10 Things You Need To Know This Morning


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Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.

  • Asian indices were mixed in overnight trading with the Shanghai Composite up 0.87%. Major European indices are mixed and U.S. markets have opened positive. Caterpillar earnings came in well ahead of estimates, and the company has raised its 2011 outlook.
  • Economic data for Spain was out today, unemployment reached 21.3% and retail sales decreased for the ninth straight month, falling by 8.6% year-over-year. Don’t miss: Niall Ferguson’s new presentation on the decline of the West >
  • Personal income was up slightly more than expected, up 0.5%. Spending was also up a little more than expected, rising 0.6%.
  • The EU is investigating 16 major banks including JPMorgan, Citigroup, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs over their alleged collusion in the market for credit default swaps.
  • Microsoft earnings beat expectations for the March quarter after sales rose to $16.43 billion, up from $14.5 billion last year. The company reported earnings of $0.61 a share but reported a drop in quarterly sales of its Windows operating system. Check out the 10 top executives that left Microsoft in the last decade >
  • BlackBerry maker RIM cut its earnings forecast to $1.30 – $1.37 a share, down from $1.47 to $1.55. Investors had expected the company to announce a sale. 
  • Hui Xian real estate investment trust became the first yuan-denominated IPO outside of China last night. Shares slumped 9.4% to end at 4.75 yuan on its debut, dropping below its offer price of 5.24 yuan. Check out these incredible photos of Chinese ghost cities >
  • Consumer sentiment data came in pretty much in line with expectations. Read about it here >
  • Chicago PMI came in a little weaker than expected. Read about it here >
  • Vale, Brazilian miner of iron ore, copper and other metals, is investing $1.4 billion in Norte Energia for a stake in the Belo Monte Dam project in the Amazon. This would be the world’s third largest hydro-electric project. Don’t miss: 10 facts about Brazil that will blow your mind >
  • BONUS: Kate Middleton and Prince William are now married. Follow our coverage here >