory MPs quit the party to join an independent group yesterday. Google have stated that the omission of the Nest Guard home alarm featured microphone on tech spec was merely an "error", and that the microphone was not meant to be kept secret. Both Asian and U.S. stocks rose after reported stated that the negotiators have begun to outline a deal to end the ongoing trade war. Nike Inc have come under fire on twitter after a star U.S. college basketball player's shoe split mid-game. Despite positive jobs report AUD/USD tumbled 0.9% after report that China's Dalian port banned Australian coal imports to levels not exceeding 12m tons this year. Crude prices rose more than 1% on Wednesday to 2019 high, aided by U.S. sanctions on the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) members Iran and Venezuela. Asian overnight: Asian markets enjoyed a pick-up in bullish sentiment, with today’s resumption of the US-China trade talks helping boost sentiment. The renminbi hit a seven-month high at one point, reflecting this optimism over the potential for a positive outcome. The Australian dollar saw a volatile session, with a positive employment change figure (39.1k from 16.9k) being counteracted by news that Dalian has started turning away Australian coal imports. Elsewhere, the Japanese flash manufacturing PMI number fell sharply, dropping well into contraction territory at 48.5 (from 50.3). UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, today marks the pinnacle of the week from an economic calendar perspective. The morning sees a focus on the eurozone, with PMI surveys spanning across both services and manufacturing for France, Germany, and finally the eurozone as a whole. UK public sector net borrowing should help the pound play a role, yet the euro is certain to take the main focus. In the US, durable goods, Philly Fed manufacturing survey, manufacturing and services PMI surveys will ensure volumes and volatility is elevated for the dollar. Also keep a close eye on the latest US crude inventories amid a recent bullish breakout for crude. South Africa: Global equity markets are trading flat to marginally firmer this morning as easing US China trade tensions combine with a dovish interpretation of the US Federal Reserve's minutes from the last meeting. Gold trades flat this morning while platinum trades lower and base metals trade mostly higher in early trade. The rand has managed to claw back most of its losses which accrued leading into yesterdays Budget Speech by Tito Mboweni. Gains on our local bourse are being led this morning by Financial and Resource counters, while Industrial counters are the current underperformers of the day. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 8.15am – 9am – French, German, eurozone services & mfg PMI (February, flash): fears of a eurozone recession are rising, and further weakness in these PMIs would suggest that the eurozone is heading further towards a period of negative growth. Markets to watch: EUR crosses 1.30pm – US durable goods orders (December): forecast to grow 1.8% MoM. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses 2.45pm – US services & mfg PMI (February, flash): services to fall to 53 from 54.2 while mfg drops to 53 from 54.9. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses 4pm – US EIA crude inventories (w/e 15 Feb): stockpiles rose by 3.6 million barrels in the preceding week. Markets to watch: Brent, WTI Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Barclays reported attributable profit of £3.5 billion for 2018, below forecasts, while it has taken a £150 million provision against Brexit losses. Pre-tax profits were flat on the year, but total income rose to £21.136 billion, and operating costs fell 2% to £13.9 billion. Standard Chartered continues discussions with US authorities relating to sanctions violations, and Q4 results will include a $900 million provision for potential penalties. Purplebricks now believes that revenue for the current financial year will be in the £130-140 million range, from a previous £165-175 million forecast. Slow progress in the US has hit performance, while the Australian division has also seen some headwinds. ElringKlinger upgraded to neutral at Oddo BHF Apetit downgraded to reduce at Inderes Sainsbury downgraded to equal-weight at Barclays BBGI SICAV downgraded to hold at Jefferies Intertek downgraded to hold at Berenber IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  6. Ford announced plan to close a factory in Brazil, resulting in 2,800 job cuts. This follows as Ford pulls sale of heavy commercial trucks in South America. May will return to Brussels again in further attempt to reach conclusive agreement on the controversial Irish-backstop. Asian stocks saw a mixed session following similarly mixed U.S. trade talk reports. Whilst Trump commented positively on trade talks and it was reported that the U.S. is requesting China keep the yuan stable as part of the deal, Trump also hinted that March deadline was not a "magical date" and could be pushed back. Nikki share average rose 0.7% hitting 2 month high. Devon Energy shares gained 6% after announcing fourth-quarter earnings and plans to separate Canadian and Barnett Shale assets. The Oil producer also announced $5 billion addition to stock buyback plan. Gold surged to near 10 month