SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Virtual currency bitcoin dipped slightly from the previous session's record highs on Tuesday, after a month of whirlwind and volatile gains leading up to the launch of bitcoin futures on the weekend. Bitcoin was quoted at $16,390 on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange, down half a percent or $80 from its previous close. The world's biggest and best-known cryptocurrency hit a record high of $17,270 on Monday, registering a nearly twenty-fold increase in its price for the year as it drew in millions of new investors. The newly launched bitcoin futures on the Cboe Futures Exchange were also tepid, with prices steady and volumes a fraction of those seen on Monday. Bitcoin futures maturing in January were at $17,970, with 237 contracts traded compared with 3,956...

European markets were mostly lower on Tuesday, as investors remained cautious ahead of upcoming monetary policy meetings scheduled this week in the U.S., the euro zone and the UK. The EURO STOXX 50 fell 0.23%, France’s CAC 40 declined 0.42%, while Germany’s DAX 30 was down 0.13% by 03:40 a.m. ET (07:40 GMT). On Wednesday the Fed was widely expected to raise interest rates by 0.25% at the conclusion of its policy meeting. The European Central Bank and the Bank of England were both set to release their policy statements on Thursday. Financial stocks were broadly lower, as French lenders Societe Generale (PA:SOGN) andBNP Paribas (PA:BNPP) declined 0.63% and 0.51%, while Germany's Deutsche Bank(DE:DBKGn) and Commerbank fell 0.28...

The dollar dipped against a basket of the other major currencies on Tuesday as investors awaited this week’s Federal Reserve meeting, while the New Zealand dollar hit one-month highs after the appointment of a new central bank head. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, edged down 0.11% to 93.84 by 03:30 AM ET (08:30 AM GMT), pulling away from Friday’s two-week high of 94.08. The Fed is widely expected to raise interest rates at its two-day policy meeting that will end on Wednesday and is currently seen tightening two to three times next year, but concerns over tepid inflation could alter the outlook for 2018. The Bank of England and the European Central Bank will also meet this week...

LONDON (Reuters) - Risk specialists in British businesses are more worried about Brexit and other regulatory change than they were a year ago, though cyber attacks remain the biggest concern, a survey showed on Tuesday. The risk of changes in legislation and regulation, including concerns over Brexit, new trade barriers and protectionism, climbed three places from a year earlier to become the second most significant concern for UK businesses, according to the UK part of a global survey by German insurer Allianz (DE:ALVG) "Companies must gear up to cope with the risk of sudden political and legal shocks, such as the lack of clarity over UK Plc’s future relationship with the European Union," said Brian Kirwan, UK Chief Executive of Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty. Cyber inc...

Investing.com - The dollar edged higher against a basket of the other major currencies on Tuesday as the euro took a breather after having rallied to more than three year highs amid talk that the European Central Bank could scale back its monetary stimulus. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.19% to 90.29 by 03:19 AM ET (08:19 AM GMT). The index plumbed a three year low of 90.05 on Monday. EUR/USD slid 0.13% to 1.2249, not far from Monday’s highs of 1.2296, which was the strongest level since December 2014. The dollar has weakened broadly recently amid the view that the global economic recovery will outpace U.S. growth and prompt other major central banks, led by the ECB to...

By Huw Jones LONDON (Reuters) - Banks in Britain will move operations to the European Union at a faster pace if there is no Brexit transition deal by the end of March, the Bank of England (BoE) said on Tuesday. Britain and the EU are beginning talks on a transition period of about two years to start when the UK leaves the bloc in March 2019. But many banks, insurers and asset managers have already begun to announce plans for new EU hubs to be sure of being able to serve customers in the bloc after Brexit. The end of the first quarter is a "significant moment" as it will be just a year before Brexit, BoE Deputy Governor Sam Woods told parliament's Treasury Select Committee. "If transition is not agreed, then firms will start to progress things at a higher pace," said Woods, who also he...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain will have even more money to spend on public services than the disputed 350 million pounds a week Brexiteers promised after the country leaves the European Union, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said in an interview published on Tuesday. The 350 million pound figure was a central and controversial part of the pro-Leave campaign's "Take back control" message in the run-up to the 2016 referendum. Last September government statisticians accused Johnson of misusing state data by repeating it. Britain's theoretical gross contribution to the EU in 2016 was 18.9 billion pounds - more than 360 million per week - but this was automatically lowered to 13.9 billion pounds by a rebate arrangement that has been in place since 1984. The government received a further 4.4 bil...

Investing.com - Gold prices gained in Asia on Wednesday with a weaker dolalr helping demand for the precious metal priced int he US currency. Gold futures for February delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose 0.51% to $1,343.90 a troy ounce. Overnight, gold prices traded roughly unchanged on Tuesday, shrugging off a rebound in the dollar from three-year lows as data showed traders remained bullish on the precious metal despite the uptick in demand for risker assets. Gold prices remained close to four-month highs amid ongoing demand for the yellow metal as data showed traders increased their bullish bets on gold for the fourth-straight week. Speculative net long position in gold rose by 40,000 contracts to a net long 203,300 contracts, a six-week high...

(Reuters) - Turnaround specialists Melrose (L:MRON) on Wednesday raised its offer for GKN (L:GKN) to 430.1 pence per share or 7.4 billion pounds ($10.18 billion) after meeting the British engineering company's shareholders. U.S. activist investor Elliott Advisors has urged GKN to talk with Melrose after the company rebuffed a 405 pence per share cash-and-stock offer this month. Melrose appealed directly to GKN's investors to back its earlier 7 billion pound takeover offer after GKN's board rejected it. On Wednesday, Melrose made a firm, higher cash-and-stock offer valuing each GKN share at 430.1 pence, based on Melrose's closing price of 234.3 pence per share on Jan. 16. Under the terms of the deal, GKN shareholders will get 1.49 new Melrose shares for each GKN share and 81 p...

By Costas Pitas LONDON (Reuters) - Britain needs to allow more time for firms to take on 8,500 workers whose jobs are threatened by the demise of Carillion, unions said on Wednesday, as Prime Minister Theresa May faced criticism for the way the government outsources public services. Infrastructure company Carillion collapsed on Monday when its banks pulled the plug, forcing the government to step in to guarantee services ranging from school meals to roadworks that the company had previously provided. Britain has said it will only pay Carillion workers on private sector contracts for 48 hours after the infrastructure firm’s fall and not offer them the same protection as those in the public sector. The head of Britain's GMB union, who met business minister Greg Clark on Tuesday, sa...

By Saikat Chatterjee LONDON (Reuters) - The euro's sizzling January rally is undermining one of the most profitable bond market trades of recent years by potentially raising hedging costs and thereby eroding profits of overseas investors. Japanese and U.S. investors have long bought European sovereign bonds despite many offering a negative yield. They are attracted by the juicy return obtained from hedging the purchases via foreign exchange derivatives known as cross currency basis swaps. But as the European Central Bank shifts closer to policy "normalisation", these holdings could come under pressure from a stronger euro and force investors to look elsewhere. European bond yields would then shoot higher, posing a challenge for policymakers who want to keep borrowing costs low to boost ...

Two very different forces have emerged in the cryptocurrency market and are capable of triggering major price swings in what's already a speculative and volatile trading environment.On one side is government regulation or anything resembling a  restriction. On the other is the commercial application of the blockchain technology that lies behind the digital currencies. Worries about regulatory crackdowns, even outright bans, have caused selloffs in Bitcoin, Ripple and other digital currencies multiple times,The most recent plunge came when it seemed South Korea planned to ban trading in the currencies. In September, prices fell sharply after China said it would shut down cryptocurrency trading exchanges. Massive rallies are just as possible, when a traditional player in ...

The U.S. dollar moved higher against its Canadian counterpart on Thursday, after the release of U.S. data, while the Bank of Canada's decision to raise interest rate on Wednesday continued to dampen demand for the local currency. USD/CAD was up 0.19% at 1.2465 by 09:30 a.m. ET (13:30 GMT). The U.S. Labor Department reported on Thursday that initial jobless claims fell by 31,000 to 220,000 last week from 261,000. Analysts had expected claims to fall to 250,000 last week. A separate report showed that the number of U.S. housing starts fell more than expected in December, while building permits beat consensus. Data also showed that manufacturing activity in the Philadelphia region deteriorated in January to the lowest level in five months. The greenback...

 Asia stocks shook off losses on Wall Street and edged up to record highs on Friday following China's announcement of faster-than-expected fourth quarter growth, while worries over a possible U.S. government shutdown weighed on the dollar. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) added 0.4 percent to a record top. The index had climbed 1.3 percent on the week, during which it rode a surge in global equities. Optimism over the global economic growth outlook and improved corporate earnings have helped share markets rally at the start of 2018. Supporting economic confidence was data on Thursday that showed China's growth in 2017 accelerated for the first time in seven years. Shanghai (SSEC) advanced 0.5 percent to two-year peaks and Hong Kong's Hang Se...

Wall Street was set to open higher on Friday, as Congress rushes to pass a spending bill and avert a government shutdown. The S&P 500 futures rose eight points or 0.30% to 2,804.75 as of 6:53 AM ET (11:53 GMT) while Dow futures increased 97 points or 0.37% to 26,038.0. Meanwhile tech heavy Nasdaq 100 futures gained 33 points or 0.48% to 6,846.00. Congress has until 12:00 AM ET (5:00 GMT) to pass a spending bill before the government shuts down. The House of Representatives voted 230-197 on Thursday night for a bill to extend expiring funding through Feb. 16 but disagreements between Republicans and Democrats over immigration legislation threatens to collapse the Senate version of the bill. Telecommunications firm Nokia (HE:NOKIA) was among the top ...

(Reuters) - Shares in British gambling companies William Hill (L:WMH) andLadbrokes Coral (L:LCL), which run retail betting shops, fell by more than 12 percent on Monday on reports that Britain is set to lower the limit on betting shop terminals to 2 pounds from 100 pounds in a move that could hit their revenue. The move is being taken to help tackle the issue of problem gambling, the Sunday Times newspaper reported, citing an ally of new culture secretary Matt Hancock. The government said in October it would reduce the top stake on the machines to between 2 and 50 pounds from 100 pounds depending on the outcome of a consultation which ends on Tuesday. The move could mean a sharp reduction in revenue from the fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) in shops for companies such...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain must ensure its armed forces can keep up with adversaries like Russia, which already has military capabilities the United Kingdom would struggle to match, according to the head of the British army. The comments from Chief of the General Staff Nick Carter, due to be delivered in a speech on Monday, reflect concerns among the top brass and some politicians that defence spending is being too tightly squeezed because of wider fiscal austerity. "Our ability to pre-empt or respond to threats will be eroded if we don't keep up with our adversaries," General Carter will say, according to excerpts of his speech circulated by the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies, where he is due to deliver it. "The time to address these threats is now &nd...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's biggest retailer Tesco (L:TSCO) said on Monday it will cut a net 800 jobs from its UK business in its latest move to simplify operations and achieve targeted cost savings. The supermarket group, the UK's largest private sector employer with a staff of over 310,000, said the role of "people manager" and "compliance manager" will be removed from large UK stores and fulfilment centres, as will the role of "customer experience manager" from 226 stores. These changes will affect 1,700 Tesco workers who will be offered alternative roles within the business where possible. Tesco said it would, however, create 900 new roles - "people partners", "learning partners" and "colleague relations partners" - who will work across multiple sites, in distribution, st...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's competition regulator said Rupert Murdoch buying all of Sky was not in the public interest because it would give the media mogul too much influence, but set out possible remedies that could allow the $15 billion (11 billion pounds) deal to go ahead. The initial ruling complicates a plan by Walt Disney Co to buy many of Murdoch's assets, including the pan-European satellite business Sky. Disney had hoped that Murdoch would have taken full control of Sky by the time the U.S. group completed its takeover. But Britain's Competition and Markets Authority said on Tuesday that the deal as proposed went against the public interest because it would give the Murdoch family too much control over the provision of news. The CMA said possible ways to resolve its concerns ...

(Bloomberg) -- Gold is going digital. Blockchain technology may help keep track of the roughly $200 billion of the precious metal dug from remote mines, traded by middlemen and melted down by recyclers that’s sold each year to buyers scattered around the world. The London Bullion Market Association, which oversees the world’s biggest spot goldmarket, will seek proposals including the use of blockchain for tracing the origins of metal, partly to help prevent money laundering, terrorism funding and conflict minerals, according to Sakhila Mirza, an executive board director. “Blockchain cannot be ignored,” Mirza, also general counsel of the LBMA, said in an interview Monday. “Let’s understand how it can help us today, and address the risks that impac...

By Kirsti Knolle and Francois Murphy VIENNA (Reuters) - Former motor racing champion Niki Lauda has won the bidding for the Niki airline he founded, convincing the insolvent carrier's administrators in marathon talks and undoing an agreed deal with British Airways owner IAG (LON:ICAG). The previously agreed sale of Niki to IAG fell through after two courts ruled the insolvency proceedings had to move to Austria from Germany. That cleared the way for other parties such as budget airline Ryanair and Lauda to again bid for the carrier, which most recently was part of failed German airline Air Berlin. Niki's creditors met on Monday to pick the best bid, and their meeting ran past midnight. "In the early hours of this morning Laudamotion GmbH emerged from a transparent bidding process as t...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar remained broadly lower against other major currencies on Wednesday, as the end of the U.S. government shutdown failed to give much momentum to the greenback and as concerns over protectionist policies pursued by President Donald Trump weighed heavily. Investors remained cautious after White House officials said President Trump was planning on using his speech to the World Economic Forum in Davos on Friday to underline his "America First" policies. Such policies include a potential withdrawal from the North American free-trade agreement and disavowing the global climate change accord. The dollar only briefly rebounded after Congress approved a measure on Monday to fund the government for around three weeks and President Donald Trump signed the bill, ending...

LONDON (Reuters) - A technical issue is affecting data centres of the National Health Service in Wales, the devolved Welsh administration said on Wednesday, with media reports suggesting that doctors were struggling to access patient records. “There is currently a technical issue affecting two NHS Wales Data Centres. This is under investigation by the NHS Wales Informatics Service and is being dealt with as a priority,” a spokesman for the Welsh government said....

LONDON (Reuters) - British online fashion retailer ASOS (L:ASOS) on Thursday beat forecasts for sales growth in the key Christmas period, putting it firmly in the sector's winners' camp for festive trading. ASOS, which sells fashion aimed at 20-somethings, said total retail sales rose 30 percent to 790.4 million pounds in the four months to Dec. 31. That compared to analysts' average forecast of growth of 27.4 percent. ASOS said UK sales increased 23 percent, while international sales were up 35 percent.   The group said there was no change to its financial guidance for the 2017-18 year....

LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May said she was "frankly appalled" at reports of sexual harassment at a charity gala in London and that it shows more work needs to be done to tackle the objectification of women. Women hired to entertain businessmen and politicians at a men-only charity fundraising gala were groped, propositioned and sexually harassed at the secretive event, the Financial Times newspaper said on Wednesday. "I was frankly appalled when I read the report," May told Bloomberg Television in Davos. "I thought that sort of attitude of the objectification of women was something that was in the past. Sadly, what that event showed is that there is still a lot more work for us to do." May said she plans her position to ensure that women are respected and treated...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain is tightening controls on firms hoping to carry out hydraulic fracking in parts of the country by adding a financial health check to the application process, the government said on Thursday. Substantial amounts of shale gas are estimated to be trapped in underground rocks and the British government wants to exploit them to help offset declining North Sea oil and gas output, create jobs and boost economic growth. No fracking - which involves extracting gas obtained from rocks broken up or fractured at high pressure with water and chemicals - has taken place in the country in the past 7 years after operations were halted at the first British site following earth tremors. The government has since imposed several environmental and technical requirements which must...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices reversed earlier falls on Friday as ongoing weakness in the U.S. dollar was seen supporting fuel consumption. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) were at $70.40 per barrel at 0756 GMT, down 3 cents from their last close, after dropping as low as $70.07 earlier in the day. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $65.52 a barrel, up 1 cent from their previous close, recovering from a session-low of $64.91 a barrel. Crude oil futures have received support from a weakening dollar, which on Friday hit fresh 2014 lows against a basket of other leading currencies (DXY). As oil is traded in dollars, swings in the greenback can also impact oil demand as it affects the price of fuel purchases for countries using other currenc...

Investing.com - The dollar pushed higher against a currency basket on Monday, but gains looked likely to remain limited as concerns over the Trump administration’s commitment to a strong currency weighed. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.25% to 89.09 by 02:55 AM ET (07:55 AM GMT), extending its recovery from last Thursday’s three year trough of 88.25. The greenback remained on the defensive after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said last Wednesday at Davos that a “weaker dollar is good for trade.” The greenback recovered somewhat after President Donald Trump said Thursday the U.S. currency would get “stronger,” appearing to contradict Mnuc...

  BERLIN (Reuters) - Twenty-four hour strikes by Germany's powerful IG Metall union will be highly damaging for companies, employers' association Gesamtmetall said on Monday, adding that it was seeking a compromise sustainable for both parties. "There is major damage given that all companies in the delivery chain are affected," said Oliver Zander of Gesamtmetall. "Twenty-four hour strikes are irresponsible and threaten jobs." He said employers had at the weekend offered a 6.8 percent wage increase over 27 months. "We want a compromise that is sustainable for both sides," added Zander....

Investing.com - The dollar rebounded against a basket of the other major currencies on Monday, but the greenback was still on track for a large monthly decline after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s tacit endorsement of a weak currency last week. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.38% to 89.21 by 09:09 AM ET (14:09 GMT), extending its recovery from last Thursday’s three year trough of 88.25. For the month, the index is down around 2.8%. Investors remained cautious on the outlook for the dollar after the U.S. Treasury secretary said last Wednesday at Davos that a “weaker dollar is good for trade.” The greenback recovered somewhat after President Donald...

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The chief executive of Volkswagen (DE:VOWG_p) said tests in which monkeys were exposed to toxic diesel fumes were "unethical and repulsive", apologising for the misconduct of those who were responsible for the study. Volkswagen has come under fire after the New York Times reported last week that German carmakers had used an organisation called European Research Group on Environment and Health in the Transport Sector (EUGT) to commission the tests. The study, conducted in 2014, was designed to defend diesel following revelations that the fuel's exhaust fumes were carcinogenic, the newspaper reported. The revelation is the latest aftershock from the VW emissions-rigging scandal, which continues to rock the auto industry. "The methods used by EUGT in the United State...

By Kit Rees LONDON (Reuters) - The UK's top share index fell on Tuesday as investors took profits on miners and banks, so-called cyclical sectors which have enjoyed a strong start to 2018. The blue chip FTSE 100 (FTSE) index was down 0.4 percent at 7,641.34 points by 0950 GMT, in line with a broader slide among European markets. Over the past fortnight the rally that has seen the FTSE 100 hit a series of record highs has sputtered due to the index's heavy weighting in stocks which are sensitive to the economic cycle, such as financials and commodities. While these sectors found favour with investors at the beginning of 2018, they have seen a retreat as investors have locked in profits. "We like this kind of pullback. It's been on the cards for some time," said Ken Odeluga, market anal...

By Kit Rees LONDON (Reuters) - The UK's top share index fell on Tuesday as investors took profits on miners and banks, so-called cyclical sectors which have enjoyed a strong start to 2018. The blue chip FTSE 100 (FTSE) index was down 0.4 percent at 7,641.34 points by 0950 GMT, in line with a broader slide among European markets. Over the past fortnight the rally that has seen the FTSE 100 hit a series of record highs has sputtered due to the index's heavy weighting in stocks which are sensitive to the economic cycle, such as financials and commodities. While these sectors found favour with investors at the beginning of 2018, they have seen a retreat as investors have locked in profits. "We like this kind of pullback. It's been on the cards for some time," said Ken Odeluga, market anal...

Investing.com - The dollar erased gains on Tuesday, as U.S. bond yields pulled away from recent highs and as the euro strengthened, buoyed by data showing that the euro zone economy enjoyed its best year in a decade in 2017. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.34% to 89.87 by 08:40 AM ET (13:40 GMT), falling back towards last week’s low of 88.25, its weakest level since December 2014. The dollar came under renewed selling pressure as U.S. Treasury yields eased after climbing to fresh multi-year highs on Monday, amid growing expectations for major central banks to begin scaling back monetary stimulus. Investors were also cautious ahead of U.S. President Donald Trump's State of the Union speec...

By Emma Rumney LONDON (Reuters) - Royal Bank of Scotland's restructuring business did not turn around the "vast majority" of small businesses it worked with, Chief Executive Ross McEwan said on Tuesday in response to lawmakers' questions. McEwan and RBS (LON:RBS) Chairman Howard Davies were being grilled by members of the Treasury Select Committee, which has challenged state-backed RBS on its treatment of troubled small businesses during and after the financial crisis. RBS's Global Restructuring Group (GRG) handled around 12,000 struggling firms between 2007 and 2012, some of which accuse the bank of pushing them into bankruptcy to pick up their assets on the cheap. Nicky Morgan, who chairs the Treasury committee, asked McEwan about a statement he made in 2014 after the publication of ...

Investing.com - The dollar came under renewed selling pressure on Wednesday, sliding lower against a basket of the other major currencies ahead of the Federal Reserve’s policy decision. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.24% to 88.81 by 03:05 AM ET (08:05 GMT), falling back towards last week’s low of 88.25, its weakest level since December 2014. The dollar was on track for a steep monthly loss against its peers, with the index down around 3.0% on the month at time of writing. The dollar has come under pressure as it has lost its relative yield attraction for investors. A faster rate of monetary tightening outside the U.S. would lessen the divergence between the Federal Reserve and oth...

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland's central bank expects to see an increase in Brexit-related authorisations from financial services firms looking to set to set up in the country or extend their current operations, governor Philip Lane said on Wednesday. "Many types of entities - including banks; insurance companies; asset management firms; and payments and electronic money institutions - have made applications to the Central Bank of Ireland," Lane told a financial conference.   "The potential activities range from: broker dealers; trading venues; electronic money institutions; commercial insurance; and retail insurance. We expect the current levels of authorisation and supervisory engagements with firms to increase further."...

By Andrew MacAskill and Huw Jones LONDON (Reuters) - European Commission officials have rejected the City of London's proposal to strike a post-Brexit free trade deal on financial services, a major blow to Britain's hopes of keeping full access to EU markets for one of the world's top two financial centres. The decision increases the likelihood that the City will trade with Europe under less favourable terms and could accelerate corporate contingency plans to move more operations to the continent from London. Since Britain voted to leave the EU 19 months ago, some of the world's most powerful finance companies in London have been searching for a way to preserve the existing cross-border flow of trading after it leaves the bloc in 2019. Officials from the European Union's executive told...

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Industrial workers in Germany began a second day of 24-hour strikes over pay and working hours on Thursday, affecting companies including carmakers Volkswagen (DE:VOWG_p) and Ford (N:F). The IG Metall union has called for full-day walkouts through Friday, firing a last warning shot before it ballots for extended industrial action that could be crippling to companies reliant on a supply chain of car parts and other components. Emboldened by the fastest economic growth in six years and record low unemployment, IG Metall is demanding an 8 percent pay rise over 27 months for 3.9 million metal and engineering workers across Europe's largest economy. The union has also asked for workers to be given the right to reduce their weekly hours to 28 from 35 to care for children...

MILAN (Reuters) - Italian sportscar maker Ferrari (MI:RACE) forecast to double core earnings to 2 billion euros (£1.8 billion) no later than 2022 and become debt free a year earlier, betting on racy demand for its supercars and new launches, including a planned SUV. The Maranello, Italy-based company gave the mid-term forecast after "thoroughly reviewing its current portfolio and all of its product development initiatives". Shares in the group rose as much as 4.9 percent after the release. Ferrari reported 2017 adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of 1.04 billion euros, in line with expectations, breaching the 1 billion euro mark two years earlier than forecast at the time of its initial public offering. For 2018 Ferrari forecast...

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Britain's financial companies can either establish full-blown subsidiaries in the European Union after Brexit or fall back on financial regulatory "equivalence", European Commission Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis said on Thursday. EU negotiators see no room for Britain keeping "passport" access to EU financial markets for its banks, diplomats in Brussels said earlier this week. And Dombrovskis told a separate event in Dublin late on Wednesday this could be discussed given Britain's wish to leave the single market. "Equivalence is applied to a third country with a regulatory and supervisory framework comparable with the EU and can be used as a tool," Dombrovskis told a news conference in Dublin. "Another possibility, which is currently available is the establishment...

Investing.com - Gold prices moved higher on Friday, as sentiment on the U.S. dollar remained vulnerable ahead of a key U.S. employment report due to be released later in the day. Comex gold futures were up 0.28% at $1,351.60 a troy ounce by 03:00 a.m. ET (07:00 GMT). Market participants were looking ahead to the U.S. nonfarm payrolls report due later Friday, for further indications on the strength of the job market. The greenback briefly rebounded after the Fed, at the conclusion of its policy meeting on Wednesday, signaled its confidence about inflation and growth in the U.S. The Fed said that inflation is likely to rise this year, boosting expectations for further interest rate hikes under incoming central bank head Jerome Powell. The Fed left rates unchange...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar extended gains against other major currencies on Friday, after data showed that the U.S. economy added more jobs than expected this month, adding to optimism over the strength of the economy. The U.S. Labor Department said the economy added 200,000 jobs in January, beating expectations for a 184,000 gain. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.1% this month, in line with expectations. The report also showed that average hourly earnings rose 0.3% in January, as expected. The greenback was already supported after the Federal Reserve, at the conclusion of its policy meeting on Wednesday, signaled its confidence about inflation and growth in the U.S. The Fed said that inflation is likely to rise this year, boosting expec...

LONDON (Reuters) - European stocks suffered a sharp sell-off at the open on Monday, tracking big drops in Asia as growing inflation expectations and rising bond yields took their toll on equity markets. Europe's STOXX 600 (STOXX) sank 1.1 percent, in line with euro zone stocks (STOXXE) and on track for its sixth straight day of decline. The pan-European index hit a two-month low in early dealing, having given back all the gains it made in the exuberant new year rally. Among major European equity markets, only Spain and Italy are still higher than at the turn of the year, with the UK the worst performer. All sectors were in the red on Monday, but the sell-off hit the highest valued parts of the market hardest, with tech stocks (SX8P) falling 1.6 percent. Chipmaker AMS (S:AMS), one of th...

LONDON (Reuters) - Tesco (L:TSCO), Britain's biggest retailer, said Booker (L:BOK) boss Charles Wilson would stay on and run its entire UK business once it completes the 3.7 billion pounds takeover of the wholesaler. Tesco also forecast profit for 2017-18 would come in slightly ahead of analysts' expectations, adding it had traded in line with management expectations since it last updated investors on Jan. 11. Tesco's purchase of Booker is the boldest move yet by its Chief Executive Dave Lewis, who took over in 2014, providing the supermarket group with access to the faster growing catering segment of Britain's 195 billion pound food market. After completion of the deal, Wilson, who has led Booker since 2005, will become CEO of Tesco's retail and wholesale operations in the UK...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's Lloyds Banking Group (L:LLOY) last month carried out a net 465 job cuts, a spokeswoman for the bank said by email on Monday, as it continues to try to reduce costs. The job cuts will mainly impact the bank's commercial banking, chief information office, risk, community banking and insurance and wealth units.   "This process involved making difficult decisions, and we are committed to working through these changes in a careful and sensitive way. All affected employees have been briefed by their line manager," the spokeswoman said by email....

Цены на нефть снижались вчера на фоне возобновившегося укрепления доллара США. По итогам торгов 5 февраля стоимость апрельского контракта на нефть марки Brent на бирже ICE Futures в Лондоне упала на $0,96 (1,4%) - до $67,62 за баррель. Мартовский фьючерс на WTI на Нью-Йоркской товарной бирже NYMEX рухнул на $1,30 (1,99%) и составил $64,15 за баррель. Сегодня нефть продолжает терять в цене вслед за падением мировых рынков акций на фоне укрепления доллара США. Апрельские фьючерсы на нефть марки Brent к 8:15 мск снизились на $0,71 (1,05%) - до $66,91 за баррель. Котировки мартовского контракта на нефть WTI подешевели на $0,7 (1,09%) и составили $63,45 за баррель....

LONDON (Reuters) - BP (L:BP) on Tuesday reported a surge in fourth-quarter profit, beating analysts' expectations, supported by strong earnings in refining and trading. BP reported fourth-quarter underlying replacement cost profit, the company's definition of net income, of $2.1 billion (£1.5 billion), exceeding forecasts for $1.9 billion, according to a company-provided survey of analysts. That compared with a profit of $400 million a year earlierand $1.9 billion in the third quarter of 2017. On an annual basis, BP's profits soared to $6.2 billion from $2.6 billion in 2016.   Full-year production rose to 2.47 million barrels per day (bpd), up some 12 percent from 2016....

ZURICH (Reuters) - Credit Suisse (S:CSGN) reiterated on Tuesday that it faced no material impact from a sharp drop overnight in the VelocityShares Daily Inverse VIXShort-Term ETN (P:XIV) product, in which it has a 32 percent stake. "The XIV ETN activity is reflective of today's market volatility. There is no material impact to Credit Suisse," a spokesman said. The bank's exposure was fully hedged. Monday's stock market rout left two of the most popular exchange-traded products (ETPs), which investors use to benefit from calm rather than volatile conditions, facing potential liquidation, market participants said. [nL4N1PW1ZX]...

Investing.com – U.S. Futures pointed to another negative day for stock markets on Tuesday as a sell-off continues world wide. The S&P 500 futures fell over 14 points or 0.54% to 2,593.75 as of 6:50 AM ET (11:50 GMT) while Dow futures decreased 225 points or 0.94% to 23,713.0. Meanwhile tech heavy Nasdaq 100 futures was down over 39 points or 0.61% to 6,390.0. The Dow lost over a 1,000 points at the close on Monday, as inflation concerns pushed stocks down. The negative movements started on Friday after a report showed that U.S. wages increased at its fastest pace in eight and a half year. Bond yields rose after the report, as investors grow concerned that inflation will rise and the Federal Reserve will interest rates more than expected ...

 Investors may be excused for not knowing what to make of the staggering two-day stock market selloff.
On the one hand, Wall Street firms have been calling for a correction in the relentless rally for quite some time.
On the other hand, the most recent Bank of America/Merrill Lynch fund managers survey showed most see the rally running into next year.
Don't be confused by the two. 
The Dow Industrials' enormous decline Monday was the biggest in history based on the number of points -- 1,175 -- but on a percentage basis, there have been a few bigger, including the crash of 1987.
Along with the Dow's big loss last Friday, the benchmark index is down 8% from its recent record high.
But that's still shy of the 10% threshold that qualifies as a ...

 Britain's major share index posted modest gains but remained at 10-month lows on Wednesday after Wall Street recovered overnight from a brutal global sell-off. The FTSE 100 was up 0.6 percent at 7,185 points by 0903 GMT while other European bourses were also trading in positive territory at a roughly similar pace. "Certainly there is a risk that yesterday’s rally is a fake out before another selloff", said Neil Wilson, senior market analysts at ETX Capital, noting that U.S. futures were currently trading in the red. British shares lost ground for the previous six sessions and are down 6.4 percent so far in 2018. Financials, which were badly hit during the sell-off, added the most points to the index. Old Mutual, HSBC, Barclays (LON:BARC), Prudentia...

(Reuters) - British food ingredients maker Tate & Lyle (LON:TATE) Plc said it remained on track to deliver profit growth for 2018 in line with guidance after sales volumes picked up pace in the three months to December. The company, which sells corn syrup and other ingredients to food and drink makers, said sales volume growth accelerated in both of its speciality food ingredients and bulk ingredients divisions in the three-month period....

LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling jumped and stocks hit session lows on Thursday after the Bank of England said interest rates probably needed to rise sooner and by a bit more than it thought three months ago. Against the dollar, the pound rose as much as 0.9 percent to hit a day's high of $1.4015 <GBP=> after trading flat before the BoE announcement, in which the bank kept rates unchanged. Against the euro, sterling rallied more than one percent to hit a one-week high of 87.41 pence (EURGBP=). Britain's internationally-exposed FTSE 100 (FTSE) hit its session low, down 1.1 percent, after the BoE decision. The Bank of England said interest rates probably needed to rise sooner and by a bit more than it thought three months ago, after it raised its economic growth forecasts for ...

Investing.com - Aftershocks from this week's wild roller-coaster ride on Wall Street continued to reverberate around markets on Thursday, a sign that market participants remain jittery amid increased volatility levels. The wild ride in U.S. equities started on Monday, when both the Dow and S&P 500indices plunged more than 4%, with the former notching its biggest intraday decline in history with a nearly 1,600-point drop, as investors rushed for the exits in the wake of higher rates. On Tuesday, the 30-stock index swung 1,167.5 points before closing 567 points higher. The turbulence continued Wednesday, with U.S. stocks finishing lower despite climbing earlier in the session, as the S&P 500 recorded its largest one-day reversal since February 2016. The Dow has los...

MILAN (Reuters) - The chances of striking a deal on the sale of Italy's struggling carrier Alitalia before national elections due on Mar. 4 are "effectively low", Italy Industry Minister Carlo Calenda said in an interview with Italian newspaper La Stampa on Friday. Alitalia, which has made a profit only a few times in its history, was put under special administration last year after staff rejected a plan to cut jobs and salaries. Germany's Lufthansa, British low-cost carrier easyJet (LON:EZJ) and U.S. private equity fund Cerberus are among companies that have expressed an interest in Alitalia, but Calenda said their interest was temporarily on hold pending the outcome of the vote....

(Reuters) - An attorney for Alphabet Inc's (O:GOOGL) Waymo self-driving vehicle unit said on Friday the company has reached a settlement with Uber Technologies Inc [UBER.UL] in its legal dispute over trade secrets.   A trial to decide the case, which started earlier this week, has been dismissed by the judge. No further details were immediately available....

Investing.com - The dollar slipped lower against a currency basket on Monday as Asian stock markets steadied after last week’s selloff, dampening safe haven demand for the greenback. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, dipped 0.11% to 90.13 by 03:23 AM ET (08:23 AM GMT). The index rose 1.45% last week. Shares in Hong Kong and China rose on Monday and U.S. futures extended gains, adding to a late bounce on Friday. Japan’s Nikkei was closed for a holiday. U.S. stocks ended higher on Friday but still posted their worst week in two years as fears of faster inflation and thus more aggressive interest rate increases triggered a global stock market rout. Investors were looking ahead to U.S. i...

By Martinne Geller and Douglas Busvine LONDON/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Unilever (L:ULVR) (AS:UNc), one of the world's biggest spenders on advertising, has threatened to pull ads from digital platforms such as Facebook and Google if they "create division" in society or fail to protect children. Keith Weed, chief marketing officer at Unilever, which makes Ben & Jerry's ice cream and Dove soap, will explain the plan in a speech on Monday at the annual Interactive Advertising Bureau conference in California. Weed will call on the technology industry to improve transparency and consumer trust in an era of fake news and "toxic" online content. "Unilever, as a trusted advertiser, do not want to advertise on platforms which do not make a positive contribution to society," Weed plans...

By Catherine Ngai NEW YORK (Reuters) - Last year, Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) executives met with some scepticism after unveiling an ambitious plan to grow revenue by $5 billion (£3.6 billion), whether or not markets remained subdued. Now that trading has picked up, Wall Street is hoping the bank can do even better. On Tuesday, Goldman's chief executive officer, Lloyd Blankfein, is scheduled to speak at an industry conference in Miami Beach, where he intends to provide more information about the revenue-boosting effort. It will be the first time Blankfein himself tries to persuade investors with a formal, public presentation about the lofty goals Goldman has set. Since his deputies first laid out the revenue-growth strategy in September, analysts have peppered exec...

LONDON (Reuters) - British lawmaker Nicky Morgan said on Tuesday that she planned to ask fellow members of parliament's Treasury Committee to publish a confidential regulator's report into Royal Bank of Scotland's treatment of small businesses. Morgan, who chairs the committee, said she would use parliamentary powers to require the Financial Conduct Authority to provide committee members with the report, extracts of which have already been leaked. "A version of the report is now in the public domain. The FCA has completely lost control of the publication process," Morgan said on Tuesday. "I will be asking members to agree to publish the final, unredacted report under parliamentary privilege as soon as possible," she said.   The FCA has said it cannot legally publish the report as...

Wall Street was lower on Wednesday after a better than expected inflation report sparked investor concern over raising interest rates. The S&P 500 was down eight points or 0.31% to 2,654.66 as of 9:43 AM ET (14:43 GMT) while the Dow composite decreased 116 points or 0.47% to 24,524.0, and tech heavy NASDAQ Composite was down five points or 0.08% to 7,008.17. Markets were on edge after U.S. consumer prices rose more than expected in January, supporting speculation that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates more than expected this year. The Labor Department said that consumer prices rose by a seasonally adjusted 0.5%last month, above forecasts for an increase of 0.3% and following a gain of 0.2% in December. Year-over-year, consumer prices w...

 Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Wednesday, February 14: 1. Inflation and retail sales in focus Markets are focused Wednesday on key data points scheduled for release at 8:30AM ET (13:30GMT). Traders will be keeping a close eye on the consumer price index (CPI) for January as they look for indications of inflation stateside in order go gauge support for the Federal Reserve’s plans to gradually increase interest rates. Market analysts expect consumer prices to rise 0.3%, faster than December’s 0.1% increase, while core inflation is forecast to inch up 0.2%, a touch slower than December when consumer prices recorded their largest increase in 11 months. On a yearly base, core CPI is projected to climb 1.7%, s...

