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Five Things World Business Will be Talking About Today

July 24, 2017


It’s PMI day, no change at OPEC meeting, and no end in sight to dollar bearishness. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about today.

Europe growth

A composite Purchasing Managers’ Index for the euro area fell to 55.8 in July, the weakest pace in six months, according to IHS Markit. In France, the slowdown was concentrated in services as manufacturing grew at the fastest pace in six years. The IMF, meanwhile, has indicated that the world will rely less on the United States to drive global growth in the coming years, and cut its forecast for U.K. growth to 1.7 percent for this year while raising projections for Japan and the euro area.

OPEC unchanged

At a meeting in Russia today, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies indicated they weren’t planning any major changes to their deal to cut production. That means there will be no moves to impose output caps on Libya and Nigeria, countries that had been excused from the deal forged November 2016. A barrel of West Texas Intermediate for September delivery was trading broadly unchanged at $45.80 at 5:25 a.m. Eastern Time.

Dollar bears

Speculator and hedge-fund net short positioning on the dollar have risen to the highest number of contracts since 2013, according to the latest CFTC report. The currency slumped to a five-week low against the yen as concerns for President Donald Trump’s growth agenda rise ahead of closed-door testimony from Jared Kushner to the Senate Intelligence Committee today. In other currency news, Poland’s zloty strengthened the most in two months after the country’s president unexpectedly vetoed part of the government’s controversial judicial revamp.

Markets slip

Overnight, the MSCI Asia Pacific Index was little changed, while Japan’s Topix index dropped 0.5 percent with exporters leading the losses due to the strong yen. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.5 percent lower at 5:45 a.m. with automakers among the worst performers as they come under scrutiny over possible collusion. U.S. market futures pointed to a lower open.

Coming up..

The big event for markets this week is Wednesday’s Federal Reserve decision, with a Bloomberg survey showing that no change in policy is expected. Today in the U.S., preliminary Markit PMI data for July are released at 9:45 a.m., with existing home sales numbers at 10:00. Tech will dominate earnings this week, with Google parent Alphabet Inc. reporting after the bell today, while Inc. and Facebook Inc. are due in the coming days.

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