high. Spot gold rising 0.9% to $1,388.62 per ounce and U.S. gold futures hit $1,342.40, a 1.54% increase. Palladium continues to set record highs as shortages cause further surge to sit above $1,500 an ounce. Asian overnight: A mixed session saw losses in China and Australia counteracted by Japanese and Hong Kong upside. Once again, markets look towards US-China trade talks (due to resume on Thursday) as a key driver of market sentiment. We also saw the Japanese trade data post a disappointing exports figure (-8.4%) which hurt the overall trade balance, and ultimately the Yen. UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, the economic calendar remains light, with the eurozone consumer confidence figure providing the one notable release in the morning. We also see Theresa May meet up with European President Jean-Claude Juncker in Brussels today, ensuring the pound remains in the spotlight after yesterday’s jobs numbers. Finally, watch out for the minutes from the last FOMC meeting, with markets hoping to get a better idea of exactly how long they will hold off until the next rate hike. Democratic-led House panel has launched an inquiry into White House plan to transfer US nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia. Concerns focus on the volatile nature of the Saudi region, whilst Saudi Arabia has stated that the nuclear power is desired in order to diversify its energy sources. Could this once again controversial move by Trump help US Senator Bernie Sander in his second bid for president in 2020? South Africa: We are expecting a postive start to trade today as US markets closed firmer overnight and Asian markets trade firmer this morning. Further suggestions that Trump may extend the trade truce with China amidst ongoing negotiations is providing some of the positive sentiment in markets. Metal prices have risen, particularly that of precious metals. Oil is flat on the day. South Africans will look to today's budget speech for further guidance on a rescue plan for Eskom and its possible impact on the country's credit rating. The anticipation of the upcoming budget has seen the rand amongst the worst performing emerging market currencies as of late. Tencent holdings is up 1.25% in Asia suggestive of a similar start for major holding company Naspers. BHP Group is up 2.5% in Australia suggestive of a positive start for local resource counters. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 3pm – eurozone consumer confidence (February, flash): expected to fall to -8.2 from -7.9. Markets to watch: EUR crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Sainsbury said that it was disappointed with the Competition & Markets Authority, after the regulator found ‘extensive competition concerns’ relating to the proposed merger with Asda. The firm said it fundamentally disagreed with the findings that might require either blocking the deal or selling off a large number of stores and other assets. Lloyds reported a 24% rise in statutory profit, to £4.4 billion, for 2018, while underlying profit was £8.1 billion, up 6%. The improvement was due to a reduction in operating costs and the PPI insurance charge. The dividedn was raised 5% to 3.21p, but the firm also proposed a share buyback o £1.75 billion. Glencore has announced a share buyback of $2 billion, along with a $2.8 billion dividend, while saying that adjusted EBITDA rose 8% in 2018 to $15.8 billion. Glencore will also cap its coal production at 150 million tonnes per year. Bakkafrost upgraded to buy at SEB Equities Ipsen upgraded to neutral at Goldman Credit Suisse upgraded to hold at Berenberg ACS downgraded to underweight at Morgan Stanley Axel Springer downgraded to hold at HSBC IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  7. Chinese markets were mixed during the Monday session after being offline for much of last week due to the Lunar New Year holiday. The Shanghai composite gained 0.8% whilst the Hang Send index rose 0.23%. However following Samsung electronic decline of 0.67% the Kospi remained slightly lower after promising recovery from earlier losses. Oil prices fell over 1% despite refinery fire in Illinois which resulted in shutdown of large crude distillation unit. International Brent Crude futures down 71 cents settling at $61.39 a barrel. US government shutdown could potentially reoccur as talks between congressional Republicans and Democrats have again broken down with agreement as Trump continues to dig in heals over US-Mexico border wall budget. Theresa May responded to Corbyn's letter which set out five demands for a Brexit deal, her reply concluded with hope that the two parties could have further talks on the matter. Nevertheless will Valentines Vote see further love lost between opposing parties? The Swiss Franc (CHF) saw mini "flash crash" of almost 1% due to Japanese holiday causing thin liquidity. The CHF slid from 1.0004 per dollar to 1.0096 the lowest since November. Apple verse Huawei war sees the iphone brand's shipment plummet by estimated 20% in last year's final quarter. Aurora Cannabis Inc is scheduled to announce second quarterly earnings today, However with EFTMG Alternative Harvest ETF and Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences Index ETF showing larger than 10% drops since October could the cannabis industry be coming down from