10 things you need to know in markets today

Getty/Cameron Spencer

Good morning! Here’s what you need to know on Thursday.

1. Facebook handily beat analysts’ expectations on both the top and bottom line for its first quarter of 2018 – sending its stock jumping more than 7% in after-hours trading on Wednesday.The social network’s quarterly revenues grew 49% year-on-year to $US11.9 billion, while its earnings per share (EPS) was $US1.69 – well in excess of the predicted $US1.35. And it announced it was significantly increasing its share buybacks by $US9 billion.

2. Deutsche Bank on Thursday announced cuts to its investment bank after posting a 79 per cent drop in net profit in the first quarter.Deutsche Banks said it will scale back its bond and equities trading activities, including cuts to its business with hedge funds. The bulk of the cuts will focus on the United States and Asia.

3. Royal Dutch Shell on Thursday reported a 42% rise in profits in the first quarter of 2018, the highest in over three years, boosted by higher oil prices and beating analysts’ expectations.Net income attributable to shareholders in the quarter, based on a current cost of supplies (CCS) and excluding identified items, rose to $US5.322 billion from a year ago, compared with a company-provided analysts’ consensus of $US5.277 billion.

4. Samsung Electronics posted a record quarterly profit, as expected, for the three months through March, led by firm demand for memory chips.Operating profit for the world’s biggest chipmaker was 15.6 trillion won ($US14.4 billion) in the first quarter, up 58 per cent from a year ago and in line with the 15.6 trillion won the company had estimated.

5. Financial technology startup Revolut has raised $US250 million in a blockbuster “Series C” funding round.The investment, one of the largest-ever in European fintech, values Revolut at $US1.7 billion. It means the 33-month-old company has grown its valuation by more than five times in a year.

6. British bank Barclays and digital payments firm PayPal have announced a partnership that will see them explore ways to combine their services for customers, Barclays said on Thursday.The pair aim to allow Barclays customers in the United States and Britain to use their PayPal accounts on the bank’s online and mobile phone-based platforms while Barclays products will be used in PayPal accounts.

7. Ford reported first-quarter earnings after the markets closed on Wednesday and beat analysts expectations, with a profit of $US0.43 per share and revenue of $US42 billion.“We are committed to taking the appropriate actions to drive profitable growth and maximise the returns of our business over the long term,” CEO Jim Hackett said in a statement.

8. Shares of AMD (Advanced Micro Devices) soared more than 7% in after-hours trading Wednesday after the chip maker’s first-quarter results topped analyst expectations.The company said it earned an adjusted $US0.11 per share, outpacing the $US0.09 that analysts surveyed by Bloomberg were expecting. Revenue was $US1.65 billion, which was ahead of the $US1.57 billion that Wall Street was anticipating.

9. Central bankers rescued the world in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis when governments were dysfunctional, Jacob Frenkel, chairman of JPMorgan International, said.Frenkel criticised the ineffectiveness of governments since the financial crisis of 2008 which forced central banks to take their place in the “front line” of policy making, he said at an event in London on Tuesday.

10. The US entertainment giant Comcast has made a £22 billion ($US30.7 billion) bid for Sky, gate-crashing Rupert Murdoch’s takeover attempt for the British and European broadcaster.Comcast on Wednesday said it was offering £12.50, or $US17.45, a share for the company. The bid represents a 16% premium on the latest offer from Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox.

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