10 things you need to know in markets today

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

1. HSBC’s pre-tax profit for 2017 more than doubled due to the absence of hefty restructuring costs incurred in the prior year but still lagged expectations as the bank took a writedown following U.S. tax changes. Europe’s biggest lender by market capitalisation, on Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver’s last day on the job on Tuesday, also announced plans to further bolster its capital base by raising up to $US7 billion in the first half of 2018.

2. North Korean is ready for both dialogue and war, state-run news agency KCNA said Monday. In an op-ed, KCNA said the US is trying to derail inter-Korean relations by keeping military options on the table. “It is obviously an expression of a hideous attempt to block the improvement of inter-Korean relations and again coil up the military tension on the Korean peninsula,” KCNA said.

3. Uber Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi said on Tuesday he can see commercialization of the Uber Air flying taxi service happening within five to 10 years.The U.S. ride-hailing app maker has said it expects flying vehicles to eventually become an affordable method of mass transportation.

4. Elliott Management, a $US34 billion hedge fund, told clients that cryptocurrencies will likely one day be described “as one of the most brilliant scams in history.” “FOMO (fear of missing out) has solidly trumped WTHIT (what the hell is this??),” Elliott wrote in a fourth-quarter letter to clients.

5. Britain’s financial sector will be “the servant of industry not the masters of us all” if the opposition Labour Party gets into power, its leader Jeremy Corbyn will say on Tuesday, accusing bankers of taking the economy hostage. “For a generation, instead of finance serving industry, politicians have served finance. We’ve seen where that ends: the productive economy, our public services and people’s lives being held hostage by a small number of too big to fail banks and casino financial institutions,” he will say.

6. Bitcoin has failed as a currency measured by the traditional benchmarks, and is neither a store of value nor a useful way to buy things, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said on Monday.“It has pretty much failed thus far on … the traditional aspects of money. It is not a store of value because it is all over the map. Nobody uses it as a medium of exchange,” Carney told students at London’s Regent’s University.

7. Asian stocks dipped on Tuesday, their recent recovery slowing after European equities broke a winning streak run, while the dollar held firm after bouncing from three-year lows.MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged down 0.1%. Australian stocks dipped 0.45%.

8. Deutsche Bank is cutting at least 250 investment banking jobs in locations including London and the United States, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters, adding that the figure could rise to as many as 500. It is in the process of cutting 9,000 jobs group-wide from 2015 levels, or around one in 10 staff, with 4,000 jobs expected to go in Germany.

9. Euro zone finance ministers chose Spanish Economy Minister Luis de Guindos to succeed European Central Bank Vice President Vitor Constancio in May, a move likely to boost the chances of a German becoming head of the ECB next year. Initially faced with two candidates – de Guindos and Irish central bank governor Philip Lane – the ministers had their choice made simple for them by Ireland’s decision to withdraw Lane’s name.

10. The price of bitcoin climbed back above $US11,000 per coin on Monday afternoon during thin trading. Bitcoin lost more than half its value between November and late January but has staged a strong rally over the last week or so, appreciating from around $US8,000 on February 13 to more than $US11,000 on Monday.

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