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Five Things to Know in World Business Today


By Lorcan Roche Kelly

(Bloomberg) U.S. GDP due, a plethora of corporate news, and new U.K. PM off to a bad start on Brexit. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about today.

Where’s the growth?

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi yesterday said that he did not see the euro area entering a recession, despite the recent under-performance of the region’s biggest economy. Should the U.S. GDP reading come in as weak as some expect today, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell may also have to issue big-picture pronouncements on the economic outlook at next week’s hotly anticipated meeting. The median forecast for the second quarter is for growth to slow to an annualized 1.8%, matching the weakest pace of Donald Trump’s presidency when the number is published at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time this morning.

Tech earnings

Amazon.com Inc. saw a surge in costs related to its one-day delivery push that caused an unexpected drop in profits despite a 20% increase in revenue. Shares declined in pre-market trading. It’s a different story over at Alphabet Inc. which is seeing a surge in its shares in early trading after results beat expectations and the company announced its biggest-ever buyback. Twitter Inc. is due to report this morning, with analysts likely to focus on monetizable daily active users as the key metric.

New PM, same message

Any slim hope British Prime Minister Boris Johnson may have harbored on re-negotiating the Brexit deal were quickly quashed by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker who told him that the current deal remains the best and only deal possible. For markets, the negotiation is not yet critical. What may be of more interest is who Johnson favors as the next governor of the Bank of England, with pro-Brexit economist Gerard Lyons seen as the front-runner.

Markets mixed

Overnight, the MSCI Asia Pacific Index slipped 0.6% while Japan’s Topix index closed 0.4% lower as domestic earnings came in weaker than expected. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.3% higher at 5:50 a.m., with media and telecom sectors leading gains after positive corporate results, while banks were unable to hold yesterday’s rally. S&P 500 futures pointed to a higher open, the 10-year Treasury yield was at 2.069% and gold gained.

Coming up…

As well as GDP, we also get personal consumption and core PCE data at 8:30 a.m. Oil’s small increase for the week is unlikely to be tested by the Baker Hughes rig count at 1:00 p.m. as tensions in the Persian Gulf remain one of the main drivers. McDonald’s Corp. and Phillips 66 are also reporting earnings today.



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