Согласно официальным данным, в январе инфляция потребительских цен (CPI) и базовая инфляция выросли выше прогнозов, что повышает давление на ФРС относительно ужесточения монетарной политики. В отчете Министерства торговли США указано, что индекс потребительских цен (ИПЦ) в США за январь вырос на 0,5% по сравнению с предыдущим месяцем против прогноза роста на 0,3% и роста на 0,1% в декабре. В годовом исчислении индекс потребительских цен (ИПЦ) в США в январе вырос на 2,1%, как и в прошлом месяце, что выше прогноза роста на 1,9%. Базовый индекс потребительских цен (ИПЦ) в США, который не включает в себя цены на продукты питания и энергоносители, в январе вырос на 0,3% против прогнозируемого сохранения темпов роста на уровне на 0,2%. Базовый индекс потребительских цен в годовом исчислении...

The yen climbed to a 15-month high as traders probed Japanese officials’ tolerance for appreciation, hurting the nation’s stocks in what was otherwise a mixed session for Asian equities Wednesday ahead of a key U.S. inflation report. Treasuries also advanced, along with gold, giving the moves the flavor of a shift to havens. Futures on the S&P 500 Index were little changed, as was the MSCI Asia Pacific Index of stocks. Shares rose in Hong Kong and Seoul, and fluctuated in Shanghai before a week-long Lunar New Year holiday. Volatility lingered, albeit down from the extremely elevated levels reached last week. Japan’s currency climbed to its strongest since November 2016, when the yen was sold off as investors anticipated U.S. fiscal stimulus would boost Ame...

Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Thursday, February 15: 1. Global Stock Market Rally Continues Global stock markets continued higher, extending this week's strong rally as equity investors appeared to take strong U.S. inflation data in their stride. Asian markets closed mostly higher, with a 1.4% rise for the Nikkei 225 index and almost a 1.8% jump for the Hong Kong Hang Seng Index, though trading volumes in much of the region were capped by the coming Lunar New Year holiday. In Europe, the continent's bourses posted solid gains, as strength seen in markets overseas boosted sentiment. Germany’s DAX index climbed about 1% in early action. On Wall Street, U.S. stock futures pointed to a positive open, setting the Dow&nb...

The dollar fell broadly on Thursday, hitting a 15-month low against the yen as U.S. bond yields rose after a report showing that inflation rose at a faster than expected pace last month. USD/JPY was down 0.72% to 106.23 by 03:15 AM ET (08:15 AM GMT), the weakest level since Nov. 11, 2016. The dollar has fallen more than 2% against the Japanese currency in February. Expectations for a continued expansion in the U.S. budget deficit pressured the dollar lower as bond yields rose. A recovery in risk appetite also weighed on the greenback. The U.S. currency attracted safe haven demand during the stock market downturn seen earlier this month, although it had fallen to a three-year low in January. On Wednesday, the dollar initially climbed after data showing a stronger-than-expected incr...

Wall Street was set to rise on Thursday as investors shrugged off inflation concerns. The S&P 500 futures rose 12 and a half points or 0.46% to 2,709.50 as of 6:40 AM ET (11:40 GMT) while Dow futures increased 227 points or 0.91% to 25,090.0. Meanwhile tech heavy Nasdaq 100 futures was up 37 points or 0.56% to 6,724.25. Wall Street was volatile Wednesday morning after inflation data rattled markets but closed in the green. The consumer price index rose to 0.5% in January, beating expectations of a 0.3% rise, according to the Labor Department. The increase in inflation supports the Federal Reserve raising interest rates this year, with many analysts expecting three rate increases. TripAdvisor Inc (NASDAQ:TRIP) was among the biggest gainers in p...

How can stock investors profit from the increasingly striking movements in global bond yields? It’s the question brought into focus by last week’s equity market rout, partly sparked by the recent sharp move upward in U.S. government bond yields, and reiterated Wednesday after U.S. consumer prices data pushed them higher again. As equity traders around the globe wake up to the prospect of higher inflation and interest rates -- and adjust to a higher yield range -- many are seeking the best trades to capitalize on movements in the bond market. “We have clearly seen a shift in expectations on monetary policy and global rates over recent months,” said Mahmood Noorani, the founder of Quant Insight, whose past experience includes roles at BlueCrest Capital Management an...

 European shares were set to snap a three-week losing streak on Friday, supported by continued strength in earnings updates, as volatility calmed down and jitters over rising inflation eased. Gains in the energy sector on the back of rising oil prices and solid updates from large cap companies including Schneider, Eni and Renault (PA:RENA) helped the pan-European STOXX 600 index rise 0.5 percent by 0818 GMT. The STOXX is up more than 2 percent so far this week but it is still down around 7 percent from the 2 1/2 year peak hit in January. This week's recovery follows a turbulent start to February, when worries over inflation caused a global sell-off in equities. "The reason for the change in sentiment may well be down to the fact that the overall global eco...

 The pound dipped slightly lower on Friday following the lower than expected retail sales figures for January.   The pound pared gains against the dollar following the data release. At 10:03 GMT, the GBP/USD was up 0.03% on the previous session close to 1.4101.   The pound reached a two week high against the weaker dollar early on Friday morning, touching 1.4145. Immediately prior to the data release at 09:30 GMT. cable was 1.4105.   According to a report by the Office for National Statistics released on Friday, UK retail sales increased by 0.1% in the three months to January.   December recorded a decline of 1.4%, revised upward from a decline of 1.5%. The consensus figure had been for an increase of 0.5%.   Year on year ret...

 Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Friday, February 16: 1. Dollar hovers near 3-year low The U.S. dollar fell to three-year lows against other major currencies earlier on Friday on the back of rising concerns over U.S. policies, especially the rising deficit. The greenback has been under presssure amid sustained concerns over the deficit in the U.S., which is projected to climb near $1 trillion in 2019 following the announcement of infrastructure spending and large corporate tax cuts. At 5:50AM ET (10:50GMT), the U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, inched up 0.08% at 88.53, pulling off its 3-year low of 88.16 hit in overnight trade. The dollar was still o...

 The pound dipped slightly lower on Friday following the lower than expected retail sales figures for January.   The pound pared gains against the dollar following the data release. At 10:03 GMT, the GBP/USD was up 0.03% on the previous session close to 1.4101.   The pound reached a two week high against the weaker dollar early on Friday morning, touching 1.4145. Immediately prior to the data release at 09:30 GMT. cable was 1.4105.   According to a report by the Office for National Statistics released on Friday, UK retail sales increased by 0.1% in the three months to January.   December recorded a decline of 1.4%, revised upward from a decline of 1.5%. The consensus figure had been for an increase of 0.5%.   Year on year ret...

Global financial markets will focus on minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest policy meeting in the week ahead, with hopes the central bank will give more hints on the pace of future rate hikes this year. Staying in the U.S., a report on existing home sales will be the highlight of the holiday-shortened week. Markets stateside will remain closed on Monday for the President's Day holiday. In the UK, investors will be looking ahead to a second reading on British growth data for further hints on the health of the economy and the likelihood of the Bank of England raising interest rates this year. Meanwhile, market players will eye flash survey data on euro zone business activity to assess how fast the European Central Bank will start unwinding its asset purchase program. Elsewhere, ...

 European shares rose for a fourth straight session on Monday, helped by gains among steel makers such as Tenaris and Outokumpu after the United States government outlined proposals for hefty import curbs. Shares in Tenaris (MI:TENR), Outokumpu (HE:OUT1V) and Arcelor Mittal (AS:MT) - which have facilities in the United States - were the biggest gainers in Europe, up between 2.2 and 4.6 percent by 0821 GMT. Their gains and strength in the heavyweight banking sector (SX7P) helped the pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) index edge up 0.15 percent. The UK's FTSE (FTSE) added 0.1 percent and Germany's DAX (GDAXI) rose 0.4 percent. Makers of consumer staples fell after Reckitt Benckiser (L:RB) missed earnings expectations and its profit margins declined, hurt by a tougher ...

Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Monday, February 19: 1. Global Stocks Maintain Rally In Holiday-Thinned Trade Global stock markets kicked off the new week with more gains, as appetite for equities remained strong following a recent shakeout that was sparked by fears of creeping inflation and higher borrowing costs. Asian markets closed mostly higher, with a near 2% rise for the Nikkei 225 index and an almost 1% jump for South Korea's Kospi, though many markets in the region remained closed for the Lunar New Year holiday. In Europe, shares rose for a fourth straight session, as strength seen in markets overseas boosted sentiment. Meanwhile, U.S. stock futures edged up, but traders were steering away from big bets as they got the...

World stocks were set for a sixth session of gains on Monday, extending a recovery from a selloff sparked by fears of creeping inflation and higher borrowing costs. Gains were marginal, however, and scored largely in Asian markets, with Japan's Nikkei 225 up 2 percent. European markets gave up initial gains to turn lower, with the pan-European STOXX index down 0.2 percent. Market holidays in the United States and China kept trading slower than usual, but moves in the steel sector were pronounced after the U.S. government outlined proposals for curbing imports. Shares in Tenaris, Outokumpu and Arcelor Mittal - which have facilities in the United States - were the biggest gainers in Europe, up between 1.7 and 3.1 percent (EU). The MSCI world index, which tracks shares in 47 cou...

Asian stocks slipped on Tuesday, their recent recovery stalling after European equities broke a winning streak, while the dollar edged further away from three-year lows. Spreadbetters expected a mixed start for European stocks, with Britain's FTSE seen rising 0.1 percent, Germany's DAX dropping 0.1 percent and France's CAC dipping 0.07 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan shed 0.25 percent. Australian stocks were little changed, South Korea's KOSPI lost 1.2 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng dropped 0.4 percent. Japan's Nikkei retreated 1 percent after three successive days of gains. The pan-European STOXX index fell 0.6 percent on Monday following a three-day ascent, dragged down by falls in cons...

 European shares edged back in positive territory on Tuesday after ending a three-day recovery in the previous session when Wall Street and Chinese markets were closed for holiday. At 0824 GMT, most sectors and indexes across the continent were making gains and the pan-regional STOXX 600 (STOXX) benchmark was up 0.18 percent at 378.92 points. Shares Edenred (PA:EDEN) were the top performers on the STOXX, up 9.2 percent, after the French prepaid meal voucher and card provider reported record 2017 earnings, increased its dividend and expressed confidence over 2018. Other top movers in the pan-European index included (L:HSBA) HSBC and BHP (L:BLT), both down nearly 3.5 percent, after their trading updates disappointed investors. While the world's biggest miner missed its for...

 Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Tuesday, February 20: 1. Global Stocks Mostly Lower As Jitters Creep Back In Global stocks were mostly lower, as jitters from last week's sell-off sparked by fears of creeping inflation and higher borrowing costs returned to the market. Asian stocks slipped, though many markets in the region remained closed for the Lunar New Year holiday. South Korea's Kospi index and Japan's Nikkei 225 fared the worst, closing down 1.1% and 1% respectively. In Europe, shares were a tad lower in mid-morning trade, after ending a three-day recovery in the previous session. London's FTSE 100 was the biggest loser after earnings from both HSBC (LON:HSBA) and BHP (LON:BLT) disappointed i...

 Here's a preview of the top 3 things that could rock markets today: 1. Fed Minutes, Housing, Manufacturing, Service Data To Keep Dollar Rebound Alive? The Federal Reserve publishes Wednesday the minutes of its January meeting at which the central bank voted to keep its benchmark rate unchanged but adopted a more hawkish tone in its monetary policy statement, citing improving inflation. RBC suggested that the subtle change in the Fed’s language on inflation may have been a deliberate effort by the central bank to open the door to a more “forceful tone on rate hikes” as the year progresses. A trio of reports on services, manufacturing, and housing are also expected to draw investor interest for clues on the underlying strength of the US economy. Economi...

 The dollar edged up to one-week highs against a currency basket on Wednesday, as investors awaited the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest policy meeting for fresh indications on the future pace of interest rate hikes. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.12% at 89.75 by 03:24 AM ET (08:24 AM GMT). The index has climbed higher after it sank to a low of 88.15 on Friday, the weakest since December 2014. The Fed was to release the minutes of its January meeting later on Wednesday and a hawkish tone could reinforce expectations for a faster pace of monetary tightening this year and boost the dollar. The dollar has weakened in recent months as expectations for a faster pace of interest ra...

Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Wednesday, February 21: 1. Fed FOMC Meeting Minutes Investors will be looking closely at the the Federal Reserve minutes of its most recent policy meeting, scheduled for release on Wednesday at 2:00PM ET (1900GMT). The U.S. central bank left interest rates unchanged following its meeting on Jan. 31, the last under the leadership of Janet Yellen, and said inflation was likely to rise this year. Those comments signaled that borrowing costs will continue to climb under new central bank chief Jerome Powell. The Fed is scheduled to hold its next policy meeting on March 20-21, with interest rate futures pricing in an 82% chance of a rate hike at that meeting, according to Investing.com's Fed Rate Monito...

U.S. Futures pointed to a lower opening bell on Wednesday, as traders wait for the Federal Reserve meeting minutes and potential signs of increased interest rates. The S&P 500 futures fell over four points or 0.18% to 2,709.25 as of 6:40 AM ET (11:40 GMT) while Dow futures decreased 56 points or 0.22% to 24,892.0. Meanwhile tech heavy Nasdaq 100 futures was down over three and a half points or 0.06% to 6,786.75. The Federal Reserve is expected to release the minutes of its most recent policy meeting at 2:00 PM ET (19:00 GMT). Investors will pay close attention for signs that rates could increase more than expected. The Fed is scheduled to hold its next policy meeting on March 20-21, with interest rate futures pricing in an 82% chance...

Here’s a preview of the top 3 things that could rock markets today: 1. UK GDP To Revive Sterling’s Rise Against Dollar? The second reading of fourth quarter UK Gross Domestic product (GDP), is expected to confirm the UK economy grew at 0.5% in the fourth quarter. The pound has struggled to make a sustained move above $1.4 against the greenback as the latter has rebounded from three-year lows following recent data showing improved US inflation and economic growth. The FOMC minutes Tuesday boosted greenback despite analysts pointing out that the minutes failed to lift expectations for a faster pace of rate hikes. “The discussion offered limited indication of a Fed turning more preemptive in the face of fiscal stimulus and stronger global growth conditions,” T...

 Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Thursday, February 22: 1. Global Stocks Slump Amid Fed-Driven Jitters Global stocks were on the backfoot, after minutes of the Federal Reserve's January meeting underlined expectations for faster U.S. interest rate hikes, souring appetite for riskier assets around the world. Asian markets ended broadly lower, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng and Japan's Nikkei225 faring the worst, closing down around 1.5% and 1.1% respectively. But Chinese markets were in a better mood, returning from their long holiday break with a gain of about 2.2% for the Shanghai blue-chip index. In Europe, stocks were notably weaker in mid-morning trade. The Stoxx Europe 600index, the region's broad...

 World stocks tumbled to one-week lows on Thursday after the U.S. Fed confirmed it was on track to raise interest rates several times this year, sending bond yields to new multi-year highs. While U.S. 10-year yields retreated after nearing the psychologically key 3 percent level, the minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserve's meeting at the end of January has at least temporarily taken the edge off investors' appetite for equities and other assets perceived as risky, such as emerging markets and commodities. With Fed policymakers agreeing that "a gradual upward trajectory of the federal funds rate would be appropriate," the odds in the market of faster U.S. interest rate hikes have narrowed and a host of Fed fund futures <0#FF:> have hit contract lows. The dollar too was trading j...

The S&P 500 and the Dow industrials opened higher on Thursday after two days of losses as bond yields eased off four-year highs and traders took stock of the Federal Reserve's views on inflation. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) rose 101.75 points, or 0.41 percent, to 24,899.53. The S&P 500 (SPX) gained 11.77 points, or 0.435711 percent, to 2,713.1. The Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) added 36.10 points, or 0.5 percent, to 7,254.33....

 Asian shares rebounded on Friday as comments from a Federal Reserve official eased worries about faster rate rises in the United States, while the dollar ticked higher as investors dipped their toes back into riskier assets. Indications were mixed for other global equity markets, with E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 up 0.3 percent but London's FTSE futures slipping 0.2 percent. Financial markets have fluctuated wildly this month as investors fretted about how fast the Fed might raise rates in the wake of data showing a pick up in U.S. inflation. Even though broader U.S. price pressures still appear modest for now, markets are fully pricing in three rate hikes this year, one more than was seen just a few months ago. Some analysts even expect four. That in tu...

Oil prices dipped lower on Friday as investor concerns about high U.S. crude exports outweighed an unexpected drop in oil inventories in the world's biggest fuel consumer. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $62.74 a barrel at 0750 GMT, down 3 cents from their last settlement. Brent crude futures were down 2 cents at $66.37 a barrel. WTI was still on track to rise about 1.7 percent for the week, and Brent was up 2.2 percent, with both contracts set for their second weekly gains after falling steeply early in the month. Friday's dips followed gains during the previous day when the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said U.S. crude stockpiles fell by 1.6 million barrels in the week to Feb. 16, to 420.48 million barrels, despite a seasonal slow...

- Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Friday, February 23: 1. Global Stocks Mixed As Traders Digest Fed Minutes Global stocks partially recovered from losses posted after minutes of the Federal Reserve's January meeting underlined expectations for faster U.S. interest rate hikes, souring appetite for riskier assets around the world. Asian markets ended broadly higher, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng and Japan's Nikkei 225 up 0.93% and 0.62% respectively, while China's Shanghai blue-chip index advanced 0.63%. In Europe, stocks were notably lower in late morning trade. The Stoxx Europe 600index, the region's broadest measure of share prices, rose 0.3%. Meanwhile, early indications from U.S. futures suggested a higher o...

LONDON (Reuters) - European shares opened slightly higher on Monday with gains across bourses and sectors, as focus gradually shifts from the earnings season to monetary policy and politics this week with Italy's general election on Sunday. While the ECB President Mario Draghi is to make a speech at the European Parliament Monday afternoon, the new Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell is to give his first House testimony on Tuesday. At 0830 GMT, the pan-European STOXX benchmark index (STOXX) was up 0.75 percent at 384 points.   Lloyd's of London underwriter Hiscox (L:HSX) posted the worst performance of the index with a 4.7 percent fall after it reported a fall of more than 90 percent in full-year pretax profit, as it faced the costliest year ever for insurers and rein...

By Padraic Halpin DUBLIN (Reuters) - Concerns over the profitability of its lending overshadowed Bank of Ireland's (I:BIRG) resumption of dividends for the first time in a decade, sending its shares lower on Monday. The bank had said a year ago it expected to pay its first dividend since the financial crisis in the first half of 2018, a year later than initially hoped as it awaited further clarity on Brexit and visibility on its pension deficit. The deficit stabilised at 500 million euros (£439 million)last year and new chief executive Francesca McDonagh said the bank, the Irish lender most exposed to the British property market, was seeing no material impact so far from Brexit. "This is a pivotal moment," McDonagh, who took over in October, told Reuters, referring to the resumpt...

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Commission wants to tax large digital companies' revenues based on where their users are located rather than where their headquarters are, at a rate between 1 and 5 percent, a draft Commission document showed. The proposal, seen by Reuters, aims at increasing the tax bill of firms like Amazon (AMZN.O), Google (GOOGL.O) and Facebook (FB.O) that are accused by large EU states of paying too little in tax by re-routing their EU profits to low-tax countries such as Luxembourg and Ireland. The proposal says that the tax should be applied to companies with revenues above 750 million euros (658.54 million pounds) worldwide and with EU digital revenues of at least 10 million euros a year. The document is subject to changes before its publication which is expecte...

By Kate Holton LONDON (Reuters) - Comcast Corp (NASDAQ:CMCSA), the biggest cable operator in the United States, offered to pay $31 billion (22.2 billion pounds) to buy Sky, the European pay-TV group that Rupert Murdoch's Fox has already agreed to buy. Comcast, which owns NBC and Universal Pictures, said it was offering 12.50 pounds per share, significantly higher than the 10.75 pounds per share agreed by Fox. The proposed offer pits Comcast against Murdoch, the 86-year-old media tycoon who helped to launch Sky in Britain, and also against Walt Disney which has agreed to buy a string of assets from Fox once the deal is done, including Sky. Comcast said it had not yet engaged with Sky over the proposal. "We would like to own the whole of Sky and we will be looking to acquire over 50 per...

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Google is not obligated to ensure websites are free from defamatory content before displaying links to them in search results, Germany's highest court ruled on Tuesday. The case, which comes in the context of debate about the so-called "right to be forgotten", had been brought by two individuals seeking Google to prevent its search engine from displaying links to websites on which they were verbally attacked by other internet users. They wanted Google, a unit of Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Inc, to set up search filters to keep those websites from appearing in future search results, information about the users who had posted the offending comments and payment of damages, saying Google was partly responsible for the violation of their rights. The German Federal Court of ...

By Kate Holton LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. cable giant Comcast (O:CMCSA) offered to buy Sky (L:SKYB) for $31 billion (22.21 billion pounds) in an unsolicited approach, taking on Rupert Murdoch's Fox and Bob Iger's Walt Disney in the battle for Europe's biggest pay-TV group. The world's biggest entertainment company, which owns NBC and Universal Pictures, said on Tuesday it proposed to offer 12.50 pounds per share, significantly higher than the 10.75 pounds Fox (O:FOXA) had agreed to pay for the British company The offer pits Comcast's Brian L. Roberts against Murdoch, the 86-year-old tycoon who helped to launch Sky and pioneer pay-TV in Britain. Iger is also a long time rival after Comcast tried and failed to buy Disney (N:DIS) for $54 billion in 2004. Disney had agreed to buy Sk...

BARCELONA (Reuters) - British broadcaster ITV (LON:ITV) reported a 5 percent drop in adjusted full-year earnings, reflecting the tough advertising environment facing new chief executive Carolyn McCall. ITV, the country's biggest free-to-air commercial network, reported core earnings of 842 million pounds on Wednesday, with a drop in ad revenue partly offset by underlying growth in its studios business.   McCall, who joined ITV from airline easyJet (LON:EZJ), said the company's operational performance in 2017 in a challenging environment was strong, and its viewing performance and studio gave it a solid foundation to build on....

By Michael Nienaber BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's jobless total fell more than expected in February and employment hit a record high in January, data showed on Wednesday, underlining the strength of a labour market that is fuelling a consumption-led upswing in Europe's biggest economy. Data published by the Federal Labour Office showed the seasonally adjusted jobless total dropped by 22,000 to 2.393 million. That was way more than the predicted drop of 15,000 forecast in a Reuters poll. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.4 percent in February, the lowest level since German reunification in 1990, the Office said. "The good labour market developments are continuing in February," said Detlef Scheele, head of the Labour Office. He added that employment within the scope of social insur...

(Reuters) - Facebook Inc (O:FB) said on Wednesday it was expanding the jobs section on its social network, as it looks to compete in a market dominated byMicrosoft Corp 's (O:MSFT) LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD). The expansion marks the tool's international rollout a year after it was launched in the United States and Canada. The tool will now be available to users in 40 countries, Facebook said in a statement. The company also said it plans to invest about $1 billion (£723.7 million) in its teams, technology and new programs in 2018....

Investing.com - Sterling fell to one-and-a-half month lows against the broadly stronger dollar on Thursday as expectations for faster hikes in U.S. interest rates this year continued to underpin the greenback. GBP/USD hit a low of 1.3732, the weakest level since Jan. 15 and was at 1.3740 by 05:17 AM ET (10:17 AM GMT), off 0.14% for the day. The dollar remained supported after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Tuesday that the U.S. economic outlook remains bright, bolstering bets on further Fed rate hikes this year. The remarks bolstered expectations that the U.S. central bank may deliver four rate increases this year, rather than the three it had earlier signaled. Expectations of rising borrowing costs tend to buoy the dollar, as higher rates make the U.S. currency more ...

By Susanna Twidale LONDON (Reuters) - British households were told to "carry on cooking" by the government on Thursday, as a warning of a gas supply deficit spooked the market and raised questions over the country's gas policy. A nationwide cold snap with temperatures as low as minus 10.3 degrees Celsius and widespread snow has led to a sharp increase in gas demand which is used to heat as much as 80 percent of Britain's homes and also for cooking. Prices for within-day gas delivery have more than quadrupled since the start of the week to 300 pence per therm on Thursday, the highest in at least 10 years. Energy minister Claire Perry said there would be no disruption to domestic supplies and encouraged Britons to "carrying on using your gas heating and cooking meals as normal". National...

OSLO (Reuters) - Britain's National Grid (LON:NG) withdrew a gas supply warning it issued on Thursday and said it did not expect to issue a warning on Friday as new supplies of gas were reaching the market, it said on Friday. The grid continued to expect high gas demand due to the continuing cold weather, it added....

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar pushed lower against other major currencies on Friday, as worries over a potential global trade war following news of fresh U.S. tariffs continued to weigh on heavily sentiment. U.S. President Donald Trump announced plans on Thursday to impose tariffs of 25% on imported steel and 10% on aluminum, in a move to “protect U.S. industry”. The news sparked concerns over potential trade wars, which would have a negative impact on the U.S. economy. The announcement overshadowed positive remarks by Fed Chair Powell, who told the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday that there was no evidence the U.S. economy is overheating. Two days earlier, the Fed president had reiterated that the U.S. central bank would likely move forward with gradual increases in...

By Sudip Kar-Gupta PARIS (Reuters) - AXA (PA:AXAF), Europe's second-biggest insurer, has agreed to buy Bermuda-based XL Group (N:XL) for around $15 billion (11 billion pounds), in a deal which AXA said would create a world leader in property and casualty insurance. The French insurer said it was offering $57.60 for each XL share, representing a premium of 33 percent to XL's closing share price on March 2. The total consideration for the deal would amount to $15.3 billion. Insurers around the world have started to strike up takeover deals in order to strengthen their businesses as they face tougher regulation and falling returns based on financial markets investments. AXA’s takeover of XL comes just over a month after rival American International Group (N:AIG) said it would buy re...

LONDON (Reuters) - Investors sold shares in BMW (DE:BMWG) and Daimler(DE:DAIGn) on Monday after President Donald Trump said the U.S. may tax imports of European cars if the EU retaliates against his plan to impose tariffs on aluminium and steel. The United States is a big buyer of coupes, sports cars and sedans made by the German premium carmakers, such as Daimler's Mercedes S-Class and BMW's 7 Series, and accounts for a big chunk of their global profits. It is also a big manufacturing base for their bigger sport-utility vehicles including the Mercedes GLE and BMW X5, many of which are shipped to Asia and Europe. This makes them especially vulnerable if Trump's protectionist moves spark retaliation by the world's other big trading blocs. Daimler shares were already under pressure ...

LONDON (Reuters) - Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday that Britain's National Health Service was "not for sale" in any future trade deal with the United States after Brexit. "I'm absolutely clear that as we look to negotiate a trade deal with the United States of America, the National Health Service will remain as it is today," May told MPs in parliament.   "It will remain free at the point of use. The National Health Service is not for sale."...

(Reuters) - Bombardier Inc (TO:BBDb) will sell equity to strengthen its balance sheet as part of a five-year turnaround plan, the Canadian plane-and-train maker said on Monday. The company will sell 168 million Class B shares at C$3.80 per share to raise C$638.4 million (355.8 million pounds) in gross proceeds. The price represents a discount of 4 percent to the stock's Monday closing price on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Bombardier, which considered bankruptcy in 2015, announced a turnaround plan focussed on improving profit margins and shedding billions of dollars in debt. Credit Suisse (SIX:CSGN), National Bank Financial, UBS and TD Securities are the underwriters for the stock offering.   ($1 = 1.2968 Canadian dollars)...

By Julien Ponthus LONDON (Reuters) - An unsolicited bid for Irish packaging group Smurfit Kappa from U.S.-based International Paper lifted shares in the whole sector on Tuesday, providing a boost to Britain's top share index. The FTSE 100 was up 0.9 percent at 7,180 points by 0907 GMT, slightly higher than the European average as world markets shrug off trade war fears or political risk concerns in Italy following its inconclusive general election. Shares in Smurfit Kappa (LON:SKG), Europe's largest producer of paper-based packaging, jumped 17 percent to 33.7 euros after the company said the offer from International Paper failed to reflect its growth prospects and the industry's attractive outlook. "We believe an offer above 33 euros per share would be realistic" to start dis...

Investing.com - The dollar fell against a basket of the other major currencies on Tuesday, following reports that North and South Korea have agreed to hold a summit next month, in a sign of easing tensions on the peninsula. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, fell 0.48% to 89.54 by 09:10 AM ET (14:10 GMT). The prospect of tensions easing between North Korea and South Korea, and with the U.S. bolstered risk appetite. North Korea also indicated that it could be willing to dispose of its nuclear technology and agreed to suspend all weapons testing during the summit in April. South Korea’s won jumped against the dollar following the reports, with USD/KRWtumbling 1.34% to 1,063.31. The dollar remaine...

LONDON (Reuters) - Prime Minister Theresa May will hold talks with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at her country residence on Thursday, diplomatic sources said, in another sign of the importance with which London is treating his visit. The visit to Chequers, a 16th-century manor house 40 miles (60 km) northwest of London, will be in addition to a previously announced meeting at May's London office on Wednesday, the sources said on Tuesday. Prince Mohammed's visit, part of his first foreign tour as heir apparent, is aimed at persuading Britain that his reforms have made his country a better place to invest and a more tolerant society. The trip will include lunch with the Queen, a dinner with heir to the throne Prince Charles and his son Prince William, and meetings with British i...

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Smurfit Kappa's board reaffirmed its rejection of a takeover offer from International Paper Co after its U.S. rival revealed late on Tuesday that the bid was worth 8 billion euros (7.2 billion pounds). International Paper offered 22 euros in cash and 0.3028 new International Paper share for each Smurfit share. Shares in the Irish company, which surged more than 18 percent on Tuesday after it flagged the approach, rose a further 4 percent to 35.2 euros by 0840 GMT. "Smurfit Kappa notes the announcement released by International Paper Company (NYSE:IP) setting out the price of the unsolicited and highly opportunistic proposal... Shareholders are strongly advised to take no action," Smurfit Kappa said in a statement....

By Susanna Twidale LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's energy regulator wants to trim 5 billion pounds from consumer bills over five years from 2021 by slashing the amount gas and electricity network firms can return to shareholders, it said on Wednesday. Rising energy bills have drawn increasing public criticism, prompting Prime Minister Theresa May promise an end to what she has called "rip off" gas and electricity bills. The government has introduced legislation to parliament to cap prices.. Under its proposals, Ofgem plans to cut the "cost of equity range", or the amount network firms pay their shareholders, to 3 to 5 percent for the next regulatory period starting 2021, down from 6 to 7 percent now. "In total, we estimate this would result in savings of over 5 billion pounds for househol...

By Sinead Cruise and Arno Schuetze LONDON/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs (N:GS) has put more than a dozen UK-based banking, sales and trading staff on notice to move to Frankfurt within weeks, two sources with knowledge of the matter said, as it braces for divorce between Britain and the European Union. After months of patience and private lobbying, the U.S. investment bank has decided it can no longer wait for clarity from lawmakers on how its business might be impacted by Britain's exit from the trading bloc and is taking the steps to minimise disruption to clients. It has informed members of its London-based derivatives and debt capital markets teams working on German accounts that their activities will be relocated to its base in Frankfurt and to make the necessary preparations...

(Reuters) - Domino's Pizza Group Plc, Britain's biggest pizza-delivery firm, on Thursday reported a 10.2 percent rise in full-year pretax profit on strength in domestic and other European markets. Underlying pretax profit rose to 94.4 million pounds in the 52 weeks ended Dec. 24, from 85.7 million pounds a year earlier, the company said. Domino's Pizza, which has most of its 1,192 stores in the UK, and also operates in Ireland, Switzerland and Germany, said sales at UK stores that were open for more than a year rose 4.8 percent over the period.   System sales rose 15 percent to 1.16 billion pounds....

LONDON (Reuters) - Saudi Aramco Chief Executive Officer Amin Nasser said on Thursday that all work required from the oil giant for its initial public offering (IPO), which could be the biggest in history, will be completed in the second half of 2018. Speaking at a conference in London, Nasser added that the decision on the listing venue "and the rest is a job for the shareholder". Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Wednesday embarked on a trip to Britain and the United States, which could shape the decision on where to list the company.   London and New York are among the leading financial centres seen as frontrunners to host the international leg of the flotation alongside a Riyadh listing....

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's market regulator on Monday cleared Hochtief's (DE:HOTG) takeover bid for toll road company Abertis (MC:ABE), starting a one month period in which Hochtief and rival bidder Atlantia (MI:ATL) can improve their proposals. However, both Hochtief, owned by Spanish builder ACS (MC:ACS), and Italian motorway and airport operator Atlantia said last week they were in talks over their competing bids and a source said they could decide to break up the company in a move to prevent a bidding war. If a deal is reached, Atlantia would likely withdraw its offer for the Spanish company and sign an agreement with ACS on how to divide Abertis's assets, the source said on Thursday. Atlantia and ACS are in talks over a possible joint bid that would me...

(Bloomberg) -- Free-trade proponents might be out of fashion at the White House, but not in the U.S. equity market. A Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS). basket of U.S. stocks that derive the bulk of sales abroad has outperformed the S&P 500 Index since March 1, the day that President Donald Trump rattled financial markets with a surprise announcement that his administration will impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. While the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 420 points March 1, it’s rallied almost 3 percent since as investors grow more confident that the most severe protectionist policies won’t become reality. “Although equity prices have moved in reaction to the proposed metals tariffs, investors do not appear concerned ab...

By Rania El Gamal, Saeed Azhar and Alex Lawler DUBAI/LONDON (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia is increasingly looking to just float oil giant Saudi Aramco locally as plans for an initial public offering (IPO) on an international exchange such as London or New York hang in the balance, sources close to the process said. The kingdom is counting on being awarded emerging market status by index complier MSCI in June to help Saudi Aramco attract Western funds, in addition to cornerstone investors from China, Japan and South Korea, the sources said. "I would guess it is about evens that there will be no international IPO," said a high-level source familiar with the preparations, saying they were proving to be a disappointment. Saudi Arabia is planning to list up to 5 percent of Saudi Aramco in an ini...

By Lawrence White TUNBRIDGE WELLS, England (Reuters) - Fitness instructor Ed Lumsden was trying to log in to his online bank account last week when he discovered HSBC (L:HSBA) had closed it without warning. Lumsden, who counts British television presenter Davina McCall among the clients of his gym, TWPT, in the affluent spa town of Tunbridge Wells in Southern England, was unable to receive payments or pay his bills. "I couldn't take payments, I couldn't pay my suppliers, all my direct debits would be rejected which could affect my credit rating and I had 16,000 pounds ($22,209.60)locked in the account that I couldn't access," he told Reuters at his gym. He is one of hundreds of HSBC clients whose accounts have been frozen as part of a compliance crackdown called Safeguard aimed at figh...

By Abhirup Roy and Krishna V Kurup MUMBAI (Reuters) - India's Punjab National Bank (NS:PNBK) has told police it has uncovered additional exposure of about 9.42 billion rupees (104.03 million pounds) in connection with a huge alleged fraud, according to a court filing seen by Reuters. In what has been dubbed the biggest fraud in India's banking history, PNB, the country's second-biggest state-run lender, said last month it had been defrauded of about $2 billion. The bank accused two jewellery groups - one controlled by diamond tycoon Nirav Modi and the other by his uncle, Mehul Choksi - of colluding with rogue bank employees to secure credit from overseas lenders using fraudulent guarantees. Both men deny any wrongdoing. Police say they left India in January, before the initia...

Investing.com - The dollar pushed higher against the other major currencies on Wednesday, but gains were checked by tepid inflation data and concerns over political instability in the wake of the sudden firing of U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, edged up to 89.77 by 04:40 AM ET (08:40 AM GMT). The index ended the previous session lower after the Labor Department reported Tuesday that U.S. consumer price inflation remained muted in February, indicating that the Federal Reserve is likely to stick to a gradual pace of rate hikes this year. The inflation data came after last week jobs report showed tepid wage growth, easing concerns over a faster than expected pickup in ...

By Radhika Rukmangadhan (Reuters) - Britain's Balfour Beatty (L:BALF) reported a tripling of annual profit on Wednesday and said the construction industry was returning to health after the high-profile collapse of Carillion (L:CLLN) this year. The demise of Carillion came after construction companies took on major contracts at thin margins, leaving them nursing losses in the event of delays or problems. "Companies are starting to recover from what effectively was very low pricing in 2013 and 2014," Balfour Beatty Chief Executive Leo Quinn told Reuters. "I wouldn't brand the industry like Carillion," he added. Underlying pretax profit for the infrastructure and building company rose to 165 million pounds ($230.4 million) in 2017, from 62 million pounds a year earlie...

Investing.com - After a brief initial reaction to the downside, West Texas Intermediate oil managed to rebound and head higher in North American trade on Wednesday, after data showing that oil supplies in the U.S. registered a larger-than-expected inventory build, while gas and distillate stockpiles both fell more than forecast. Crude oil for April delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange fell 13 cents, or 0.43%, to trade at $60.97 a barrel by 10:34AM ET (14:34GMT) compared to $60.89 ahead of the report. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that crude oil inventories rose by 5.022 million barrels in the week ended February 10. Market analysts' had expected a crude-stock build of 2.023 million barrels, though the American Petroleum Instit...

Investing.com - Crude oil prices moved lower on Thursday, amid ongoing concerns over rising global supply levels following news U.S. stockpiles increased far more than expected last week. The U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude April contract was down 8 cents or about 0.13% at $60.88 a barrel by 05:00 a.m. ET (09:00 GMT). Elsewhere, Brent oil for May delivery on the ICE Futures Exchange in London slid 23 cents or about 0.34% to $64.67 a barrel. Oil prices came under pressure after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia forecast, in its monthly report released on Wednesday, an increase in non-OPEC supply over the next year. The Organization said non-OPEC supply growth for 2018 was forecast at around 1.60 million barrels per day compared to 1....

By Marwa Rashad, Tom Arnold and Katie Paul RIYADH/DUBAI (Reuters) - The Saudi government is expected to take a 35 percent stake in construction giant Saudi Binladin Group (SBG) as part of a financial settlement with state authorities, sources told Reuters on Thursday. The figure -- previously unknown -- was confirmed by four sources familiar with the matter. It represents the total stakes of chairman Bakr Binladin and his brothers Saleh and Saad, all of whom were detained in an anti-graft crackdown in November alongside scores of other businessmen, princes and officials, according to some of the sources. A formal transfer of control has not yet taken place, causing prolonged uncertainty about the fate of the company two months after it announced that some shareholders might transfer pa...

