- Reuters/Denis Balibouse
Here is what you need to know.
China’s GDP was in line. China’s economy grew at a 6.7% year-over-year clip in the first quarter, matching economist expectations. The reading was a tick below the 6.8% growth experienced in the fourth quarter, and the weakest since Q1 2009. “The overall performance of national economy continued to be stable and move in a positive direction, with structural adjustment deepened, new impetus accumulated and positive changes showed on major indicators,” China’s National Bureau of Statistics said.
The biggest oil meeting in decades takes place on Sunday. Major oil producers will gather in Doha, Qatar, on Sunday to discuss a potential oil-production freeze. Expectations for a deal are low, with RBC’s commodities research team suggesting, “As it stands now, we believe that the most likely outcome is that producers fail to close the deal and announce a freeze on Sunday, but that they instead pledge to continue to conversation and even possibly put an additional OPEC/non-OPEC meeting on the calendar for later in the year.” Notably, Iran has said it won’t send its oil minister to the meeting, which could pose a problem as Saudi Arabia has suggested it won’t agree to a deal unless Iran is involved. Crude oil is down 1.9% at $40.72 a barrel.
Europe is buying more cars. European auto sales jumped 8.2% YoY in the first quarter to 3.8 million. While purchases rose in every country, Italy saw an eye-popping 20.8% surge. Volkswagen sales slipped 0.5%, making it the only top-10 automaker to see a decline.
Brazil’s president failed to block an impeachment vote. Embattled Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff failed to block an impeachment vote in the lower house of Congress. According to the Associated Press, Brazil’s Supreme Court voted eight to two in favor of striking down a motion that attempted to block the vote, saying it wasn’t appropriate to get involved at this point. The impeachment vote will take place on Sunday.
The IMF says tax avoidance is a global risk. The Financial Times reports that IMF head Christine Lagarde thinks more needs to be done on an international level to prevent tax avoidance. Lagarde said the issue is no longer “a local matter associated with sovereignty” and that “international co-operation has to be significantly improved.”
Bats is going public. The stock-exchange operator has priced its initial public offering at $19 a share. Friday’s IPO will raise about $253 million, making it the largest IPO of 2016. This is the exchange’s second attempt at an IPO. It previously tried to go public in 2012, but a computer malfunction kept shares from trading. Bats will trade on its own exchange under the ticker symbol BATS.
Citigroup beats. The bank earned an adjusted $1.10 a share on revenue of $17.60 billion. Both numbers were better than the Bloomberg consensus. Earnings from the big banks continue to flow next week with Morgan Stanley reporting on Monday and Goldman Sachs reporting on Tuesday.
Earnings reports trickle out. Infosys and Regions Financial release their quarterly results ahead of the opening bell.
Stock markets around the world are lower. Japan’s Nikkei (-0.4%) led the losses in Asia and Germany’s DAX (-0.7%) paces the decline in Europe. S&P 500 futures are down 3.50 points at 2073.25.
US economic data is heavy. Empire Manufacturing is released at 8:30 a.m. ET before industrial production and capacity utilization cross the wires at 9:15 a.m. ET. Then, at 10 a.m. ET, University of Michigan consumer sentiment is due out. Data concludes for the week with the announcement of net long-term TIC flows at 4 p.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is lower by 3 basis points at 1.76%.