- Reuters/Abhishek Chinnappa
This is what traders are talking about.
Europe is back in deflation. Euro area inflation fell 0.2% in April, according to Eurostat’s preliminary reading. The number was expected to fall by 0.1%, a drop from March’s 0.0% print. While a large part of the decline can be attributed to the drop in oil prices, the core reading wasn’t much better. Those prices showed disinflation, or a slowing of price gains, rising 0.8% compared with the previous look of 0.9%. Economists had forecast a bump up to 1%. The euro is up 0.4% at 1.1396 per dollar.
China’s yuan fixing saw its biggest move since 2005. The People’s Bank of China set the midpoint of its yuan trading band at 6.4589 per dollar. This was weaker by 0.6% compared with Thursday’s fixing and was the biggest adjustment since 2005, according to CNBC.
The Japanese yen keeps getting stronger. The currency briefly strengthened to better than 107.00 per dollar, something it hadn’t done since October 2014. The yen has rallied about 4% since Thursday’s Bank of Japan decision that kept policy on hold when it was widely anticipated the central bank would announce further easing. The yen is now stronger by 1% near 107.00 per dollar.
Precious metals are surging. Silver is up 1.4% at $17.80 an ounce, its best level since February 2015. A 0.9% advance for gold has it above $1,278 an ounce and on track for its best close in 15 months.
Amazon posted a big beat. The online marketplace earned $1.07 a share in its first quarter as revenue jumped 27% year-over-year to $29.1 billion. Both numbers were well ahead of their respective Bloomberg consensus. Amazon’s Web Services revenue climbed 64% YoY to $2.57 billion, edging out the $2.53 billion that was expected. The Q1 net profit of $513 million was the largest ever for the company. Amazon shares are higher by 12.5% ahead of the opening bell.
LinkedIn beat on the top and bottom lines. The professional networking site announced first-quarter adjusted earnings of $0.74 a share, easily beating the $0.60 that was expected. Revenue surged 35% versus a year ago to $860.7 million, well ahead of the $828 million that Wall Street was anticipating. “We continue to invest heavily in innovation and in our core products, while at the same time driving focus and scale to enable growth and leverage across the business,” CFO Steve Sordello said in the earnings release. Shares of LinkedIn are up 7.6% in premarket trade.
AB InBev says it will sell more of SAB’s European assets. The world’s largest brewer says it will sell SABMiller’s Eastern European assets to win regulatory approval for its $100 billion takeover, Reuters reports. The announcement comes as Anheuser-Busch InBev readies for the European Commission’s verdict, which will be announced no later than May 24. AB InBev has already said it will sell SABMiller’s Grolsch, Peroni, and Meantime brands to Japan’s Asahi Group Holdings for €2.55 billion ($2.90 billion) if the deal is approved.
Earnings reports continue to flow. AstraZeneca, Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Phillips 66 are among the companies releasing their quarterly results before the opening bell.
Stock markets pretty much everywhere are in the red. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng (-1.5%) led the losses in Asia, and Japan’s Nikkei was closed. In Europe, Spain’s IBEX (-1.9%) paces the decline. S&P 500 futures are down 3.00 points at 2,069.50.
US economic data is heavy. Personal income and spending, PCE core prices, and the Employment Cost Index will all be released at 8:30 a.m. ET before Chicago PMI crosses the wires at 9:45 a.m. ET and University of Michigan consumer sentiment is announced at 10 a.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is higher by 2 basis points at 1.84%.