By Hideyuki Sano TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks slid on Friday as reports of more chaos in the Trump administration tested investors' nerves, already frayed by fears that U.S. tariffs could hurt the global economy and trigger a trade war. European stock futures point to a weaker start in Europe, with futures of Britain's FTSE and France's Cac down 0.1 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.2 percent in early trade. Japan's Nikkei was down 0.6 percent. On Wall Street, the S&P 500 edged 0.08 percent lower on Thursday, marking its first four-day losing streak of 2018. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.2 percent. U.S. shares hit a session low soon after the New York Times reported that U.S. Special Counsel Rob...

Евро в ходе торгов на "Московской бирже" превысил 71 руб. впервые с 14 февраля, доллар приблизился к 58 руб. Курс евро в 13:39 мск составил 71,01 руб., прибавив 33,5 копейки к уровню закрытия предыдущего дня и 49 коп. к курсу, установленному Банком России на сегодня. При этом доллар торговался на отметке 57,59 руб., что 13 коп. выше уровня предыдущего закрытия и на 57 коп. выше официального курса. Доллар также обновил максимум с 14 февраля. По мнению экспертов "Интерфакс-ЦЭА", рубль слабеет к доллару и евро, торгуясь на минимальных отметках с середины февраля на фоне очередного ухудшения внешнеполитической ситуации вокруг России. Участники торгов негативно реагируют на решение правительства Великобритании выслать российских дипломатов и расширение списка антироссийских санкций со стороны...

By Arno Schuetze and Ludwig Burger FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Shares in Siemens Healthineers (DE:SHLG) gained as much as 7 percent in the medical equipment maker's stock market debut on Friday, boding well for a string of pending German flotations including asset manager DWS. In one of Germany's biggest listing in recent years, parent Siemens (DE:SIEGn) raised 4.2 billion (3.71 billion pounds) euros from selling a 15 percent stake in the world's largest maker of medical imaging equipment. Issued at 28 euros apiece, the shares opened at 29.10 euros after a delay of more than an hour because of market-wide technical problems at Deutsche Boerse's (DE:DB1Gn) electronic trading platform. By 1157 GMT the shares were up by 7.1 percent at 29.98 euros, outpacing a 0.3 percent gain for the b...

BERLIN (Reuters) - German online retailer Home24, which wants to challenge IKEA's dominance of the European furniture market, accelerated sales and trimmed its losses in the fourth-quarter after sources said it is considering a stock market listing. Home24, in which ecommerce investor Rocket Internet (DE:RKET) holds a 43 percent stake, said quarterly sales rose 21 percent to 80 million euros ($98 million), picking up from a 10 percent rise in the first nine months of the year. Its adjusted loss before interest, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) narrowed to 4 million euros. Launched in 2009 in Berlin, the company delivers furniture in seven European markets, plus Brazil. It said on Monday that its Latin American region was the first to reach breakeven in the fourth quarter...

By Munsif Vengattil (Reuters) - Facebook Inc's (O:FB) shares fell 4 percent in premarket on Monday after media reports that a political consultancy that worked on President Donald Trump's campaign gained inappropriate access to data on 50 million Facebook users. The move would knock $21.5 billion (£15.3 billion) off the social network's market value of $538 billion as of Friday's close. One Wall Street analyst said the reports raised 'systemic problems' with Facebook's business model and a number said it could spur far deeper regulatory scrutiny of the platform. The head of European Parliament said on Monday that EU lawmakers will investigate whether the data misuse has taken place, adding the allegation is an unacceptable violation of citizens' privacy rights. Facebook was alrea...

LONDON (Reuters) - Power generation from Britain's wind farms hit a record 14.2 gigawatts (GW) on March 17, National Grid (LON:NG) said on Monday. Wind power represented 34.2 percent of domestic electricity generation at 1430 GMT on Saturday, Britain's power grid operator said. "2017 was a record year for green energy and it's looking likely 2018 is set to exceed that," said Fintan Slye, director of the system operator at National Grid. Predicting wind output can be difficult as it depends on wind speeds and power demand, but it is expected to increase this year as more wind farms open. Industry group Renewable UK forecasts around 2 GW of wind capacity will be added in 2018. Britain is looking to wind power to help bridge a looming electricity supply gap as old nuclear plant...

By Hideyuki Sano TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian shares were on the defensive on Tuesday after investors took profits in high-flying U.S. technology shares on fears of stiffer regulation, as Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) came under fire following reports it allowed improper access to user data. The retreat came as investors braced for new Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's first policy meeting starting later in the day and amid concerns that U.S. President Donald Trump could impose additional punitive trade measures against China. "U.S. tech indexes, including Nasdaq and Philadelphia semi-conductor index all hit record highs last week. So they were prone to profit-taking," said Mutsumi Kagawa, chief strategist at Rakuten Securities. "Shares will be capped by various uncertainties for now. Once th...

Investing.com - The pound trimmed gains on Tuesday after data showing that inflation in the UK fell to its lowest level since July last month, easing a squeeze on household spending. GBP/USD was trading at 1.4029 by 06:14 AM ET (10:14AM GMT) down from around 1.4054 ahead of the data. The Office for National Statistics reported that the consumer price index fell to 2.7%on a year over year basis in February, from 3.0% in January. Economists had expected a more modest decline to 2.8%. The data added to indications that UK inflation is falling back from its November peak, when consumer prices jumped by 3.1%, as the impact of the drop in the pound after last years Brexit vote faded. The weaker than expected inflation figure could undermine the case for the Bank of England to rais...

  LONDON (Reuters) - Glencore (LON:GLEN) chief executive Ivan Glasenberg said that the automotive industry is waking up too late to the fact that the Chinese will hold most of the world's global cobalt supply, a key metal for electric vehicle (EV) batteries. "If cobalt falls in hands of the Chinese, yeah you won't see EVs being produced in Europe. They are waking up too late... I think it's because the car industry has never had a supply chain problem before," Glasenberg told the FT Commodities Global Summit in Lausanne, Switzerland. About 70 percent of global cobalt production comes from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Glencore, the world's biggest producer, agreed last week to sell a third of its output to China's GEM.   Glasenberg said he was nevertheless prep...

By Eric Auchard and David Ingram LONDON/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - The suspended chief executive of Cambridge Analytica said in a secretly recorded video broadcast on Tuesday that his UK-based political consultancy's online campaign played a decisive role in U.S. President Donald Trump's 2016 election victory. CEO Alexander Nix's comments, which could not be verified, are potentially a further problem for Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) as it faces lawmakers' scrutiny in the United States and Europe over Cambridge Analytica's improper use of 50 million Facebook users' personal data to target voters. The social media network's shares fell for a second day, closing down 2.5 percent, as investors worried that its dealings with Cambridge Analytica might damage its reputation, deter advert...

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Standard Chartered PLC's (L:STAN) chief executive of private and commercial banking is leaving the bank to join another financial services company in London, the emerging markets-focussed lender said on Wednesday. Anna Marrs, who is also StanChart's chief executive for the 10-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and South Asia, will leave StanChart in September this year, it said.   As a result of her departure, StanChart said its commercial banking business unit would now report into Simon Cooper, chief executive for corporate and institutional banking, the bank's biggest unit in terms of its contribution to group revenue....

Investing.com - Crude prices rose to the best levels of the session on Wednesday, hitting a six-week high, after data showed that U.S. oil stockpiles fell unexpectedly last week as refinery activity picked up. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures surged $1.04, or 1.6%, to $64.58 a barrel by 10:35AM ET (1435GMT). Prices were at around $64.25 prior to the release of the inventory data. Meanwhile, London-traded Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., climbed $1.27, or roughly 1.9%, to $68.69 a barrel. Both benchmarks hit their highest level since Feb. 5 earlier in the session. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that crude oil inventories declined by 2.6 million barrels in the week ended...

By Ron Bousso LONDON (Reuters) - North Sea oil and gas producer Chrysaor has agreed to acquire stakes in three ageing fields from Spirit Energy, hoping to prolong their production with new drilling, the company said in a statement. Private equity-backed Chrysaor, which last year acquired a large portfolio of assets from Royal Dutch Shell (LON:RDSa), will become the sole owner of the Armada, Maria and Seymour fields following the completion of the deal, planned for the second half of 2018. The value of the deal was not disclosed. "The acquisition is part of Chrysaor's strategy to prolong asset life, maximise recovery and deliver value from the UK North Sea," Chief Executive Officer Phil Kirk said in a statement. The company will soon begin site surveys in preparation of drilling new we...

Investing.com - The dollar edged higher against a currency basket on Thursday, but struggled to make headway as investors continued to grapple with the direction for Federal Reserve policy and fears over the prospect of a global trade war. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, edged up 0.15% to 89.41 by 09:51 AM ET (13:51 GMT), pulling away from the one-month low of 89.06 hit overnight. The dollar remained on the back foot after the Fed raised interest rates by a quarter point on Wednesday, but stuck to its forecast for two more hikes this year. Some investors had expected the Fed to project three more rate hikes this year so the decision to stick to its forecast for two additional hikes was seen as less hawki...

(Reuters) - Engineering firm Smiths Group Plc (L:SMIN) reported a 4.3 percent fall in first-half revenue on Friday, hurt by weakness in its businesses serving energy and medical sectors. Smiths, a provider of hospital equipment, industrial services and sensors to detect explosives, said revenue fell to 1.55 billion pounds for the six months ended Jan. 31, from 1.62 billion pounds a year earlier....

МОСКВА (Рейтер) - Расширение российской экономики, несмотря на некоторое замедление, продолжается, и темпы роста уже близки к потенциальным, сказала глава Центробанка РФ Эльвира Набиуллина. "Мы всё-таки оцениваем, что экономический рост продолжается. Он не может происходить ровными темпами или постоянно ускоряющимися... темпы роста ВВП могут быть волатильными", - сказала она во время пресс-конференции в пятницу. Рост ВВП в феврале замедлился до 1,5 процента в годовом выражении с 1,9 процента в январе, по оценке Минэкономразвития. По мнению регулятора, темпы роста ВВП составят 1,5–2,0 процента в 2018-2020 годах, что соответствует потенциальным темпам экономического роста. "Мы не считаем, что наша ставка ограничивает экономический рост, мы видим, что он восстанавливается", - сказал...

(Bloomberg) -- The trade conflict between China and the U.S. escalated, with Beijing announcing its first retaliation against metals levies hours after President Donald Trump outlined fresh tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports and pledged there’s more on the way. On Friday, China unveiled tariffs on $3 billion of U.S. imports in response to steel and aluminum duties ordered by Trump earlier this month. The White House then declared a temporary exemption for the European Union and other nations on those levies, making the focus on China clear. Though Beijing’s actions so far are seen by analysts as measured, there may be more to come. Equity indexes from Tokyo to Frankfurt tumbled with European equities falling to the lowest in more than a year. U.S. stock futures dropped...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices reversed earlier gains on Monday as concerns of a looming trade dispute between the United States and China weighed on global markets. The possibility of a full-blown trade war between the United States and China battered Asian shares (N225) (AXJO) on Monday. The falls came after U.S. President Donald Trump last week signed a memorandum that could impose tariffs on up to $60 billion of imports from China. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $65.51 a barrel at 0255 GMT, down 37 cents, or 0.6 percent, from their previous close. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) were at $70.24 per barrel, down 21 cents, or 0.3 percent. Crude was also squeezed ed by a rise in the number of U.S. rigs drilling for oil to a three-yea...

Investing.com - The dollar slid to one-month lows against a basket of the other major currencies on Monday as worries over trade tensions between the U.S. and China subsided and risk appetite recovered. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.26% to 88.87 by 09:02 AM ET (13:02 GMT), the lowest level since February 16. The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that Beijing and Washington are negotiating behind the scenes to improve U.S. access to Chinese markets, after a week of threats over trade tariffs. The report eased concerns over the prospect of a trade war between the two countries, which investors fear could hit growth in the U.S. and derail global growth. The euro rose to two-and-half week hig...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain and the European Union are looking at whether interim taxation is needed to ensure digital firms are paying the right amount of tax, Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday.   "We believe that the best result is an international result, but it is right to look, as the European Union, whether there are any interim steps that need to be taken to ensure that we are properly taxing these companies," May told parliament....

(Reuters) - Water utility United Utilities Group Plc (L:UU) said on Tuesday it expected to report higher profit and revenue for the full year ending March, helped mainly by regulatory changes in how utilities charge customers. Revenue is expected to be "slightly higher" for the year, while underlying operating profit is expected to be "moderately higher", the company, which supplies and treats water in north-western UK, said....

By Richa Naidu and Stephen Nellis CHICAGO (Reuters) - Apple Inc (O:AAPL) on Tuesday was widely expected to announce a lower-priced iPad aimed at helping it grab more of the U.S. educational market. Major technology companies are battling for dominance in U.S. schools, a market seen as important for hooking young consumers. Apple in March 2017 lowered the price of its 9.7-inch tablet to $329, the lowest starting price ever for one of its full-sized tablets. But laptops running operating systems by Alphabet Inc's (O:GOOGL) Google or Microsoft Corp (O:MSFT) can be had for less than $200. Apple's previous price cutting, along with software changes, have been followed by an improvement in iPad sales. Analysts believe the teacher- and student-geared event on Tuesday at Lane Tech Co...

Investing.com - Crude prices mostly higher on Tuesday, although West Texas Intermediate struggled around the unchanged mark, as investors looked ahead to weekly data from the U.S. on stockpiles of crude and refined products to gauge the strength of demand in the world’s largest energy consumer. Industry group the American Petroleum Institute is due to release its weekly report at 4:30PM ET (20:30GMT) Tuesday. Official data from the Energy Information Administration will be released Wednesday, amid forecasts for an oil-stock gain of around 0.4 million barrels. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures inched up 1 cent, or 0.02%, to $65.56 a barrel by 10:27AM ET (14:27GMT). Meanwhile, Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the ...

Investing.com - The dollar pushed higher against a basket of the other major currencies on Wednesday as trade tensions remained elevated following reports that China will soon announce a list of retaliatory tariffs on U.S. imports. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.16% to 89.10 by 02:59 AM ET (06:59 GMT), extending its recovery from Tuesday’s five-week low of 88.53. Fears over the prospect of trade war between the U.S. and China mounted after the state run Chinese newspaper the Global Times reported Wednesday that Beijing will soon announce a list of tariffs on U.S. exports to China in response to proposed U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports. Reports that U.S. President Donald Trump discussed Ch...

LONDON (Reuters) - The Bank of England said on Wednesday finance companies operating in Britain will have more time to meet a Brexit deadline, in a move aimed at avoiding a potentially disorderly shift of people and operations across the continent. Britain and the European Union last week agreed a transition period of 21 months that will follow Britain's departure from the bloc in March 2019 during which companies will have unchanged access to the bloc's markets. But many banks have said they will not be able to rely on such a political deal as it will not be formally ratified by governments until the autumn and any deal could collapse if there is domestic political upheaval in the months before Britain leaves. Companies will be able "to plan that they will be able to continue undertaki...

Investing.com - The dollar dipped against the yen on Thursday a day after posting its largest daily percentage gains in around six months boosted by faster U.S. economic growth and hopes for a diplomatic breakthrough with North Korea. USD/JPY was down 0.27% to 106.55 by 03:35 AM ET (07:35 AM GMT), after ending Wednesday’s session with gains of 1.4%, the largest increase since September 11. The dollar was boosted after data on Wednesday showing that the U.S. economy grew by a larger than initially estimated 2.9% in the fourth quarter. The data left the way clear for a slightly more aggressive pace of interest rates hikes by the Federal Reserve this year. The Fed hiked rates for the first time this year last week and stuck to its projection for three rate hikes this year. The ...

By Noor Zainab Hussain and Sinead Cruise LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. exchange operator CME Group has made a $5.5 billion (3.9 billion pounds) offer to buy NEX Group to create a cross-border powerhouse for investors trading in the multi-trillion dollar foreign exchange and government debt markets. Shareholders in NEX, a financial technology firm that matches buyers and sellers of bonds, swaps and currencies, will receive 500 pence in cash for each NEX share and 0.0444 new CME shares. Each NEX share would be valued at 1,000 pence, CME said. The offer by CME, one of the world's biggest exchange groups and owner of the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) and Chicago Mercantile Exchange, represents a 2.9 percent premium to Wednesday's share close of 972 pence. A union of the two firms would enable in...

By Lawrence White and Makini Brice LONDON/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Barclays (L:BARC) will pay $2 billion (1.42 billion pounds) to settle claims for billions of dollars of losses suffered by investors who bought toxic mortgage-backed securities in the run-up to the 2007 financial crisis, the U.S. Justice Department said on Thursday. The British bank denied misleading investors about the quality of the mortgage loans backing the instruments and allegations it committed mail fraud and bank fraud. The settlement, described by Barclays Chief Executive Jes Staley as "fair and proportionate", resolves the bank's largest outstanding legal issue in the United States, and could reassure investors who had been braced for a potentially larger fine. "The settlement is at the bottom end of e...

By Ben Blanchard and Tony Munroe BEIJING (Reuters) - China has increased tariffs by up to 25 percent on 128 U.S. products including frozen pork, wine and certain fruits and nuts, escalating a spat between the world's biggest economies in response to U.S. duties on imports of aluminium and steel. The tariffs, to take effect on Monday, were announced late on Sunday by China's finance ministry and matched a list of potential tariffs on up to $3 billion (£2.1 billion) in U.S. goods published by China on March 23 Soon after the announcement, an editorial in the widely read Chinese tabloid Global Times warned that if the U.S. had thought China would not retaliate or would only take symbolic counter-measures, it can now "say goodbye to that delusion." "Even though China and the U.S. hav...

By David Lawder WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Trump administration this week will unveil the list of Chinese imports targeted for U.S. tariffs to punish Beijing over technology transfer policies, a move expected to intensify trade tensions between the world's two largest economies. The list of $50 billion to $60 billion (£35.6 billion to £42.7 billion) worth of annual imports is expected to target "largely high-technology" products and it may be more than two months before tariffs take effect, administration officials have said. The U.S. Trade Representative's office needs to unveil the list of products by Friday under President Donald Trump's China tariff proclamation signed on March 22. The tariffs are aimed at forcing changes to Chinese government policies that USTR says re...

By Swati Pandey SYDNEY (Reuters) - Asian shares slipped on Tuesday amid escalating trade tensions and concerns about tech firms, although regional index declines were modest compared with those of their Wall Street counterparts as investors focused on global growth prospects. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to open lower, with Britain's FTSE (FTSE) losing 0.5 percent, Germany's DAX (GDAXI) falling 0.95 percent and France's CAC (FCHI) dropping 1 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) fell 0.35 percent on Tuesday, compared with losses of more than 2 percent on each of the three Wall Street indices overnight. The U.S. dollar steadied against the safe haven yen after declining for three straight days and gold, which is often seen as a stor...

By Alistair Smout LONDON (Reuters) - British manufacturer De La Rue Plc (L:DLAR) said it will challenge a decision by Britain to award a contract to print the post-Brexit blue passports to a European company. The new blue British passports have been hailed by Prime Minister Theresa May as "an expression of our independence and sovereignty", but will be made by a Franco-Dutch firm after Britain leaves the European Union, De La Rue said. Media reports said the firm was Gemalto (AS:GTO), although it has not confirmed or denied those reports. Gemalto produces British driver's licenses. De La Rue, which makes banknotes and passports, said it would seek a judicial review of the provisional decision to award the British passport contract to an overseas company after it was...

ROME (Reuters) - Italy's competition watchdog is considering asking for more details on a deal broadcaster Mediaset (MI:MS) signed last week with Sky's (L:SKYB) Italian unit, a source said on Tuesday. "They will decide quickly whether to ask for all the documentation," the source close to the matter said. On Friday Mediaset said the deal would allow it to broadcast its pay-TV Premium Cinema and TV series channels on Sky's satellite platform. Sky Italia would be able to use Mediaset's Premium pay-TV digital platform for its own offering of services and channels....

СИНГАПУР (Рейтер) - Цены на нефть снижаются утром в среду, невзирая на сокращение недельных запасов сырья в США, но от дальнейшего падения рынок удерживает перспектива долгосрочного сотрудничества РФ и ОПЕК. К 8.55 МСК фьючерсы на североморскую смесь Brent опустились на 0,34 процента до $67,89 за баррель. Фьючерсные контракты на американскую лёгкую нефть WTI торговались у отметки $63,32 за баррель, что на 0,3 процента ниже предыдущего закрытия. Россия предварительно обсудила долгосрочный формат сотрудничества со странами-членами ОПЕК и допускает создание новой организации для взаимодействия с нефтеэкспортным картелем, сказал во вторник журналистам министр энергетики Александр Новак. Как показали данные Американского института нефти (API), запасы нефти в США снизились на 3,3 м...

By Jessica Resnick-Ault NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Trump administration heralded the government's sale last month of U.S. drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico as a bellwether. If that is the case, a Reuters analysis of the sale's results shows reason to worry about demand in future offshore auctions. The sale brought in $124.8 million, as just 1 percent of the 77 million acres (31.2 million hectares) offered found bidders. Reuters examined the acreage offered and leased, and nearly all the purchases show big drillers stuck closest to existing infrastructure, shunning the most far-flung areas. While U.S. crude oil production reached a record last year at more than 10 million barrels a day, most new development is in onshore shale regions. The U.S. Interior Department has said i...

LUTON, England (Reuters) - French auto-maker Peugeot will boost output at its English Vauxhall van plant by around two thirds from next year onwards, including new Peugeot and Citroen models, in a show of confidence in its British brand a year before Brexit. Peugeot-maker PSA bought German carmaker Opel and its British sister brand Vauxhall last year when it acquired General Motors' loss-making European arm, and has been pursuing a restructuring plan to return it to profitability. Peugeot said on Wednesday that Vauxhall's next Vivaro van would be built at the British company's plant in Luton, using its new EMP2 platform. This will allow it to also build Peugeot's Expert van and Citroen Jumpy model in Britain, confirming an earlier Reuters report. Annual production will rise to 100,000 v...

Investing.com - The dollar fell to the day’s lows against a basket of the other major currencies on Wednesday after China announced a fresh wave of tariffs on U.S. imports, in retaliation to the U.S. tariffs released late Tuesday. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was down 0.26% to 89.61 by 04:22 AM ET (08:23 AM GMT). China's commerce ministry announced Wednesday reciprocal 25% tariffs on $50 billion of U.S. goods, including autos and chemicals and said the effective date for the new tariffs would be announced at a later time. The announcement came after the Trump administration late Tuesday announced 25% tariffs on $50 billion of annual imports from China in an attempt to force change...

(Reuters) - Electrocomponents Plc (L:ECM), Britain's largest industrial distribution firm, said its expected full-year adjusted pretax profit to be above market estimates after posting strong revenue growth in the fourth quarter. Adjusted profit before tax for year ended March 31 is expected to be slightly ahead of the top end of the market consensus range of 161.8 million pounds to 171 million pounds, the supplier of Raspberry Pi, a low-cost credit card-sized computer, said. Comparable revenue in the fourth quarter rose 10 percent, with big increase coming from its Asia Pacific business, Electrocomponents, which is turning itself around, said....

Investing.com - Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Thursday, April 5: 1. Stocks bounce on hopes for trade compromise After U.S. stocks ended the prior session with a strong move higher, global stocks seemed to also accept the narrative that the U.S. and China would be able to avoid an all-out trade war. U.S. President Donald Trump’s chief economic advisor Larry Kudlow downplayed the idea that the world’s two largest economies would further up the ante and insisted that the two sides would work on negotiations and there was time to avoid the implementation of recently announced tariffs. “There is no trade war here,” Kudlow insisted, adding that Trump was determined to resolve the issue with the least amount of pain possible. Wal...

By Julien Ponthus LONDON (Reuters) - British shares rose on Thursday as the threat of a trade war between the United States and China appeared to fade and a relief rally spread from Wall Street and Asia to Europe. In addition, a number of analysts now believe that current valuations make British stocks worth buying. Citing "recent underperformance and cheap valuations", Citi upgraded UK equities to "overweight". Cit said it expects returns of 10 percent or better to the end of 2018 "unless a Brexit or global shock drives a sharp deceleration in growth". At 0810 GMT, the blue-chip FTSE 100 (FTSE) was up 1.3 percent. The mid-caps index (FTMC) rose 0.9 percent. In that segment, shares in Sophos (L:SOPH) skyrocketed 19 percent after the cybersecurity firm said billings growth for the year...

By Jane Chung SEOUL (Reuters) - Oil prices fell on Friday after U.S. President Donald Trump's threat of new tariffs on China reignited fears of a trade war between the world's two biggest economies. President Trump said on Thursday he had ordered U.S. trade officials to consider tariffs on $100 billion more of imports from China, escalating tensions with Beijing. Brent crude for June delivery was down 32 cents, or 0.5 percent, at $68.01 per barrel at 0410 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude for May delivery was down 35 cents, or 0.6 percent, at 63.19 a barrel. Shanghai September crude futures were untraded due to public holidays in China, after falling 0.8 percent on Wednesday. Shanghai trading will resume on Monday. While oil market watchers were wary of the brewing trade w...

Investing.com - Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Friday, April 6: 1. Trade tariffs continue to keep markets on edge Tariffs between the U.S. and China continued to keep markets on edge on Friday as a day earlier Trump ordered trade representative Robert Lighthizer to consider additional tariffs on $100 billion of Chinese imports, escalating the trade conflicts between the world’s two largest economies. Trump’s decision came after Thursday’s market close and China’s state media was quick to respond on Friday, saying that Beijing will defend its interests "against new U.S. actions" in a similar fashion seen earlier in the week. Despite the fact that this is the third round of threats from the U.S., starting dates for several of...

Investing.com - Oil prices were mixed on Friday, as traders looked ahead to the weekly oil data later in the day. Crude oil futures fell 0.28% to $63.36 a barrel by 10:15 AM ET (14:15 GMT). Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., was flat at $68.38 a barrel. Traders were looking ahead to the weekly U.S. Baker Hughes Oil Rig count, which is used to gauge crude production and market sentiment. The report is expected at 1:00 PM ET (17:00 GMT). Prices were also held back by fears of a trade war between the two biggest countries in the world. On Thursday Trump said he was asking the United States Trade Representative to consider $100 billion more in tariffs as a retaliation against China. China’s state media said Beijing will defend its int...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil markets rose for a second day on Tuesday, with Brent rising above $69 per barrel on hopes a trade dispute between the United States and China, the world's two biggest crude consumers, may be resolved without greater damage to the global economy. Yet prices remain within recent ranges as oil markets still face an abundance of supply that puts pressure on producers to keep their prices competitive in order not to lose market share. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) were at $69.04 per barrel at 0523 GMT, up 39 cents, or 0.6 percent, from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures (CLc1) were at $63.81 a barrel, up 39 cents, or 0.6 percent. The gains followed a more than 2 percent rally on Monday during European and American trade...

Investing.com - The pound rose to its highest level in two weeks against the dollar on Tuesday after a senior Bank of England official said UK interest rates should be raised again without delay. GBP/USD was up 0.32% to 1.4174 by 05:39 AM ET (09:39 AM GMT), the most since March 28. The pound climbed after BoE monetary policy committee member Ian McCafferty said the prospect of faster pay rises and a strong pick-up in the global economy emphasized the need for higher borrowing costs before long. In an interview with Reuters McCafferty said that wage growth, which has lagged inflation for much of the past decade, could prove to be stronger than many of his colleagues on the monetary policy committee believed. "We shouldn't dally when it comes to tightening policy modestly," McCaffer...

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel's consumer protection bureau said on Tuesday it was investigating Apple (O:AAPL) over a failure to disclose to consumers that its software could slow performance in some iPhones. The Consumer Protection and Fair Trade Authority said in a statement it had questioned the head of Apple in Israel, Rony Friedman. A spokesman at the Authority said it had the power to levy significant fines in civil proceedings, but that it was too early to discuss such a possibility. A spokesman for Apple in Israel declined to comment. Apple acknowledged in December that its software sometimes deliberately slows phones with weak batteries. It apologised and cut the price of battery replacements for affected phones. Critics say Apple has obfuscated the fact that a worn-out batter...

Investing.com - Gold was higher on Tuesday, driven by a weaker U.S. dollar and geopolitical tensions in Syria. The price of the precious metal rose as the greenback reached a two-week low. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.25% to 89.31 as of 10:52 AM ET (14:52 GMT). Comex gold futures for June delivery rose 0.21% to $1,342.90 a troy ounce. Gold is denominated in the U.S. currency and becomes more expensive for holders of other currencies when the dollar rises. Geopolitical tensions in the Middle East have also bolstered bullion.Investors are worried that U.S.-Russia relations could deteriorate amid the heightened uncertainty after a suspected chemical attacks. On Monday U.S. President...

(Bloomberg) -- Russia’s ruble extended it’s slump and bonds retreated as investors offloaded holdings amid a wave of uncertainty created by the latest round of U.S. sanctions. The currency dropped 2.1 percent to 64.345 per dollar, extending a slide this week to almost 8 percent. The yield on 10-year local-currency debt jumped to 7.69 percent, the highest level since November. The harshest U.S. penalties on Russia yet have left investors guessing about future targets, spurring them to unload long positions built up in recent months in ruble assets. Foreigners held about 34 percent of Russia’s local-currency sovereign bonds before the selloff, a record share, according to central bank data. “The market was caught off guard, with many funds overw...

By James Davey LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's largest supermarket Tesco (L:TSCO) bucked a grim start to the year for the retail sector with a 28 percent surge in annual profit, underlining Chief Executive Dave Lewis' recovery strategy of lower prices and streamlined product ranges. Shares in Tesco rose as much as 6.3 percent on Wednesday after it confirmed its medium-term savings and profit targets and said the integration of wholesaler Booker, purchased for 4 billion pounds ($5.7 billion) last month, was well underway. The deal will see Tesco expand to provide food to restaurants, bars and smaller grocers, while some 200 million pounds of annual synergies are targeted within three years. Tesco's results provided some cheer after Britain's brutal trading conditions plunged Toys...

By James Davey LONDON (Reuters) - Tesco (LON:TSCO) beat expectations with a 28 percent rise in full-year profit on Wednesday, helped by a strong end to the year in its home market, underlining the recovery of Britain's biggest retailer under Chief Executive Dave Lewis. The supermarket group, which is expanding to provide food to restaurants, bars and smaller rivals with a 4 billion pound purchase of wholesaler Booker, made an operating profit of 1.644 billion pounds in the year to Feb. 24. That compared to Tesco's guidance of "at least" 1.575 billion pounds and 1.28 billion pounds made in 2016-17. Shares in Tesco were up 3.6 percent at 0715 GMT. "We are generating significant levels of cash and net debt is down by almost 6 billion pounds over the last three years," Lewis sai...

Investing.com - The dollar extended early losses against the yen on Wednesday, falling to the day’s lows as mixed U.S. inflation data and mounting tensions over Syria weighed. USD/JPY was down 0.35% to 106.82 by 09:12 AM ET (13:12 GMT), the lowest levels of the day. The safe haven yen is often sought out by investors in time of market turmoil and political tensions. The U.S. consumer price index fell 0.1% in March the Labor Department reported Wednesday, in what was the first and biggest drop in ten months. However annual inflation rose by 2.4% while underlying inflation rose 2.1% year-on-year. The report did little to alter the outlook for monetary policy. The Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the first time this year last month and stu...

By Danilo Masoni MILAN (Reuters) - Fresh dealmaking activity helped support European shares on Thursday, although investors remained cautious on worries over the prospect of U.S. military action in Syria. The pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) index fell 0.1 percent at 0821 GMT, having lost 0.6 percent on Wednesday. The FTSE (FTSE) was flat and Germany's DAX (GDAXI) lost 0.1 percent. U.S. President Donald Trump warned Russia this week of an imminent military action in Syria over a suspected gas attack, declaring that missiles "will be coming" and lambasting Moscow for standing by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. "We may well see a military response by the end of the week, as the situation in Syria ramps up further, and this may well temper investor enthusiasm to buy back into the market a...

By Libby George and Dmitry Zhdannikov LONDON (Reuters) - Oil prices edged off highs last reached in late 2014 due to rising U.S. stocks but remained well supported by mounting geopolitical tension in the Middle East, shrinking global oil inventories and expectations of a supply cut extension by OPEC. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) were at $71.84 a barrel at 1315 GMT on Thursday, down 22 cents from their last close. U.S. WTI crude futures (CLc1) were down 12 cents at $66.70. Both Brent and WTI on Wednesday hit their highest since late 2014 at $73.09 and $67.45 a barrel respectively after Saudi Arabia said it intercepted missiles over Riyadh and U.S. President Donald Trump warned Russia of imminent military action in Syria. On Thursday, OPEC said the global oil stocks surplus was close to e...

TOKYO (Reuters) - Oil prices edged lower on Friday but are set for their biggest weekly gains since last July following a jump to a more than three-year high earlier in the week on tensions over Syria and shrinking global oil inventories. NYMEX crude for May delivery (CLc1) was down 23 cents, or 0.3 percent, at $66.84 a barrel at 0148 GMT, after settling up 25 cents on Thursday. London Brent crude (LCOc1) was down 25 cents, or 0.3 percent, at $71.77 after settling down 4 cents. Both contracts are set to rise around 7 percent for the week, the biggest weekly gain since July. A global oil stocks surplus is close to evaporating, OPEC said on Thursday, citing healthy energy demand and its own supply cuts while revising up its forecast for production from rivals who have benefited from high...

By Helen Reid LONDON (Reuters) - European shares inched up to new one-month highs on Friday as trade tensions showed signs of easing, while results disappointments drove some sharp moves. The STOXX 600 (STOXX) rose 0.2 percent while Germany's DAX (GDAXI), which is highly sensitive to trade and China, gained 0.5 percent after U.S. President Trump made comments indicating he would want to avoid a Sino-U.S. trade war and rejoin the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact. "Markets have given cautious welcome to this news. Welcome, because avoiding a trade war is a clear economic positive. Cautious, because market trust in U.S. presidential announcements is, perhaps, a little limited," said UBS Wealth Management chief economist Paul Donovan. The index was on track for its third straight...

By Saikat Chatterjee and Sujata Rao LONDON (Reuters) - Russia's rouble has endured its worst week in more than 2-1/2 years but foreign exchange derivatives predict more pain ahead as bond and equity investors continue slashing exposure to the market after tough new sanctions from the United States. While a market bounce in the past two days has helped the rouble nearly halve its weekly losses since Wednesday, option market indicators such as implied volatility and risk reversals on the Russian currency remain at extremely elevated levels. One-month implied volatility, a gauge of expected swings in a currency - surged this week to over 20 <RUB1MO=R>, effectively predicting a rouble swing of nearly 20 percent. The vol, as it is known in market parlance, stood below 10 last Friday. ...

By Wayne Cole SYDNEY (Reuters) - U.S. stock futures firmed and oil fell on Monday as investors wagered the latest U.S.-led strike on Syria would not escalate into a wider conflict, though Asian markets turned mixed as selling in bank shares slugged Chinese indexes. EMini futures for the S&P 500 (ESc1) rose right from the start and were last up 0.4 percent, while Eurostoxx 50 futures (STXEc1) added 0.27 percent. Japan's Nikkei (N225) rose 0.3 percent. Yet MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) slipped 0.4 percent as Chinese blue chips (CSI300) skidded 1.7 percent. Real estate and financial firms led the declines as Chinese authorities continue to tighten the screws on riskier types of financing in a bid to reduce systemic risks. The earl...

Investing.com - Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Monday, April 16: 1. U.S. Set To Slap New Sanctions On Russia The Trump administration plans to impose new sanctions against Russia over its support for Syrian President Bashar Assad, the latest in a series of actions by both sides underscoring the deterioration in relations between Moscow and the West. U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told CBS's "Face the Nation" that the Treasury Department will announce the new sanctions on Monday and insisted the U.S. has sent "a strong message" about the use of chemical weapons. The fresh sanctions would be the third round enacted by the Trump administration against Russia in the past four weeks. Last week, U.S. measures introduced against Russi...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asia stocks wavered on Tuesday after data showed both hot and cold patches in the Chinese economy, but losses were limited as investors turned their focus to corporate earnings from Syria. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to open higher following overnight Wall Street gains, with Britain's FTSE (FTSE) rising 0.15 percent, Germany's DAX (GDAXI) gaining 0.3 percent and France's CAC (FCHI) climbing 0.3 percent. The dollar was barely changed, with demand for safe-haven U.S. Treasuries ebbing as risk appetite improved in parts of the broader market as investors took the view that Western-led strikes on Syria were a one-off intervention.China's economy grew a welcome 6.8 percent in the first quarter of 2018 from a year earlier, official data showed...

Investing.com - The dollar slid to three week lows against a currency basket on Tuesday as concerns over tensions between the U.S. and Russia eased, while the pound hit a post Brexit high ahead of the latest UK jobs report. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.12% to 89.02 by 04:20 AM ET (08:20 AM GMT), the lowest level since March 28. The dollar drifted lower as risk appetite improved amid relief that U.S.-led missile strikes on Syria over the weekend would not lead to an escalation into a broader conflict. But geopolitical tensions remained in focus amid lingering concerns over a simmering U.S. - China trade spat. The dollar came under pressure on Monday after U.S. President Donald Trump accus...

Investing.com - Sterling and the euro turned lower on Tuesday, while the dollar pulled up from three-week lows against a currency basket to hit the highs of the day. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, edged up to 89.20 by 06:09 AM ET (10:09 AM GMT), from an overnight low of 89.08. The dollar had drifted lower earlier as risk appetite improved amid relief after U.S.-led missile strikes on Syria over the weekend did not lead to an escalation into a broader conflict. But geopolitical tensions remained in focus amid lingering concerns over a simmering U.S. - China trade spat. The dollar had come under pressure on Monday after U.S. President Donald Trump accused Russia and China of devaluing their currencies in...

