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Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
- Asian markets were mixed in overnight trading, with the Hang Seng down 1.15 per cent dragged down by banks after a four-day weekend. Europe is lower and U.S. markets are modestly lower.
- Chinese exports grew 8.9 per cent year-over-year in March to $165.6 billion, while imports grew 5.3 per cent to $160.3 billion. The Asian giant returned to a trade surplus but growth in imports and exports was hit by weak U.S. and European demand. Don’t Miss: The 15 American states that would get slammed by a Chinese slowdown >
- German exports climbed 1.6 per cent in February from the previous month, beating expectations of a 1.2 per cent drop. The trade surplus grew to €14.7 billion.
- In earnings news, Alcoa is expected to report a loss of $0.04 per share and investors will be watching the announcement for information on China the world’s largest aluminium consumer.
- Chesapeake Energy has said it will raise $2.6 billion from three deals that would help fund drilling and close a financial gap. Energy giants like Chesapeake that have been exposed to low natural gas prices are putting more funds towards drilling for oil. Now here are the companies that will make a killing off of the coming ‘industrial revolution’ in America >
- Wholesale trade data for February will be released at 10 a.m. ET. Consensus is for a 0.6 per cent month-over-month rise in inventories. Follow the release at Money Game >
- Sony posted a record $6.4 billion loss after taking a massive $3.7 billion tax charge. This comes after news that the company plans to cut 10,000 jobs or 6 per cent of its global workforce.
- Last night Fed chairman Ben Bernanke said banks need a bigger capital buffer. Bernanke made few remarks about the economy and focused on financial regulation when he spoke at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Don’t Miss: No mention of QE3 In Bernanke’s Big Atlanta Speech >
- In politics news, The White House is making a big push for The Buffett Rule today, which would basically put a minimum tax of 30% on all millionaires.
- French business confidence was unchanged at 95 in March, after declining in February. Manufacturing production fell 1.2 per cent. The data adds to concerns that France is struggling to grow in the midst of Europe’s debt crisis.
- Bonus – Jennifer Love Hewitt is embarrassed about her crush on Adam Levine and thinks she should write him an apology on Twitter.
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