Good morning! Here’s what you need to know in markets on Friday.
China’s “data dump” for July — Chinese industrial output, fixed asset investment, and retail sales figures — has been released, and all three figures have missed to the downside. According to China’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), industrial output grew by 6.0% over the past year, below the 6.1% pace expected and 6.2% level seen in June.
Asian stock markets are higher despite the figures. China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite is up 0.10% at the time of writing (6.30 a.m. BST/1.30 a.m. ET), Japan’s Nikkei is up 1.04%, and the Hong Kong Hang Seng is up 0.68%.
US stock markets did something they haven’t done since December 31, 1999. All three major indices — the S&P 500, the Dow, and Nasdaq — closed at all-time highs overnight.
Oil is climbing. Crude oil is up 1.13% to $43.98 at the time of writing (6.40 a.m. BST/1.40 a.m. ET), while UK Brent is up 0.80% to $46.41. The Times reports that Saudi Arabia’s oil minister dangled the prospect of co-ordinated action to stabilise prices, boosting the black stuff.
Eurozone GDP figures are coming. Preliminary estimates of GDP growth in the second quarter of the year will be released by Eurostat at 10.00 a.m. BST (5.00 a.m. ET). Economists are forecasting 0.3% growth on the first quarter and 1.3% growth on the same quarter last year.
Big Wall Street banks are asking the US Federal Reserve to grant them an additional 5-year grace period to comply with a financial reform regulation known as the Volcker rule, people familiar with the matter said. If the Fed agrees, the extension would give banks more time to exit fund investments that are difficult to sell, but no longer allowed by the law. The added grace period, which follows three 1-year extensions, would start next year and run through 2022.
The pensions watchdog wants the power to block deals involving stressed pension schemes to stop another disaster on the scale of BHS. The Pensions Regulator CEO Lesley Titcomb told the Financial Times that a new power to veto mergers and acquisitions in certain circumstances could better protect the 11 million members of final salary schemes in the private sector.
Citigroup appears to be beefing up its healthcare banking team. The firm has promoted Jennifer Fox and Toby King as coheads of North America healthcare banking, according to an internal memo seen by Business Insider.
Airbnb is thinking about how to convince home-builders to create properties that have extra rooms included especially for being rented out, according to a new report from tech industry news website The Information. Airbnb spokesperson Nick Papas told The Information only that the company is “continually experimenting with new things and we don’t have anything to share right now, but we have a few exciting things in the works.”
Carl Icahn does not like Hillary Clinton’s ideas for American business. The hedge fund billionaire took to Twitter to express his dissatisfaction with the Democratic presidential nominee’s economic proposals.
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