By Lawrence White LONDON (Reuters) - Lloyds Banking Group (L:LLOY) will cut 305 jobs and close 49 branches in Britain, the latest in a series of reductions to its workforce and network as it promotes its digital services. Lloyds said in February it would invest 3 billion pounds over three years in such digital initiatives, but had not said how many branches or jobs it would axe as part of the cost-cutting strategy. Lloyds said the plan reflected changes in customer behaviour, with more people using digital services than branches, which are costly to maintain . "Today's announcement involves making difficult decisions, and we are committed to working through these changes in a careful and sensitive way," the bank said in a statement on Tuesday regarding the job losses and closures. The...

Investing.com - The dollar rose against the yen on Wednesday amid improving risk appetite as concerns over trade friction between the U.S. and China and tensions in the Middle East subsided. USD/JPY was up 0.3% to 107.33 by 03:21 AM ET (07:21 AM GMT), pulling away from Tuesday’s lows of 106.87. Stronger market sentiment dampened demand for the safe haven Japanese currency, which is often sought in times of market turmoil and political tensions. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.17% to 89.36 after touching a three week low of 88.95 on Tuesday. The dollar was supported by solid U.S. economic reports as market focus turned back to economic fundamentals as fears over tensions in Syria and ...

Investing.com - The pound fell to the day’s lows on Wednesday after data showing that Britain’s inflation fell to its lowest in a year in March, potentially diminishing the chances for a rate hike by the Bank of England next month. GBP/USD was down 0.59% to 1.4204 by 04:43 AM ET (08:44 AM GMT) from around 1.4275 earlier. The Office for National Statistics reported that the annual rate of inflation slowed to 2.5% in March from 2.7% in the previous month. That was below expectations for 2.7% and was the lowest level in a year. Underlying inflation slowed to 2.3% on a year-over-year basis, down from 2.4% in February and missing expectations for an uptick to 2.5%. With inflation falling back towards the BoE’s 2% target markets took the view that a May ...

Investing.com - West Texas Intermediate oil extended gains in North American trade on Wednesday, as data showed that oil supplies in the U.S. fell more than expected. Crude oil for June delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange surged 1.69 cents or 2.54% to trade at $68.21 a barrel by 10:32 AM ET (2:32GMT) compared to $67.72 ahead of the report. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its weekly report that crude oil inventories fell by 1.071 million barrels in the week ended April 13. Market analysts' had expected a crude-stock decline of 500,000 barrels, while the American Petroleum Institute late Tuesday reported a decline of 1.047 million. Supplies at Cushing, Oklahoma, the key delivery point for Nymex crude, decreased by 1.115 million barrels last week,...

LONDON (Reuters) - British defence contractor Ultra Electronics (L:ULE) said the UK's Serious Fraud Office had opened a criminal investigation into "suspected corruption in the conduct of business" by it in Algeria. Ultra said in a statement on Thursday that the SFO investigation concerned the business conduct of Ultra, its subsidiaries, employees and associated persons, and came after Ultra referred itself to the British fraud authorities. "Given the stage of these matters, it is not possible to estimate reliably what effect the outcome of this matter may have on the group," Ultra said, adding that it continued to co-operate with the SFO....

LONDON (Reuters) - Industrial and commodities-focused stocks made gains on Thursday as earnings and basic resource prices spurred them higher, while the main European indices declined, showing signs of fatigue after a two-day rally took them to six-week highs. Earnings dominated trading, with Swiss industrial equipment maker ABB (S:ABBN) and French electric components firm Schneider (PA:SCHN) the biggest boosts to the pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) index. ABB rose 3.9 percent after reporting first-quarter profit that beat expectations, while Schneider's profit beat sent its shares up 2 percent. Another notable gainer was advertising group Publicis (PA:PUBP), rising 5.1 percent after first-quarter sales beat forecasts. A surge in metals prices, after Russian sanctions sparked concerns o...

Investing.com – Согласно отчету Международного энергетического агентства (МЭА), в марте, благодаря росту производства нефти на 1,34 млн баррелей в сутки в сравнении с мартом прошлого года до 9,96 млн баррелей, США обошли Саудовскую Аравию (9,92 млн баррелей) и стали вторыми в мире по добыче нефти после России, добывающей 11,35 млн баррелей в сутки. Производство растет в том числе и за счет экспорта. Так, согласно последним данным, потребление нефти в США в январе по отношению к январю прошлого года выросло лишь на 1,23 млн баррелей в сутки. По итогам I квартала этого года среднесуточное мировое потребление нефти составило 98,1 млн баррелей в сутки. По прогнозу МЭА, в октябре-декабре 2018 г. оно может превысить 100 млн баррелей – то есть темпы его роста отстают от темпов роста ...

By Shadia Nasralla LONDON (Reuters) - Oil prices rose on Thursday to their highest since late 2014 as U.S. crude inventories declined, moving closer to five-year averages, and after sources told Reuters that top exporter Saudi Arabia aims to push oil prices higher. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) rallied as high as $74.44 a barrel, the strongest since Nov. 27, 2014 -- the day OPEC decided to pump as much as it could to defend market share, sending the price to a low of $27 just over a year later. Brent futures were at $74.23 a barrel at 1115 GMT, up 75 cents from the previous close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) rose 61 cents to $69.08. WTI had earlier hit $69.27, its highest since Dec. 2, 2014. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and oth...

Investing.com - Gold prices moved lower on Thursday, as the dollar wallowed around the unchanged mark and yields on U.S. Treasuries rose. Comex gold futures fell $2.60, or around 0.2%, at $1,350.90 a troy ounce by 10:23AM ET (14:23GMT), while the U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, slipped 0.04% to 89.31. The yield on the 10-year Treasury topped 2.9% on Thursday, a day after the yield on the 2-year hit its highest level since September 2008. The move lower in gold, which does not pay interest, may be due to its inability to compete with yield-bearing fixed income. Economic data released on Thursday gave a mixed reading, as weekly jobless claimsdipped less than expected. Still, the ...

By Hideyuki Sano TOKYO (Reuters) - The British pound flirted with two-week lows against the dollar on Friday following comments from the Bank of England chief and soft UK retail sales data, while the yen eased as risk sentiment was on the mend. Still, uncertainties on issues ranging from U.S. trade policies to North Korea and Syria kept many investors on hold, and the euro/dollar and the dollar/yen could see one of their narrowest weekly range in months. Bank of England Governor Mark Carney dampened widespread expectations for an interest rate hike in May on Thursday, pointing out there were also "other meetings" this year. Disappointing UK retail sales released earlier on Thursday also raised some doubts about the outlook for UK rate hikes. The British pound fell to a two-week low of...

LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling fell another 0.3 percent to a two-week low on Friday after Bank of England governor Mark Carney signalled that the central bank may not rush to raise interest rates in May because economic data was "mixed". Investors had this week bid up the pound, one of the best performing major currencies in 2018, to its highest level since the Brexit referendum in June 2016, in part because of growing expectations the BoE would hike rates next month to curb inflation. But weaker than expected wage growth numbers and inflation data this week encouraged Carney to tell the BBC on Thursday that the rate rise was far from certain and that there were other BoE meetings later in the year. "Carney has moved the goalposts," said Jane Foley, an FX strategist at Rabobank. "The data ...

By Helen Reid LONDON (Reuters) - Investors are still keen on risk assets despite bearish signals such as a flattening U.S. yield curve and a surprise move by China to cut bank reserve requirements, Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) Merrill Lynch strategists said on Friday. As a strong earnings season rekindled risk appetite, investors pushed money into U.S. and emerging market equities, while they pulled out of European and Japanese stocks, BAML strategists said, citing EPFR flows data. Overall, a modest $2.8 billion flowed into bonds while equities drew small inflows of $3.3 billion. High-yield bonds drew $2.3 billion inflows this week while $1.5 billion flowed into government bonds, in flows strategists said were starting to reflect more dovish central banks and investors' expectation yield...

Investing.com - Gold prices headed lower on Friday as a rebound in the dollar put downward pressure on the precious metal. Comex gold futures fell $10.60, or around 0.8%, at $1,338.20 a troy ounce by 10:26AM ET (14:26GMT). With geopolitical tensions fading into the background, a 0.6% rise in the U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was enough to spark pressure on the dollar-denominated commodity that becomes more expensive for holders of foreign currency and thus decreases demand. Still, gold has been trading in a tight range was on track for weekly losses of just around 0.7%, while maintaining gains of 1.5% so far this year. With no major economic data on Friday’s agenda, market p...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices were steady on Monday as a rising U.S. rig count pointed to further increases in American output, marking one of the few factors tamping back crude in an otherwise bullish environment. Brent crude oil futures (LCOc1) were at $74.07 per barrel at 0354 GMT, virtually unchanged from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were down 3 cents at $68.37 a barrel. U.S. drillers added five oil rigs drilling for new production in the week ended April 20, bringing the total count to 820, highest since March 2015, according to General Electric's Baker Hughes energy services firm. The rising rig numbers point to further increases in U.S. crude production , which is already up a quarter since mid-2016 to a ...

LONDON (Reuters) - The UK's top share index started the week flat on Monday with stocks in consumer goods under pressure from a rise in U.S. treasury yields, which make their dividends streams relatively less attractive for investors. At 0832 GMT, the FTSE 100 (FTSE) was down 0.1 percent while most European bourses also traded in negative territory. Consumer good makers Reckitt Benckiser (L:RB) was the worst performer among blue chips, down 2.1 percent as JP Morgan cut its rating for the stock, which had published disappointing results last week. Other consumer staples stocks such as Diageo (L:DGE), down 1 percent, or Unilever(L:ULVR), off 0.8 percent, lost some grounds in line with the wider European sector as their "bond proxy" profile is weakened by rise in t...

Investing.com - The dollar posted broad gains against a basket of the other major currencies on Monday, hitting seven week highs, boosted by rising U.S. bond yields. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.57% to 90.60 by 10:04 AM ET (14:04 GMT), the highest level since March 1. The yield 10-year U.S. Treasury notes moved closer to the 3% level on Monday, as strengthening inflation prospects added to expectations for a faster rate of monetary tightening from the Federal Reserve. The dollar rose to more than two-month highs against the safe haven yen, with USD/JPY advancing 0.72% to 108.42. The Japanese currency is often sought in times of market turmoil and political tensions and te...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - International oil prices hit their highest levels since late 2014 on Tuesday, pushed up by expectations of renewed U.S. sanctions against Iran and as OPEC continues withholding supplies amid strong demand. Brent crude futures (LCOc1), the international benchmark for oil prices, climbed as high as $75.20 in early trading on Tuesday, levels not seen since November, 2014. Brent was still at $74.89 a barrel at 0109 GMT, up 18 cents, or 0.2 percent from its last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $68.84 a barrel, up 20 cents, or 0.3 percent from their last settlement. Markets have been lifted by supply cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) which were introduced in 2017 with the ...

Investing.com - The dollar was holding steady near seven week highs against a basket of the other major currencies on Tuesday, boosted by rising Treasury yields. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was at 90.70 by 03:18 AM ET (07:18 AM GMT), after hitting an overnight high of 90.84, the strongest level since March 1. The yield on 10-year U.S. Treasury notes hit its highest in more than four years at 2.998% on Monday, as strengthening inflation prospects added to expectations for a faster rate of monetary tightening from the Federal Reserve. The yield later backed off that level and was last at 2.960%. The dollar hit ten-week highs against the safe haven yen, with USD/JPY up 0.15% to 108....

DUBLIN (Reuters) - An appeal by Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Ireland against a European Union ruling for the U.S. firm to pay 13 billion euros (11.37 billion pounds) in disputed taxes is likely to be heard in the autumn, Irish Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe said on Tuesday. The European Commission ruled in August 2016 that Apple had received unfair tax incentives. Both Apple and Dublin are appealing the original ruling, saying the iPhone maker's tax treatment was in line with Irish and European Union law....

Investing.com - The yield on 10-year U.S. Treasury notes hit its highest in more than four years at 3% shortly after the U.S. open on Tuesday. Investors have been focused on the 10-year yield in recent sessions as it inched towards the key psychological level amid concerns that it could trigger a reaction in global financial markets. The yield has been driven higher as strengthening inflation prospects added to expectations for a faster rate of monetary tightening from the Federal Reserve....

(Bloomberg) -- Oil held losses below $68 a barrel after French President Emmanuel Macron called for a new Iran nuclear deal to keep the U.S. on board, raising speculation sanctions on the OPEC producer may be averted. Futures in New York were little changed after dropping 1.4 percent Tuesday. Macron proposed negotiating a new agreement that would curb Iran’s ballistic missile development and nuclear program ahead of next month’s decision by President Donald Trump on whether the U.S. will withdraw from the deal and reimpose sanctions on oil exports. Fears of an increase in U.S. crude inventories also weighed on prices. Oil has surged more than 7 percent this month on concern geopolitical risk in the energy-rich Middle East is intensifying, with Trump set to decide wh...

LONDON (Reuters) - European shares declined on Wednesday in early deals as worries over rising bond yields trumped a slew of well-received earnings updates fromKering (PA:PRTP) and Credit Suisse (SIX:CSGN), while Shire bounced after accepting an improved offer from Takeda. The pan-European STOXX 600 index was down 0.5 percent, pulling further away from its highest level since the beginning of February, while Germany's DAX fell 0.6 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 was down 0.4 percent. Concerns over higher bond yields continued after the yield on the U.S. 10-year Treasury breached the symbolic 3 percent level on Tuesday, raising questions over the relative attractiveness of equities and sectors which pay steady dividends. On the day, almost every E...

By Paul Sandle LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. media group Comcast submitted a 22 billion pound bid for Sky on Wednesday, prompting the European pay TV group to drop its support for a lower offer from Rupert Murdoch's Twenty-First Century Fox. Sky's independent directors welcomed Comcast's 12.50 pound per share bid and said they would now engage with both Comcast and Fox. They cautioned that neither bid could yet be put to shareholders and advised them to take no action for now. Fox, which already has a 39 percent stake in Sky, first announced its 10.75 pound per share cash offer in December 2016. The deal has been held up by concerns about the influence Murdoch could wield over public opinion through owning all of the broadcaster as well as British newspapers including The Times and The Sun. ...

By Tom Sims and Arno Schuetze FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Deutsche Bank (DE:DBKGn) announced cutbacks to its bond and equities trading on Thursday in a major overhaul of its troubled investment bank, after posting a 79 percent drop in net profit in the first quarter. The cuts will result in job losses and include a scaling-back of its business with hedge funds. The bulk of the cuts will focus on the United States and Asia. The cuts are a move to become more focussed on its corporate customers, and a return to its origins after rampant growth across the globe over past decades. "Deutsche Bank is deeply rooted in Europe – here we want to provide our clients access to global financing and treasury solutions," said new Chief Executive Officer Christian Sewing. "This is what we wi...

LONDON (Reuters) - Encouraging results and a recovery among industrials helped European stock markets on Thursday, while earnings disappointments weighed heavily on some stocks including Germany's Deutsche Bank . The STOXX 600 (STOXX) inched up 0.2 percent in early deals, enjoying a timid bounce from the one-week lows hit in the previous session when anxiety over rising bond yields jolted risky assets. Bank earnings were also a key focus. Deutsche Bank (DE:DBKGn) fell 2.6 percent after the bank said it would scale back its bond and equities trading in a major overhaul of its investment bank, after reporting a 79 percent drop in net profit in the first quarter. The stock is down more than 27 percent year-to-date, the worst-performing of the European banks sector (SX7P). Norwa...

HAMBURG (Reuters) - Germany’s food industry must label unhealthy products more clearly, the country’s new agriculture and consumer protection minister said on Thursday. “About 15 percent of our children and young people are overweight, about 17 billion euros (15 billion pounds) of healthcare costs are generated annually by diet-related illnesses,” Julia Kloeckner told a food industry conference in Berlin. Kloeckner took office in the new German government in March, with the coalition agreement committing to a strategy to reduce consumption of sugar, fat and salt. She called on Germany’s food industry to make its own concrete proposals on how to achieve this in the near future. The existing voluntary labelling of food content should be improved, removing so...

By Ann Saphir MIDLAND, Texas (Reuters) - In West Texas, rising oil prices are fuelling a sharp economic upswing, lifting employment and pay to records, driving up spending at hotels, restaurants, and car dealerships, and raising the cost of housing and other essentials. This parched patch of land, under which lie the largest oil-producing rock formations in the United States, is used to growth binges as well as the busts that always follow. After a two-year crash, the price of crude (CLc1) began to recover in 2016 and pierced $60 a barrel early this year. But oil is still far cheaper than at the peak of the previous eight-year boom that began in 2006 North Dakota's Bakken oil patch and supercharged the city of Williston. In the Permian basin, which stretches across West Texas and easte...

Investing.com - The pound fell to four month lows on Tuesday after weak UK factory data further cut chances for a near term rate hike by the Bank of England, while the broadly stronger dollar rose to multi-month highs against a currency basket. GBP/USD was down 0.68% to 1.3669 by 05:08 AM ET (09:08 AM GMT) from around 1.3727 earlier. It was the lowest level since January 12. The pound extended early losses after data showing that activity in the UK manufacturing sector grew at the slowest pace in seventeen months in April. The report saw investors slash expectations for a rate hike from the BoE at its upcoming meeting next week after overall economic growth slowed to near stagnation in the first quarter. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength aga...

(Bloomberg) -- China weakened its daily currency fixing by more than traders and analysts had expected before high-ranking U.S. officials arrive in the country to discuss trade issues. The People’s Bank of China cut the reference level to 6.3670 per dollar, weaker than the average estimate of 6.3610 in Bloomberg survey of 21 traders and analysts. The deviation is the biggest since Feb. 7 and continues a pattern set in April when the fixing was weaker than expected on all but one day, according to Bloomberg calculations. "The move in the fixing today is aggressive," said Ken Cheung, a currency strategist at Mizuho Bank Ltd. in Hong Kong. "China may want to weaken the yuan pre-emptively before the trade talks with the U.S., so that they have room to strengthen the currency" if needed...

Investing.com - Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Wednesday, May 2: 1. Markets Await Fed Policy Decision The Federal Reserve is set to hold interest rates steady when it announces its policy decision at 2:00PM ET (1800GMT). Fed Chair Jerome Powell will not hold a press conference following the decision and no updated economic projections will be released. Instead, investors will be focusing on the central bank's post-meeting statement, which will likely underline expectations that it will lift borrowing costs in June, as widely expected. Markets will also be on the lookout to see whether the Fed upgrades its view of both the economy and inflation, which would be considered hawkish. The Fed currently forecasts another two rate rises this year, ...

Investing.com - The dollar rose to its highest level since December against a currency basket on Wednesday ahead of the Federal Reserve’s decision on monetary policy later in the day. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, rose 0.14% to 92.43 by 10:31 AM ET (14:31 GMT), the strongest level since December 28. Demand for the dollar continued to be underpinned after data showing that U.S. private employers added 204,000 jobs in April, slightly higher than economists' expectations. The upbeat jobs data cemented expectations for a June rate hike by the Fed. While the Fed is expected to keep interest rates on hold after its meeting later Wednesday policymakers are widely expected to line up their next rate hike...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices fell early on Thursday, pulled down by a rise in U.S. crude inventories and record weekly U.S. production, which is countering efforts by producer cartel OPEC to cut supplies and prop up prices. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down 28 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $67.65 per barrel at 0004 GMT. Brent crude oil futures (LCOc1) were at $73.04 per barrel, down 32 cents, or 0.4 percent, from their last close. Prices were pulled down by a report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Wednesday showing U.S. crude inventories jumped by 6.2 million barrels to 435.96 million barrels in the week to April 27, marking a 2018 high. "The (EIA) report showed a much larger than expected crude buil...

LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling trimmed gains and stocks hit the session highs on Thursday after a major survey showed Britain's services sector struggled to recover in April from a sharp slowdown in March, further squeezing expectations of an interest rate hike next week. Sterling <gbp=d3>trimmed gains to stand 0.2 percent up on day at $1.3598 compared to $1.3630 earlier. It later recovers most of those losses.</gbp=d3> Britain's FTSE 100 (FTSE) rose to a session high, up 0.04 percent as a weaker sterling is expected to boost overseas earnings. UK gilt futures rose 10 ticks after the weaker-than-expected survey and turned positive for the day.   The IHS Markit/CIPS services purchasing managers' index (PMI) rose to 52.8 in April from March's 20-month low of 51.7, a s...

LONDON (Reuters) - The European Union's decision to ban some widely used insecticides is likely to dent sugar beet production in the trading bloc, farming groups said on Thursday. EU countries backed a proposal last week to extend a partial ban on the use of insecticides known as neonicotinoids that studies have shown are harmful to bees. "This decision has a devastating impact on beet growing. With this ban, all French regions are likely to be affected by viral jaundice, with potential yield losses estimated at 12 pct at national level, and up to 50 pct in certain ocean climate zones,” French sugar beet growers group CGB said in a statement. "It is a very hard blow for sugar beet growers and for the sustainability of the French and European sugar sector in general," it said. Yie...

MILAN (Reuters) - European shares bounced back on Friday morning as a flurry of company updates rolled in although the heavyweight banking sector was left behind following poor updates from HSBC (L:HSBA), BNP Paribas (PA:BNPP) and Societe Generale (PA:SOGN). While the European banking index, recently penalised by softening economic data, fell 0.6 percent to lead sectoral losers (SX7P), broad-based gains across sectors lifted the pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) index up 0.3 percent in early trading. The recent fall in the euro following a rally that started in the second half of last year has helped euro zone stocks outperform Wall Street in the last few weeks, putting the euro zone benchmark index (STOXXE) on track for six straight week of gains. On Friday solid updat...

By Helen Reid LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's leading stock index climbed at the end of a heavy earnings week as strong results from British Airways owner IAG sent the stock flying, while HSBC joined French banking peers in reporting weaker profits and suffering share price falls. Strong earnings from IAG and Pearson , along with rising commodities stocks, buoyed Britain's FTSE 100 (FTSE) up 0.4 percent, while financials were a drag as heavyweight HSBC fell 3.3 percent. The index has risen sharply in recent weeks, though it is still underperforming European peers. It's up 9.7 percent since it hit 15-month lows at the end of March, and was on track for its sixth straight week of gains. British Airways owner IAG (L:ICAG) led the FTSE, up 5.1 percent and near a four-month high afte...

Investing.com - Crude prices started the week in an upbeat mood on Monday, reaching their strongest level in almost four years as traders increased their bets the U.S. would pull out the Iran nuclear deal, raising the potential for tighter global oil stockpiles. New York-traded WTI crude futures rose to an intraday peak of $70.69 a barrel, breaching the $70-mark for the first time since November 2014. It was last at $70.30 by 3:05AM ET (0705GMT), up 58 cents, or around 0.9%. Meanwhile, Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., tacked on 56 cents, or 0.8%, to $75.42 a barrel, after climbing to $75.89 earlier in the session, its highest since November 2014. The showdown between President Donald Trump and Iran will likely continue to be the main dr...

(Bloomberg) -- Plunging Venezuelan crude production; sanctions disrupting Iranian oil exports; Saudi Arabia pushing for even higher prices; North Korea peace talks -- the coming weeks bring an abundance of risks for the oil market. The geopolitical premium has already helped lift crude prices to a three-year high. There are several dates coming up which could have a significant impact on global oil supply and demand, or at the very least elevate the risk of a market-moving presidential tweet. Iran Sanctions Within five days, U.S. President Donald Trump must choose whether to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal and reimpose restrictions on oil shipments from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ third-largest producer. It’s a decision that could remove a big chunk ...

By Hideyuki Sano and Andrew Galbraith TOKYO/SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Oil prices eased slightly on Tuesday, a day after hitting 3-1/2 year highs, as investors braced for President Donald Trump's decision on whether to withdraw the United States from the Iran nuclear deal, a move that could disrupt global oil supply. European shares are seen steady to slightly firmer after Asian shares picked up, helped by technology stocks as generally upbeat earnings overcame weakness in the global smartphone market and concerns about more regulation. Spread-betters expect Britain's FTSE (FTSE) to rise 0.2 percent and Germany's Dax (GDAXI) to inch up 0.1 percent. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) on Monday rose above $70 for the first time since November 2014, putting it more than 18 ...

(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump will announce on Tuesday whether the U.S. will leave the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement, a signature achievement by his predecessor that he’s long derided as “the worst deal ever.” He could still surprise the world by agreeing to stay in the accord as diplomats try to negotiate side agreements to address his concerns, but foreign leaders and analysts say the president is likely to exit. That could result in renewed sanctions on the third-largest crude producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. Oil futures rose above $70 a barrel in New York for the first time in more than three years on Monday as traders speculated about Trump’s intentions. If the president does decide to exit the nuclear deal, here&rsquo...

Investing.com - The dollar rose to fresh 2018 highs on Tuesday amid heightened geopolitical risk ahead of an announcement on the future of the Iran nuclear deal and after a hawkish signal from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, climbed 0.53% to 93.10 by 10:21 AM ET (14:22 GMT), the highest level since mid-December. Safe haven demand for the dollar was underpinned as investors remained cautious ahead of an announcement by U.S. President Donald Trump later in the day about the future of an international nuclear agreement with Iran, which he has repeatedly threatened to withdraw from. The U.S. currency received an additional boost after Fed Chairman Jerome Powell warned ...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks rose on Thursday, with energy shares leading the way as crude oil prices bolted higher after U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of a nuclear deal with Iran. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to open higher as well, with Britain's FTSE (FTSE) adding 0.2 percent, Germany's DAX (GDAXI) rising 0.4 percent and France's CAC (FCHI) gaining 0.3 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) advanced 0.6 percent, while Japan's Nikkei (N225) climbed 0.3 percent. South Korea's KOSPI (KS11) rose 0.5 percent and Shanghai (SSEC) was 0.2 percent higher. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) rose 0.8 percent to $77.82 a barrel, the highest since November 2014 and building on gains of about 3 percent on W...

Investing.com - Crude prices continued higher on Thursday, notching another three-and-a-half-year peak as escalating geopolitical tensions between Israel and Iran cast further uncertainty about supply disruptions from the region. Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., tacked on 67 cents, or around 0.9%, to $77.88 a barrel by 4:10AM ET (0810GMT), after climbing to $78.00 earlier in the session, its highest since November 2014. Meanwhile, New York-traded WTI crude futures rose 61 cents, or 0.8%, to $71.75 a barrel, after rising as high as $71.89 at one point, also close to highs last seen in late 2014. Fresh highs for oil came after Iranian forces in Syria launched a rocket attack on Israeli army bases in the Golan Heights, Israel said, prompting one...

Investing.com - Oil prices surged to their highest level in three-and-a-half years this week, after U.S. President Donald Trump walked away from an international nuclear deal with Iran and reimposed “the highest level of economic sanctions” against the country. Trump said he quit the deal because Tehran continues to work on a bomb, based on evidence provided by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and it backs terrorist groups around the Middle East. Some analysts have said the reinstatement of sanctions could lead to tighter global oil supplies as they make it more difficult for Iran to export oil. Iran, which is a major Middle East oil producer and member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), resumed its role as a major oil exporter in Janu...

(Bloomberg) -- The currency of the world’s biggest energy exporter is finally doing what it’s supposed to be doing: rallying with the price of oil. The ruble was the biggest gainer in the world on Thursday as it played catch-up with Brent crude’s surge above $77 a barrel following a national holiday. Oil had lost so much force as a driver for the currency that the 60-day correlation between the two assets has dropped to almost zero. Thursday’s rally doesn’t necessarily mean the historic bond between the ruble and oil is making a more permanent come-back though. Investors are still wary of piling back into the ruble after being caught out holding overweight positions when the U.S. extended sanctions last month, and a recent rally in the do...

By Kate Duguid NEW YORK (Reuters) - China is positioned to be a chief beneficiary of the U.S. decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal as it would give China leverage to demand oil imports be priced in yuan, several currency experts said on Thursday. President Donald Trump is preparing to impose new sanctions on Iran, the White House said on Wednesday, following the U.S. withdrawal from the multinational 2015 agreement that stalled Iran's nuclear program. The sanctions would aim to limit global trade of the oil producer's crude. The effects may be muted as major Asian importers, China chief among them, are likely to continue buying Iranian oil. The People's Republic stands to benefit if it can use its leverage as the world's largest importer of crude by insisting that its oil pu...

By Sue-Lin Wong BEIJING (Reuters) - Some North Korean traders are offering cheap coal to Chinese buyers who are stockpiling it at ports inside the isolated country, hoping recent diplomatic moves lead to an easing of sanctions barring purchases of North Korean coal, three Chinese traders told Reuters. Official data shows China has not imported any coal from North Korea since October last year, after the United Nations banned Pyongyang from exporting coal in September. In 2016, China, Pyongyang's main trading partner, bought 22.5 million tonnes of coal from North Korea worth almost $2 billion. But the Chinese traders said offers of coal had surged after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made a surprise visit to Beijing in March, and ahead of a planned meeting with U.S. President Donald Tr...

Investing.com - The dollar edged lower against a basket of the other major currencies on Monday after its recent rally to multi-month highs stalled amid diminished expectations for an aggressive pace of monetary tightening by the Federal Reserve this year. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.23% at 92.23 by 03:42 AM ET (07:42 AM GMT). The index hit four-and-a-half month highs of 93.26 on Wednesday before retreating, to end the week almost unchanged, snapping three straight weeks of gains. The rally in the dollar lost momentum after tame U.S. inflation data tempered expectations for a faster pace of rate hikes by the Fed. The Fed raised rates in March and projected two more rate hikes this year, a...

Investing.com - Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Monday, May 14: 1. U.S.-China Trade Back In The Spotlight Trade was back into focus after U.S. President Donald Trump said in a Sunday tweet that he was working with Chinese President Xi Jinping to give struggling Chinese telecom giant ZTE (HK:0763) "a way to get back into business, fast."   Donald J. Trump   ✔@realDonaldTrump     President Xi of China, and I, are working together to give massive Chinese phone company, ZTE, a way to get back into business, fast. Too many jobs in China lost. Commerce Department has been instructed to get it done! 6:01 PM - May 13, 2018   70.6K   39.3K people are talking about this Twitter Ads ...

(Reuters) - CBS Corp (N:CBS) on Monday asked a court to block controlling shareholder Shari Redstone from interfering at a special meeting of its board called to consider a merger with Viacom. The news of the lawsuit, filed to a Delaware court and also seeking to dilute the 79 percent voting rights in CBS held by Redstone's National Amusements Inc, pushed the network's shares up nearly 1 percent and those in Viacom down 6 percent. National Amusements, a privately held movie theatre company owned by Sumner Redstone and his daughter Shari, own a majority of the voting shares in both companies. CBS said in the lawsuit Shari Redstone had taken actions over the past two years that have led the special committee of the board considering the merger to conclude that she presents a significant t...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks pulled back on Tuesday, brushing off a firmer lead from Wall Street, as investors turned cautious after soft Chinese economic data and awaited fresh developments on U.S.-China trade talks and North Korea. Crude oil prices held near 3-1/2-year highs on supply concerns, while the dollar edged higher, underpinned by a rise in U.S. bond yields. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to follow their Asian peers lower, with Britain's FTSE (FTSE), Germany's DAX (GDAXI) and France's CAC (FCHI) all seen shedding 0.2 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) fell 0.8 percent after rising the previous day to its highest since late March. The index had rallied for three straight sessions prior to Tuesday. ...

Investing.com - Oil prices remained on the front foot on Tuesday, with Brent prices extending gains to hit another 2014 high, as looming U.S. sanctions against Iran continued to provide support. Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., tacked on 23 cents, or around 0.3%, to $78.46 a barrel by 4:05AM ET (0805GMT), after climbing to $78.60 earlier in the session, its highest since November 2014. Worries about Iran have been key to oil’s recent surge to late-2014 levels. Prices have rallied sharply since U.S. President Donald Trump walked away from an international nuclear deal with Iran last week and reimposed “the highest level of economic sanctions” against the country. Some analysts have said the reinstatement of sanctions could lead to tig...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar rose to the best levels of the day on Tuesday, nearing last week’s four-and-a-half month highs after a slightly stronger than expected U.S. retail sales report. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.58% to 93.09 by 08:50 AM ET (12:51 GMT), re-approaching last Wednesday’s highs of 93.26, the most since December 19. The Commerce Department reported that while retail sales rose 0.3% in April the prior months figure was revised up to 0.8% from a previously reported 0.6%. Core retail sales rose 0.3% last month, but April’s figure was revised up to 0.4%, from 0.2% previously. The report indicated that consumer spending is on track to reb...

(Bloomberg) -- Oil rose to $80 a barrel in London for the first time since 2014 as U.S. crude inventories fell and traders braced for the impact of renewed sanctions on OPEC member Iran. Brent futures added as much as 1.1 percent to $80.18 on Thursday. U.S. crude stockpiles slipped for a second week as the summer driving season approaches, government data showed on Wednesday. Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS). said America’s surging shale output won’t be able to replace the potential drop in Iranian oil shipments after the U.S. reimposed sanctions on OPEC’s third-largest producer. Crude has rallied this month to the highest level in more than three years after U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from a 2015 pact between Iran and world powe...

LONDON (Reuters) - Just one of Britain's top 350 companies - RenewablesInfrastructure Group (L:TRIG) - has a "perfect" record on gender diversity, as tracked in a new fund from Legal & General Investment Management. The L&G Future World Gender in Leadership UK Index Fund, or GIRL fund, is the first such fund to focus on British firms and tilts its relative holdings of each company based on how it performs on four measures of gender diversity. Companies are graded based on the degree of female representation on the board, among the executive body, in management as well as the broader workforce, factors LGIM is pushing companies it invests in to address. Under the system devised by LGIM, each company is given a score between zero and 100 on each of the measures, with their co...

LONDON (Reuters) - Scotiabank has resigned as a primary dealer of British government debt, the Debt Management Office said on Thursday. "The UK Debt Management Office (DMO) is announcing that it has today accepted the resignation of Scotiabank Europe plc as a Gilt-Edged Market Maker (GEMM) in both the conventional and index-linked gilt sectors," the DMO said in a statement. The resignation takes effect from Friday, it said. Scotiabank was not immediately available for comment....

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks were steady on Friday amid caution over developments in U.S.-China trade negotiations, while the dollar perched near a five-month peak after the benchmark U.S. Treasury yield hit its highest in seven years. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to open mixed, with Britain's FTSE (FTSE) dipping 0.1 percent, Germany's DAX (GDAXI) rising 0.13 percent and France's CAC (FCHI) little changed. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) was little changed. The index was headed for a 1 percent loss this week. Hong Kong's Hang Seng (HSI) rose 0.17 percent and Shanghai (SSEC) climbed 0.3 percent as some investors bet Beijing and Washington will reach a deal in the latest round of trade talks. (SS) Japan's Nikkei ...

Investing.com - Gold prices remained lower on Friday, held back by rising Treasury yields and a stronger dollar. Comex gold futures for June delivery were down 0.12% to $1,287.90 a troy ounce as of 10:33 AM ET (14:33 GMT). The price of bouillon was driven lower by the rise in the greenback and increase in bond yields. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, inched down 0.02% to 93.37, but still remained near a five-month high. Gold is denominated in the U.S. currency and is sensitive to moves in the dollar. Bullion becomes more expensive for holders of other currencies when the dollar rises. Meanwhile the precious metal was held back by rising bond yields. The yield on the benchmark United State...

By Ross Kerber BOSTON (Reuters) - Several socially conscious investment firms are selling or rethinking their Facebook Inc (O:FB) holdings, unsatisfied by the company's moves to strengthen personal data protection and online safety after scandals involving the improper sharing of users' information. The retreat from the world's largest social media network is one of the sharpest responses by investors to concerns about Facebook's handling of user data. Cambridge Analytica, a now-defunct political data firm hired by Trump's 2016 election campaign, has been accused of harvesting data for 87 million Facebook users and is under investigation in the United States and Europe. Facebook shares fell in the first quarter when the scandal broke, and recovered after founder and Chief Exe...

LONDON (Reuters) - Glencore (L:GLEN) on Friday said it could not comment on a report by Bloomberg that it may face an enquiry from Britain's Serious Fraud Office into allegations of bribery linked to its operations in Democratic Republic of Congo. Glencore's share price traded around 6 percent lower after the Bloomberg report. No-one at the SFO was immediately available for comment....

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has paid 1.5 billion euros (1.3 billion pounds) into an escrow account set up by the Irish government to hold 13 billion euros in disputed taxes, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe said on Friday. The European Commission ordered Apple in August 2016 to pay the taxes it ruled it had received as illegal state aid, as part of its wider drive against what it says are sweetheart tax deals usually used by smaller states in the bloc to lure multinational companies and their jobs and investment. Both Apple and Dublin are appealing the ruling, saying the iPhone maker's tax treatment was in line with Irish and European Union law. Last October the Commission said it was taking Dublin to the European Court of Justice over delays in recovering the money that was ...

(Bloomberg) -- The pound is running into another crucial week as it fumbles around this year’s lowest levels against the dollar for a footing. With the next round of Brexit talks, key U.K. economic reports and the still-unfolding Italian coalition drama set to converge in the coming days, front-end option volatility in sterling versus the U.S. currency has picked up from a one-month low reached at the start of last week. What investors are waiting for is to see whether the latest economic figures show any upturn, after a sluggish first three months of the year when the Beast from the East snowstorm swept across the country. That could push higher the odds of an interest-rate increase as early as August by the Bank of England. Nomura International Plc sees room for gains in the U.K....

