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Five Things World Business Will be Talking About Today

August 3, 2017


It’s “Super Thursday” at the Bank of England, there’s a raft of economic data, and Tesla pleases investors. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about today.

BOE decision

At 7:00 a.m. Eastern Time the Bank of England will release its latest interest rate decision and update its forecasts for the economy. The announcement will be followed by a press conference with Governor Mark Carney at 7:30 a.m. With markets not pricing a rate hike until 2018, and economists seeing no move until 2019, any change in rates would be a surprise. That means markets are likely to concentrate on the forecasts for the economy which are expected to be downgraded.

Economic data

Ahead of the BOE decision, IHS Markit said that the U.K. economy had moved into a “steady but sluggish” phase as it published its latest Purchasing Managers Index showing services expanded faster than expected in July. In the euro-area, German composite PMI dropped to 54.7, a 10-month low, representing the first time the country has lagged France, Italy and Spain in more than 12 years. Coming up this morning in the U.S.  will be weekly jobless claims at 8:30 a.m., composite PMI at 9:45 a.m. and factory and durable goods orders at 10:00 a.m.


Shares in Tesla Inc. rose more than 7 percent in extended trading after the company reported a cash burn of $1.16 billion in the second quarter, which was lower than analysts had expected. In Europe, UniCredit SpA reported net income higher than expected and a common equity Tier 1 ratio increase to 12.8 percent. Shares in the bank rallied as much as 5 percent in Milan. While Credit Agricole SA also beat on income, earning 1.35 billion euros ($1.6 billion) in the quarter, shares in the bank slipped in Paris trading.

Markets mixed

Overnight, the MSCI Asia Pacific Index declined 0.6 percent, with a selloff in Korean stocks leading losses in the region as President Moon Jae-in’s plans for economic reforms, including higher taxes on the country’s biggest firms, weighed on local equities. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.1 percent higher as of 5:30 a.m. as earnings season continues. S&P 500 futures were broadly unchanged.

White House appointment

Amid all the musical chairs in the White House recently, one appointment decision that has yet to be made is starting to raise the market’s interest – that of the next Fed Chair. While a re-appointment of current Chair Janet Yellen had seemed the most likely decision until recently, White House senior economic adviser Gary Cohn has now emerged as the leading candidate. Two administration officials have confirmed that he is interested in the job, even as Cohn himself remains coy about his chances.

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