that original legal high? Asian overnight: Chinese stocks were the big outperformer overnight as they played catch up following a week-long break. This time it is the Japanese who are away, with National Foundation day seeing markets closed. Elsewhere, marginal gains in the Hang Seng were counteracted by downside in the Australian ASX 200. This is despite the commencement of yet another round of trade talks between the US and China, as both sides seek to find some form of resolution to the current trade standoff ahead of the 1 March deadline. However, with Trump stating that he has no plans to meet Xi Jinping before that deadline, many believe it diminishes the chance of a comprehensive deal to stave off higher tariffs. Swiss Franc faced mini "flash crash" UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, a whole raft of economic data from the UK means that the pound will be in focus for traders in the European session. Monthly GDP (December), Q4 GDP, manufacturing production, industrial production, trade balance, and the NIESR GDP forecast for January all tally up to a likely volatile session for UK stocks and the pound. Elsewhere, apart from the Canadian trade balance, this looks like a day largely devoid of any major releases outside of the UK. South Africa: While China and Hong Kong equity markets are firmer this morning playing catch up after being closed for the Lunar New Year's festivities last week, US equity indices are trading marginally lower this morning. This is expectant of a flat to weaker start to our local bourse today. The rand has weakened sharply following news that major power utility would be embarking on nationwide blackouts in lieu of capacity constraints within the country. The dollar has also resumed some short term strength and is weighing on precious metal prices. BHP is up 2% in Australia, suggestive of a similar start for the locally listed entity. Tencent Holdings is up 1.8% in Asia, although this may already be priced into major holding company Naspers. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 9.30am – UK trade balance (December), industrial & manufacturing production (December), GDP (December): trade deficit to narrow to £1.9 billion, while GDP to growth 0.3% MoM, and at a three month average of 0.3%. Q4 preliminary GDP reading to grow 0.3% QoQ and 1.3% YoY. Market to watch: GBP crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Acacia Mining said that gold production for the year would be flat despite output beating guidance for 2018 thanks to higher production at its North Mara field. Gold production was 521,980 ounces, above the 435-375 thousand ounce guidance, but down 32% on last year. Telford Homes has acquired a site in Stratford for £20 million. It is expected to provide space for 380 new homes. AAK upgraded to accumulate at Handelsbanken Bank of Ireland raised to overweight at Barclays Metro Bank upgraded to hold at Berenberg Lloyds upgraded to overweight at Morgan Stanley Barratt downgraded to hold at Liberum Bovis Homes downgraded to hold at Liberum Petrofac downgraded to neutral at JPMorgan RBS downgraded to equal-weight at Morgan Stanley IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  8. Facebook shares soared 12% after Earnings report of $2.38 per share crushed $2.19 expectation. Facebook's revenue forecast of $16.39 billion was also outdone coming it at a reported $16.91 billion Tesla shares fell 5% in after hours trading after disappointing earnings report of $1.93 per share. This came after a 3.8% share rise in the regular session pre-results. Microsoft also saw underwhelming results report. Despite beating earnings expectation of $1.09 by 1 cent per share, Microsoft missed $32.51 billion revenue expectation coming in at $32.47 billion. Subsequently the share price fell by 4%. China's manufacturing activity contracted for the second month straight, the National Bureau of Statistics of China reporting a PMI of 49.5 for January. Fed pledge to keep interest rates steady saw Asian Stock gain. The Shanghai composite rose 0.6% and Hang Seng index climbed 1.21%. Meanwhile the Dow surged 400 points and the S&P 500 gained 1.56%. Gold prices also increased following the Fed announcement marking day 4 of positive gold price movement. Oil headed for biggest monthly gain since April 2015 as Saudi Arabia and Russian output levels fall lower. Brent march contracts rose 42 cents higher to sit at $62.07 per barrel. Saudi Arabia ends corruption crackdown after reaping $100 billion in cash, real estate and other assets as settlements. Asian overnight: Asian markets enjoyed a bullish session overnight, as the Australian ASX 200 provided the only dampener on an otherwise-positive session throughout Japan, China, and Hong Kong. The Fed’s decision to keep rates unchanged was largely expected, yet markets have taken their lead from a statement which saw the committee switch away from constant rate hikes, and towards a more data dependant policy. Rather than setting out the exact indicators they are looking for, the FOMC statement said that ‘it will patiently continue to monitor incoming data and economic and financial developments to evaluate their implications for the economic outlook’. This decision to shift onto a slow course of rate hikes helped strengthen stocks, weaken the dollar, and boost gold prices. In