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Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
- Asian indices were up in overnight trading with the Hang Seng up 1.99%. Europe is trading higher and U.S. futures opened lower, than pre-market highs.
- China’s manufacturing index for August came in at 49.8, compared with a final reading of 49.3 in July. Although a figure below 50 indicates contraction, the the report suggests a softer slowdown than expected. Check out 18 facts about China that will blow your mind >
- Eurozone August manufacturing PMI fell to 49.7 in August, from 50.4 in July, but came in line with expectations. France’s manufacturing PMI fell but its services PMI was up from the previous month. German manufacturing PMI came in line with July, but ahead of expectations.
- German investor confidence in August fell to a 2 1/2 year low. The ZEW centre’s index of investor and analyst expectations fell more than expected to -37.6, from -15.1 in July. A four-week rout in the stock markets that wiped about 25% off the DAX, fears of a global slowdown, and stalled GDP growth in the second quarter, have been blamed for low investor confidence. Now here are 14 facts about Germany, the strong man of Europe >
- Swiss Bank UBS has announced that it is cutting 3,500 jobs, or about 5% of its global workforce. Most of the cuts are expected to come from its investment banking unit, and are part of an effort to save $2.5 billion in annual costs. Don’t miss: The 16 strongest banks in the world >
- Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs stock closed down 4.7% yesterday, on news that CEO Lloyd Blankfein hired high-profile Washington defence attorney Reid Weingarten. It is unclear whether the lawyer is for him or the company, but reports suggest it may have to do with accusations of perjury.
- Medical technology firm Convatec has made a rival bid for U.S. maker of medical devices, Kinetic Concepts. Apax Partners had previously made a $5 billion offer for Kinetic, which, including debt totaled $6.3 billion. Convatec’s bid is reported to exceed $6.3 billion.
- New home sales for July fell to 298K seasonally adjusted annual rate, missing expectations of 315K >
- The U.S. committee on foreign investment approved Deutsche Boerse’s proposed takeover of the New York Stock Exchange, removing a regulatory hurdle to the deal. Deutsche Boerse’s takeover still faces obstacles including the competition authorities in the U.S. and Europe.
- Standard & Poor’s President Deven Sharma is stepping down weeks after announcing a downgrade of U.S.’s AAA credit rating. Sharma will be replaced by Douglas Peterson, chief operating officer of Citibank N.A., Citigroup Inc.’s chief banking arm. See how McGraw Hill went from publishing railroad journals to downgrading U.S. debt >
- BONUS – Jennifer Garner and husband Ben Affleck are expecting their third child together.