Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
- Asian indices were up in overnight trading with the Hang Seng up 1.64%. Europe is higher and U.S. futures have opened higher.
- German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cabinet approved expansion of the euro zone’s bailout fund today. But German deputy finance minister Jorg Asmussen said the bailout fund is already big enough and some members of Merkel’s centre-right coalition have threatened to vote against giving the European Financial Stability Facility more powers. Now meet Germany, the strong man of Europe >
- German unemployment in August fell a seasonally adjusted 8,000 to 2.95 million. The jobless rate held steady at 7%. Unemployment fell for a 26th straight month. Meanwhile retail sales held steady in July. Check out 15 rich countries facing a huge unemployment problem >
- European inflation held steady at 2.5% in August, after having climbed to 2.7% in the twelve-months to June. The ECB inflated target is just under 2% but it may stave off interest rate hikes over concerns of slowing growth in the region. Now here are 10 hyperinflation horror stories of the 21st century >
- Baliffs raided BP’s Moscow office today because of a dispute with Russian oil partner TNK-BP. The raid was related to a lawsuit by minority shareholders in TNK-BP who are suing for $3 billion after a BP-Rosneft deal to explore for oil in the Russian arctic fell through. This comes after ExxonMobil signed a historic $500 billion deal with Rosneft yesterday. Don’t Miss: A former BP exec’s presentation on why peak oil is real >
- The ADP jobs report showed 91K jobs added in August, well below market estimates of 110K. Chicago PMI data for August came in at 56.5, beating expectations >
- July factory orders rose 2.4%, beating expectations >
- Joy Global Inc. posted Q3 earnings of $172 million or $1.61 per share, against estimates of $1.53 per share and said it will sell its drilling products business for $375 million in cash. The company also raised its 2011-outlook and now expects earnings of $5.70 – $6 a share, on revenue of $4.3 billion – $4.5 billion.
- UK consumer sentiment fell to -31 in August from -30 in July, as households grew less confident about the country’s economic outlook. An index that measures household expectations for the economy over the next year fell 4 points to -31.
- Bank of America Corp is reportedly looking to sell its correspondent mortgage business and the unit’s employees could be given the word today. The unit employs more than 1,000 people but no longer meets the long-term strategy for its mortgage unit. Now read about the bomb that could blow a hole in Bank of America >
- BONUS – Blake Lively flew to Australia for a belated birthday weekend with boyfriend Leonardo DiCaprio.