other news, Chinese manufacturing PMI ticked higher to 49.5 yet remained within contraction, while the non-manufacturing reading continues to outperform, rising from 53.8 to 54.7. UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, GDP is going to be crucial for market sentiment, with Q4 Spanish, eurozone, Italian, and Canadian GDP readings all released throughout the day. With the Year-on-Year figure for the eurozone expected to slow markedly from 1.8% to 1.2%, this reading could have significant implications for both monetary policy and future growth prospects. May: Stuck between a rock and a hard Brexit? EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier says there is to be no renegotiation of the Irish backstop as it is "part and parcel" of Brexit deal. May appears stuck between a rock and a hard Brexit as Parliament have voted against both the Brexit deal presented, which incorporates the backstop, and on Tuesday voted against a No Deal Brexit. South Africa: A more dovish Federal Reserve commentary overnight has seen a sharp weakening of the US dollar, rise in equity markets as well as commodity prices. The fed has said it would be patient with further hikes this year suggesting a pause (possibly an end) to the current tightening cycle. US markets closed around 2% higher last night following the news. In turn we are expecting a higher open on the Jse this morning amidst what is a light economic calendar today. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 8.55am – German unemployment rate (January): rate to hold at 5%. Market to watch: EUR crosses 10am – eurozone GDP growth (Q4, flash): QoQ rate to rise to 0.6% from 0.2%, while YoY figure to increase to 1.9% from 1.6%. Market to watch: EUR crosses 1.30pm – US jobless claims (w/e 26 January): previous week saw claims fall to a fifty year low of 199K. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses 2.45pm – US Chicago PMI (January): expected to fall to 62.5 from 65.4. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Diageo said that first-half operating profit rose 11% to £2.4 billion, while net sales were up 5.8% to £6.9 billion. Organic volume rose 3.5%. The outlook was left unchanged. Shell said that full-year earnings rose 36%, to $21.4 billion, while earnings in Q4 were up 32% to $5.688 billion. Unilever reported a rise of 2.9% in Q4 sales, lower than the 3.5% expected by analysts. Full-year sales growth said that it expected full-year sales growth to be at the bottom end of its 3-5% forecast. Tesla CFO Deepak Ahuja announced plans to retire sometime in 2019. Deutsche PBB upgraded to buy at Citi Ferrovial upgraded to add at AlphaValue Telenor upgraded to hold at Pareto Securities Volvo upgraded to buy at SEB Equities Ahold Delhaize cut to underweight at JPMorgan Petra Diamonds downgraded to neutral at JPMorgan Randstad downgraded to hold at ING Unibail downgraded to underweight at Barclays IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  9. May's Brexit deal rejected by 230 votes making may's defeat the biggest in UK history of sitting governments. The no vote saw the GBP rise 0.05% to $1.28. As a result of the landslide defeat May is to face vote of no confidence, the vote is expected to be held at 19:00 GMT. Asian Stocks saw a mixed reaction following the Brexit news. Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.55% to 20,442.75 and the Topix index followed suit falling by 0.32% to 1,537.77 whilst the Kospi rose 0.43% to 2,106.1. As US government shutdown continues Trump administration doubles estimates of the resulting cost. The original estimate stating that the partial shutdown would subtract 0.1% from growth every two weeks has been doubled to 0.1% every week. The US has charged 10 defendants for the 2016 SEC hacking. The Department of Energy forecasts that US oil production will rise to 12.9 million barrels per day by 2020. A 2 million increase from 2018. Asian overnight: A mixed affair overnight has seen Japanese markets underperform thanks to a strengthening yen, with Brexit turmoil denting confidence and shifting focus onto haven assets. Hong Kong, Chinese, and Australian markets managed to remain in the green though despite this political volatility. Last night’s parliamentary vote saw Theresa May’s deal rejected in huge numbers, yet despite the immediate selling seen in GBPUSD, we have since seen the pair stabilise around the levels seen prior to the vote. UK, US and Europe: Today is likely to remain highly sensitive for UK traders, with Jeremy Corbyn’s vote of no confidence expected to take place at 7pm UK time. With UK inflation data and an appearance from Mark Carney also taking place this morning, it looks like all eyes will be back on the UK today. Also keep an eye out for crude inventories data which is released later in the day. No vote: biggest defeat in UK history Although a focus of this week Britain is not the only country facing political uncertainty, Greece will also be holding a confidence vote in government, after break down of the coalition. Furthermore, Sweden's parliament is still to vote (for the third time) on a prime minister nominee. South Africa: Despite last nights impasse on the UK parliaments Brexit vote, global markets are trading mostly firmer this morning although marginally so. US markets saw tech sector led gains after Netflix announced that it would be raising subscription prices in the near term. Chinese equity markets remain buoyant after policymakers suggested yesterday that further tax relief would be implemented to support the Asian economy. Base metal prices trade firmer this morning while precious metal prices are flat to marginally higher. The rand has renewed some short term strength against the majors. BHP Billiton is down 0.4% in Australia suggestive of a softer start for local resource counters. Tencent Holdings is flat on the day. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 9.30am – UK CPI (December): prices expected to rise 2.2% YoY, from 2.3%, and 0.3% MoM from 0.2%. Core CPI to rise 2.2% YoY from 1.8%. Market to watch: GBP crosses 1.30pm – US retail sales (December): sales to rise 0.5% MoM from 0.2%. Market to watch: US indices, USD crosses 3.30pm – US EIA crude inventories (w/e 11 January):stockpiles fell by 1.7 million barrels last week. Markets to watch: Brent, WTI Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Pearson expects to meet forecasts for earnings guidance, with further progress in 2019. The firm said that adjusted operating profit for 2018 would be in the middle of its £540 – 545 million range. Bovis Homes expects annual profits would be slightly ahead of market forecasts, due to significant improvements in operating margins. Saga said it was trading in line with forecasts, despite challenging market conditions. Snap CFO Tim Stone to announced resignation seeing share price tumble by 8%. United Continental Holdings beat profit and revenue expectations resulting in share increase of 6%. Netflix stock saw 6.5% increase despite announcing price hikes for US customers. Carlsberg upgraded to buy at Jefferies Laurent-Perrier upgraded to buy at Oddo BHF Petrofac upgraded to overweight at Morgan Stanley AB InBev downgraded to underperform at Jefferies Ashmore downgraded to hold at Berenberg Restaurant Group downgraded to sell at Citi Synergie downgraded to neutral at Oddo BHF IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  10. Yesterday saw further pessimism from corporate giants as the likes of Jaguar Land Rover, Macy's Inc and BlackRock Inc cut profit forecasts. Geely Group halves 9.7% stake in Daimler AG. Virgin Atlantic and Stobart Group to buy Flybe for £2.2million after Flybe profit warning saw shares prices tumble in October 2018. A fall from which it hasn't recovered. Trump announced intention to bypass Congress by declaring a national emergency in order to fund wall. This comes as government shutdown reaches day 20. S&P 500 rose 0.4% yesterday resulting in first 5 day increase streak since September 2018. The Dow followed suit posting a 5 day increase. Hitachi shares jump 8% after The Nikkei Asian Review reported that the company would be likely to suspend all work on the UK nuclear plant, though Hitachi have stated that no formal decision has yet been made. Oil heads for biggest weekly gain in over 2 years, Brent Crude up 8.4% following Saudi Arabia pledge that a producer coalition will maintain market balance. Yesterday saw Bitcoin return to $3600 mark after a week pushing $4000, will next week see another rally? Corporate Giants cut profit forecasts Asian overnight: Asian markets are closing out the week in positive fashion, with Chinese, Japanese, and Hong Kong stock markets in the green as continued optimism surrounding US-China trade talks helps to drive hope of a wider recovery. Trump’s claim that the US is having ‘tremendous success’ in trade talks with the Chinese has raised hopes of a breakthrough within the 90-day timeframe set out by Trump and Xi Jinping. On the data front, Japanese household spending fell further into negative territory (-0.6% from -0.3%), while Australian retail sales ticked marginally higher (0.4% from 0.3%). UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, the European session looks set to be dominated by the UK economy, with the November GDP reading, manufacturing production, industrial production, and December NIESR GDP figure all released simultaneously. Meanwhile, for the US session we have the US CPI inflation reading to look out for as a source of market volatility. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 9.30am – UK GDP & trade balance (November): growth to be 0.3% over the three months to the end of November, while trade deficit to narrow to £2.2 billion from £3.3 billion. Market to watch: GBP crosses 1.30pm – US CPI (December): prices expected to rise 2.2% YoY, in line with last month, and 0.2% MoM, up from 0.2%, while core CPI rises 2.2% YoY and 0.2% MoM. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Flybe has agreed to be taken over for £2.2 million by a joint venture of Stobart Group, Virgin Atlantic and several investment funds. Grafton Group expects earnings to be slightly ahead of expectations, as revenue rose 8.7% for 2018, to £2.95 billion. Moss Bros expects to report an annual loss, after sales fell 1.1% like-for-like for the 23 weeks to 5 January. An annual loss of £0.6 million is expected for the full year. Cairn Energy upgraded to outperform at BMO Hunting upgraded to overweight at JPMorgan Saipem upgraded to overweight at JPMorgan Suedzucker upgraded to neutral at Goldman Eurobank downgraded to underperform at KBW Orion downgraded to underperform at Jefferies Raiffeisen downgraded to neutral at JPMorgan Telia downgraded to sell at SocGen IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  11. China's stock market leads 2018 losses with both major indexes, the Shanghai composite and the Shenzhen component each facing annual declines of over 24%. 