Good morning! Here’s what you need to know in markets on Friday.
US stocks dived overnight as investors once again bought into assets with less risk. The Dow ended the day down 0.98%, the S&P500 closed down 1.20%, and the Nasdaq suffered a 1.47% fall. Yields on two- and 10-year treasuries fell to two-month lows, a sign of demand.
Asian markets are shaky too. Japan’s Nikkei rebounded to close up 1.47%, but China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite is down 0.58% at the time of writing (6.25 a.m. GMT/1.25 a.m. ET), and the Hong Kong Hang Seng is down 0.39%.
The strong performance of Japan’s stock market has helped oil prices bounce back from 1%+ falls yesterday. UK Brent oil is up 1.72% to $40.11 (£28.51) at the time of writing (6.25 a.m. GMT/1.25 a.m. ET) while US crude is an even better 2.25% higher at $38.09 (£27.07).
A tidal wave is coming to the US economy, according to Albert Edwards, and when it crashes it’s going to throw the economy into recession. The Societe Generale economist, and noted perma-bear, believes that the profit recession facing American corporations is going to lead to a collapse in corporate credit.
Verizon is expected to place a bid for Yahoo next week, while Google is also considering making an offer, according to a report by Bloomberg. Aside from Google, Time and private-equity funds Bain and TPG remain interested in making a bid, according to the report.
A former Barclays banker accused of conspiring to manipulate Libor has tried to implicate three senior Barclays executives — including the chief operating officer of its investment bank — by claiming they were aware of the practice, a court has heard. The Financial Times reports that Jay Merchant, a former trader, is one of five Barclays bankers on trial at Southwark Crown Court. The men all deny the charges.
JPMorgan is hiring senior bankers in “underpenetrated” sectors, including tech, healthcare, and China. It’s also making significant technological investments in its sales and trading businesses. That’s according to CEO Jamie Dimon’s annual letter to shareholders.
Japan wants to print 1.23 billion ¥10,000 (£65/$91) bills in fiscal year 2016, an increase of 180 million from a year earlier, according to the Japan Times.“Some financial market sources believe it is because more people are keeping their money at home rather than in banks, because interest rates on deposits have fallen to almost zero after the Bank of Japan introduced a negative interest rate in February,” the Japan Times reports.
Asos has pulled the plug on its Chinese operations after admitting it would have been too expensive to grow the business. The Telegraph reports that the online retailer said it would continue to serve Chinese customers through its global website and ship clothes from Europe, rather than hold stock in China and operate a Mandarin language website.
Ride-sharing company Uber has agreed to pay $10 million (£7 million) to settle a dispute over its background checks for drivers. The BBC reports that Uber was sued in 2014 after it claimed its vetting process was better than systems traditional minicab firms used. But district attorneys in San Francisco and Los Angeles said Uber’s very public statement it was “the gold standard” for safety was misleading.