By Helen Reid LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 notched up a fresh record high on Monday, rising strongly as an easing in Sino-U.S. trade tensions and a strengthening dollar gave more fuel to the internationally-exposed index. The index of Britain's biggest companies (FTSE) was up 0.8 percent at 0850 GMT, hitting a new record high at 7,838.55 points. The mid-cap FTSE 250 (FTMC) also hit a record in early trading at 21,092.72 points, up 0.5 percent. UK equities enjoyed a broad-based rally, with all sectors making gains, while financials and energy provided the strongest boosts. The FTSE 100 has gained 7 percent in the past month. "I don't think sentiment has changed towards the UK stock market dramatically over the last 2 to 6 months," said James Illsley, UK equity portfolio manager...

Investing.com - Brent oil prices fell on Monday, while U.S. crude oil prices continued to rise amid news of sanctions against Iran and the U.S. and China halting trade tariffs. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in an interview that the U.S. would demand major changes in Iran following America's withdrawal from the nuclear deal, with the possibility of even tougher sanctions. The withdrawl from the Iran deal has left investors on edge, as Iran supplies about 4% of global oil. Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., was down 0.28% to $78.28 a barrel as of 10:19 AM ET (14:19 GMT). Meanwhile crude was up, Crude oil futures rose 0.35% to $71.62 a barrel as news of the U.S. and China discussing a trade agreement bolstered prices. The trade war bet...

Investing.com - Gold prices were little changed in early dealings on Tuesday, hovering not far off a 2018 low struck in the previous session, as improved appetite for riskier assets sapped demand for the yellow metal. Comex gold futures were up around 0.1% at $1,291.30 a troy ounce by 4:10AM ET (0810GMT). In the previous session, it slid to as low as $1,281.20, its weakest level since December 27. Gold's losses on Monday came after a truce between the United States and China calmed fears that a trade war might be imminent. Washington and Beijing both claimed victory on Monday as the world's two largest economies stepped back from the brink of a global trade war and agreed to hold further talks to boost U.S. exports to China. That news boosted U.S. equities and Treasury yields...

By Jessica Jaganathan SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices rose on Tuesday amid worries that Venezuela's crude output could drop further following a disputed presidential election in the country and with potential sanctions on the OPEC-member. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) were at $79.37 per barrel at 0110 GMT, up 15 cents, from their last close. Brent broke through $80 for the first time since November 2014 last week. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $72.49 a barrel, up 25 cents from their previous settlement. "The markets' positive take on 'no trade war' and Venezuela's political woes are driving oil prices higher," said Stephen Innes, head of trading for Asia-Pacific at futures brokerage OANDA in Singapore. Venezuela's socialist President Nicolas Maduro faced wide...

(Reuters) - British water utility Severn Trent Plc (L:SVT) posted a 4 percent rise in full-year profit on Wednesday, as its Dee Valley Water business and higher revenue offset the impact of changes in business rates and costs. The company, which supplies water across the Midlands region, said underlying profit before interest, tax and exceptional items rose to 541 million pounds for the year ended March 31 from 520.1 million a year earlier. The FTSE 100-listed company said it earned 80 million pounds in customer outcome delivery incentives (ODI), up from 47.6 million a year earlier. The incentives are paid to water companies by regulator Ofwat for meeting or exceeding targets, such as project completions and customer service....

  (Bloomberg) -- Economic momentum in the euro area cooled yet again in May as more temporary factors weighed on output in manufacturing and services. A composite Purchasing Managers’ Index fell to an 18-month low of 54.1, from 55.1 in April, IHS Markit said on Wednesday. New order growth weakened, hiring and backlogs of work showed slower rates of increase and companies became less optimistic about the outlook. “While prior months have seen various factors such as extreme weather, strikes, illness and the timing of Easter dampen growth, May saw reports of business being adversely affected by an unusually high number of public holidays,” said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit. “Some of the fog will hopefully lift with the June PMI data...

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The world's largest consumer goods maker Procter & Gamble (N:PG) plans to invest a further 3 billion roubles ($48.5 million) in its Russian production facilities this year, a senior company executive overseeing the Russian market told Reuters. "We are committed to the market, we are committed to the Russian consumers. Until today we have invested roughly $800 million and counting," Sotirios Marinidis, general manager for Eastern Europe and Central Asia, said in a recent interview. The lion share of the upcoming investments would be in a new distribution centre at the Novomoskovsk plant, south of Moscow, to improve supply chain efficiency, Marinidis said. The U.S.-based maker of Tide detergent also plans to modernise production lines at its Gillette plant in St Pet...

LONDON (Reuters) - Mining firm Petra Diamonds (L:PDL) said on Thursday it would raise $178 million (133 million pounds) from investors to cut debt after it was hobbled by a strong South African rand, delays in production, strikes and a confiscated consignment of diamonds. Its London-listed shares sank 14 percent to 65 pence by 0907 GMT. Workers at Petra's South African operations downed tools in September over wages and the Tanzania government confiscated a consignment of diamonds, which has still not been returned. There were also delays in ramping up production at its Cullinan and Finsch mines in South Africa and a lack of refunds on value-added-tax (VAT) from the Tanzanian government. New shares would be offered at 40 pence, a 35.6 percent discount to the theoretical ex-rights price...

Investing.com - Gold prices extended gains in midmorning trade on Thursday as U.S. President Donald Trump dashed hopes for a summit with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un At 10:40AM ET (14:40GMT), gold futures for June delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange was up $16.30, or around 0.6%, to $1,305.90 a troy ounce. That was close to an intraday high of $1,306.30, its highest level since May 14. Both leaders were set to meet in Singapore on June 12 to discuss the possibility of denuclearization. However, Trump called off the meeting. “Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting,” he said in a letter to Kim. Escalat...

By Rania El Gamal, Olesya Astakhova and Alex Lawler DUBAI/MOSCOW/LONDON (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia and Russia will discuss raising OPEC and non-OPEC oil output by around 1 million barrels per day (bpd), easing 17 months of strict supply curbs, sources familiar with the matter said. An increase of about 1 million bpd would bring compliance with global supply curbs down to 100 percent from around 152 percent, the sources said. The initial talks are being led by the energy ministers of Saudi Arabia and Russia at St. Petersburg this week along with their counterpart from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which holds the OPEC presidency this year, the sources said. OPEC and non-OPEC ministers meet next in Vienna on June 22-23, and the final decision will be taken there. Discussions are still o...

MILAN (Reuters) - European shares bounced back in morning trading on Friday but were set for their first weekly drop since March as worries over global trade talks, Italy's government and a slowing economy took their toll. A bounce in auto stocks helped the pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) benchmark rise 0.4 percent by 0716 GMT after ending at an eight-day low on Thursday. The index was down 0.6 percent on the week. Autos (SXAP) rose 0.7 percent after US President Donald Trump's threat to impose import tariffs drew strong criticism with U.S. business groups and members of his own party warning of damage to the industry and American interests. Shares in German carmakers BMW (DE:BMWG), Daimler (DE:DAIGn) and Volkswagen (DE:VOWG) rose between 0.3 and 1.1 percent. Biggest gainers o...

Investing.com - The greenback was flat on Friday while the pound inched down as investors looked ahead to testimony from Fed Chair Jerome Powell and Bank of England Governor Mark Carney. Both Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and BOE Governor Mark Carney are expected to participate in a panel discussion of "Financial Stability and Central Bank Transparency" at the "Sveriges Riskbank Conference: 350 Years of Central Banking - The Past, The Present and The Future" in Stockholm, Sweden at 9:20 AM ET (13:20 GMT). The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up slightly by 0.03% to 93.75 as of 5:17 AM ET (9:17 GMT). The dollar was also held back by Fed meeting notes on Wednesday that suggested that...

By Hideyuki Sano TOKYO (Reuters) - U.S. oil futures sank to six-week lows on Monday on expectations that major producers may raise output, while Asian stocks and U.S. share futures gained on signs the United States and North Korea were still working towards holding a summit. The euro bounced back from a 6-1/2-month low after the Italian president rejected a eurosceptic as a key economy minister. But his move was seen as triggering a possible constitutional crisis and opening the prospect of fresh elections, keeping the single currency fragile. Oil prices extended their decline from last week on growing expectations that major oil producers may ease their 17-month-old production cuts. A return to the oil production levels that were in place in October 2016, the baseline for the current...

Investing.com - The euro gained ground against the dollar on Monday, after Italy’s president moved to block the appointment of a euro sceptic economy minister, bolstering investor sentiment towards the single currency. EUR/USD was up 0.38% at 1.1694 by 04:11 AM ET (08:11 AM GMT), rebounding from Friday’s six-month trough of 1.1644. The euro was boosted after Italy’s populist parties abandoned their bid to form a coalition government after the country’s President Sergio Mattarella blocked the nomination of a euro sceptic finance minister. Investors had feared that the coalition could endanger Italy’s membership in the euro zone, but political uncertainty remained elevated amid the prospect of fresh elections. The U.S. dollar index, which measures ...

LONDON (Reuters) - British discount retailer B&M European Value (L:BMEB) reported a 25 percent rise in full-year profit on Wednesday, saying its good valued products were wining over customers in a difficult economic environment. The fast-growing company, which finished the year with 576 B&M stores, reported profit before tax of 229.3 million pounds for the 53 weeks to end-March on sales of 2.98 billion pounds, up 22.4 percent....

LONDON (Reuters) - Aviva Investors, the fund arm of insurer Aviva (L:AV), said on Wednesday it would combine its real estate, infrastructure and private debt businesses into a new unit called Aviva Investors Real Assets. Aviva said the business, which would manage 37 billion pounds in assets, would focus on investments where it was a direct operator, with full control over fund management, asset management, origination and distribution. As a result, it said it had agreed to sell its indirect real estate multi-manager business and an interest in Encore+, a pan-European commercial property fund, with a combined 6 billion pounds in assets, to Lasalle Investment Management. Further financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Aviva Investors said Mark Versey would be chief i...

LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. investment bank Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) said on Wednesday it had cut its euro/dollar forecast for the next 3, 6 and 12-months because of uncertainty stemming from Italy's political crisis. The bank said it forecast the euro to trade at $1.15 over the next three months, versus $1.20 previously. It also cut its six-month forecast to $1.20 from $1.27 and the 12-month forecast to $1.25 from $1.30. The euro has slumped this week to its lowest in 10-months, at around $1.15 (EUR=EBS), after an attempt by two Italian parties to form a government collapsed, fanning fears of a fresh election that could become a de facto referendum on Italy's membership of the euro zone.   "Although we remain structurally positive on the currency, it has become difficult to envision s...

BERLIN (Reuters) - U.S. steel and aluminium tariffs will probably take effect on June 1 unless a deal is struck, a spokesman for the German economy ministry said on Wednesday. U.S. President Donald Trump has granted the European Union an exemption from the tariffs until June 1. Asked about the procedure, the ministry spokesman said:   "As far as I know it is in the night (going into) June 1," said the spokesman. "As far as I know, they (the tariffs) would automatically take effect," he said, adding talks were still going on to try to get a deal....

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's Financial Reporting Council has lodged formal complaints against the auditors and two former finance executives of Autonomy, the software business that was sold to Hewlett Packard for $11 billion (8.3 billion pounds) in 2011. Britain's accountancy watchdog said on Thursday that the conduct of auditors Deloitte, Richard Knights and Nigel Mercer, as well as that of former chief financial officer Sushovan Hussain and ex-vice president of finance Stephen Chamberlain, had fallen significantly short of standards expected of them....

Investing.com - Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Thursday, May 31: 1. European Markets Rebound As Italy Fears Subside European stocks pushed higher for the second day in a row, as Italian parties renewed attempts to form a government, easing concerns about the wider impact of a political crisis in Europe's third-largest economy. Matteo Salvini, the head of the right-wing League, has said he would "seriously consider" an offer on Wednesday from 5-Star leader Luigi Di Maio to resurrect their bid to govern together. Italy's FTSE MIB added to gains from the previous session, rising roughly 1%. Highlighting the degree of calm that has returned to the market, the yield on Italy's two-year bonds fell to as low as 0.816% from a high of ...

By Swati Verma (Reuters) - Oil will stay above $70 a barrel this year because strong demand and possible supply disruptions in Iran and Venezuela will put pressure on global inventories, even though OPEC and Russia are considering raising output, a Reuters poll showed on Thursday. A survey of 36 economists and analysts forecast Brent crude (LCOc1) to average $71.68 per barrel in 2018, about $4 higher than $67.40 forecast in last month's poll and just above the $70 average so far this year. "Oil fundamentals have been increasingly positive for oil prices of late. Geopolitical events surrounding Iran and Venezuela augur further oil supply loss, adding to that already generated by OPEC and allied non-OPEC producer restraint," said Harry Tchilinguirian, global head of commodity market strat...

Investing.com - Gold prices inched up on Thursday, as the U.S. announced it was going ahead with planned tariffs against its allies and investors brace for a potential global trade war. U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced that America was going ahead with metal tariffs against the European Union, Mexico and Canada, effective at midnight on Thursday. The tariffs will be 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum. The decision on tariffs on Mexico and Canada was taken after talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement took too long. Comex gold futures for June delivery were up 0.32% to $1,305.70 a troy ounce as of 10:57 AM ET (14:57 GMT). Gold, seen as a safe haven asset, often moves higher from political turmoil. The price of bouillon was also driven up by a fall in the gr...

By Paulina Duran and Byron Kaye SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australia is preparing criminal cartel charges against the country's third-biggest bank and underwriters Deutsche Bank (DE:DBKGn) andCitigroup (NYSE:C) over a $2.3 billion (1.7 billion pounds) share issue, in an unprecedented move with potential implications for global capital markets. The pending charges, which can carry hefty fines and 10-year prison terms, threaten to change the way institutional capital raisings are handled around the world, and do further damage to the reputation of Australian lenders already mired in scandal. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said federal prosecutors would charge Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd, its Treasurer Rick Moscati, the two investment banks...

Investing.com - Gold prices inched down on Friday, as the U.S. dollar strengthened ahead of the monthly nonfarm payrolls data and trade worries lingered. Comex gold futures for June delivery were down 0.08% to $1,299.10 a troy ounce as of 4:38 AM ET (8:38 GMT). The nonfarm payrolls data, often seen as an indicator of the health of the U.S. economy, is expected at 8:30 AM ET (12:30 GMT). Traders will pay close to wage data and any clues that the Federal Reserve could increase interest rates, which could further strengthen the dollar and decrease the price of gold. The Fed raised rates in March and is expected to raise rates twice more, including at its next meeting in June. Expectations of higher interest rates tend to boost the dollar by making the currency more attracti...

By Philip Blenkinsop BRUSSELS (Reuters) - After all the condemnation of U.S. tariffs on EU metal exports and calls for unity, the European Union still has two decisions to make - how hard to hit back at the United States and whether to engage in trade talks with Washington. Neither is a given. The EU can act only by consensus, and its 28 members have different interests. Germany, by far the largest European exporter to the United States, is the most fearful of a trade war. Others, including France, are determined not to yield to what they see as U.S. bullying. The European Commission is considering safeguards to prevent a surge of imports into the bloc and will launch a legal challenge at the World Trade Organization after the EU producers were hit by U.S. tariffs of 25 percent on steel...

By Naveen Thukral SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Crude oil futures lost more ground on Monday as the market was weighed down by U.S. output climbing to a record-high and expectations that OPEC members will raise supplies. Global benchmark Brent (LCOc1) was down 34 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $76.45 a barrel by 0531 GMT, falling for a second session. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude (CLc1) futures dipped 3 cents to $65.78 a barrel. Last week, the market lost around 3 percent, adding to a near 5-percent decline from a week before. "Crude oil remained under pressure as the market remained focused on the discussion between OPEC members about whether they should increase production later this year," ANZ said in a note. "In the U.S., the data also presented a gloomy picture. Crude oil producti...

By Julien Ponthus LONDON (Reuters) - British shares rose on Monday as a flurry of deals lifted investors' mood and helped brush aside fears about a possible full-blown trade war between the U.S. and some of its closest partners. At 0826 GMT, the blue chip FTSE 100 index was up 0.7 percent amid optimism across trading centres in Europe about the political situation in Italy and Spain. "Carrying over last Friday's robust relief rally, investors continued to ignore the trade tensions sprouting out of the US in favour of celebrating the improved political situation in the Eurozone", said Connor Campbell, a financial analyst at Spreadex. Contributing to confidence, a survey showed on Sunday that British companies were growing more quickly after a weak start to the year adding to s...

Investing.com - The euro pared gains against the dollar on Monday but remained supported above the $1.17 level as signs of strength in the U.S. economy offset concerns over escalating trade frictions and political tensions in Italy. EUR/USD was up 0.52% at 1.1720 by 10:11 AM ET (14:11 GMT), after rising as high as 1.1745 earlier. The euro gained as concerns over the political situation in Italy subsided after anti-establishment parties reached a deal on a proposed coalition government, which eased fears that repeat elections could give a mandate for the country to exit the euro zone. Traders shrugged off concerns over escalating global trade tensions as the improved political situation in the euro area and Friday’s upbeat U.S. jobs report continued to underpin risk appetite. ...

By Jane Chung SEOUL (Reuters) - Oil prices edged higher on Tuesday after falling nearly 2 percent in the previous session, but growing U.S. production and expectations of higher OPEC supplies continue to weigh on sentiment. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) added 15 cents, or 0.2 percent, to $75.44 a barrel at 0020 GMT, after settling down 2 percent at $75.29 a barrel on Monday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude (CLc1) was up 28 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $65.03 a barrel. It finished the previous session 1.6 percent lower at $64.75 a barrel. "It's all about supply, whether it's OPEC raising output or U.S. increasing production, all roads lead to higher global oil supplies, which is leaving oil traders shaking in their boots," said Stephen Innes, head of trading for Asia-Pacific at futu...

The euro and the dollar steadied on Tuesday as investors awaited a fresh catalyst after the previous day’s gains as signs of strength in the U.S. economy shifted focus away from trade concerns. EUR/USD was steady at 1.1697 by 03:35 AM ET (07:35 AM GMT), after rising as high as 1.1743 on Monday, the most since May 24. The euro has rebounded since hitting a ten-month low of 1.1509 a week ago as concerns over the political situation in Italy subsided after anti-establishment parties formed a coalition government, easing fears that repeat elections could give a mandate for the country to exit the euro zone. The euro was steady against the yen, with EUR/JPY last at 128.43, having rebounded from an 11-month low of 124.61 reached a week ago. The dollar was little changed ...

 Gold prices traded slightly lower in mid-morning trade on Tuesday as positive economic data sent the dollar to its best level of the day against major rivals. At 10:30AM ET (14:30GMT), gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange slipped 70 cents, or 0.05%, to $1,296.60 a troy ounce. Meanwhile, the U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, gained 0.26% to 94.26, just off its intraday high of 94.29. The greenback got a boost as U.S. data showed that the rate of growth in the economy's service sector accelerated again in May. The Institute of Supply Management said its non-manufacturing purchasing managers' index rose to 58.6 in May, ...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks rose on Wednesday after tech sector strength lifted Wall Street shares while concerns about Italy's debt prompted investors to move into lower-risk government debt elsewhere, pushing U.S. Treasury yields down from recent highs. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) rose 0.7 percent. Japan's Nikkei (N225) rose 0.4 percent. European spreadbetters predicted shares there would shake off concerns over Italian debt and open broadly higher as tech stocks globally continue to rise. Britain's FTSE (FTSE) was seen opening 0.1 percent higher, Germany's DAX (GDAXI) gaining 0.2 percent and France's CAC (FCHI) up 0.3 percent. A firmer-than-expected print on first quarter growth lifted Australian stocks (AXJO) by...

The euro rose to two week highs on Wednesday after upbeat comments by a senior European Central Bank official, while the Canadian dollar pushed higher but remained under pressure amid concerns over heightened trade tensions. EUR/USD was up 0.42% to 1.1760 by 03:49 AM ET (07:49 AM GMT), the highest level since May 23. The euro was boosted after the ECB’s Chief Economist Peter Praet said officials are increasingly confident that inflation is rising back towards the banks target and will next week debate whether to begin gradually scaling back its asset purchase program. The comments came after reports overnight that the ECB’s June meeting could see an announcement on when its monetary stimulus program would end. Many traders had believed the bank would hold off on giving...

The euro extended early gains on Wednesday to hit the highest level in two weeks after hawkish European Central Bank comments, sending the dollar lower against a basket of the other major currencies. EUR/USD was up 0.53% to 1.1775 by 07:20 AM ET (11:20 AM GMT), the highest level since May 23. ECB Chief Economist Peter Praet said earlier Wednesday that officials are increasingly confident that inflation is rising back towards the bank’s target and will next week debate whether to begin gradually scaling back its asset purchase program. The comments seemed to confirm overnight reports that the ECB’s June meeting could see an announcement on when its monetary stimulus program would end. Many traders had believed the bank would hold off on giving any new forward guidance t...

(Bloomberg) -- As China looks to buy more from the U.S. this year, its oil purchases are helping a bit. Sales increased by about $1.2 billion in the first four months of 2018 compared with a year earlier, thanks to stronger global crude prices. China has offered to boost purchases of U.S. goods by about $25 billion this year ahead of a mid-June tariff deadline. Crude oil, coal and farm products are among the goods that the Chinese are willing to buy more of, according to the people briefed on the talks. America sent about 330,000 barrels a day of mainly domestic crude and condensate to China in the first four months of the year, about 120,000 more than a year ago, according to latest government data. U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude averaged $63.77 a barrel during the fo...

By Jonathan Cable LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling is likely to gain, and by the time Britain leaves the European Union next March it is expected to have recouped much of the losses since the June 2016 decision to leave the bloc, according to a Reuters poll. However, the pound is unlikely to re-test the levels above $1.43 it traded at earlier this year, when the Bank of England was expected to raise interest rates in May. Instead, it left rates unchanged. The currency is down around 10 percent since Britons voted to leave the EU, trading at $1.34 on Wednesday, but a lot of those losses will be wiped out on expectations for rate hikes and a good divorce deal with the EU. Sterling's collapse was predicted in numerous Reuters polls before the Brexit referendum. In a month's time, sterling&nbs...

Investing.com - Gold prices were little changed on Thursday as investors awaited the outcome of geopolitical risks and looked forward to key decisions on monetary policy to be delivered next week. At 10:28AM ET (14:28GMT), gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange inched up 80 cents, or 0.06%, to $1,302.20 a troy ounce. In the short-term, market participants were focused on the G7 meeting to take place on Friday and Saturday in Quebec. France and Germany warned the U.S. that they would not sign a joint communique without concessions, but the American top economic adviser Larry Kudlow warned this week that U.S. President Donald Trump would not back down from his tough stance on trade. Kudlow called the current situation a “...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - The dollar wallowed near a three-week low against peers on Friday as U.S. Treasury yields fell sharply, while the euro's recovery remained intact amid expectations that the European Central Bank would begin unwinding it stimulus program. The dollar index versus a basket of six major currencies (DXY) was little changed at 93.444 after declining 0.3 percent overnight, when it posted its fourth session of losses. The index has fallen 0.75 percent this week, and plumbed 93.213 on Thursday, its lowest since May 17. The dollar has come under pressure this week as the euro bounced back from 10-month lows thanks to an ebb in Italian political concerns and speculation that an ECB could signal intentions to start unwinding its big stimulus program...

Gold prices were little changed in European morning trade on Friday as investors looked forward to the start of the Group of Seven summit. At 4:02AM ET (8:02GMT), gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange slipped 40 cents, or 0.03%, to $1,302.60 a troy ounce. In a session with no major U.S. economic data, market participants will focus on the G7 meeting which kicks off on Friday in Quebec. France and Germany warned the U.S. that they would not sign a joint statement without concessions, but the American top economic adviser Larry Kudlow warned this week that U.S. President Donald Trump would not back down from his tough stance on trade. “The American President may not mind being isolated, but neither do we mind signing a 6...

By Vibhuti Sharma (Reuters) - Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) expects to ship 80 million new model iPhones this year, down 20 percent from what it had planned at the same time last year, the Nikkei reported on Friday, citing industry sources. The California-based firm has asked its parts suppliers to make about 20 percent fewer components for the three new iPhones it plans to launch in the second half of 2018, compared to last year's plans for its iPhone X and iPhone 8 models, the paper reported. The report adds to concerns of weakening smartphone sales after years of scorching growth as sales stagnate in key growth markets such as China and users upgrade their phones less often. It knocked 2 percent off Apple's shares and send stocks of its suppliers around the world as much as 6 pe...

Investing.com - Gold prices were little changed in mid-morning trade on Friday as investors looked forward to the start of the Group of Seven summit and digested a round of trade threats by U.S. President Donald Trump. At 10:30AM ET (14:30GMT), gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange inched up 40 cents, or 0.03%, to $1,303.40 a troy ounce. In a session with no major U.S. economic data, market participants will focus on trade tensions at the G7 meeting Friday in Quebec. The official welcome of leaders is scheduled for 11:45AM ET (15:45GMT) on in Quebec. However, Trump was busy on Friday morning making trade threats at the other six members of the G7, setting an aggressive tone ahead of the meeting. Having already accused Franc...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asia stocks shook off initial modest losses and edged up on Monday ahead of an historic U.S.-North Korea summit that investors hope might pave the way to ending a nuclear stand-off on the Korean peninsula. Spreadbetters expected European stocks follow their Asian peers higher, with Britain's FTSE rising 0.25 percent, Germany's DAX advancing 0.17 percent and France's CACinching up 0.05 percent. Stocks wobbled in early trade after U.S. President Donald Trump raised fresh fears of a global trade war when he backed out of a joint Group of Seven communique over the weekend, in a blow to the group's efforts to show a united front. The S&P 500 futures were 0.1 percent lower after dropping as much as 0.3 percent. MS...

Investing.com - Oil prices were lower on Monday as rising U.S. production and worry over increased supply from OPEC members continued to drag on investors. Crude oil futures decreased 0.03% to $65.72 a barrel as of 11:01 AM ET (15:01 GMT). Meanwhile Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., fell 0.64% to $75.97. Prices were held back slightly by concern that the U.S. is increasing production. Investors will be looking ahead to crude inventories data on Tuesday and Wednesday for clues on global oil demand and insight into how fast output levels are rising. Oil prices have also been held back in recent weeks by worry that members of the he Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia (OPEC) could increase supply. The organization set t...

By Swati Pandey SYDNEY (Reuters) - The dollar hovered near 3-week highs on Tuesday and Asian shares gained as U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un signed a 'comprehensive' deal at a historic summit aimed at the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula. Trump said the process of denuclearisation would happen "very, very quickly", adding he had formed a "special bond" with Kim and the relationship with North Korea would be very different. "The letter that we're signing is very comprehensive and I think both sides are going to be very impressed with the result," Trump said after a "really very positive" summit meeting in Singapore. "A lot of goodwill went into this, a lot of work, a lot of preparation." Both leaders are set to hold a press conference later. Th...

Investing.com- Crude oil production by OPEC countries rose in May, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia stated in its monthly report. Total production of OPEC countries rose by 35,000 barrels per day (bpd) in May to 31.87 million bpd. Saudi Arabia’s production increased by 9,990 bpd to 85,500 bpd from the prior month. However the higher production in Saudi Arabia, Algeria and Iraq was offset by decreased production in Venezuela, Libya and Nigeria, the firm said. The organization set to meet in Vienna on June 22 and is expected to decide whether or not to increase supply by one million barrels per day, as OPEC faces losses from Venezuela and Iran. OPEC agreed in December to cut oil output by 1.8 million bpd until the end of 2018. The agreement ...

Investing.com - Gold prices were little changed in midmorning trade tracking caution also seen in the dollar as the Federal Reserve’s two-day policy meeting kicked off on Tuesday. At 10:40AM ET (14:40GMT), gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange slipped 70 cents, or 0.05%, to $1,302.50 a troy ounce. On the geopolitical front, U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un pledged to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, while Washington committed to provide security guarantees for its old enemy. At the end of their historic summit in Singapore, Trump and Kim signed an agreement to work toward complete denuclearization and a lasting "peace regime" on the Korean Peninsula. On the ...

LONDON (Reuters) - Rolls-Royce (L:RR) said it would cut 4,600 jobs primarily in the UK as part of a plan to simplify its business and save 400 million pounds ($536 million) a year by the end of 2020. The engineering company said the job cuts and overhaul of its business would cost it 500 million pounds and be spread across 2018, 2019 and 2020. It will be reported as separate one-off costs, allowing it to stick to its targets for free cash flow. "These changes will help us deliver over the mid and longer-term a level of free cash flow well beyond our near-term ambition of around 1 billion pounds by around 2020," Chief Executive Warren East said in a statement on Thursday. The staff reductions and upheaval at the business comes at a time when Rolls-Royce is under pressure in the biggest p...

By Simon Jessop and Sinead Cruise LONDON (Reuters) - Wealth manager Rathbone Brothers (L:RAT) has agreed to buy its biggest independent rival in Scotland, Speirs & Jeffrey, boosting its assets by almost a fifth to 44.5 billion pounds. Rathbone said on Thursday that it will pay 104 million pounds in cash and shares, from a new share issue, for Glasgow-based Speirs' 6.7 billion pounds in assets, with further shares to be paid out if earnings targets are met. Rathbone has played a lead role in industry consolidation, as rising regulatory and other costs push smaller fund managers to join forces, and as the firm looks to increase the amount of money it invests directly on behalf of clients. As part of that strategy, it discussed merging with peer Smith & Williamson last year, but t...

By Dhara Ranasinghe and Tommy Wilkes LONDON (Reuters) - Euro zone bond yields tumbled and the euro headed for its biggest daily loss versus the dollar in eight months on Thursday after the European Central Bank indicated it would not be raising interest rates through the summer of 2019. The bank's unexpectedly dovish guidance on interest rates overshadowed, at least for the time being, its statement that it aimed to wrap up its stimulus programme at the end of this year -- marking the biggest step in dismantling crisis-era stimulus -- quantitative easing. The ECB now plans to reduce monthly asset purchases between October and December to 15 billion euros until the end of 2018 and then conclude the programme, though ECB President Mario Draghi stressed that the governing council stood rea...

(Bloomberg) -- The brutal tumble of Argentina’s peso added to the list of concerns over the ability of developing economies to defend their currencies as the era of cheap money wanes. Emerging-market assets extended losses a day after the Federal Reserve’s more hawkish signals. A measure of currencies in developing nations dropped to a seven-month low, while every group in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index fell -- led by industrial, commodity and technology companies. The Argentine peso sank more than 6 percent on reports of changes at the country’s central bank and after truck drivers began a strike. The Brazilian real -- dropped a fourth day as the impact of a massive sale of foreign-exchange swaps was short lived. Developing-nation assets took a beating as si...

Investing.com - The euro attempted to rally from its worst week in 19 months, as the U.S. dollar fell amid trade concerns. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.19% to 94.75 as of 5:53 AM ET (9:53 GMT). U.S. President Donald Trump announced he would impose tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese goods, which will be revealed on Friday. It is unclear what goods will be impacted and when the tariffs will go into effect. The two largest economies in the world have been in a tit-for-tat over global trade tariffs in recent months as the two struggle to reconcile their trade differences. The euro was higher but still remained under pressure after the European Central Bank indicated on Thursday that it would ho...

Investing.com - Stocks in focus in pre-market trade Friday: • Time Warner stock (TWX) gained 1.7% by 8:04AM ET (12:04GMT) as AT&T (T) closed the acquisition shortly after the U.S. Department of Justice said it would not apply for a stay of a judge's ruling letting the deal go forward. • Ford stock (F) dropped 0.1% as the firm reported that vehicle sales in China fell 29% in May despite steps being taken by the U.S. automaker like appointing a new sales leader and readying launches of new products. • McDonald’s (MCD) stock lost 0.5% with the company in the headlines as it announced that it would replace plastic straws with paper ones in all its restaurants in the United Kingdom and Ireland, starting from September. Accordin...

Investing.com - The dollar pushed higher against a currency basket on Monday, boosted by the diverging monetary policy outlook between the U.S. and Europe, while the yen remained supported as trade tensions underpinned safe haven demand. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.26% to 94.69 by 03:30 AM ET (07:30 AM GMT), holding below Friday’s eleven-month high of 95.13. The index rose 1.33% last week; its best weekly performance in seven weeks after a hawkish Federal Reserve pointed to a faster pace of monetary tightening this year while the European Central Bank gave a dovish signal. The euro was lower against the dollar, with EUR/USD down 0.37% to 1.1567 after falling 1.34% in the prev...

Investing.com — В понедельник американский доллар подорожал против корзины других основных валют на фоне расхождения монетарных политик США и Европы. Японская иена сохранила поддержку из-за сохраняющейся напряженности в международных отношениях, которая приводит к повышению спроса на защитные активы. Индекс доллара США, который показывает покупательную силу доллара к торгово-взвешенной корзине шести основных валют, к 10:30 МСК вырос на 0,26% до 94,69, приблизившись к максимуму за 11 месяцев 95,13, который был зафиксирован в пятницу. За прошлую неделю индекс доллара вырос на 1,33%, что стало наибольшим значением роста за семь недель. В среду ФРС указала на более быстрый темп ужесточения монетарной политики, а в четверг заявление ЕЦБ было сделано в пользу более мягкого варианта ...

(Reuters) - General Electric (N:GE) will cut 1,200 jobs in Switzerland at its troubled power generation business, about 200 fewer than its original proposal, the U.S. industrial conglomerate said on Monday. GE had announced plans in December to cut as many as 4,500 jobs in Europe - including 1,400 in Switzerland - as it aims to reduce its global footprint by 30 percent.   The company has a workforce of about 4,200 in Switzerland. The cuts will affect 920 employees in Baden, 230 in Birr and 50 in Oberentfelden, Swiss labour union Unia said separately....

Investing.com - The dollar fell to the day’s lows against the yen on Monday as heightened trade tensions between the U.S. and China hit market sentiment, bolstering safe haven demand for the Japanese currency. USD/JPY was down 0.23% to 110.40 by 10:31 AM ET (14:31 GMT), pulling away from Friday’s three-week highs of 110.90. Market sentiment deteriorated as China's retaliatory action against trade tariffs imposed by the Trump administration reignited fears of a possible trade war between the world's two largest economies. The safe haven yen is often sought by investors in times of geopolitical tensions and market turmoil. The euro was little changed against the dollar, with EUR/USD at 1.1603, up from an earlier low of 1.1565. The single currency remained on t...

ЛОНДОН (Рейтер) - Цены на нефть вышли в плюс вечером понедельника в преддверии министерской встречи ОПЕК+, на которой участники глобальной сделки должны определиться с будущей политикой. К 17.45 МСК фьючерсы на североморскую смесь поднялись на 1,62 процента до $74,63 за баррель. Фьючерсные контракты на WTI торговались вблизи $65,27 за баррель, что на 0,32 процента выше предыдущего закрытия. Пакт ОПЕК+, заключенный в декабре 2016 года для выравнивания баланса глобального спроса и предложения, действует до конца текущего года. Участники соглашения соберутся в конце этой недели в Вене, чтобы обсудить успех общего дела и решить дальнейшую судьбу сделки. Среди факторов, сдерживающих дальнейший рост котировок WTI, аналитики называют обострившиеся противоречия Китая и США.   ...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks sank on Tuesday and Shanghai shares tumbled to near two-year lows as U.S. President Donald Trump threatened new tariffs on Chinese goods in an escalating tit-for-tat trade war between the world's two biggest economies. U.S. and European equity markets looked set to follow Asia into the red. S&P 500 futures (ESc1) were off 1 percent and Dow Jones futures <1YMcv1> were 1.1 percent lower. Spreadbetters expected Britain's FTSE (FTSE) to open down 0.3 percent, with Germany's DAX (GDAXI) seen shedding 0.7 percent and France's CAC (FCHI) losing 0.8 percent. Trump threatened to impose a 10 percent tariff on $200 billion of Chinese goods, prompting a swift warning from Beijing of retaliation, as the trade conflict between t...

EDINBURGH (Reuters) - Scotland's highest court has ruled in favour of a government ban on fracking which was challenged by energy giant Ineos, the Scottish government said on Tuesday. "This decision vindicates the extensive process of research and consultation which the Scottish government has undertaken since 2015," Scottish business minister Paul Wheelhouse said in a statement. "Our preferred position is not to support unconventional oil and gas extraction in Scotland (fracking), and that position remains unchanged."...

Investing.com - The dollar rose to the day’s highs against a currency basket on Tuesday and pared back some losses against the safe haven yen as heightened trade tensions between the U.S. and China soured risk appetite. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.48% to 94.86 by 08:03 AM ET (12:03 GMT), holding below Friday’s eleven-month high of 95.13. China warned Tuesday that it would retaliate swiftly after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to impose a 10% tariff on $200 billion of Chinese imports. The moves exacerbated worries among investors that the world’s two largest economies could descend into an all-out trade war. Uncertainty over the future of the North American Free Tra...

Investing.com - The dollar edged higher against a currency basket on Wednesday in subdued trade amid a lull in an escalating trade dispute between the U.S. and China. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.13% to 94.78 by 02:47 AM ET (06:47 AM GMT), holding below Friday’s eleven-month high of 95.13. Fears over trade tensions mounted on Tuesday after Beijing warned that it would retaliate swiftly after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to impose a 10% tariff on $200 billion of Chinese imports. The moves exacerbated worries among investors that the world’s two largest economies could descend into an all-out trade war. Uncertainty over the future of the North American Free Trade Agreemen...

Investing.com - The pound was trading close to seven month lows on Wednesday as Prime Minister Theresa May’s government faced another crunch vote on Brexit. GBP/USD hit a low of 1.3148, a level not seen since November 16 and was trading at 1.3157 by 05:44 AM ET (09:44 AM GMT), off 0.14% for the day The House of Commons was to vote on the EU withdrawal bill, the government’s flagship piece of Brexit legislation, later in the day. The government is seeking to defeat an attempt to give MPs a “meaningful vote” before Britain could leave the EU without a deal. The vote is coming at a time of growing investor nervousness that Brexit negotiations could fail to reach an agreement. Sterling was little changed against the euro, with EUR/GBP last at 0.8789....

