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Good morning! Here’s what you need to know in markets on Friday.
1. The White House announced sanctions on Russians in response to election meddling. The sanctions target Russian nationals and entities charged last month in Mueller’s investigation.
2. Stock-trading app Robinhood could be valued at $5.6 billion when it closes an upcoming fundraising round, according to a Thursday report in The Wall Street Journal.According to The Journal’s sources, the funding round is being led by Russian billionaire Yuri Miller’s investment firm, DST Global.
3. Goldman Sachs wants women to make up half of its global workforce, starting with new analysts by 2021, the Wall Street bank said on Thursday, as it stepped up efforts to address gender and racial imbalance across the board.“The advancement of women in the workplace – and more broadly the state of diversity at our firm – is top of mind for all of us,” Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein and President and co-Chief Operating Officer David Solomon said in an internal memo posted on its website.
4. Uber is discussing the possibility of installing its self-driving system in Toyota vehicles as the U.S. ride-hailing firm seeks to sell its autonomous driving technology to outside companies, the Nikkei reported on Friday. Without citing sources, the Japanese business daily said that the firms are negotiating a possible deal for Toyota to use Uber’s automated driving technology in one of the automaker’s minivan models.
5. Oil prices crept higher on Friday after the International Energy Agency said global crude demand would accelerate this year, but warned supply is growing at a faster pace.NYMEX crude for April delivery was up 5 cents, or 0.1%, at $61.24 a barrel at 0048 GMT, after settling up 23 cents on Thursday.
6. Asian stocks were on the defensive on Friday as worries over the U.S. investigation into the Trump Organization tested investor nerves, already frayed by fears U.S. tariffs could hurt the global economy and trigger a trade war. Japan’s benchmark index, the Nikkei 225, was down 0.55% to 21,684 at the close of play.
7. The legal fight over a complex Credit Suisse financial instrument betting on stock market swings is expanding, with a new lawsuit targeting one of the product’s service providers.An investor on Thursday sued both the bank and the service provider, a unit of Janus Henderson Group PLC, over the VelocityShares Daily Inverse VIX Short-Term Exchange-Traded Note (ETN).
8. Japan’s parliament approved on Friday the government’s nominees for central bank governor and deputy governors, Lower House Speaker Tadamori Oshima said.Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda has been approved for another five-year term after his current one ends in April.
9. Wall Street banks are at “an inflection point.” According to a big report from Morgan Stanley and Oliver Wyman on wholesale banks and asset managers, it’s now time for banks to shift their focus towards corporate business, versus the institutional investor clients they’ve been focused on.
10. A trade war would bring forward the next financial crisis sooner than expected, according to Societe Generale Strategist Albert Edwards. For several years, Edwards has warned that “waves of deflation” would cause a 2008-style crisis.