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Good morning. Markets are assessing what the trade war goal is, Brexit may return in full force in June and Federal Reserve officials are urging policy patience. Here’s what’s moving markets.
Tactic or Goal?
Markets calmed themselves on Tuesday after the trade war-sparked rout the day before. President Donald Trump is still sounding optimistic a deal will get done, but economists are increasingly worried the tariffs are the goal, not a tactic, and that the trade war will get worse before it gets better. Trump’s even turned to the Federal Reserve, so often the target of his now China-heavy Twitter ire, to call for it to match any stimulus China is likely to unleash to keep its softening economy stable. All of which bodes ominously for the global outlook, even if markets seem to think this is about as far as it will go.
Summer of Brexit
Block out June in your Brexit diary because that's when Prime Minister Theresa May is planning to put a deal back in front of lawmakers. The Cabinet has decided that it is “imperative” a deal is put before Parliament again before the summer recess, which normally happens in July. May is therefore heading back into talks with the opposition Labour Party, which have thus far proved unsuccessful. Workers, however, are enjoying wage gains as labor shortages increase their bargaining power. Luxury property owners, however, are still miserable.
Another day, another set of views from central bankers to pontificate over. From the Federal Reserve, Esther George expressed her opposition to any rate cuts, warning that could lead to asset price bubbles and eventually recession. Her colleague John Williams says trade tariffs will push inflation up and that he has no rate bias either way right now. Overall, the message remains to have patience. At the European Central Bank, Francois Villeroy de Galhau sees no reason for a change in policy and revealed his views on the relative merits of different cryptocurrencies.
Uber Technologies Inc.’s terrible stock market debut, which got a little less bad on Tuesday, may have spoiled the party for IPOs this year but in Europe companies are pushing ahead regardless. Financial services firm Finablr had been struggling to find investors for its planned listing but rather than quit, it has cut the price and is going ahead. And after the collapse of a planned merger with J Sainsbury Plc, Walmart Inc.-owned U.K. grocer Asda is a serious potential candidate for listing. Still, analysts think the reprieve for Uber may not last long, so the mood could sour again.
Weakness in the Chinese economy is spurring expectations of stimulus and has helped Asian stocks higher on Wednesday. European and U.S. stock futures also indicate a green open. Later, euro area GDP data is due, as is industrial production from Italy and from the U.S. later in the day. There are also a few big names reporting results, including catering services giant Compass Group Plc, information services firm Experian Plc and James Bond's favored car maker, Aston Martin Lagonda Global Holdings Plc.
What We’ve Been Reading
This is what’s caught our eye over the past 24 hours.
- The $1.9 trillion fund giant and its crazy investment idea.
- A hedge fund offering to share the risk of losses.
- A Hong Kong doctor and a spectacular stock explosion.
- Car snobs now love this ‘90s wagon they once mocked.
- Veganism is proving a big winner for stock investors.
- The weird world of virtual bike racing, courtesy of the Decrypted podcast.
- The lavish wedding that turned out to be a scam.
©2019 Bloomberg L.P.