2018 saw both Australia and Hong Kong's benchmark indexes face annual declines. The ASX 200 falling 6.9% compared to its 2017 closing, whilst the Hang Seng index saw around a 13% decline compared to 2017. China's manufacturing sector contracted for the first time in two years.. The official Purchasing Manager's Index reporting at 49.4, falling short of the 49.9 prediction. The ratification of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Pacific (CPTPP) by seven of it's members yesterday may see further disruption to American trade in 2019. The agreement will slash tariffs among members, leaving non-CPTPP members such as the US less competitive. US stock-index futures rallied on Sunday after Trump's Tweet reported positive US-China negotiations. S&P 500 March contracts rose 0.7%, the Dow climbed 0.8% and Nasdaq futures increased 0.9%. Asian overnight: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina secured her third consecutive term with landslide victory. Hasina's party and it's allies won 288 out of 300 parliamentary seats but opposition calls for investigation into vote-rigging allegations. UK, US and Europe: Paris fire this weekend most recent result of Yellow vest protesters anger over inequality and the high cost of living. After resisting demands to reinstate wealth tax President Emmanuel Macron's government is scrutinizing the tax situation of business leaders and state they will take measures to force them to pay their taxes in France if necessary. Bexit deadline may be forced back until as late a july, warn both members of the Conservative and labour parties, if May fails to deliver vote in favour of her proposal. South Africa: Polls close in vote for new Democratic Republic of Congo president. Delays caused by electronic voting machines caused further frustration after 2 year wait for the election. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Sears announcement to increase store closures from 40 to 80 by late march 2019, stocks saw resulting slip of 2.24%. IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  12. The U.S. Government has seen turmoil over the weekend after "Trump's Wall" disagreement on Friday resulted in a government shutdown. Trump will be bringing in the new year with new Defence Secretary. Patrick Shanahan will replace James Mattis on 1st January, earlier than expected. The end of the year sees further stock slumps, particularly for 2018 tech IPOs. Domo plummeting 25%, Zscaler tumbling 18% and Zurora and SurveyMonkey falling over 10% Asian Stocks saw a mixed Monday session with Samsung Electronics declining 0.13% and SK Hynix rising 0.83%. BMW is facing criminal further investigation in South Korea after it was found that the company concealed fire hazards and delayed recalls. This potential prosecution follows a $10 million fine. Asian overnight: A threadbare Asian session saw just the Chinese stock market open, with both the Shanghai and Shenzhen composite gaining ground. A Tsunami in Indonesia on Saturday has left at least 200 dead and 800 injured after destroying hotels, houses and a gathering of beach concert attendees. UK, US and Europe: Weekend affairs centred on the US, with the partial government shutdown coming into play as the President warned that the government shutdown could be in place for a long time. Parts of the U.S. government closed after Congress failed to agree, by Friday's midnight deadline, on Severn spending bills affecting nine departments. The disagreement appears sparked by the Democrats refusal to approve Trump's $5 billion Mexican Wall budget. Meanwhile, the US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin rattled market sentiment after announcing that he had conversations with the big US banks to ensure they have enough liquidity. That is not typically something that would take place unless there was a current or impending threat to the economy. Looking ahead, there are precious few economic events to watch out for on the coming days. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 1.30pm – US Chicago Fed index (November): expected to rise to 0.9 from 0.2. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Playtech said that new Italian legislation would hit 2019 adjusted earnings by around €20 – 25 million. IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  13. