Week 19 2017

Week 19 2017

08 May – 12 May


08 May


Yields on Greek government debt have hit fresh lows in the aftermath of the French presidential result, as investors’ fears of a eurozone breakup recede.


Didi Chuxing is launching a bilingual version of its ride-hailing app and accepting international credit cards, enabling foreigners — who had been left fuming at its withdrawal — to use the Uber-type service in China once again.


Alfa Financial Software has announced plans to join the London Stock Exchange next month, in what is likely to be the largest UK technology listing for two years.


The euro dropped and French stocks were weaker on Monday morning as attention turned to economic growth and the challenges of implementing a reform agenda after Emma


09 May


The pace of Federal Reserve rate increases that fixed-income investors are currently expecting is still “much too slow”, with central bankers likely to fret about the unemployment rate falling too low even if inflation remains tepid, Goldman Sachs said on Monday.


Inflation in the Netherlands rose more than expected during April. The consumer price index rose 1.6 per cent last month from a year earlier, a solid advance on the 1.1 per cent pace registered in March.


US stocks closed flat on Monday, after Apple shares surged to an all-time high and the Vix index closed at its lowest point since 1993. Both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite inched higher at the start of trading to set new all-time highs, the gauges quickly trimmed those gains to close flat as losses in materials shares offset gains in the energy and technology sectors.


Hertz shares fell sharply in extended trading after the car-rental chain reported a larger-than-expected quarterly loss in the midst of turnaround efforts. Shares in the Florida-based company tumbled more than 17 per cent in extended trading on Monday after the company reported a net loss of $223m or $2.69 a share from continuing operations, compared with a narrower loss of $52m or 61 cents a share in the year-ago period.


10 May


Irish household indebtedness fell more than 20 times faster than the EU as a whole in 2016, highlighting the extent of the country’s recovery from its debt-induced crisis.


Greg Clark, the energy secretary, surprised personal finance experts and utility companies alike on Tuesday when he admitted he had never himself switched electricity or gas supplier.


Hazelnut prices have surged almost 10 per cent in the past two weeks after the Turkish government intervened to support the market for the first time in eight years.


The Yaya Chemist in a smartish downtown Nairobi shopping centre is more than a place to pick up prescriptions or buy cough syrup, shampoo and mosquito spray. In one corner is a tiny consultation room, where customers can have simple tests and receive medical advice. It costs roughly 50 cents to have your blood pressure checked, $2 for blood-sugar levels and $10 for your cholesterol level. In similar pharmacies across Africa, patients can access services from “nutritional consultations” to HIV and malaria tests.


11 May


Brussels has laid out the scale of the task facing new French president Emmanuel Macron to balance France’s troublesome public finances as it warned that Paris’ efforts to rein in spending would prove more difficult than previously thought.


Aviva chief executive Mark Wilson has hit out at the UK’s personal insurance market, describing it as “dysfunctional” and said that the company would be addressing the issue of premiums sharply rising at renewal.


Emerging markets have come roaring back into fashion. Cross-border flows to EM bonds and equities topped $20bn for the third consecutive month in April, making this their biggest three-month positive streak since 2014, according to the Institute of International Finance (IIF), an industry association.


The army of independent software developers producing applications for the Windows operating system was once one of Microsoft’s strongest assets. As the number of applications grew, users were drawn to buy PCs, in turn attracting more attention from developers — a virtuous circle that turned Microsoft into a monopoly.


12 May


The German economy gathered speed in the first quarter of the year, underpinning predictions from the European Central Bank and the European Commission that the eurozone’s hesitant recovery is growing stronger.


Spain’s inflation rate picked up faster than expected in April after March’s pullback, the country’s statistics agency has confirmed.


There is a striking divergence in yields across eurozone bank and high-yield bonds. The accompanying chart shows the extent to which the riskiest class of bank bonds known as Cocos are yielding more than similarly rated corporate high-yield bonds.


Independent directors of Dow Chemical and DuPont are to review plans for splitting up the company once their agreed $142bn merger is completed, after investors raised concerns that the existing proposals might not maximise shareholder value.