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices dipped on Thursday as Iran signalled it could be won over to a small rise in OPEC crude output, likely paving the road for the producer cartel to agree a supply increase during a meeting on June 22. However, prices were prevented from falling further by record refinery runs in the United States and a large decline in U.S. crude inventories, a sign of strong fuel demand in the world's biggest economy. Brent crude futures (LCOc1), the international benchmark for oil prices, were at $74.55 per barrel at 0040 GMT, down 19 cents, or 0.3 percent, from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $65.63 a barrel, down 8 cents. Iran, a major supplier within the producer cartel of the Organization of the...

VIENNA (Reuters) - Oil ministers will debate on Thursday whether to raise supplies by 1 million barrels per day as the main proposal for the upcoming meetings of OPEC and non-OPEC allies, OPEC sources said. Three OPEC sources said that if the proposal was approved, all OPEC members and their non-OPEC allies could raise supplies pro-rata, with Saudi Arabia adding about 0.25-0.3 million bpd.   Iran had yet to agree to the proposal, the sources said. Iran will join a ministerial committee meeting on Thursday. Iran is usually not part of the committee, which includes Russia, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Kuwait, Algeria and Venezuela....

Investing.com - The dollar eased after hitting the highest levels of the year on Thursday following the release of soft U.S. manufacturing data, while the pound was higher after the Bank of England laid the groundwork for an August rate hike. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, dipped 0.12% to 94.67 by 09:40 AM ET (13:40 GMT), after rising to an eleven month high of 95.07 earlier. The dollar softened slightly after a report showing that manufacturing activity in the Philadelphia region slowed in June after a spike higher in the previous month. At the same time, the Labor Department reported that initial jobless claims fell unexpectedly last week, pointing to further tightening in the labor market. Demand fo...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices rose by more than 1 percent in early Asian trading on Friday, pushed up by uncertainty over whether OPEC would manage to agree a production increase at a meeting in Vienna later in the day. Brent crude futures (LCOc1), the international benchmark for oil prices, were at $74.07 per barrel at 0034 GMT, up $1.02 cents, or 1.4 percent, from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $66.45 a barrel, up 90 cents, or 1.4 percent. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), a producer cartel de-facto led by top exporter Saudi Arabia, is meeting together with some non-OPEC members including top producer Russia at its headquarters in the Austrian capital to discuss output policy. The ...

  Investing.com - The euro was steady on Friday, as the U.S. dollar fell amid trade war concerns. French and German business activity in June came in higher than expected, easing concerns of a slowdown in the eurozone. EUR/USD rose 0.57% to 1.1669 as of 5:18 AM ET (9:18 GMT) while the pound was higher, with GBP/USD rising 0.52% to 1.3308. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.42% to 94.14. Tensions between the U.S. and its allies continue, as India joined China and the European Union in retaliation against steel and aluminum tariffs. As the biggest buyer of almonds, India raised its tariff on U.S. almonds by 20%. Meanwhile the European Union imposed tariffs on a...

(Bloomberg) -- Billionaire hedge-fund manager John Paulson is among investors pushing for Canadian miner Detour Gold Corporation (TO:DGC). to put itself up for sale, citing stock losses amid managerial missteps. In a letter to the Toronto-based company’s board, Paulson & Co. said directors had “failed to recruit and oversee a management team capable of operating the Detour Lake mine in a manner that delivers returns to shareholders.” The letter, a copy of which was obtained by Bloomberg, was signed by John Paulson and Marcelo Kim, a partner at the firm. Paulson & Co., whose $9 billion in assets includes a 5.4 percent stake in Detour, wants the board to explore all strategic alternatives, including a sale. Those sentiments were echoed by other shareholders, inclu...

(Рейтер) - Продажи ювелирных украшений с бриллиантами на основных мировых рынках в первом квартале 2018 года выросли, но темп роста оказался почти вдвое медленнее, чем у мирового рынка предметов роскоши в целом, подсчитали аналитики российской компании, занимающей первое место в мире по добыче алмазов. По оценке Алросы (MCX:ALRS), ссылающейся на данные ритейлеров и национальную статистику разных стран, продажи изделий с бриллиантами выросли в первом квартале на 7 процентов в годовом сопоставлении за счёт спроса в США, Китае и Европе, а также курсовой переоценке. При этом рынок предметов роскоши в целом прибавил 13 процентов на фоне 20-процентного роста в странах Азиатско-Тихоокеанского региона и 18-процентного в Европе. Абсолютных величин компания не приводит. Бриллианты, символическая ...

Investing.com - The safe haven yen strengthened on Monday as a fresh escalation in trade tensions between the U.S. and other major economies hit risk appetite, while commodity linked currencies slipped lower as oil prices declined. USD/JPY hit a two-week low of 109.48 overnight and was trading at 109.44 by 03:51 AM GMT (07:51 AM GMT), off 0.47% for the day. Market sentiment was hit after the Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. President Donald Trump has plans to bar many Chinese companies from investing in U.S. technology firms and to block additional technology exports to Beijing. The report added to concerns over the latest flare up in global trade tensions after Trump on Friday threatened to impose a 20% tariff on car imports from the EU. Trump’s threat came after the ...

Investing.com - Oil prices were mixed on Monday, as energy investors continued to react to last week's decision by major producers to start pumping more crude to compensate for losses in global production. International benchmark Brent futures were down $1.07, or around 1.4%, at $74.25 a barrel by 6:20AM ET (1020GMT), after Friday's 3.4% jump. But U.S. crude futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange were up 14 cents, or 0.2%, at $68.72 after its own 4.6% pop Friday. Both had their best day since late 2016 on Friday, after OPEC and non-OPEC producers agreed on a modest increase in production from next month, without announcing a clear target for the output increase. In a statement following its meeting in Vienna, OPEC said that it would go back to 100% compliance w...

(Bloomberg) -- Big Oil’s fortunes are becoming tied more closely to natural gas than ever before. Majors including Royal Dutch Shell (LON:RDSa) Plc and BP (LON:BP) Plc have boosted their proportion of gas output in recent years, helping them trim Exxon MobilCorp (NYSE:XOM).’s lead as the world’s most valuable oil company. MeanwhileChevron Corp. (NYSE:CVX) added two giant Australian liquefied natural gas projects and Exxon is punching back with two major projects of its own, in Papua New Guinea and Mozambique. Natural gas, seen as a clean bridge from coal to renewables, offers the best long-term demand growth among fossil fuels, particularly in its easy-to-transport liquefied form. At the same time, gas exploration comes with high upfront co...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - World stocks extended a sell-off on Tuesday as an escalating trade fight between the United States and other major economies steered investors away from riskier assets, with markets in China bearing the brunt of investor anxiety. The tense backdrop lifted safe-haven U.S. Treasuries and kept the dollar on the defensive as financial markets worried about the wider global economic fallout of the Trump administration's "America First' agenda. Asian equities were bathed in a sea of red after Wall Street tumbled overnight, with the S&P 500 (SPX) and Nasdaq (IXIC) suffering their steepest losses in more than two months overnight. Markets in China - the epicentre of the trade tensions with the United States - took the biggest knock. MSCI's broadest i...

By David Milliken and Andy Bruce LONDON (Reuters) - New Bank of England rate-setter Jonathan Haskel offered a more downbeat assessment of the British economy's readiness for higher interest rates than the official he is due to replace, in comments that weighed on sterling on Tuesday. Haskel, a professor at Imperial College in London, pointed to persistently weak wage growth and said there could be more slack in the labour market than currently estimated. While Haskel agreed with the gist of the BoE's guidance that rates will probably need to rise, investors judged his tone to be more dovish than Monetary Policy Committee member Ian McCafferty, a long-time advocate of higher rates whom Haskel replaces in September. Last week the BoE bolstered expectations that it will raise rates in Aug...

(Bloomberg) -- U.S. President Donald Trump accused Harley-Davidson Inc (NYSE:HOG). of using new tariffs on trade as cover for an existing plan to shift some production abroad and threatened the motorcycle manufacturer with a "big tax" on bikes imported to the U.S. if it relocates some plants overseas. The company said in a government filing Monday that it may locate some production outside the U.S. in response to European retaliation for the president’s tariffs on imported metals. But Trump took issue with that on Tuesday. June 26, 2018 "Early this year Harley-Davidson said they would move much of their plant operations in Kansas City to Thailand. That was long before Tariffs were announced. Hence, they were just using Tariffs/Trade War as an excuse. Shows how unbalanced & un...

Investing.com - The dollar slipped lower against a basket of the other major currencies on Wednesday, as concerns over heightened trade tensions continued to weigh on market sentiment. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, slipped 0.11% to 94.26 by 03:19 AM ET (07:19 AM GMT), after gaining 0.45% on Tuesday, snapping four straight sessions of losses. Easing concerns about U.S. trade policy had help boost the dollar, but investors remained cautious following further falls in Chinese stocks and the yuan overnight amid fears over the prospect of an all-out trade war. The dollar was lower against the yen, with USD/JPY down 0.26% to 109.76. The Japanese currency is often sought by investors as a safe haven...

LONDON (Reuters) - China has agreed to lift a ban on imports of British beef that was imposed over a BSE crisis in the 1990s, finance minister Philip Hammond said on Wednesday. "Delighted that I have agreed with Chinese Vice Premier Hu Chunhua that China will lift the BSE ban on British beef. This is great news for British farmers," he said on Twitter. Hammond is visiting Beijing this week....

BEIJING (Reuters) - China's commerce ministry said on Thursday it would carefully monitor U.S. policies on inbound investments, stressing that the country opposes using national security as grounds to restrict foreign investments. U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he will use a strengthened national security review process to thwart Chinese acquisitions of sensitive American technologies, a softer approach than imposing China-specific investment restrictions. The U.S. Treasury Department has recommended that Trump use the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), whose authority would be enhanced by new legislation in Congress, to control investment deals. The legislation expands the scope of transactions reviewed by the interagency panel to address securi...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - U.S. oil prices dipped from three-and-a-half year highs on Thursday as physical markets remained well supplied despite record demand and ongoing disruptions. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $72.55 a barrel at 0114 GMT, down 21 cents, or 0.3 percent from their last settlement. WTI hit its highest since November 2014 at $73.06 per barrel in the previous session. Brent crude futures were at $77.63 per barrel, virtually unchanged from their last close and still below recent May highs. Oil prices have been rallying for much of 2018 on tightening market conditions due to record demand and voluntary supply cuts led by the Middle East dominated producer cartel of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC...

Investing.com - The pound fell to seven-month lows Thursday as Bank of England Deputy Governor Jon Cunliffe’s warning about household debt levels and concerns over Brexit weighed. GBP/USD was down 0.26% to 1.3080 by 04:48 AM ET (08:48 AM GMT), the weakest level since November 6. Sterling came under pressure after Cunliffe said in a radio interview that he was worried that British households with high debt levels could be vulnerable in a recession. "(Household debt is) quite high by historical standards but (households have) worked hard to put those debt levels down. But within that there are areas that you do worry about," Cunliffe said. He also reiterated the central bank's guidance that interest rates are likely to rise in a gradual and limited fashion. Expectations for a...

LONDON (Reuters) - European shares opened lower on Monday as on-going worries about the U.S. trade policies and concerns about German Chancellor Angela Merkel's coalition weighed on sentiment. The pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) was down about 1.2 percent by 0730 GMT in line with Germany's trade-sensitive DAX. (GDAXI) In London, the FTSE 100 was down 1.1 percent and British gambling technology company Playtech (L:PTEC) posted the worst performance, losing over 20 percent after it disappointed investors with a trading update. Among rare winners, British software company Micro Focus International (L:MCRO) was up 3.3 percent after it said it had agreed to sell its Linux operating system SUSE business to a private equity fund advised by Sweden's EQT Partners for $2.535 bi...

nvesting.com - Stocks in focus in pre-market trade Monday: • Tesla (TSLA) stock rose 5.25% by 8:35 AM ET (12:35 GMT) as the firm reportedly hit its target production pace of 5,000 Model 3s per week just shortly after its June 30 deadline. The firm is expected to give an update on second quarter delivery and production numbers later this week. • Walgreens (WBA) lost 0.6% as Mizuho Securities downgraded the company to neutral from buy and cut its price target to $64 from $77. • Netflix (NFLX) stock fell 0.37% amid a report that the firm would pay $150 million to own up to 35 billboard displays on roughly two dozen structures along West Hollywood's famed Sunset Strip. Sources told Reuters that the streaming video service is also considering acqu...

Investing.com - Oil prices headed lower on Monday as concerns over rising output convinced traders to take profit on the back of strong gains that took U.S. crude to a three-and-a-half year high last week. New York-traded West Texas Intermediate crude futures fell 32 cents, or about 0.43%, to $73.83 a barrel by 10:37AM ET (14:37GMT). Meanwhile, Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., traded down $1.21, or 1.5%, to $78.02. U.S. President Donald Trump surprised traders by announcing an impromptu agreement with Saudi Arabia to add more supply to increasingly tight oil markets.   Donald J. Trump   ✔@realDonaldTrump     Just spoke to King Salman of Saudi Arabia and explained to him that, because of th...

By Tomo Uetake TOKYO (Reuters) - Chinese stocks went into a tail spin on Tuesday as turbulence gripped equity markets in Asia, which sank to nine-month lows amid heightened anxiety a bitter trade dispute between the United States and major economies could derail global growth. Speculation was rife China's central bank was intervening in the currency market to staunch losses and prevent a potentially destabilising sell-off in the yuan, while stocks came off a searing sell-off in the morning. Chinese financial markets have been jittery ahead of a July 6 deadline, when the U.S. is set to slap tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods that Beijing has vowed to match with tariffs on U.S. products. The trade row between the United States and major economies has rattled financial markets ...

(Reuters) - Commodities trader and miner Glencore (LON:GLEN) Plc said a subsidiary had received a U.S. Department of Justice subpoena requesting documents and records on compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and U.S. money-laundering statutes. Shares in Glencore, a major exporter of Nigerian and Venezuelan crude, fell more than 10 percent in early London trade. The company was the top loser on the British bluechip index. The documents requested from subsidiary Glencore Ltd relate to the group's business in Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Venezuela from 2007 to present, Glencore said, adding it was reviewing the subpoena. The U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act makes it a crime for companies to bribe overseas officials to win business. Glencore i...

Investing.com - The dollar edged lower against a basket of the other major currencies on Thursday, a day before the U.S. and China were to hit each other with import tariffs, escalating a trade spat that many investors fear will hurt global growth. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.11% to 94.09 by 03:36 AM ET (07:36 AM GMT). Investors remained cautious ahead of Friday’s deadline for the U.S. to impose a 25% tariff on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports, which Beijing has vowed to match with a levy on U.S. products. China's commerce ministry warned Thursday that the U.S. is "opening fire" on the world with its threatened tariffs, and reiterated that it will respond the instant U.S. measure...

LONDON (Reuters) - European shares rose in early deals on Thursday as hopes over a softening in U.S. trade rhetoric lifted shares in car makers, though trading remained cautious ahead of a U.S. deadline to impose tariffs on Chinese goods. The pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) index was up 0.5 percent by 0724 GMT, while Germany's exporter-heavy DAX (GDAXI) rose 1.1 percent, supported by autos, and Britain's FTSE 100 (FTSE) inched 0.3 percent higher. European stocks have traded in a narrow range this week in anticipation of U.S. tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports set to go into effect on Friday. Sectors which have been particularly hit by the uncertainty over the trade rift made some headway on Thursday, with basic resources (SXPP) up 1 percent, autos (SXAP) jumping 3.2 percent and ba...

(Bloomberg) -- Saudi Arabia cut pricing for August sales of its light oil grade to Asia as the world’s biggest crude exporter is increasing production to assure buyers there is sufficient supply following U.S. President Donald Trump’s demands that OPEC do more to stabilize oil markets. Oil extended losses after state-owned Saudi Arabian Oil Co. cut most pricing for Asian, European and U.S. markets. The company, known as Saudi Aramco, cut its official selling prices for Arab Light crude to buyers in Asia to $1.90 a barrel above the Middle East benchmark, the company said Thursday in an emailed price list. The 20-cent reduction was the first cut in four months from the highest since July 2014 and matched expectations of four traders in a Bloomberg survey. “REDUCE PRI...

By Andrew Galbraith and Hideyuki Sano SHANGHAI/TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks bounced back from 9-month lows in volatile trade on Friday after Washington slapped tariffs on Chinese imports, a move many investors fear could be the start of a full-scale trade war between the world's two largest economies. Spread-betters forecast a rise of 0.5-0.6 percent when Britain's FTSE (FTSE), France's CAC (FCHI) and Germany's DAX (GDAXI) open on Friday. Mainland Chinese shares led Asia's recovery, partly helped by the perception that the tariff measures were already priced in. To be sure, there was some trepidation about what lay ahead. "The China-U.S. relationship is such a large component of global trade that we really have a global impact and that has implications that are difficult to foresee,...

By Jonathan Cable LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling won't move much in the run-up to Britain's departure from the European Union in March next year but will gain ground on the U.S. dollar afterwards, a Reuters poll of foreign exchange strategists predicted. As foreseen in numerous Reuters polls, the pound sank after the surprise June 2016 referendum result when Britons voted to part ways with the EU. But three-quarters of over 50 respondents to an extra question said sterling is unlikely to set a new post-Brexit vote low before the country leaves the political and economic bloc it has been a member of for more than four decades in March 2019. The Bank of England will raise interest rates to 0.75 percent in August, according to a Reuters poll last month that also gave only a median 20 percent...

By Kit Rees LONDON (Reuters) - The UK's top share index rose on Friday, shrugging off any worries over global trade after U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods took effect. The blue chip FTSE 100 (FTSE) index was up 0.1 percent at 7,612.14 points by 0909 GMT, while mid caps (FTMC) rose 0.3 percent higher. The U.S. imposed tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese imports, with Beijing saying it had no choice but to respond in kind. While the uncertainty surrounding the tariffs and their impact on growth has weighed on market sentiment, the reaction across European stocks was sanguine with the broad market in positive territory. Some analysts suggested that the tariffs had already been priced in by the market, as the FTSE has posted a slight loss in June and is down 0.3 percent so far in July. "A lot...

Investing.com - Gold prices remained lower on Friday as the U.S. dollar weakened and U.S. trade tariffs against China went into effect. Comex gold futures for August delivery decreased 0.16% to $1,256.80 a troy ounce as of 10:24 AM ET (14:24 GMT). Trade conflict between the two biggest economies in the world began in force on Friday, when U.S. tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods went into effect at 12:01 AM ET (04:01 GMT), with more tariffs expected in the coming weeks. China has also retaliated with tariffs on $34 billion of American goods, according to Xinhua news. Beijing had previously said it would impose tariffs on U.S. agricultural products, crude imports, and vehicle products. The precious metal was also held back by a mixed jobs report. The U.S. added more j...

TOKYO (Reuters) - Oil prices fell on Wednesday, with Brent dropping by more than $1 at one point, after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to levy new trade tariffs on China. The spectre of tariffs on a further $200 billion worth of Chinese goods sent commodities lower along with stock markets, with trade tensions between the world's two biggest economies intensifying. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) were down 75 cents, or 1 percent, at $78.11 a barrel by 0308 GMT, having fallen as low as $77.60. U.S. crude (CLc1) was down 55 cents, or 0.7 percent, at $73.56. "The trade concerns have bitten today and the reason is that this is above and beyond what the market was expecting," said Michael McCarthy, chief markets strategist at CMC Markets in Sydney. The bearish mood was also fuelled by n...

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Thyssenkrupp's (DE:TKAG) supervisory board chairman lashed out at activist shareholders following the resignation of Chief Executive Heinrich Hiesinger, saying in an interview that the group had no plans to sell its prized elevators unit. "Crown jewels ... are only sold in times of need. There is no need (at Thyssenkrupp). And there are no plans to divest our best business," Ulrich Lehner told German weekly Die Zeit in an interview....

By Christopher Johnson LONDON (Reuters) - Oil prices rallied on Thursday, recouping some ground following sharp losses the previous session after Libya said it would resume oil exports. Benchmark Brent crude oil (LCOc1) rose $1.37, or almost 1.9 percent, to a high of $74.77 a barrel before easing back to trade around $74.50 by 0820 GMT. On Wednesday, Brent had slumped $5.46 or 6.9 percent. U.S. light crude (CLc1) gained 25 cents to $70.63 a barrel, after falling 5 percent the previous session. "The market fell out of bed yesterday as support failed (but was)... probably overdone to the downside," said Robin Bieber, technical analyst at London brokerage PVM Oil Associates. "Sharp attempts to recover are to be expected." An announcement by Libya's National Oil Corp that four oil export ...

ZURICH (Reuters) - Nestle (S:NESN) is selling some small New Zealand candy brands, including Mackintosh's toffees and Black Knight licorice, to Australia's Quadrant Private Equity, the latest example of the world's biggest food company tidying up its portfolio. "Following a review of Nestle's confectionery business in Australia and New Zealand, Nestle is looking to focus on its major chocolate, baking and medicated lozenge brands in New Zealand," Nestle said in a statement on Thursday. It said it had reached a conditional agreement to sell kiwi confectionery brands Mackintosh's, Heards, Black Knight and Fabulicious Red Licorice as well as other Oceania brands Life Savers and Oddfellows to Quadrant. It did not disclose the price of the deal. The company said up to 55 jobs out o...

LONDON (Reuters) - Protests in London against the visit by President Donald Trump must be "peaceful and good-spirited", London mayor Sadiq Khan said on Thursday after the U.S. leader landed in the British capital. "My message to those coming to the protests in London is that this must be peaceful and good-spirited. To those intent on causing trouble or breaking the law, I simply say: you are not welcome," he said in a statement. Khan, a member of Britain's opposition Labour Party who has clashed with Trump in the past, added that protests against Trump were not anti-American and instead reflected Londoners' opposition to "the politics of fear and despair".   ...

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German engineering group Siemens (DE:SIEGn) said it would present an updated strategy when it published its quarterly financial results on Aug. 2. "CEO Joe Kaeser and CFO Ralf P. Thomas will explain our Q3 FY 2018 financial results and will outline a strategy update," it said in an invitation send to journalists. A person familiar with the matter told Reuters last month that the group's new corporate strategy included plans to trim the number of industrial divisions to three from five....

By Kit Rees LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's leading share index rose on Friday, buoyed by a weaker pound which slipped after U.S. President Donald Trump threw cold water on a hopes for a U.S. trade deal. The blue chip FTSE 100 index was up 0.6 percent at 7,697.20 points by 0845 GMT, while mid caps also gained 0.6 percent. President Trump directly criticised Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit strategy, saying her proposals had probably killed off hope of a U.S. trade deal and that she had failed to take his advice on how to negotiate with the European Union. Sterling fell, which helped the FTSE's dollar-earnings constituents such as consumers stocks Diageo (LON:DGE), British American Tobacco (LON:BATS) and Unilever(LON:ULVR) push higher. "We've got that...

(Bloomberg) -- OPEC and its allies could boost oil production by more than the 1 million barrels a day agreed last month if needed, Russia’s Energy Minister Alexander Novak said. “I can’t rule out that if there is a need for more than 1 million barrels we will be able to quickly discuss it all together and make all necessary decisions,” Novak told reporters in Moscow. OPEC+ has “all needed tools,” if necessary, he said. Oil prices have remained near their highest in more than three years despite pledges by Russia, Saudi Arabia and their allies last month to boost production. Supplies are being strained by deepening losses in Venezuela, erratic flows from Libya and the prospect of renewed U.S. sanctions on Iran. Novak didn’t comment on wheth...

TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks were mostly lower on Tuesday, with a sharp decline in crude oil prices weighing on energy shares, while the dollar dipped ahead of Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's first U.S. congressional testimony. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to open slightly higher, with Britain's FTSE, Germany's DAX and France's CAC each gaining about 0.1 percent. Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow edged up 0.2 percent but the S&P 500 lost 0.1 percent as energy shares were hit by the drop in oil that offset a jump in financials. (N) MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.3 percent lower following two sessions of gains. Chinese shares extended losses after dropping the previous day on soft econ...

The dollar edged down on Tuesday ahead of congressional testimony by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell which traders will scrutinize for clues on the pace of U.S. interest rate rises and risks emanating from trade conflicts. Powell will testify on the economy and monetary policy before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee at 1400 GMT on Tuesday. He is expected to deliver an upbeat message on the outlook for growth and reaffirm the Fed's gradual monetary tightening policy but could face tough questions on the central bank's independence and how it would deal with an escalation in the global trade war. "The escalating trade conflict is becoming an increasingly realistic downside risk that could weigh on sentiment and capital spending," said Societe Generale (PA:SOGN) analyst G...

 U.S. stock indexes pared some losses on Tuesday after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said in a Congressional testimony there were "several years" of strong jobs and low inflation still ahead for the U.S. economy. Powell discounted the risk that a trade war may throw a global recovery off track and signaled that he not only believes the economy is doing well, but that an era of stable growth may continue provided the Fed gets its policy decisions right. U.S. stock were already lower ahead of Powell's written testimony to the Senate Banking Committee, as Netflix's slump due to weak subscriber growth weighed on its own and other high-growth stocks.   At 10:03 a.m. EDT the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) was down 31.01 points, or 0.12 percent, at 25,033.35, the S&...

 Asian share markets were mostly firmer on Wednesday as a bullish outlook from the head of the U.S. central bank buoyed the dollar, lifted Tokyo shares to a one-month top and sent gold to a one-year trough. Japan's Nikkei (N225) rose 0.43 percent as a weakening yen promised to fatten exporters' profits. Spreadbetters and futures (FFIc1) also pointed to opening gains for European bourses. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) added 0.1 percent and Australia (AXJO) 0.6 percent. Shanghai blue chips (CSI300) started firm only to flag as China's yuan lost ground to the advancing dollar. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell stuck with an upbeat assessment on the U.S. economy while downplaying the impact of global trade risks on the outlook for rate r...

Цены на нефть умеренно снижаются утром в среду на фоне роста недельных запасов сырья в США. К 8.25 МСК фьючерсы на североморскую смесь Brent опустились на 0,42 процента до $71,86 за баррель. Фьючерсные контракты на WTI торговались вблизи $67,7 за баррель, что на 0,56 процента ниже предыдущего закрытия. Цена сентябрьского контракта на нефть на Шанхайской международной энергетической бирже (INE) утром держалась на уровне 481,8 юаня за баррель. По данным Американского института нефти (API), запасы нефти в США на прошлой неделе выросли на 629.000 баррелей до 410,7 миллиона против прогноза снижения на 3,6 миллиона баррелей. В фокусе внимания инвесторов – официальная статистика Управления энергетической информации (EIA), выходящая сегодня вечеро...

 Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Wednesday, July 18: 1. Powell Back On Capitol Hill Investors looked ahead to a second appearance from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, after comments he made Tuesday reinforced views the central bank is on track to steadily hike interest rates. He is due to testify in front of the House Financial Services Committee at 10:00AM ET. In his first day of testimony to the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, Powell stuck with an upbeat assessment on the U.S. economy, while downplaying the impact of global trade risks on the outlook for rate rises. Those comments underlined expectations in financial markets that two more rate hikes are coming from the Fed this year. Besides Powell, the economic calenda...

 Asian shares on Thursday struggled to hold earlier gains made after upbeat Wall Street earnings, as trade war jitters rattled China's stock and currency markets, with the yuan hitting fresh one-year lows. The dollar was off a three-week high as investors cashed in on gains the currency made after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's two-day testimony reinforced a strong economic outlook but was underpinned by the relative U.S. economic strength. European shares are expected to open steady to slightly lower, with spread-betters seeing a flat open in Britain's FTSE and a lower start of 0.1 to 0.2 percent in France's CAC and Germany's DAX. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan last stood up less than 0.1 percent, giving up much o...

By Danilo Masoni MILAN (Reuters) - European shares fell in morning trading on Monday in a broad-based pullback led by declines in Fiat Chrysler (MI:FCHA) after deteriorating health forced its CEO to quit, while a disappointing earnings update sent Ryanair (I:RYA) sharply lower. The STOXX 600 (STOXX) was down 0.2 percent by 0827 GMT, on track for its third straight day of losses as worries over trade tensions lingered following Washington's threat last week to slap tariffs on $500 billion of Chinese imports. Most sectors were trading in negative territory, though defensives like telecoms (SXKP) and utilities (SX6P), whose domestic exposure shields them from trade jitters, outperformed. Fiat Chrysler (FCA) and Ferrari (MI:RACE) both slumped as much as 5 percent after ...

By Kit Rees LONDON (Reuters) - The UK's top share index fell back on Monday as trade tensions weighed on cyclical stocks while a rising pound held back dollar earners. With attention also focused on the unfolding earnings season, the blue chip FTSE 100 index was down 0.4 percent at 7,648.41 points by 0847 GMT, slightly lagging a broadly negative European market. A stronger pound weighed on the FTSE's dollar-earning exporters, with large consumer staples including British American Tobacco (LON:BATS), Diageo(LON:DGE) and Reckitt Benckiser taking the most points off the index. Cyclical stocks were also on the back foot, with financials, miners and heavyweight oil stocks all lower. These stocks, which tend to experience relatively bigger price swings, have come un...

(Reuters) - Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) said on Monday it would double its presence in London, acquiring nearly 600,000 square feet (56,000 square metres) of office space across two buildings in King's Cross - enough for more than 6,000 workstations. The social network did not say how many jobs it would add in the British capital, where it expects to employ 2,300 people by the end of this year. It added 800 jobs in London last year. Steve Hatch, managing director for Northern Europe, said Facebook had developed many of its significant products - including its Workplace collaboration and apps for its Oculus virtual reality headsets - in London. "Today's news reflects our commitment to the UK and our desire to grow our business and the UK economy," he said in a statement.   The announceme...

(Bloomberg) -- When it comes to the dollar and President Donald Trump’s signals that he’d prefer it to be weaker, as the Rolling Stones sang, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.” That’s the take from strategists at State Street Bank & Trust and John R. Taylor, formerly head of what was once the world’s biggest currency hedge fund. Part of the support for that thesis includes expectations for robust U.S. growth (even if tit-for-tat tariffs play out) that will keep the Federal Reserve hiking rates. Against that backdrop, the dollar has gained almost 6 percent since mid-April. Dollar bulls also took cheer Monday after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin over the weekend moved to ease fears that trade disputes had brought on a currency war. The gr...

By Aaron Sheldrick TOKYO (Reuters) - Oil prices were mixed on Tuesday as benchmark Brent crude rebounded from earlier losses with market participants divided in their concerns amid rising tensions between the United States and OPEC producer Iran and signs of oversupply. Brent crude oil (LCOc1) was up 6 cents at $73.12 a barrel by 0706 GMT, after settling down 1 cent on Monday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude (CLc1) was down 3 cents at $67.86 a barrel, clawing back earlier losses. The contract fell 37 cents the previous day. During Monday's session, the market rose after President Donald Trump warned of dire consequences for Iran if it threatened the United States. "While oil prices were the primary beneficiary of the weekend's headline battle between President Trump and Iranian Pres...

Investing.com - The dollar slid broadly lower on Tuesday as the euro rebounded and the pound rose to the day’s highs following reports that British Prime Minister Theresa May will take control of Brexit negotiations. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.21% to 94.22 by 10:52 AM ET (14:52 GMT). Expectations that the Federal Reserve will stick to plans for further gradual rate hikes this year as the economy continues to strengthen supported the outlook for the dollar. The dollar has come under pressure after U.S. President Donald Trump launched an attack on the U.S. central bank last week, claiming that their plans to raise U.S. interest rates risked undermining his efforts at strengthening the...

Investing.com - The dollar dipped against a currency basket on Wednesday as investors awaited a meeting between the U.S. and the European Union amid heightened trade tensions in the global economy. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, edged down 0.11% to 94.30 by 03:38 AM ET (07:38 AM GMT). U.S. President Donald Trump is to host European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in the White House for trade talks later Wednesday, with talks set to center on the auto industry. Trump has already slapped tariffs on U.S. imposed tariffs steel and aluminum imports from the EU and has threatened to impose tariffs on $50 billion of car imports from the bloc, which would prompt retaliatory action from Brussels. The e...

BERLIN (Reuters) - Three years after the Germanwings crash in which a pilot deliberately flew a jet into a mountainside, the European Commission has adopted new rules on pilot mental health requiring airlines for the first time to carry out a psychological assessment of pilots before they hire them. Investigators have concluded that pilot Andreas Lubitz locked the captain out of the cockpit and deliberately flew the Germanwings A320 jet into a French mountainside on March 24, 2015 on a flight from Barcelona to Duesseldorf, killing all 150 people on board. Prosecutors have said Lubitz was suffering from a mental disorder with psychotic symptoms that led to suicidal thoughts but he had concealed his illness from his employer, part of the Lufthansa group (DE:LHAG). The new rules seek to pr...

(Reuters) - Virgin Money (L:VM) reported a 10 percent rise in first-half underlying pretax profit on Thursday, helped by growth across the bank's core mortgages, savings and credit card businesses. The British challenger bank, which is being bought by rival CYBG (L:CYBGC), said underlying pretax profit rose to 141.6 million pounds for the six months ended June 30, from 128.6 million pounds a year earlier.   Virgin Money forecast a banking net interest margin (NIM) of about 162 basis points for the full year 2018, lower than the 172 basis points reported in 2017....

By Aaron Sheldrick TOKYO (Reuters) - Brent crude led oil prices higher, extending gains into a third day after Saudi Arabia suspended crude shipments through a strategic Red Sea shipping lane and as data showed U.S. inventories fell to a 3-1/2 year low. Brent crude (LCOc1) futures had risen 47 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $74.40 a barrel by 0247 GMT, after gaining 0.7 percent on Wednesday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude (CLc1) futures were up 5 cents at $69.35 a barrel, after climbing more than 1 percent in the previous session. "The announcement this morning that the Saudis have closed some shipping lanes in the Gulf because of rebel Houthi attacks also gives the bulls something to launch off," said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at AxiTrader, also pointing to the drop in U.S....

By Vibhuti Sharma and Munsif Vengattil (Reuters) - Facebook Inc (O:FB) Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg's fortune took an almost $16 billion (12.18 billion pounds) hit on Thursday, as the social media giant headed for the biggest one-day wipeout in U.S. stock market history, a day after executives forecast years of lower profit margins. At least 16 brokerages cut their price targets on Facebook after managers said the cost of improving privacy safeguards, as well as slowing usage in the biggest advertising markets, would hit the company's profit margins for more than two years. Facebook shares were down as much as 19.6 percent at $174.78 in early trading, a decline that would wipe about $124 billion off the company's value - or nearly four times the entire market capita...

Investing.com — В четверг курс евро снизился до минимума сессии после того, как президент Европейского центробанка Марио Драги еще раз подтвердил, что значение процентной ставки ЕЦБ останется без изменений до конца лета 2019 года. Это усиливает расхождение в курсах монетарной политики ФРС и ЕЦБ. К 17:20 МСК пара GBP/USD снизилась на 0,47% до 1,1671, отступив от максимума сессии 1,1744. На пресс-конференции Драги сообщил, что экономика еврозоны по-прежнему нуждается в существенном финансовом стимулировании. Эти заявления были сделаны несмотря на то, что в прошлом месяце ЕЦБ сообщил о завершении своей программы количественного смягчения в конце этого года. Драги сказал, что слишком рано оценивать влияние соглашения о сотрудничестве в торговле между Евросоюзом и США. О...

(Bloomberg) -- Pound bulls just lost some of their swagger. Long-standing optimists Credit Agricole (PA:CAGR) SA, BBVA (MC:BBVA) and ING Groep (AS:INGA) NV all cut their sterling calls in recent days with still no sign of a resolution to Brexit uncertainty. While the French and Spanish banks still see the U.K. currency strengthening from current levels, the Dutch one now forecasts it will fall to as low as $1.27 -- a level not seen in more than a year -- in the coming months. “Our bullish outlook at the start of the year was predicated on lower Brexit uncertainty and issues like the Irish backstop having been resolved,” said ING analyst Viraj Patel. “The fact that we’re still debating that and still questioning whether a transition may or may n...

(Reuters) - GVC Holdings Plc (L:GVC) shares leapt to a record high on Monday after it agreed to set up an online betting platform in the United States with U.S. hotel and casino operator MGM Resorts International (N:MGM) . The announcement comes ahead of the American football season and as British betting companies look to capitalise on the U.S. market after a U.S. Supreme court ruling in May lifted a ban on sports betting. Bookmakers have also been assessing the impact of recently implemented UK gambling curbs after the government said in May it would cut the maximum stake on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs) to two pounds from 100 pounds. "GVC appears to have struck gold by signing a 50/50 JV with arguably the biggest gambling brand in the U.S.," London-based broker Shorecap's Greg...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar was lower on Monday, while the euro and sterling were higher as investors wait for a a number of central bank meetings this week. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.43% to 94.06 as of 11:34 AM ET (15:34 GMT). Meanwhile, the pound inched higher, with GBP/USD rising 0.31% to 1.3146. Investors are waiting for a flurry of central bank policy decisions this week that could determine direction of currencies. The Federal Reserve makes a policy decision Wednesday afternoon, but with no rate hike expected. Investors expect the Fed to raise rates in September, with the chance of an increase at 87.8%. The U.S. economy accelerated as expected in the second ...

By Swati Pandey SYDNEY (Reuters) - Global bond prices gained and the yen fell on Tuesday after the Bank of Japan (BoJ) wrongfooted hawks as it pledged to keep interest rates extremely low for an extended period. The lead for European and U.S. shares was mixed with FTSE futures (FFIc1) down a tad while E-Minis for the S&P500 (ESc1) gained 0.2 percent. BOJ's policy announcement to make its massive stimulus programme more flexible provided some comfort to bond investors, as the policy tweaks didn't appear to show any inclination from the central bank make a radical shift from its accommodative stance. In response, yields on 10-year Japanese government bonds (JGBs) <jp10ytn=jbtc>fell 3 basis points to pull away from a 1-1/2 year high of 0.11 percent while...

