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Good morning. Coronavirus cases on a cruise ship are climbing, Credit Suisse’s CEO is out and we’ll get the biggest European IPO of the year so far. Here’s what’s moving markets.
The cruise ship quarantined in Japan is now the biggest center of infection of the new coronavirus outside of China, with 61 people on board sick. Meanwhile, Beijing is growing increasingly angry at countries imposing harsh travel restrictions on visitors from China, where the number of infections has now passed 31,000 on the mainland. Sadly, the Chinese doctor who issued an early warning about the virus has died, stoking fresh anger online.
Credit Suisse Drama
Credit Suisse Group AG Chief Executive Officer Tidjane Thiam is stepping down and will be replaced by Thomas Gottstein. The move comes after escalating tension between Thiam and Chairman Urs Rohner culminated in a board meeting in Zurich. Major investors in the U.S. and the U.K. had warned that Rohner had to publicly back his hand-picked CEO. Credit Suisse on Friday morning said Rohner has the unanimous backing of the board until his term ends in April 2021.
The largest European listing of the year takes place today, with Calisen Plc going to market in London. The smart-meter company, which is backed by KKR & Co., is a test of demand of investor appetite for companies with a environmental, social and governance focus as well as for the U.K. capital post-Brexit. As London hit a decade-low for IPO activity in 2019, with offerings by British issuers particularly sparse, Calisen’s float could open the door for more if it does well in its first trading session Friday.
Following this week’s State of the Union speech, we’ll get a real look at the state of the U.S. job market today. The report is projected to show U.S. employers added more than 165,000 jobs in January-- less than last year’s 176,000 average but still enough to keep unemployment at a half-century low. At the same time, revisions of 2019 payroll stats will probably pour some cold water on past figures. A preliminary projection released in August forecast payrolls will be revised down 501,000 in the year through March. Friday’s report will include historical revisions for all of 2019.
Asian stocks retreated after their biggest daily jump since June and U.S. futures slipped after Wall Street notched a fresh record high. Earnings slow down today after a busy week; French video-game maker Ubisoft Entertainment SA and cosmetics company L’Oreal SA both came out with better-than-expected revenue after the market closed Thursday. Uber Technologies Inc. shares will be worth keeping an eye on later as the company forecast its first-ever quarterly profit by the end of this year.
What We’ve Been Reading
This is what’s caught our eye over the past 24 hours.
- Man vs. Microbe. The endless war.
- I sabotaged my boss with ransomware.
- How to get dates for Valentine’s day.
- World’s oldest luxury-car brand goes #vanlife.
- It’s not just America. ETFs are invading the U.K.
- Brexit halo fades for Irish leader.
- White House weighs ouster of aide who testified against Trump.
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