10 things you need to know in markets today

Good morning! Here’s what you need to know in markets on Wednesday.

1. Disney and 21st Century Fox are closing in on a deal that could come as quickly as next week, according to a CNBC report citing sources familiar with the matter. The transaction would involve Disney acquiring Fox’s studio and television production assets – a portion of the business that has an enterprise value of more than $US60 billion, CNBC’s sources say.

2. Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has asked banks to pitch next Friday for an initial public offering in 2018, people familiar with the plan told Reuters. Xiaomi was valued at $US46 billion in a 2014 funding round completed before its sales stagnated. More recently it has seen expectations of its value pick up following strong results this year.

3. Japan’s Nikkei share average fell 2 per cent on Wednesday, its biggest percentage drop since late March, with selling accelerating after a break of a key technical support level from its 25-day moving average. Market players said investors rushed to take profits from gains in recent months, with materials and other cyclical shares leading the losses following a tumble in copper prices.

4. Bitcoin extended its eye-popping rally on Wednesday, breaking above $US12,000 to a record high despite questions about the cryptocurrency’s real value and worries about a dangerous bubble.Bitcoin received a boost after Friday’s announcement by the main U.S. derivatives regulator that it would allow CME Group Inc and CBOE Global Markets to list bitcoin futures contracts.

5. Goldman Sachs asked clients their views on bitcoin’s likely price trajectory, yet another sign of growing interest in cryptocurrency from mainstream finance. Goldman Sachs’ market “strat” team within the securities division sends a monthly poll to clients to gauge their thinking on a variety of investment issues. The December “Quickpoll” includes the question: “Where do you see bitcoin at the end of the year?”

6. Greg Coffey, a star hedge fund manager who bowed out of the industry in 2012, is said to be eyeing a comeback.Coffey is considering launching a new fund with James Saltissi, people familiar with the matter told Business Insider. The fund could launch as soon as March, some of the people said.

7. UK police foiled a terror plot to assassinate Prime Minister Theresa May. Police reportedly believed there were plans to detonate an explosive device at Downing Street and kill May amid the chaos.

8. Chancellor Philip Hammond has been banned from using a fleet of RAF jets and helicopters until the Treasury settles a bill with the Ministry of Defence, according to a report from the Times. “Hammond’s department is said to owe a six-figure sum for past flights with No 32 (The Royal) Squadron,” the paper says.

9. Apple could release three new iPhone models in 2018, according to a note distributed to investors on Monday by Nomura analysts.Several of the predictions line up with a forecast from renowned KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo issued last month. Apple could release two iPhones with OLED screens, and one with an LCD screen, according to the note.

10. Google is preventing YouTube from working on Amazon products. Google notified Amazon Echo Show owners that they will no longer be able to watch YouTube videos on their gadgets.

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