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker stumped Theresa May's effort to renegotiate on a key Brexit withdrawal point, namely the Irish Backstop. China's reported industrial output and retail sales growth missed expectations. Industrial output growing by only 5.4% in November the slowest rate of increase in almost three years. Asian Stocks fell as China's economy shows weakening. Shares in Hong Kong and Japan led declines, Japan Topix index sliding 1.5% and Shanghai Composite falling 1.5% Apple to push software updates in attempt to resolve potential court ban of some iPhone models in China resulting from alleged Qualcomm patent infringements. COP24 UN Climate talks in Poland come to an end today but Former Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed warns there may be "hell to pay" if counties fail in taking significant steps in key climate issue agreements. Bitcoin continues to decline as it approaches September 2017 level of $3,000. Europe Car sales fell by 8.1% last month the third monthly decline in a row. Asian overnight: Asian markets have failed to sustain the recent uptrend, with sharp losses overnight coming amid slowing Chinese data and a return of fears over Theresa May’s Brexit programme. Data-wise, the Japanese and Chinese economies have been in focus. The Japanese Tankan non-manufacturing index was the big outperformer, rising back to 24 after last month’s fall to 21. Chinese industrial production and retail sales both underperformed, although the blow was softened by a fall in the unemployment rate. UK, US and Europe: Looking ahead, a host of eurozone PMI surveys will keep the European session interesting as they are released throughout the morning. Also keep an eye out for the US retail sales figures before we return to the PMI focus for the US manufacturing and services PMI readings to close out the day. After rebuffing Theresa May's attempts to renegotiate or outline the Irish Backstop EU Leaders step up No-Deal Brexit plans. It appears once again that the EU is taking a hard stance in these divorce talks. This week has seen May experience highs and lows as Prime Minister. On Monday May was forced to cancel the parliamentary vote on the draft Brexit deal amid fears the Irish Backstop controversy would result in a no vote. Wednesday saw May survive a vote of no confidence but is this a small victory in the face of today's news? Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 8.15am – 9am – French, German, eurozone PMIs (December, flash): German mfg PMI to rise to 52.3 from 51.8. Markets to watch: eurozone indices, EUR crosses 1.30pm – US retail sales (November): forecast to rise 0.2% MoM from 0.8%. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Balfour Beatty expects performance to be above expectations after the sale of its infrastructure investments unit. The year-end order book is expected to be £12 billion, above last year’s £11.4 billion. Reach said that performance for 2018 would be marginally ahead of forecasts, after Q4 revenue rose 23% following the acquisition of Express & Star. Costco reported disappointing quarterly earnings and revenue resulting in shares fall of 3%. Starbucks saw a 3% fall after hours, following the announcement of delivery service partnership with Uber Eats. Lundbeck upgraded to overweight at Barclays Meggitt upgraded to buy at Citi Equinor Downgraded to Sell at Goldman IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  14. Bitcoin hit year low falling below $3,500 after a 11% dive. Chip stocks in Europe and Asia tumbled after the arrest of Huawei CFO . AMS dived 7%, STMicroelectronics fell 4% and Dialog Semiconductor slid 3%. Dow rebounds after falling 780 points ending the day only slightly lower yesterday. 10-year Treasury yield fell to 2.83% amid stock sell-off compared to the beginning of the week where it was above 3%. Non-Farm payrolls today expected to have expanded by 198,00 in November. Oil prices fell, Brent Crude falling below $60 a barrel, trading at $59.50, down 0.9%. This follows delayed OPEC oil cut decision, further talks to be held today with oil producing nations. Singapore authorities cast shadow over the Noble Group's $3.5 billion debt rescue plan, stating that they would block the relisting of shares. Asian overnight: Equities have recovered from their lows, with a better session in Asia overnight following on from a steep rebound for US indices that saw the Dow recover from an initial 400-point sell-off to end the day only 80 points down. Investors continue to watch for further signs of fallout between China and the US, but so far the situation is quiet. Markets are also waiting for a decision on oil supply levels from OPEC, the cartel having failed to reach agreement yesterday. Asian stocks see some improvement after Wall Street Journal report suggests that the US interest rates may not increase as quickly as feared. Consequently, the Nikkei up 0.8%, the Hang Seng rose 0.2% and Shaghai stocks clawed back 0.4%. UK, US and Europe: The US jobs report is the focus of attention today, with the recent strength in wages likely to recur. Also on the calendar is the Canadian jobs report, plus the Michigan confidence survey. Last night saw an amendment to the Brexit draft laid down in the House of Commons which offered MPs more say over when and if the contentious Northern Ireland backstop will be triggered. However, DUP leader Arlene Foster dismissed the amendment. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 1.30pm – US non-farm payrolls (November): payrolls to be 205K from 250K, while average hourly earnings rise 0.2% MoM, and the unemployment rate holds at 3.7%. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses 1.30pm – Canada employment data (November): 10,000 jobs expected to have been created, from 11,200 a month earlier, and unemployment rate to rise to 5.9% from 5.8%. Markets to watch: CAD crosses 3pm – US Univ. of Michigan consumer confidence (December, preliminary): forecast to be 93 from 97.5. Markets to watch: US indices, USD crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Associated British Foods said that trading for the first eight weeks of the year was in line with expectations, although November trading at Primark was described as ‘challenging’. The outlook for the current year was unchanged. Berkeley Group reported a pre-tax profit of £401.2 million for the first half, down from £539.9 million a year earlier. Despite this drop, the firm has increased its pre-tax profit guidance for the current year by at least 5%. It sold 2027 homes in the period, down from 2190 a year earlier, but the average selling price rose to £740,000, from £721,000 a year earlier. Premier Oil has reaffirmed annual output guidance, thanks to a stronger performance in November and December. Full-year output is forecast to be around 80k barrels/day. It has also begun drilling at the Zama-2 well offshore Mexico, and has completed the sale of its interests in the Babbage area for £30.3 million. Walmart announce plans to buy Art.com a e-commerce home décor site. Fiat Chrysler announces plan to open new factory in Detroit. Yesterday saw 02 customers without data or facing cellular disruption for 24 hours. Akzo Nobel upgraded to buy at Jefferies Amer Sports upgraded to accumulate at Inderes Rotork upgraded to neutral at Credit Suisse Schindler upgraded to overweight at Barclay BMW downgraded to reduce at Commerzbank Scatec Solar downgraded to neutral at SpareBank Centamin downgraded to hold at Berenberg IP Group downgraded to under perform at Jefferies IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
  15. Fed hints that future interest rate rises may be lower than anticipated. Whilst Wall Street saw it's 5th biggest daily increase Asian stocks also gained as a result, the Nikkei saw a 0.9% increase whilst SoftBank rose over 3% and Nintendo a further 4%. Trump announced yesterday that he is exploring new auto tariffs with a view to promote domestic production. This comes as part of an ongoing Trump Administration tariff war. Georgia elects first female president. Salome Zurabishvili won the vote with a 59% majority Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Limited was ordered to pay up to 150 million won to 28 South Koreans who were used as forced labour by the company in World War Two. Bitcoin gains heading for biggest increase since April. Providing some relief after the 32% loss this month Intu takeover worth £2.8 Billion scraped. The shopping network cuts dividends in attempt to maintain construction investment. Asian overnight: Equities surged after Jerome Powell made a speech widely viewed as dovish. The S&P 500 posted its best day since March, with tech and consumer discretionary shares leading the way. Asian markets also bounced as investors pinned their hopes on a slowdown in the pace of Fed tightening after one more hike in December. UK, US and Europe: Today’s FOMC minutes are something of an afterthought following the Powell speech, but we do have plenty of German and eurozone data, and investors should also watch out for US existing home sales, after new home sales fell to their lowest level since March 2016. Also watch UK banks, after the release of the BoE’s forecasts on a ‘no deal’ Brexit scenario. Russia-Ukraine frictions result in Ukraine calling on Nato to send ships to the Sea of Azov. This follows Russia opening fire on three Ukrainian ships on Sunday. Nato are yet to respond to this plea, however Chief Jens Stoltenberg on Monday called for Russia to free the Ukrainian ships and captive sailors. Economic calendar - key events and forecast (times in GMT) 8.55am – German unemployment (November): unemployment rate to hold at 5.1%. Markets to watch: EUR crosses 10am – eurozone business confidence (November): forecast to rise to 1.14 from 1.01. Markets to watch: EUR crosses 1pm – German inflation (November, preliminary): prices to rise 2.4% YoY from 2.5%. Markets to watch: EUR crosses 1.30pm – US personal income & spending (October): income to rise 0.4% MoM and spending to rise 0.4% MoM. Markets to watch: USD crosses 3pm – US pending home sales (October): sales to fall 0.5%. YoY. Markets to watch: USD crosses 7pm – FOMC minutes: no change was made in policy, but the minutes will be key for USD movement this week. Markets to watch: USD crosses 11.30pm – Japan unemployment rate (October): rate to rise to 2.4% from 2.3%. Markets to watch: JPY crosses Source: Daily FX Economic Calendar Corporate News, Upgrades and Downgrades Unilever 10 year CEO Paul Polman to be succeeded by Alan Jope after retirement Phoenix Group reported cash generation of £1.3 billion for 2018, exceeding its target of £1 - £1.2 billion. Rio Tinto will develop a ‘technologically advanced’ mine in Western Australia, with construction to start next year and production expected in late 2021. Revolut given permission to expand the fintech firm into Japan and Singapore Adecco upgraded to buy at Goldman Total upgraded to neutral at JPMorgan Cobham upgraded to buy at Berenberg Iliad upgraded to equal-weight at Morgan Stanley BASF downgraded to equal-weight at Barclays Equinor downgraded to underweight at JPMorgan ISS downgraded to sell at Goldman Senior downgraded to neutral at JPMorgan IGTV featured video Information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.
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