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Global Market Report - April 16, 2018

World markets have so far dismissed prospect of a protracted military conflict in the Middle East

James Gard 16 April, 2018 | 10:55AM

Asia

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region were mixed on Monday as fears eased that the weekend’s air strikes on Syria would trigger a stock market correction.

China and Hong Kong benchmarks were around 1.5% lower than Friday’s close, but Japan’s Nikkei 225 and Topix indices closed up on the day as the US dollar held up above 107 yen.

Tuesday is a big day for Chinese data: March retail sales and industrial production will be overshadowed by the first-quarter GDP number. The Chinese economy is expected to have grown by 6.8% in the first three months of the year, against the same period in 2017.

Europe

Investors in global ad giant WPP (WPP) had their first chance to react to news that Martin Sorrell is to step down as chief executive. The company’s shares fell around 3% as shareholders mulled the prospect of the company being broken up, or Sir Martin launching a rival company.

At the other end of the FTSE 100, shares in Premier Inn and Costa Coffee owner Whitbread (WTB) rose on talk that coffee arm could be spun off.

This week sees the release of two key UK economic indicators: unemployment and wage data on Tuesday and inflation on Wednesday. The rise in the cost of living as measure by the Consumer Price Index is expected to remain at 2.7%, while the Retail Price Index is forecast to have dipped in March to 3.6%.

Otherwise, UK and eurozone exchanges made modest moves: the FTSE 100 was down slightly while the EuroStoxx was flat in midmorning trading.

North America

US earnings season gets into its stride this week after JP Morgan (JPM) kicked off proceedings on Friday. The company’s profits rose to a record high, but shares fell as investors noted the missed profit forecast and weaker investment banking revenues.

Bank of America (BAC) is up today before the market open, while tech star Netflix (NFLX) – whose share price has doubled in a year – reports after the market closes on Monday.

Before the market opens on Monday, investors will have sight of March retail sales figures, which are expected to show a month-on-month gain, against a slight fall in February.

 

 

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Securities Mentioned in Article
Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar
Rating
Bank of America Corporation30.19 USD0.00
JPMorgan Chase & Co110.41 USD0.00
Netflix Inc307.02 USD0.00
Whitbread PLC4,186.00 GBP0.00-
WPP PLC1,116.50 GBP0.00
About Author

James Gard  is subeditor for Morningstar.co.uk