By Sumita Layek Oil prices are likely to hold fairly steady this year and next as increased output from OPEC and the U.S. meets growing demand led by Asia and helps to offset supply disruptions from Iran and elsewhere, a Reuters poll showed on Tuesday. A survey of 44 economists and analysts forecast Brent crude (LCOc1) to average $72.87 a barrel in 2018, 29 cents higher than the $72.58 projected in the previous month's poll and above the $71.68 average so far this year. U.S. crude futures (CLc1) were seen averaging $67.32 a barrel in 2018, compared with $66.79 forecast last month and an average of $66.16 until now. This is the 10th consecutive month in which analysts have raised their oil price forecasts. "We expect prices will largely remain range-bound in the second half of 2018 and...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's biggest defence company BAE Systems (L:BAES) stuck to its forecast for flat earnings this year, saying that some issues at U.S. projects and in its maritime unit would be offset by a stronger performance from other parts of the business. BAE, which is building Britain's new nuclear submarines, manufactures Eurofighter Typhoon jets and provides electronics for the F-35 combat jet, posted a 2 percent drop in underlying earnings per share to 19.8 pence for the half year period. For the full-year it is aiming to match the 43.5 pence it made in 2017, and it said it was on course to do so, adding that it expected to see some additional benefit from exchange translation. The company, which won a $26 billion (£19.83 billion) contract to build war ships for Aus...

Investing.com - Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) plans to invest $5 billion to produce cars in China and avoid possible tariffs as trade tensions between the U.S. and Beijing remain on edge, according to a report from Bloomberg. The company is looking to raise funds in China to finance at least a portion of the investment for the plant, one source told Bloomberg. According to the report, Tesla will begin producing its new Model 3 vehicle at the factory near Shanghai in 2020. Last month, chief executive officer Elon Musk made an agreement with Chinese authorities to build a new its first factory outside the U.S. and the move was expected to double the size of the electric car maker’s global manufacturing. The agreement was reached not long after Tesla raised prices on U.S.-made vehicles it sel...

Investing.com - Stocks in focus in pre-market trade Wednesday: • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock jumped 4.47% by 8:09 AM ET (12:09 GMT) as its high-priced iPhone X and services revenue helped it beat consensus. • Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) stock gained 0.46% after a report that the company would invest $5 billion in a factory in China to avoid tariffs. • Google-parent Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) stock traded up 1.38% as the internet giant plans to develop a censored version of its search engine for China that will block websites and certain search terms, according to a report from The Intercept. • Campbell Soup (NYSE:CPB) stock jumped soared 3.91% on the back of news that activist hedge fund Third Point is meeting with some of the company’s largest shareholders to se...

(Reuters) - Shares of Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) hit a record high on Wednesday and neared a $1 trillion (£762.32 billion) valuation, after the company forecast blowout current-quarter sales and analysts said a September launch of new iPhones set the stage for sustained growth. The company's shares rose 4.7 percent to a high of $199.26 in early trading - within striking distance of the $206.49 mark that will give it a trillion-dollar valuation. Including Wednesday's gains, the stock has risen 17.5 percent this year. Apple forecast revenue of $60 billion to $62 billion for its fiscal fourth quarter, beating the $59.6 billion analysts had expected, according to data from Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. The iPhone maker usually launches new mobile models in September, which includes a few days...

By Hideyuki Sano TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks tumbled on Thursday as the latest escalation in the Sino-U.S. trade war hit Chinese shares, while global bond markets were rattled by increased borrowing by Washington and Japan's new tolerance for higher yields. European shares are expected to fall, with financial spread-betters see Britain's FTSE (FTSE), France's CAC (FCHI), Germany's DAX (GDAXI) opening 0.4 percent lower. Japan's Nikkei (N225) declined 1.1 percent while MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) dropped 1.5 percent, dragged down by a 2.2 percent fall in Chinese H-shares <.MICN00000PUS>. The CSI 300 index (CSI300) of China's A-shares dropped 3.0 percent to 2,741, near its 1 1/2-year low of 2,691 set on July 6. Shares of export-depend...

Investing.com - The dollar was higher against a currency basket on Thursday after the Federal Reserve indicated that it is on track for additional rate hikes this year, while the pound slipped ahead of the Bank of England’s policy announcement later in the day. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.21% to 94.66 by 02:52 AM ET (06:52 AM GMT). Demand for the dollar continued to be underpinned after the Fed kept interest rates unchanged as widely expected at the conclusion of its policy meeting on Wednesday, and said U.S. economic growth has been rising strongly and the job market has continued to strengthen. The dollar was also supported by safe haven demand amid renewed concerns over global trade...

LONDON (Reuters) - The pound extended losses on Thursday after the Bank of England raised interest rates from crisis era lows but was cautious about any further tightening with an uncertain Brexit on the horizon. A broadly rallying dollar also hit the pound. Sterling fell as much as 0.8 percent to $1.3017, down from around $1.31 before Governor Mark Carney gave his post-rate decision news conference.   The pound also fell against the euro from an earlier flat position. It dropped 0.4 percent at 89.150 pence per euro as Carney spoke....

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Packaging and paper group Mondi (L:MNDI), (J:MNDJ) reported a 25 percent increase in half-year underlying profit, benefiting from higher average selling prices, good demand across its packaging businesses and profit improvement initiatives across the group. Mondi has been battling negative currency effects from a weaker U.S. dollar and a weaker Russian rouble while also facing higher raw materials costs and the impact of maintenance shut-downs. The company said on Friday that its fibre-based packaging business, comprising packaging paper and fibre packaging, was the main contributor to the improved performance. Underlying operating profit rose to 630 million euros (£560.85 million) in the six-months ended June, up from 503 million euros earlier, Mondi said...

By Kit Rees LONDON (Reuters) - The UK's top share index climbed higher on Friday as cyclical stocks recovered thanks to a respite from trade and Brexit worries, while results from Mondi and RBS were well-received. The blue-chip FTSE 100 (FTSE) index was up 0.4 percent at 7,606.09 points by 0844 GMT, though it was on track for its biggest weekly loss since March with a 1.2 percent slide. This week fresh concerns over global trade marred sentiment, after U.S. President Donald Trump ramped up the pressure on China by proposing a higher 25 percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports. "(Trade) is certainly a concern among other concerns around the world. It's not one a global investor can particularly do much about - we're already seeing the impact in a number of companies' earn...

LONDON (Reuters) - The main UK subsidiary of Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) had a tax bill of 1.7 million pounds on profits of 72.4 million pounds in 2017 thanks to deductions related to share-based awards to staff, accounts published this week show. The tax affairs of Amazon, which on Thursday reported its largest ever profit of $2.5 billion in the second quarter, and other tech groups have been the subject of parliamentary scrutiny across Europe in recent years. Amazon group books most of its $11.4 billion of UK revenues via a UK branch of Luxembourg-based Amazon EU Sarl, Amazon's main European operating unit. This subsidiary had a tax bill of 54.9 million euros ($63.7 million)last year, despite booking a 876 million euro loss that was partly driven by large inter-group royalty payments,...

Investing.com - Stocks in focus in pre-market trade Friday: • Kraft Heinz (NASDAQ:KHC) stock soared 6.48% by 8:07 AM ET (12:07 GMT) as second-quarter results topped expectations and the company’s chief executive Bernardo Hees said he expects “profitability to improve by year-end, with further momentum into 2019.” • GoPro (NASDAQ:GPRO) stock gained 3.67% after reporting smaller-than-expected quarterly losses. • American International Group (NYSE:AIG) stock sank 4.04% after second-quarter profit fell 17%, missing consensus. • Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC) stock tumbled 10.92% as the company announced plans to cut 8% of its workforce and lowered its full-year revenue outlook. • Shake Shack (NYSE:SHAK) stock lost 4.16% as delayed restaura...

(Bloomberg) -- The Turkish lira fell against the dollar for a sixth day and government bonds dropped as a showdown with the U.S. over a detained American pastor continued to weigh on investor sentiment. The currency weakened 1.1 percent to a record low amid its longest streak of losses in three months, while the yield on 10-year bonds touched an all-time high. The lack of liquidity in the lira market and broad dollar strength are compounding the move, according to an Istanbul-based trader who asked not to be named as they are not authorized to speak publicly. While President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday that Turkey will respond in kind to the U.S. decision to sanction two government ministers, speculation that the dispute will eventually be resolved has incre...

(Bloomberg) -- Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), which recommended selling U.S. tech stocks a month ago, says traders are finally starting to take heed. The Nasdaq Composite has lost as much as 4.2 percent since reaching a record high on July 25 as investors fled the likes of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)., Twitter Inc(NYSE:TWTR). and Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX). following disappointing earnings. And while Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL). breached the historic $1 trillion value mark last week, Morgan Stanley warns that this could actually be a signal of the rally in tech reaching a top, posing risks for the broader market. “When we made the call, feedback was fairly lopsided against us. Phones were not ringing and even those who had sympathy for our views of a poor near...

Investing.com - U.S. crude oil prices rose on Monday as lower Saudi Arabian production bolstered prices. West Texas Crude oil futures surged 1.84% to $69.75 a barrel as of 11:09 AM ET (15:09 GMT). Meanwhile Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., increased 1.46% to $74.28. Saudi Arabia only pumped about 10.29 million barrels per day (bpd) in July, down about 200,000 from a month earlier, Reuters reported. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, of which Saudi Arabia is the de facto leader, agreed in June to raise output at a nominal increase of 1 million bpd amid pressure from the U.S. to decrease prices. While OPEC members are expected to add around 700,000 barrels a day, non-OPEC oil suppliers led by Russia would add the r...

LONDON (Reuters) - Iraqi Kurdistan-focused Genel Energy (L:GENL) is likely to significantly increase its oil production guidance next year, Chief Financial Officer Esa Ikaheimonen said on Tuesday. The output boost is expected to come from 11 wells currently being drilled in three fields in the region, eight of which are expected to begin producing this year. Genel on Tuesday reaffirmed its 2018 production guidance of 32,800 barrels of oil per day. "We maintained that guidance ...signalling that even with the existing level we would exceed guidance," Ikaheimonen told Reuters. "There is a good chance that we enter the new year with a significantly updated level of production," he added.   ...

BEIJING (Reuters) - Baidu Inc (O:BIDU) is prepared to win against Alphabet Inc's (O:GOOGL) Google in China, its chief executive officer said on social media, amid rumblings the U.S. search engine giant was planning to re-enter a market it left eight years ago. Google's search engine has been largely blocked in China since 2010, when the company exited the market over ethical concerns related to China's strict censorship laws. Baidu dominates the domestic search engine space currently. Last week, Reuters reported Google was developing a censored version of its search engine to enter China, citing information from the firm's employees and Chinese officials. The plans were earlier reported by the news website Intercept. In a posting on a private social media account on Tuesday, Baidu CEO R...

(Bloomberg Opinion) -- It’s time for FAANG stocks to break up, at least in investors’ minds. Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) and Google parent Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) can’t get away from one another. Every time one grabs the spotlight — as Apple did last week when it became the first U.S. company with a $1 trillion market value — it brings along the other four. They’re alternately hailed as the hot stocks, technology’s brightest lights and indispensable growth companies, and jeered as a worrisome sign of a frothy and top-heavy market. But look closely and it’s no longer clear why they should be lumped together at all. Let’s start with the technology moniker. Amazon is a retailer ...

LONDON (Reuters) - Furniture and floorings retailer SCS Group (L:SCSS) on Wednesday reported a fall in second half sales, blaming a softer trading environment and extremely warm weather in June and July for the shortfall. An industry survey published on Tuesday had highlighted weak non-food retail sales in July, with furniture sales notably poor. The survey found consumer confidence remained fragile particularly around bigger ticket items. SCS said like-for-like order intake in its second half to July 28 fell 2.6 percent, having increased 2.2 percent in the first half. For the full year, the group therefore achieved an overall like-for-like order intake increase of 0.2 percent - which it said was in line with the board's expectations. SCS said the outcome was encouraging given the UK's...

Investing.com - The dollar edged lower against a currency basket on Wednesday, sliding for a second day as trade tensions faded, while sterling wallowed near one-year lows, pressured lower by Brexit uncertainty. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, touched a low of 94.82 and was at 94.98 by 04:11 AM ET (08:11 AM GMT) after slipping 0.2% on Tuesday. The index touched the highest level in nearly a year last week, bolstered by rising U.S. interest rates and fears over the impact of trade conflicts. The recent rally in the dollar has faded as investor concerns over global trade tensions waned, dampening safe haven demand for the greenback. Trade tensions remained in focus after the Trump administration said Tues...

Investing.com - The pound fell to the lowest levels of the year on Wednesday as the currency was pressured lower by growing fears over the prospect of Britain exiting the European Union without a trade deal in place. Against the dollar, the pound fell below the $1.29 level for the first time in a year. GBP/USD hit a low of 1.2854 and was at 1.2869 by 10:39 AM ET (14:39 GMT), off 0.53% for the day. Sterling hit a 10-month low against the euro, with EUR/GBP advancing 0.48% to 0.9030. Sentiment on the pound has soured after Britain’s International Trade Secretary Liam Fox said in an interview published in the Sunday Times newspaper there was a 60:40 chance that the UK would leave the European Union without an agreement. The remarks came after Bank of England Governor...

LONDON (Reuters) - Soft drink bottler Coca-Cola HBC (L:CCH) reported higher half-year revenue on Thursday, helped by warm weather across Europe and the World Cup soccer tournament. The bottler of Coca-Cola (N:KO) drinks said net revenue was 3.23 billion euros (£2.9 billion) in the first half of the year, up 6.4 percent on a currency-neutral basis. However, including currency fluctuations, revenue was up only 0.5 percent. Sales volume, or the amount of drinks sold, lifted sales by 4.6 percent, while the remaining 1.8 percentage points of sales growth was due to higher prices. Growth was mainly driven by emerging and developing markets. Comparable earnings per share rose 4.7 percent to 60 euro cents. The company said it continued to make "good progress" against its 2020 targets an...

LONDON (Reuters) - European shares retreated across a number of sectors on Thursday as a new batch of corporate earnings triggered sharp price swings but failed to dispel fears about a tense geopolitical context with the China-U.S. trade tensions and new sanctions against Russia. At 0725 GMT, the pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) was down 0.4 percent with heavy losses in Paris and London where the CAC 40 (FCHI) and the FTSE (FTSE) both slipped 0.6 percent. The on-going corporate season also prompted steep moves among companies publishing second-quarter results. German sportswear firm Adidas (DE:ADSGn) posted the best performance after it reported a better-than-expected second quarter and saw its shares jump 9 percent.   Still in Germany, TUI (L:TUIT) shares fell 8 percent after its ...

By Wayne Cole SYDNEY (Reuters) - Asia share markets skidded and the euro hit one-year lows on Monday as a renewed rout in the Turkish lira drove demand for safe harbours, including the U.S. dollar, Swiss franc and yen. Japan's Nikkei (N225) lost 1.3 percent and MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) fell 1.1 percent as bourses across the region turned red. EMini futures for the S&P 500 (ESc1) were off 0.33 percent, while 10-year Treasury yields dipped further to 2.85 percent (US10YT=RR). China's blue chip index (CSI300) shed 1.2 percent, while Hong Kong stocks (HSI) lost 1.4 percent as the local dollar fell to the limits of its trading band. Much of the early action was in currencies with the euro gapping lower as the Turkish lira ...

By Julien Ponthus LONDON (Reuters) - British shares dipped on Monday as the Turkish currency crisis continued to shake global markets with stock indexes declining from Asia to Europe. Turkey's lira pulled back from a record low to the dollar in morning trading after the central bank pledged to provide liquidity and cut reserve requirements for Turkish banks, but the currency's meltdown is still a major worry for emerging markets and beyond. At 0856 GMT, the FTSE 100 (FTSE) was down 0.5 percent, slightly more than its European peers where the STOXX 600 lost 0.3 percent, France's CAC 40 0.2 percent and Germany's DAX (GDAXI) 0.5 percent. "The (lira) currency’s travails and the timid response by the authorities has cast a dark cloud over European equities this mor...

By Daren Butler and Nevzat Devranoglu ISTANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey's lira pulled back from a record low of 7.24 to the dollar on Monday after the central bank pledged to provide liquidity, but it remained under selling pressure and its meltdown continued to rattle global markets. The currency has lost more than 40 percent against the dollar this year, largely due to worries about President Tayyip Erdogan's influence over the economy, his repeated calls for lower interest rates, and worsening ties with the United States. On Friday the slide turned into a crash: the lira dropped as much as 18 percent, hitting U.S. and European stocks as investors took fright over banks' exposure to Turkey. A fresh lira collapse on Sunday night hit Asian shares and drove global demand for safe curre...

By Kylie MacLellan and Hannah McKay LONDON (Reuters) - Police arrested a man on suspicion of terrorism offences on Tuesday saying he appeared to deliberately drive into cyclists before ramming a car into security barriers outside the British parliament in what appeared to be the second attack on the building in just under 18 months. The man, in his 20s, injured three people as he drove through a group of cyclists and pedestrians before hitting a barrier outside parliament during the early morning rush hour. "Given that this appears to be a deliberate act, the method, and this being an iconic site, we are treating it as a terrorist incident," London Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said. Basu said the man was not co-operating with police. He was not believed to be known to security forc...

By Emma Rumney LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's biggest banks are planning to send personalized spending alerts and in some cases money management advice to their mobile banking customers as they strive to shore up brand loyalty in the face of growing competition. Lloyds Banking Group (L:LLOY) and HSBC (L:HSBA) will launch a range of new alerts from this year, for instance informing clients whenever they spend on their card or when a bill is higher than usual. The move is one example of how traditional lenders are expected to start harnessing a wealth of customer data in ways they haven't before, as competition and changing consumer behavior threaten their decades-old business model. New regulation has left banks more vulnerable to threats from players like digital-only banks Monzo and Rev...

Investing.com - Gold prices recovered from an 18-month low on Tuesday, as the U.S. dollar softened, . Comex gold futures for August delivery rose 0.47% to $1,204.50 a troy ounce as of 10:37 AM ET (14:37 GMT). Gold fell to an 18-month low on Monday, after economic turmoil in Turkey caused the Turkish lira to plunge to an all-time low of 7.1289. The lira recovered on Tuesday, breaking a 5-day losing streak after the country's central bank pledged to provide liquidity in response to a meltdown that led to a global sell-off in equities. The struggling currency sank on Monday amid growing concerns over a deepening diplomatic rift with the United States over Ankara's detention of Andrew Brunson, an American pastor detained in 2016. Turkish Finance Minister Berat Albayrak is expecte...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks retreated on Wednesday, failing to follow Wall Street's gains, while the dollar was near a 13-month high as concerns about Turkey's financial crisis weighed on investor appetite despite the lira's move away from an all-time low. The lira <trytom=d3>--which plummeted to a record low of 7.24 to the dollar at the week's start, rattling global markets-- was slightly weaker at 6.415 after rebounding more than 8 percent overnight.</trytom=d3> Wall Street's three main indexes rose on Tuesday as the lira's climb eased fears of broader financial contagion for now. A string of robust earnings also boosted U.S. shares. (N) But the rise in U.S. shares did not carry through to Asia, with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific share...

(Bloomberg) -- Greek bonds as a safer bet? Now that’s something new. While still ranked non-investment grade by major rating companies, the Mediterranean nation’s debt may prove relatively resilient to simmering Italian political risks because it’s “very hard” to depict scenarios in which Greece could default on its borrowings, according to Societe Generale (PA:SOGN) SA. That could help the securities outperform Italian ones provided potential bouts of risk aversion in the region continue to be centered on Rome, analysts at the bank said. “There is long-term value in Greece, especially when we get over the threats of risk aversion just now,” Societe Generale strategists Yvan Mamalet and Ciaran O’Hagan wrote in a note to clients. ...

LONDON (Reuters) - European shares bounced back on Thursday after Beijing said it would hold trade talks with the U.S. in Washington later this month, spurring a recovery in investors' risk appetite on hopes of a trade war thaw. Europe's STOXX 600 (STOXX) rose 0.2 percent, clawing back some of the previous session's losses which had taken it to a six-week low as emerging markets entered bear territory. Mining stocks (SXPP) were the top gainers, rising 1.2 percent after suffering their worst day since the Brexit vote on Wednesday when metals prices sank. Results drove some sharp moves with copper miner Kaz Minerals and electronic payments firm Wirecard leading the pack. Kazakhstan-focused miner Kaz Minerals (L:KAZ) rose 7.1 percent after announcing its first dividend since 201...

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Citigroup (NYSE:C) has agreed to pay $10.5 million (£8.27 million) to settle charges related to bad loans made by its Mexican subsidiary, Banamex, between 2008 and 2014, and to trader mismarking and unauthorised proprietary trading by Citigroup Global Markets Inc. from 2013 to 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission said on Wednesday. The SEC said the "fraudulently-induced loans" to Oceanografia that led to $475 million in losses were the result of inadequate controls that prevented them from registering "numerous red flags" in the borrower's documents. Similarly, it said that inadequate supervision allowed the CGMI traders to mismark illiquid positions and cover up $81 million in losses.   Citigroup and CGMI settled the allegations witho...

By Julien Ponthus LONDON (Reuters) - European shares were steady in early trade on Friday as investors were cautious about the Turkish lira's recovery as well as the latest efforts by China and the United States' to avert a trade war. While the mood was upbeat on Wall Street with gains for the main indexes, trade in Asia was more subdued, including in China where the Shanghai composite index (SSEC) falling 1.3 percent. At 0822 GMT, the pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) was up 0.07 percent at 381.68 points with no clear set trend across the major trading centres. The lira crisis, which has sent shockwaves through emerging markets and beyond, is still a major concern among investors. "To declare with confidence that the worst is over for the lira, the central bank would have to act decisiv...

By Sivaram Venkitasubramanian and Gopakumar Warrier KOCHI/BENGALURU, India (Reuters) - The worst floods in a century in the Indian state of Kerala have killed 164 people and forced more than 200,000 into relief camps, officials said on Friday, with more misery expected as heavy rain pushed water levels higher. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is due to visit the southwest state later on Friday and its chief minister said he was hoping the military could step up help for the rescue effort, which is already using dozens of helicopters and hundreds of boats. "I spoke to the defence minister this morning and asked for more helicopters," Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told a news conference in the state capital, Thiruvananthapuram, adding that he planned to send 11 more helicopters to the worst...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar pushed higher against a currency basket on Monday, buoyed by expectations for trade talks that investors hope will ease tensions between the U.S. and China. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, edged up 0.1% to 96.11 by 03:41 AM ET (07:41 AM GMT) after falling 0.5% on Friday, the largest one day decline in almost a month. Mounting tensions between the U.S. and its trading partners, along with a currency crisis in Turkey propelled the dollar to 14-month highs late last week. The dollar’s rally stalled ahead of expected trade talks between Chinese and U.S. officials in Washington in the coming days. Ebbing concerns over the fallout from the Turkish lira’s recent sello...

(Bloomberg) -- Gold is hitting new milestones of misery. Exchange-traded funds tracking the metal have bled assets for 13 consecutive weeks, the longest run in five years, investors have placed the biggest gold short on record, and bullion’s chief foe -- a strong dollar -- is extending its market grip. Gold's 9 percent tumble this year belies the turmoil in emerging markets and jitters over technology companies, the anchor of the U.S. equity bull market. “The long suffering holders of ETFs have finally given up hope of the yellow metal returning to its former glories and have decided there is better protection in the dollar, the stock market and pretty much anything other than gold,” David Govett, head of precious metals at Marex Spectron, said by email. “I ...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks rose on Tuesday, supported by hopes Beijing and Washington would dial back trade hostilities, though comments from the U.S. president about the yuan and Federal Reserve policy capped gains and weighed on the dollar. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to open slightly lower, with Britain's FTSEdipping 0.25 percent, Germany's DAX shedding 0.05 percent and France's CAClosing 0.1 percent. In an interview with Reuters on Monday, President Donald Trump said that China was manipulating its currency to make up for having to pay tariffs imposed by Washington on some imports from China. This kept global trade conflict concerns alive and dented some of the market optimism ahead of upcoming U.S.-China trade talks. He also ...

FRANKFURT/MUNICH (Reuters) - Linde (DE:LIN1) warned that divestments needed to secure approval for its planned tie-up with Praxair (N:PX) have reached a size that would allow either party to abandon the deal, but added it was in constructive talks to salvage the $83 billion (65.08 billion pounds)merger. The industrial gases suppliers earlier agreed that if antitrust regulators demanded the disposal of businesses with more than 3.7 billion euros ($4.3 billion) in sales, or 1.1 billion euros in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), either party could withdraw without penalty. "Linde and Praxair remain in constructive dialogue with each other and the regulators on how to satisfy their requirements," Linde said on Wednesday. Linde said the revenue threshol...

Investing.com - The dollar edged higher against a basket of the other major currencies on Wednesday as investors awaited the outcome of trade talks between China and the U.S. this week and monitored growing political risks in the U.S. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, edged up 0.13% to 95.26 by 04:03 AM ET (08:03 AM GMT) after falling 0.69% the previous day. Market sentiment has been boosted by the revival of trade talks between Washington and Beijing. Investors hope the talks will ease trade tensions between the world’s two largest economies, even after U.S. President Donald Trump played down the prospects of any imminent success. Hopes for progress on trade were offset by concerns over U.S. politi...

Investing.com - Stocks in focus in pre-market trade Wednesday: • Target (NYSE:TGT) stock soared 6.03% by 8:02 AM ET (12:02 GMT) as its second-quarter revenue, earnings and same-store sales beat consensus and the company raised its full-year guidance. • Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW) stock sank 2.78% as the company cut its full-year profit and sales forecast. • La-Z-Boy (NYSE:LZB) stock surged 17.54% after the company reported quarterly results that topped consensus on the top and bottom lines. • Urban Outfitters (NASDAQ:URBN) stock rose 5.58% as the company reported record second-quarter sales and profit that beat expectations. • Momo (NASDAQ:MOMO) stock jumped 6.72% as the company reported second-quarter results that...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices slipped on Thursday, weighed down by the escalating trade dispute between the United States and China, although a decline in U.S. commercial crude inventories offered some support. International benchmark Brent crude oil futures (LCOc1) were at $74.54 per barrel at 0647 GMT, down 24 cents, or 0.3 percent, from their last close. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $67.80 per barrel, down 6 cents from their last settlement, somewhat supported by a decline in U.S. crude inventories. International markets weakened as the intensifying trade spat between the United States and China was seen as a drag on economic growth. The United States and China escalated their acrimonious trade war on Thursday, implementing puni...

(Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's sovereign fund is set to borrow up to $12 billion (£9.4 billion) from international banks after IPO plans for state energy group Saudi Aramco were put on hold, the Financial Times reported, citing sources. Reuters on Wednesday reported that Saudi Arabia had called off its plans for listing the oil giant as the country shifts its attention to a proposed stake in local petrochemicals maker Saudi Basic Industries Corp. Almost 16 banks are expected to participate in the lending process, with the lead banks to be selected later Thursday, the report said....

By Daren Butler and Behiye Selin Taner ISTANBUL (Reuters) - The Turkish lira weakened 3 percent against the dollar on Monday after a week-long holiday, hit by persisting concern about a diplomatic rift with Washington over a detained U.S. pastor. The slide as local trading resumed left the lira down 38 percent lira this year, driven by worries over President Tayyip Erdogan's grip on monetary policy and the stand-off with the United States over the fate of evangelical Christian Andrew Brunson. He is being tried in Turkey on terrorism charges that he denies. With the dollar stronger globally, the lira <trytom=d3>weakened as far as 6.19 from a close of 6.00 on Friday when a holiday to mark the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha came to an end. It stood at 6.1350 at 0810 GMT.</try...

By Douglas Busvine BONN, Germany (Reuters) - Germany's antitrust watchdog expects to take first steps this year in its probe against Facebook (O:FB) after finding that the social media giant abused its market dominance to gather data on people without their knowledge or consent. The probe is being closely watched in Europe amid mounting concerns over leaks of data on tens of millions of Facebook users, as well as the extensive use of targeted ads by foreign powers seeking to influence elections in the United States. The Federal Cartel Office objects in particular to how Facebook acquires data on people from third-party apps - including its own WhatsApp and Instagram services - and its online tracking of people who aren't even members. "We are conscious that this should, and must, go qu...

(Reuters) - British business supplies distributor Bunzl's (L:BNZL) first-half profit rose 3.9 percent, driven by gains from recent acquisitions. The group, which supplies everything from disposable tableware and personal protection equipment to cleaning chemicals, on Tuesday also announced its first acquisition in Norway, of a catering equipment supplier. It gave no deal value. Bunzl's adjusted profit before tax rose to 257.9 million pounds ($328.9 million) in the six months ended June 30, from 248.3 million pounds last year. Revenue rose 5.5 percent to 4.34 billion pounds. ($1 = 0.7841 pounds)...

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - The Turkish lira weakened on Tuesday as investors weighed up Turkey's efforts to manage its rift with the United States after Finance Minister Berat Albayrak warned that U.S. trade sanctions against Ankara could destabilise the Middle East. The row with Washington over an American evangelical Christian pastor detained in Turkey on terrorism charges has accelerated losses in the lira, which is down about 38 percent against the dollar this year. At 0509 GMT, the lira <trytom=d3>stood at 6.2000 against the dollar, easing from a close of 6.1200 on Monday, when it weakened to near 6.3 before rebounding in its first day of trade after a week-long holiday.</trytom=d3> After meeting his French counterpart in Paris, Albayrak highlighted Ankara's push for bet...

Investing.com - The dollar pushed higher against a currency basket on Wednesday after hitting a one-month low overnight, but gains were held in check amid uncertainty over the U.S. trade situation. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.13% to 94.75 by 03:10 AM ET (07:10 GMT), pulling away from an overnight low of 94.34, which was the weakest level since August 1. Market sentiment has been boosted by the more positive outlook on trade after the U.S. reached an agreement with Mexico on a trade deal aimed at overhauling the North American Free Trade Agreement. There are hopes that Canada, the other NAFTA trade partner, will join the new deal in the coming days. But the new trade deal did little to indic...

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Global oil markets could tighten towards the end of this year due to strong demand and uncertainty of production in some oil producing nations, the head of the International Energy Agency said. "Definitely there are some worries that oil markets can tighten towards the end of this year and as major oil importing countries India and other countries need to be ready," IEA's Fatih Birol told Reuters on Wednesday after a meeting with India's Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan. He said oil markets could tighten due to "very strong demand growth and a major problem is that Venezuelan production is collapsing". Venezuelan production has halved in the last two years, he said, adding there was also "fragility of production" in countries including those in the Middle East. &nb...

LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling rallied sharply on Wednesday and British stocks fell after the European Union's chief negotiator Michel Barnier signalled an accommodative stance towards the United Kingdom on ongoing Brexit negotiations. Barnier said the EU was prepared to offer a partnership with Britain such as has never been with any other third country. The British currency <gbp=d3>rallied to the day's highs of $1.2985 per dollar, up 0.8 percent on the day. Against the euro (EURGBP=D3), it extended gains and climbed 0.7 percent at 90.08 pence.</gbp=d3> Sterling's gains hit stock markets, however with the FTSE index (FTSE) hitting the day's low. British 10-year bond yields rose to the highest since May 22, up four basis points on the day (GB10YT=RR). "The EU has actually...

Investing.com - The dollar was holding steady near one-month lows against a currency basket on Thursday as markets awaited trade developments, while the pound remained firm after rallying in the previous session as fears over a no-deal Brexit eased. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was at 94.45 by 03:57 AM ET (07:57 GMT), not far from Tuesday’s one-month lows of 94.34. Market sentiment continued to be supported by hopes that Canada will join the new trade agreement between the U.S. and Mexico aimed at overhauling the North American Free Trade Agreement ahead of a Friday deadline. But the new trade deal did little to indicate how a trade spat between the U.S. and China will play out after talks last ...

Investing.com - The pound and the Turkish lira were pressured lower in currency markets on Monday, while the dollar remained steady against a currency basket in holiday-thinned trade. The pound sank to the lowest levels of the day after data showing that UK manufacturing activity fell to its lowest level in two years in August, weighed down by jitters over Brexit and the U.S.-China trade war. GBP/USD was down 0.77% to 1.2857 by 08:56 AM ET (12:56 GMT), from an intra-day high of 1.2933. The pound extended early losses after a report showing that the Markit UK manufacturing index dropped to a 25-month low of 52.8 in August, from 53.8 in July. Sterling had already come under pressure after the European Union's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said Sunday that he is “stron...

By Saikat Chatterjee LONDON (Reuters) - The British pound was set on Monday for its biggest daily drop against the euro in more than three months as concerns grew about the progress of Brexit negotiations. Sentiment was also further sapped by UK manufacturing data that underscored the weak state of the British economy. Traders bought sterling last week after the European Union's chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier appeared to strike a conciliatory note. That raised hopes a Brexit breakthrough was imminent as Britain and the EU try to agree what a post-Brexit trade deal would look like. But developments on the British political front dashed those expectations after Prime Minister Theresa May's former foreign secretary Boris Johnson said her Brexit strategy meant disaster for Britain...

By Andrew Galbraith SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Asian shares fell and the dollar turned higher on Tuesday as the trade dispute between the United States and China threatened to escalate this week, and as emergency austerity measures in Argentina underscored the turbulence gripping emerging markets. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) was down 0.3 percent. Chinese blue-chips (CSI300) also fell 0.3 percent, reversing earlier gains. Japan's Nikkei <.N225> slid less than 0.1 percent, while Australian shares (AXJO) were 0.4 percent lower ahead of a central bank policy meeting. On Monday, European shares ended mostly flat, though a weak British pound helped to lift London's blue-chip FTSE (FTSE) almost 1 percent. U.S. markets were closed for Lab...

By Marc Jones LONDON (Reuters) - A rebound in Chinese shares and a rally in Italian bonds bolstered Europe's spirits on Tuesday, though the pressure remained firmly on emerging market currencies as the dollar shifted up through the gears again. Asian stocks had reversed earlier losses helped by a 1.3 percent late spurt from Shanghai, though Europe moved back into the red as gains for Italian and Spanish bank shares faded and the major London, Frankfurt and Paris bourses faltered. (EU) Italian government bond yields fell back from three-month highs, with investors encouraged by soothing comments from Italian ministers on forthcoming budget proposals. [GVD/EUR] Well-placed sources told Reuters that Rome's Economy Minister Giovanni Tria was pushing the governing coalition to keep next yea...

LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling edged lower for a fifth consecutive day as a resurgent dollar and mounting concerns over Brexit negotiations sapped demand for the British currency. As fears grew that the United States may be preparing to go ahead with imposing a 25 percent tariff on $200 billion (£155.48 billion) of Chinese goods when a public consultation period ends on Thursday, the dollar advanced against its major rivals and emerging market currencies. An overnight bounce in the pound after a report that the European Union could offer new guarantees to Britain to win London's support for a solution aimed at avoiding a hard Irish border after Brexit faded on Wednesday as investors focused on the spreading selloff in emerging markets. On Wednesday, the British currency <gbp=...

By Kit Rees LONDON (Reuters) - The UK's top share index retreated on Wednesday as big oil stocks fell, though housebuilders were a bright spot following comments from Berkeley Group about the London housing market. Britain's blue chip FTSE 100 (FTSE) index was down 0.4 percent at 7,425.89 points by 0853 GMT, while mid caps (FTMC) were down 0.1 percent. The FTSE's losses were in-line with a broader decline across European stock markets, which fell on the back of continuing worries over trade tensions and weakness in emerging markets. "Emerging markets have been particularly weak and a lack of progress regarding international trade talks continues to unsettle investors," Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said. A drop in the price of oil weighed on heavyweight energy stocks, wi...

By Jonathan Cable LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling will make solid gains on the dollar in the coming year, a Reuters poll found, but that climb is based on the assumption that Britain leaves the European Union next year with a deal. Median forecasts in the Aug.31-Sept 5 poll of 50 foreign exchange specialists put cable at $1.28 in a month, $1.32 in six and $1.37 in year - which would mark around a 6 percent rise from where it was trading on Wednesday. But that still won't be where it was before the June 2016 referendum and those forecasts were weaker than ones given just a month ago, highlighting market doubts as a deadline approaches for when the two sides want to have thrashed out a deal. "Our high conviction view remains that a deal will be reached ... we think this will take GBP/US...

By Julien Ponthus LONDON (Reuters) - British shares were stable on Thursday morning as investors assessed turmoil on emerging markets and waited to see whether the United States would take its trade dispute with China to a new level and impose tariffs on another $200 billion of imports. At 0900 GMT the FTSE 100 (FTSE) was up 0.1 percent at 7391.65 points, a roughly five-months low which represents a fall of about 4 percent since the beginning of the year. With little to gnaw on in economic indicators or policy announcements in Europe, "investors are just going to have to sit and stew in this particularly unpleasant trading broth", said Connor Campbell, an analyst for Spreadex. Some of the biggest losses on the FTSE were due to the fact that some stocks were trading ex-dividend, which t...

LONDON (Reuters) - A narrow majority of institutional investors plan to keep their holdings of UK assets stable into early 2019 as Brexit negotiations approach a crunch phase, according to a quarterly survey by State Street Corporation (NYSE:STT). In the eighth instalment of a survey that began in 2016, the proportion of investors who expected their holdings of UK bonds, stocks and alternatives to remain constant over the next six months remained at 55 percent, indicating the broader investor base is adopting a wait and see approach. The so-called "Brexometer" index was conducted between late-July and late-August by State Street, which manages $2.7 trillion (2.1 trillion pounds) in assets globally. The respondents were 101 participants across hedge funds, real estate and privat...

(Bloomberg) -- Saudi Arabia has markedly increased oil exports to America, a sign OPEC’s leading producer is responding to pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump to cool down the energy market. While the export boost started earlier this year, it accelerated over the past three months after Trump repeatedly -- both through private diplomacy and public Twitter harangues -- asked the Saudis to lift production to keep energy prices in check. Saudi oil shipments into the U.S. reached a four-week average of one million barrels a day last week for the first time since late 2017, according to government data, and are up roughly 250,000 barrels a day since late May. "The Middle East producers are becoming much more aggressive, wanting to bring their barrels back into this market," Gary...

LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling jumped against the dollar and euro on Monday after a Bloomberg report quoted European Union chief negotiator as saying that a Brexit deal was "realistic in six to eight weeks"   The British currency rallied nearly a percent at $1.3044, a five-week high, after the report. It rose to a one-month high against the euro of 89.57 pence (EURGBP=D3)...

By Elisabeth O'Leary EDINBURGH (Reuters) - Some British food, including beef and lamb, would become "uncompetitive overnight" on foreign markets in the event of a no-deal Brexit, food industry representatives told members of parliament on Monday. Crashing out of the EU without an agreement would leave producers with customs arrangements set by the World Trade Organization - where agricultural tariffs could top 50 percent, Sarah Baker, from the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board, said. The United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on March 29, but there is no full exit deal and Britain's ruling party is split over Prime Minister Theresa May's "Chequers" plan to largely accept a "common rulebook" over goods. That "Chequers" plan was the least bad option for Britain, i...

By Saikat Chatterjee and Tommy Wilkes LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling erased its earlier gains and fell into the red on Tuesday as a recent rise in optimism over prospects for a Brexit trade deal with the European Union faded. The pound remained close to five-week highs, however, after EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier's comments on Monday that a Brexit deal was possible within weeks and given that British economic data has been broadly supportive of the currency. The latest figures, published on Tuesday, showed British workers' underlying pay growth picking up faster than expected, although market attention is squarely focussed on Brexit headlines. The British currency hit its highest level since early August in early trading at $1.3087, but gave up its gains after the pay data to stand ...

Investing.com - The dollar ticked higher against a currency basket on Wednesday, as concerns over global trade tensions supported safe-haven demand for the greenback. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was 0.1% higher at 95.15 by 03:30 AM ET (08:30 AM GMT). Investors remained focused on the U.S.- China trade dispute amid fears that an escalation could be imminent. China will ask the World Trade Organization next week for permission to impose sanctions on the U.S. for Washington's non-compliance with a ruling in a dispute over U.S. dumping duties. This comes after President Donald Trump announced Friday that there could more trade tariffs against Beijing totaling $267 billion. The Australian dollar, seen a...

Investing.com- Oil demand growth is expected to slow down in 2019 due to trade tensions and issues in emerging markets, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia stated in its monthly report on Wednesday. Global oil demand growth for 2019 was lowered by 20,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 1.41 million bpd while non-OPEC oil supply in 2019 was increased by 20,000 bpd to 2.15 million bpd. Rising challenges in emerging markets and trade tensions are a risk to current global economics, OPEC said. “A combination of monetary tightening from G4 central banks, the weakening financial situations in some emerging and developing economies, rising trade tensions and ongoing geopolitical concerns in some parts of the world constitute challenges to the current global economic...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices slipped on Thursday, although U.S. crude remained above $70 a barrel on the back of falling crude inventories and Brent was still close to $80 because of looming sanctions against Iran. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $70.19 per barrel at 0024 GMT, down 18 cents from their last settlement. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) dipped 11 cents to $79.63 a barrel. Brent rose above $80 per barrel the previous session for the first time since May, spurred by expectations that U.S. sanctions against Iran's oil exports, which will start in November, will tighten global markets. U.S. crude inventories fell 5.3 million barrels in the week to Sept. 7 to 396.2 million barrels, the lowest since February 2015 and abo...

Investing.com - The dollar ticked higher against the euro and the British pound on Thursday, as investors looked ahead to policy decisions by the European Central Bank and the Bank of England later in the day. The euro dipped 0.1% to 1.1620, while the pound slipped modestly to 1.3040 by 3:50AM ET (08:50GMT). The ECB is all but certain to keep policy unaltered, making only nuanced changes to its guidance to stay on course to end bond purchases this year and raise interest rates next autumn. The BoE is also expected to hold fire after raising interest rates last month with market expectations of another rate hike only seen in the second half of next year. Perhaps attracting more attention is a policy meeting by the Turkish central bank, which is expecte...

Investing.com - The Turkish lira rallied on Thursday after the country’s central bank raised interest rates much more than expected. The Central Bank of Turkey increased the one-week repo rate by 625 basis points to 24%, more than analyst expectations for a hike of 425 basis points to 22%. The bank’s decision was announced hours after Erdogan triggered tumult by repeating his hostility to higher borrowing costs and issuing an order that limited the use of foreign currency in domestic transactions. The lira rose after the decision and was trading 2.9% higher at 6.1586 per dollar at 7:20AM ET (1020GMT). The rate hike came alongside a pledge by the bank to enact strong monetary tightening in order to support price stability. "If needed, further monetary tighten...

(Bloomberg) -- The Trump administration’s trade war with China is following an increasingly predictable pattern and that should cause a rethink for anybody hoping for a rapid resolution. The day after financial markets around the world cheered the apparent good news that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was inviting his Chinese counterparts to sit down for further high-level negotiations, President Donald Trump undermined that very idea. “We are under no pressure to make a deal with China, they are under pressure to make a deal with us,” Trump said on Twitter on Thursday. “Our markets are surging, theirs are collapsing. We will soon be taking in Billions in Tariffs & making products at home. If we meet, we meet?” The move marked just the latest instanc...

By Karin Strohecker and Ritvik Carvalho LONDON (Reuters) - Emerging market investors are trying to gauge whether a currency crisis and the steep interest rate hikes being used to fight it could turn into a broader slowdown and even recession. On Thursday, Turkey's central bank attempted to draw a line under a lira collapse of almost 40 percent this year by hiking interest rates more than 6 percentage points to 24 percent. Argentina is struggling to shore up its peso, which has more than halved in value despite punitive interest rate rises to 60 percent. Other currencies have been caught in the slipstream, with India's rupee plumbing record lows and South Africa's rand, Russia's rouble and Brazil's real losing 15-20 percent this year so far. (For a graphic showing the losses, click: ht...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar was flat against other currencies on Tuesday as the White House imposed fresh tariffs on China. U.S. President Donald Trump announced on Monday that the U.S. will put 10% tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods, which will go up to 25% at the end of the year. Trump added that "if China takes retaliatory action against our farmers or other industries, we will immediately pursue phase three, which is tariffs on approximately $267 billion of additional imports." "We have been very clear about the type of changes that need to be made, and we have given China every opportunity to treat us more fairly," he said in the statement. "But, so far, China has been unwilling to change its practices." China has said it will retaliate against the new tariffs. The U.S....

Investing.com - Oil prices were higher on Tuesday as Saudi Arabian officials said they are comfortable with rising Brent prices. West Texas crude oil futures for November surged 1.35% to $69.61 a barrel as of 10:35 AM ET (14:35 GMT). Meanwhile Brent crude futures, the benchmark for oil prices outside the U.S., increased 1.46% to $79.19. Saudi Arabian officials said they are comfortable with Brent prices going above $80 a barrel as markets adjust to the loss of supply from U.S. sanctions. The comments came after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and Russia warned that U.S. sanctions against Iran, OPEC’s third-largest supplier, could put pressure on markets. The sanctions, which are expected to go into effect on Nov. 4, have already cau...

BEIJING (Reuters) - Oil prices on Wednesday pulled back from gains racked up the previous day, pushed down amid a surprise climb in U.S. crude stockpiles. Brent crude futures (LCOc1) had dropped 22 cents, or 0.28 percent, to $78.81 per barrel by 0042 GMT, chipping away at Tuesday's 1.26 percent gain. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude (CLc1) fell 0.20 percent, or 14 cents, to $69.71 a barrel. U.S. crude inventories rose by 1.2 million barrels to 397.1 million in the week to Sept. 14, according to data released on Tuesday by the American Petroleum Institute (API). That compared with analyst expectations for a decrease of 2.7 million barrels. Stockpiles of distillate fuels, which include diesel and heating oil, rose by 1.5 million barrels, the API data showed, compared with ex...

By James Davey CHATTERIS, England (Reuters) - British supermarket group Tesco (L:TSCO) has laid down the gauntlet to German discounters Aldi and Lidl by launching what it said would be the cheapest store in town. CEO Dave Lewis unveiled Tesco's new Jack's chain on Wednesday, saying the discount stores would sell 2,600 products, including 1,800 Jack's-branded items. The first two Jack's stores will open to shoppers on Thursday, with another 10-15 following in 2019 as Tesco seeks to compete better with the German upstarts whose limited-range stores have won over increasing numbers of British shoppers since the economic crisis hit in 2008. Together Aldi and Lidl now have a combined 13.1 percent market share, chipping away at market leader Tesco and its three biggest rivals Sains...

Investing.com - The pound struggled for direction Wednesday after reports that UK Prime Minister Theresa May was set to reject the European Union’s Irish border solution. GBP/USD bounced back slightly, but was still down 0.08% to 1.3138 as of 7:38 ET (11:38 GMT) after slumping to a low of 1.3099. The EU had suggested having more checks only in Northern Ireland, but May is expected to reject their offer, insisting that any solution must be UK-wide, The Times reported. The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier previously suggested that checks would need to be carried out at British and Northern Irish ports on only one category of goods moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. Four categories of goods would be affected if the backstop took effect and Northern ...

(Reuters) - British spirits maker Diageo (L:DGE) flagged a bigger than expected sales hit from currency movements on Thursday, an early indication of the potential impact of recent volatility on companies with emerging market revenues. However, the maker of Johnnie Walker scotch and Smirnoff vodka said its performance from the start of the year was in line with expectations and its organic sales would grow in line with last year. Diageo, which has operations across 180 countries, said it expected currency effects to knock 175 million pounds off net sales, compared to a previous estimate of 70 million pounds, which would wipe 45 million pounds off its full-year profit, up from an earlier estimate of 10 million pounds. While Diageo's revenue from emerging markets like India or C...

Investing.com - The dollar edged lower against its major rivals on Thursday, hovering around its lowest level in eight weeks as investors set aside trade concerns for now. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was down 0.15% at 93.97 by 3:45AM ET (0845GMT), not far from Tuesday's low of 93.88, which was the weakest since July 26. Global markets appear to be shrugging off concerns over and escalating trade war between the U.S. and China. On Monday, the U.S. slapped tariffs of 10% on $200 billion in Chinese goods, before they rise to 25% by the end of 2018, rather than an outright 25%. China retaliated by putting tariffs on $60 billion in U.S. goods. However, China will put a 10% tariff on some goods it had pre...

By Saikat Chatterjee and Maiya Keidan LONDON (Reuters) - As negotiations become fraught before Britain's exit from the European Union in March, tensions of a different kind are surfacing on the currency markets -- derivatives activity is rising sharply as investors bet on a weaker sterling. Hopes of progress on a Brexit deal between London and Brussels have fuelled a sterling rebound to nine-week highs; yet the view broadly remains that talks will go down to the wire, setting British assets up for a volatile few months. EU leaders' rejection this week of Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit plan already knocked the pound on Friday, and many investors warn against banking too much on a positive outcome. [GBP/] Collateral damage to the British economy could be enough to warrant holding a ...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar was lower against other currencies on Monday as trade war jitters spooked investors. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, fell 0.07% to 93.72 as of 4:53 AM ET (8:53 GMT). China cancelled mid-level trade talks with the U.S. as well as a proposed visit to Washington by Vice Premier Liu He which had been scheduled for this week, the Wall Street Journal reported. “The door for trade talks is always open but negotiations must be held in an environment of mutual respect,” state-run Xinhua News Agency reported. Negotiations “cannot be carried out under the threat of tariffs.” China added another $60 billion of U.S. products on its tariff list last week, while ...

Investing.com - The U.S. dollar continued to fall against other currencies on Monday, while the pound gained ground as investors awaited an interest rate decision from the Federal Reserve. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, fell 0.21% to 93.59 as of 10:21 AM ET (14:21 GMT). The Fed meets on Tuesday and Wednesday, with traders expecting a rate hike for the third time this year. The market has already priced in a 100% chance of a 25-basis-point increase. Chances of an increase in December were at 86.1%. Meanwhile, trade war concerns escalated after U.S. duties on $200 billion of Chinese goods and Chinese tariffs on $60 billion of U.S. products went into effect. China cancelled mid-level trade talks with the...

By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asia stocks struggled on Tuesday as a fresh round of U.S.-China tariffs and a surge in oil prices to near four-year highs added to worries about risks to global growth. Spreadbetters expected European stocks to open on the defensive, with Britain's FTSE giving up 0.1 percent, Germany's DAX starting unchanged and France's CAClosing 0.2 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged down 0.15 percent. But Japan's Nikkei bucked the trend and edged up nearly 0.2 percent. The Shanghai Composite Index dropped 0.7 percent and Australian stocks eased 0.1 percent. Hong Kong markets were closed for a holiday. China and the United States imposed new tariffs on each other's goods on Mond...

By Helen Reid LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's top share index edged up on Tuesday thanks to a surge in oil majors as crude prices hit a four-year high, while retailer Next stole the spotlight after a strong update confounded expectations. The FTSE 100 rose 0.2 percent by 0825 GMT, boosted by energy stocks and miners. Next (L:NXT) shares jumped 8.5 percent to the top of the FTSE 100 after it raised its full-year profit forecast and struck an optimistic tone on a no-deal Brexit, saying it is well prepared for the eventuality. "It is still too early to measure whether Next is gaining share as a result of retrenchment by other mid-market apparel retailers, although we expect this to be a growing feature in the medium term," said UBS analysts. Heavyweight oil majors Royal ...

(Bloomberg) -- Iran’s oil tankers are starting to disappear from global satellite tracking systems with just under six weeks to go until U.S. sanctions are due to hit the country’s exports, making it harder to keep track of the nation’s sales. No signals have been received by shore stations or satellites from 10 of the Persian Gulf nation’s crude oil supertankers for at least a week, according to tanker tracking data compiled by Bloomberg. The most likely explanation is that the vessels’ transponders have been switched off, making it more difficult to track the their movements. When they were last seen, the 10 vessels, which are listed below, were holding around 13 million barrels of crude and condensate, a light form of crude extracted from gas fi...

By Julien Ponthus LONDON (Reuters) - European shares held their ground on Wednesday morning, following limited gains on Asian stock markets and before a widely expected rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve. The pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) was down 0.01 percent by 0843 GMT after rising during the previous session, with energy stocks buoyed by Brent crude prices at four-year highs. London's FTSE 100 (FTSE) was down 0.03 percent, Paris' CAC 40 (FCHI) up 0.09 percent and Frankfurt's DAX (GDAXI) down 0.15 percent. "I don't expect much to be happening before the Fed," said Harry Scheper, managing director at ABR in Amsterdam, noting that volumes were low, as they typically are ahead of U.S. rate decisions. News that carmakers had triggered some Brexit contingency plans in Brit...

Investing.com - The dollar gained ground against the other major currencies on Thursday as markets digested the Federal Reserve’s widely expected rate hike and indications that its remains on track to continue monetary tightening into next year. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.31% to 94.16 by 04:03 AM ET (08:03 AM GMT). The Fed raised interest rates by a quarter point to 2.25% on Wednesday, its third rate hike this year and its eighth since 2015. In its statement, the Fed said it still foresees another rate hike in December followed by three more in 2019, and one additional increase in 2020. The central bank dropped the word "accommodative" to describe its monetary policy stance in its st...

ZURICH (Reuters) - Swiss watchdogs are looking into whether local banks handled billions of euros that may have moved to Switzerland through the Estonian branch of Denmark's Danske Bank (CO:DANSKE). "We are addressing the question of whether and how Swiss institutions are involved in the current case of Danske Bank and how money laundering regulations were observed," the Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) said in an email on Friday. Danske Bank's CEO resigned this month after an inquiry revealed that 200 billion euros (206 billion pounds) of payments, many of which the bank said were suspicious, had been moved through its Estonian branch over eight years. Six percent of the money flowed to Switzerland, a report by a law firm found.   ...

Investing.com - Sterling surged on Monday amid news that the UK plans to compromise on the Irish border issue to move forward with a Brexit deal. GBP/USD jumped 028% to 1.3066 as of 9:05 AM ET (13:05 GMT), not far from an earlier high of 1.3078. UK Prime Minister Theresa May plans to make a new Brexit deal with the European Union, Bloomberg reported. A senior British government official told Bloomberg that the country sees a way to reach an agreement on the border issue. The deal would only apply as a last resort if a deal is not reached and would be conditional on the UK having full access to the EU customs union. The EU has already proposed allowing Northern Ireland to trade with Ireland without full checks, which May has rejected on the grounds that it would break up the UK. Me...

Investing.com - The euro slipped lower on Tuesday amid fresh concerns over Italy's fiscal issues, while the safe haven yen pushed broadly higher as the boost to risk appetite from the re-negotiated NAFTA deal faded. EUR/USD was down 0.41% to 1.1530 by 04:26 AM ET (08:26 AM GMT), the lowest level since Sept. 10. The drop in the euro came after Claudio Borghi, head of the lower house's budget committee, said Italy would have solved its fiscal problems with its own currency. The comments added to a war or words with the European Union over the populist government’s budget proposal which seeks to increase spending and cut taxes, but would raise Italy's debt and breach EU budget rules. The euro was lower against the yen, with EUR/JPY down 0.58% to 131.14. The dollar ea...

MILAN (Reuters) - European shares fell in early trade on Thursday, led lower by defensive stocks, while banks tracked gains by their U.S. peers after strong data lifted Treasury yields to their highest since mid-2011. The pan-European STOXX 600 (STOXX) benchmark index was down 0.5 percent by 0726 GMT. Germany's DAX (GDAXI) also declined 0.5 percent and the UK's FTSE (FTSE) fell 0.6 percent. Defensive companies including consumer and healthcare stocks were the main drag on the STOXX. Shares in British American Tobacco (L:BATS), Nestle (S:NESN) andNovartis (S:NOVN) were down between 0.6 and 3.7 percent. Their losses were partly offset by gains among banks (SX7P), which tend to benefit from rising rates and bond yields. German lenders Commerzbank (DE:CBKG) andDeutsche Bank&n...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's Competition and Markets Authority has demanded Lloyds Banking Group (L:LLOY) toughen its procedures around payment protection insurance (PPI) after it accused the bank of breaching its current arrangements. The CMA said Lloyds had failed to send annual reviews, which have been required by the regulator since 2011, to around 14,000 of its PPI customers. The reviews set out how much customers need to pay and their right to cancel the policy. Some of the reviews that were sent by the bank also contained incorrect figures, the CMA said. Lloyds, one of the worst offenders in Britain's costliest mis-selling scandal, had already breached a 2011 order by the CMA outlining how PPI providers should operate six times previously. "We are disappointed that Lloyds has ag...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices rose on Friday as traders anticipated a tighter market due to U.S. sanctions against Iran's crude exports, which are set to start next month. International benchmark Brent crude oil futures (LCOc1) were at $84.98 per barrel at 0504 GMT, up 40 cents, or 0.5 percent from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were up 47 cents, or 0.6 percent, at $74.80 a barrel. The gains helped claw back some of the losses from the previous session due to rising U.S. inventories and after Saudi Arabia and Russia said they would raise output to at least partly make up for expected disruptions from Iran. "Brent front-month prices are up 6 percent over the last week as it becomes increasingly apparent that Iranian exp...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's national cyber security agency said on Friday it had no reason to doubt the assessments made by Apple (O:AAPL) and Amazon (O:AMZN) that refuted a Bloomberg story that their systems contained malicious computer chips inserted by Chinese intelligence. Bloomberg Businessweek on Thursday cited 17 unnamed intelligence and company sources as saying that Chinese spies had placed computer chips inside equipment used by around 30 companies, as well as multiple U.S. government agencies, which would give Beijing secret access to internal networks. "We are aware of the media reports but at this stage have no reason to doubt the detailed assessments made by AWS and Apple," said the National Cyber Security Centre, a unit of Britain's eavesdropping agency, GCHQ. "The NCSC ...

Investing.com - The dollar pushed higher against a currency basket on Monday, as a recent solid run of U.S. economic data underpinned expectations for further gradual rate hikes by the Federal Reserve through the end of this year and beyond. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.22% to 95.52 by 03:27 AM ET (07:27 AM GMT) after hitting a six-week high of 95.78 last week. The Labor Department reported Friday that while the rate of jobs growth slowed sharply in September, likely due to the effects of Hurricane Florence, the unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in almost 50 years. Expectations for tighter monetary policy spurred a sell-off in Treasuries last week, propelling the yield on 10-yea...

(Bloomberg) -- If the Federal Reserve tightens U.S. monetary policy too far, investors in the bull market’s biggest winners will feel the pain first, according to Bank Julius Baer & Co. That’s tech stocks. Strong economic growth will encourage the Fed to keep raising interest rates, even if the tightening sucks out more liquidity than financial markets can tolerate, said Yves Bonzon, chief investment officer at Julius Baer. That could drive the S&P 500 Indexdown about 20 percent before the equity losses start moderating the central bank’s actions, he said. “I’m the most nervous I’ve been in a long time because I think we’re approaching that point,” he said at a press roundtable in Hong Kong on Monday, referring to when Fed tigh...

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's biggest carmaker Jaguar Land Rover (NS:TAMO) will close its Solihull car plant for two weeks from Oct. 22, the Unite union said on Monday. Jaguar Land Rover has faced sliding diesel sales in recent months and has warned about the implications of Brexit, announcing job cuts and a three-day week at another facility.   "No jobs are affected by the two week shutdown and workers will continue to be paid by banking hours," the Unite Union said in a statement....

Investing.com - The dollar edged higher against a currency basket on Tuesday and the safe haven yen remained steady in cautious trade as rising U.S. bond yields and concerns over the outlook for global growth weighed on risk appetite. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.17% to 95.60 by 03:57 AM ET (07:57 AM GMT), not far from a six-week high of 95.78 reached last week. Demand for the dollar was underpinned as the move higher in U.S. Treasury yields continued, albeit at a slower pace than last week, sending the yield on 10-year Treasury notes to a fresh seven-year peak. The sell-off in Treasuries has been spurred by expectations for a potentially faster pace of rate hikes from the Federal R...

Investing.com - The euro extended early losses on Tuesday, falling to fresh seven-week lows as concerns over Italy’s fiscal outlook and a broadly stronger dollar weighed. EUR/USD was down 0.41% to 1.1444 by 07:16 AM ET (11:16 AM GMT), the weakest level since August 20. The single currency was pressured lower amid an ongoing row between Italy’s populist government and the European Commission over the country’s budget plans. Brussels and Rome have been at odds over the country's budget deficit plans for the next three years, which breach EC rules on running excessive deficits and high debt. The row has seen Italian bond yields rise amid fears that the decision to increase borrowing will prove unsustainable given the country’s debt load. But the leaders of It...

By Devika Krishna Kumar TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Reuters) - Powerful Hurricane Michael was hours away from smashing into Florida's northwestern shore with a wall of water and roof-shredding winds on Wednesday and authorities told residents along the coast they had run out of time to evacuate and should hunker down. A very dangerous Category 4 storm on five-step Saffir-Simpson scale, Michael had strengthened as it moved north over the Gulf of Mexico and by 8 a.m. ET (1200 GMT) was carrying top winds of 145 miles per hour (230 km per hour), the National Hurricane Center said. It was set to make landfall later on Wednesday on Florida's Panhandle and could drive sea water levels as high as 14 feet (4.3 meters) above normal, the centre said. The storm could strengthen further before coming ashore,...

Investing.com – Российскую национальную валюту ожидает насыщенная среда с точки зрения новостного фона. Как ожидает старший аналитик "Альпари" Роман Ткачук, происходящие 10 октября события будут иметь важное значение для динамики курса рубля в среднесрочной перспективе. Во-первых, в 12:30 МСК начинается выступление главы Центробанка Эльвиры Набиуллиной в Госдуме. Внимание будет направлено на формулировки о текущем состоянии экономики и дальнейшей монетарной политике в ожидании сигналов о будущем ключевой ставки, указывает Ткачук. >> Рубль ослаб под давлением санкционных рисков Во-вторых, в 16:00 МСК Росстат опубликует статистику по индексу потребительских цен за сентябрь. Данные по инфляции являются важным фактором для ЦБ при принятии решений, напоминает эксперт. Повыше...

(Bloomberg) -- Sanctions on Iranian oil exports are hitting much harder than most people predicted as the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump takes a tough line on enforcement, said executives from the world’s largest energy traders. Perhaps 2 million barrels a day of Iranian crude could eventually be lost to the global market, said Jeremy Weir, chief executive officer of Trafigura Group Pte. While other traders including Vitol Group of Cos. and Gunvor Group saw the impact closer to 1 million, that’s still twice as much as most people initially predicted. "Iranian exports of crude oil will be much reduced,” Vitol Chairman Ian Taylor said in a Bloomberg television interview. That’s largely the cause of the severe “fear factor” in the...

By Sudip Kar-Gupta and Foo Yun Chee PARIS/BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Thales (PA:TCFP) has offered concessions to address European Union antitrust concerns over the French aerospace and defence firm's 4.8-billion-euro ($5.6 billion) bid for chipmaker Gemalto (AS:GTO). In July, the European Commission began a full-scale investigation into the deal, which Thales hopes will make it a top player in digital security, saying that it could push up prices and reduce choices for customers. Thales, whose largest shareholder is the French state, said it had put concessions to the EU competition enforcer, after earlier disclosing talks with antitrust agencies. "We have offered a remedy proposal to the European Commission on GP HSM (general purpose hardware security modules), which it ...

(Bloomberg) -- Oil is poised for the biggest weekly decline since May as the turmoil in U.S. equities spur investors to shun risk assets at a time when American crude inventories are rising. Futures in New York were little changed, heading for a weekly drop of over 4 percent. The S&P 500 Index of equities is set for the worst week in more than six months on concerns over rising interest rates and the U.S.-China trade war. Everything from crude to zinc was hit by the sell-off, while gold -- a safe-haven -- surged the most in more than two years. Meanwhile, American crude stockpiles increased more than forecast, rising for a third week. “For oil, it’s important to look at the fundamental side because the recent decline is due to the risk-off sentiment across marke...

(Reuters) - Retail property developer Intu Properties (L:INTUP) confirmed on Friday it was considering a 215 pence per share preliminary takeover offer from a consortium formed by British billionaire John Whittaker and Saudi Arabian and Canadian investors. The consortium formed by Whittaker, Saudi Arabia's Olayan and Canadian property investor Brookfield Asset Management (TO:BAMa) has been granted access to company documents to conduct due diligence with a view to making a firm offer, the company said....

By Karin Strohecker LONDON (Reuters) - European shares gained on Monday amid relief over Italy's budget, following rallies in Asia after China promised to provide stimulus to stabilise its economy and offset the impact of U.S. tariffs. Promises of tax cuts and coordinated official statements of support for stock markets in the world's second-largest economy saw Chinese shares stage their biggest one-day surge in three years. Shanghai blue chips (CSI300) jumped around 4.5 percent, adding to Friday's bounce on Beijing's pledge of support for the economy and companies. Japan's Nikkei (N225) rose 0.4 percent. Markets elsewhere in Asia also enjoyed healthy gains. (HSI) (MIAPJ0000PUS) (TWII). European stocks (STOXX) opened higher after Moody's kept Italy's sovereign rating stable on Friday i...

Investing.com - The pound dropped on Monday following reports that Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) will back an amendment proposed by a group of pro-Brexit MPs from within Theresa May’s ruling Conservative party. Junior Brexit minister Steve Baker is proposing the amendment to block the European Union’s backstop plan. The amendment would effectively make the EU’s Irish border backstop proposal illegal. The pound fell below the $1.30 handle shortly after the Telegraph newspaper’s deputy political editor Steven Swinford sent a tweet stating that the DUP, who prop up Theresa May's minority government, would side with the Brexiteers.   Steven Swinford   ✔@Steven_Swinford     BREAKING:

DU...

Investing.com - Gold prices slipped from three-month highs on Wednesday as weakness in the euro and sterling pushed the dollar to nine-week highs. At 9:09 AM ET (13:09 GMT), gold futures for December delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange fell $1.20, or 0.10%, to $1,232.20 a troy ounce, backing away from $1,237.80 reached on Tuesday amid simmering geopolitical tensions. Meanwhile, the U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, gained 0.02% to 95.02. Dollar-denominated assets such as gold are sensitive to moves in the U.S. currency. A gain in the dollar makes gold more expensive for holders of foreign currency and decreases demand for the precious metal. The dollar i...

(Reuters) - Britain's competition watchdog imposed a 1.6 million pound fine on Heathrow Airport on Thursday after finding that the airport and the owner of Heathrow T5 Hotel Limited had infringed competition law. Heathrow Airport and Arora Holdings, parent of Heathrow T5 Hotel, had admitted to limiting competition for parking prices and infringing competition law in September, the Competition and Markets Authority said https://www.gov.uk/cma-cases/conduct-in-the-transport-sector-facilities-at-airports. Heathrow is owned by Ferrovial (MC:FER), Qatar Investment Authority, China Investment Corporation and other investors....

Investing.com - The dollar was down slightly but remained near a 10-week high on Friday as investors waited for quarterly economic data. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, inched down 0.06% 96.40 by 4:55 AM ET (8:55 GMT). Investors are waiting for third quarter U.S. gross domestic product data at 8:30 AM ET (12:30 GMT) to see if the economy has progressed enough for the Federal Reserve to continue raising rates. A strong reading could cause the greenback to strengthen even more. The U.S. economy is expected to have grown 3.3% the third quarter, compared to 4.2% in the second quarter. The dollar fell against the Japanese yen, with USD/JPY slipping 0.37% to 111.99. The Canadian dollar wa...

LONDON (Reuters) - The pound inched down to just above two-month lows on Monday as traders prepared for the British finance minister's annual budget speech later in the day. Philip Hammond will use his speech to urge his divided Conservative Party to back the government's plan for a Brexit deal, or put at risk a long-awaited easing of austerity. After a decade of cuts to public services, Hammond is expected to offer a glimpse of higher spending. But he will also make clear that more spending will hinge on London agreeing with Brussels on the terms of its exit from the European Union in March. The currency fell 0.1 percent to $1.2817 <gbp=d3>, close to two-month lows of $1.2777 touched last week.</gbp=d3> Against the euro, the pound traded flat at 88.880 pence per euro ...

Investing.com - The dollar remained near a 10-week high on Monday as the Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation measure rose, increasing chances of a rate increase. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, rose 0.27% to 96.62 as of 11:14 AM ET (15:14 GMT). The Fed's preferred inflation measure, the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index, rose 0.2% in September. The data bolsters expectations that the central bank will raise rates in December. Chances of a rate hike were priced in at 77.1%, according to Investing.com’s Fed Rate Monitor Tool. The dollar rose against the Japanese yen, with USD/JPY gaining 0.48% to 112.44. The Canadian dollar was lower, with USD/...

LONDON (Reuters) - Sterling languished at a ten-week low on Tuesday as concern about Britain's departure from the EU led investors to largely ignore hopes of an end to austerity raised by Britain's finance minister Philip Hammond. The pound has weakened 4 percent since September as traders fret over lack of progress in divorce talks over issues including the Irish border five months before Britain exits the European Union. After a decade of cuts to public services, Hammond's budget on Monday offered a glimpse of higher spending. But he made clear that will hinge on London getting a trade agreement with Brussels. "The market is entirely certain that the British economy will only be able to benefit from the attested end of austerity announced yesterday if an orderly Brexit is achieved," s...

LONDON (Reuters) - The number of companies registering as insolvent in England and Wales rose by 19.3 percent year-on-year during the third quarter on an underlying basis, official data showed on Tuesday. This was the biggest increase since the second quarter of 2009, during the depths of the financial crisis, and was driven by an increase in creditors' voluntary liquidations.   However, the number of individuals registering as insolvent fell by 2.5 percent compared with a year ago, the Insolvency Service, a British government agency, said.    ...

By Shinichi Saoshiro and Andrew Galbraith TOKYO/SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Asian stocks were set to end the month up from 20-month lows on Wednesday amid pledges by China to support its domestic markets, but sentiment was fragile after equity markets bled trillions of dollars in a grim October. A confluence of factors from Sino-U.S. trade tensions to worries about U.S. corporate earnings to the end of easy money in development economies have spurred volatility in financial markets in the past few weeks. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) was 1 percent higher on Wednesday afternoon, drawing support from gains on Wall Street overnight. Yet, it was on track to fall around 11 percent this month, which would be its worst monthly performance since September 20...

LONDON (Reuters) - UK shares jumped to a three-week high on Wednesday as upbeat results from Standard Chartered (L:STAN) and Smurfit Kappa (I:SKG) provided some respite from a ghoulish October that put the market on track for its worst month since August 2015. The blue-chip FTSE 100 (FTSE) was up 1.3 percent at 1002 GMT, with energy and financials providing the biggest lift as results eased investor worries about slowing corporate earnings and Brexit. "This rebound could well be down to some end-of-month position adjusting. However, there have been some indications in the past few days that we might be starting to see a bit of a short-term base, with most of the bad news already priced in to some extent," said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK. T...

EDINBURGH (Reuters) - British engineering and defence firm Babcock International(L:BAB) said it was closing its Appledore shipyard in Devon, a "difficult" decision after orders ran out. The southwest England yard had completed an Irish Navy order for an offshore patrol vessel in the last few weeks but did not carry out orders from Babcock's main client, Britain's Ministry of Defence. It had not had any new work for some time, a source familiar with the situation said. The cost of closing the site, the lease of which runs out in March, will be disclosed at a half year announcement later this month. Babcock said it hoped to offer all 199 of those employed at Appledore new work opportunities at other Babcock facilities, such as at nearby Devonport, which is a British Navy dockyard. I...

(Bloomberg) -- Normally, investors wanting to guess which way gold is headed look to the dollar. When the greenback goes up, the precious metal almost always goes down. Few assets have a stronger inverse correlation to the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index, with gold favored as a hedge against the world’s reserve currency. But that’s not what happened in October, a month when both assets gained ground for the first time in 20 months. The change has been driven by last month’s rout in emerging market equities, and particularly in China, which has seen investors seek out haven assets. At the same time, the strength of the U.S. economy is benefiting the dollar. The inverse relationship between gold and the dollar could continue to break down, said Michael McCarthy, chief marke...

Investing.com - The dollar was flat on Friday, despite an upbeat jobs report and news that a trade deal between the U.S. and China is not likely. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was flat at 96.28 as of 11:04 AM ET (15:04 GMT). The greenback rose briefly after the jobs report data, but was flat soon after. Nonfarm payrolls rose by 250,000 in October, higher than the consensus forecast. The jobless rate was also steady, while average hourly earnings advanced 0.2%, as expected. The positive report supports the case for the Federal Reserve to increase interest rates in December, which is likely to put pressure on gold. Chances of a December rate hike are priced in at 77.6%, according to Investing.com's ...

By Hideyuki Sano TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian shares wavered on Tuesday with sentiment tempered ahead of the U.S. midterm elections, the first major electoral test of President Donald Trump's big tax cuts and hostile trade policies. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) edged down 0.1 percent, weighed by a fall in Chinese shares and technology stocks while Japan's Nikkei (N225) managed to gain 1.0 percent. Shares in Asia-Pacific Apple suppliers, such as Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry (TW:2317), eased after Apple Inc (O:AAPL) lost 2.8 percent following a report in the Nikkei newspaper that Apple had told smartphone assemblers to halt plans for additional production lines dedicated to the iPhone XR. On Wall Street, the S&P 500 (SPX) gaine...

By Henning Gloystein SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Oil prices fell on Wednesday, extending losses from the previous session, with markets well supplied amid rising production and U.S. sanction waivers that allow Iran's biggest customers to continue buying its crude. Front-month Brent crude oil futures (LCOc1) were at $71.85 per barrel at 0115 GMT, down 28 cents, or 0.4 percent, from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures (CLc1) were at $61.76 per barrel, down 45 cents, or 0.7 percent, from their last settlement. The increasingly well supplied market has turned sentiment, which until early October was largely bullish, pushing Brent to four-year highs of more than $86 per barrel ahead of the Iran sanctions. Brent and WTI have lost 17.4 and 19.7 percent in value respe...

Investing.com - The dollar edged higher against a currency basket on Thursday as investors turned their attention to a monetary policy announcement from the Federal Reserve later in the day, while the pound remained supported above the 1.30 level on Brexit optimism. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.18% to 95.98 by 04:01 AM ET (09:01 AM GMT). The dollar regained ground after sliding in the previous session as the prospect of gridlock in Washington in the wake of midterm elections looked likely to significantly curtail President Donald Trump’s legislative agenda. The greenback has strengthened broadly this year, boosted by a robust domestic economy, rising interest rates and the effects of U....

By Lawrence White and Emma Rumney LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's big banks, long able to shrug off competition from start-ups, have been spooked by an account launched just six weeks ago by Goldman Sachs (N:GS) that pays savers more. One of the banks admitted privately that it has seen a spike in savers switching, while others have launched new accounts or raised rates to try to nip "Marcus" in the bud. British savers have got used to payouts of 1 percent or less thanks to rock-bottom central bank rates, but the launch of Marcus with a 1.5 percent rate on Sept. 27 has shaken things up. Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) searches for "savings account" hit a five-year peak in Britain in the week of the Marcus launch, a Reuters analysis of data from Google trends shows. (https://tmsnrt.rs/2DbEu6z) "Yes...

(Bloomberg) -- U.K. negotiators have secured a deal with the European Union to exit the bloc, and on Wednesday Prime Minister Theresa May will try to win over her Cabinet and later, Parliament. For investors, a done deal would remove one of the biggest overhangs in European markets since the 2016 vote. Of course, we’re not exactly there yet. Some U.K. ministers have preferred quitting to backing May’s blueprint in the past, and the math for getting it through Parliament still looks challenging. But traders are turning a little more optimistic, with the pound gaining as much as 1.5 percent on Tuesday and domestic mid-caps jumping. It’s too early to breathe a sigh of relief, but this is what an orderly Brexit could mean for U.K. markets: Currency It’s prime time f...