Good morning! Here’s what you need to know in markets on Thursday.
US stock markets had “one of the most chaotic days on Wall Street you’ll see” overnight on Wednesday, according to BI’s markets editor Myles Udland. Near midday in New York, the Dow was down more than 550 points while each of the major stock indexes were off more than 3%. Crude oil fell as much as 7% at one point. But indexes recovered to close around 1.5% by the end of trade. The Dow moved more than 1,000 points on the day.
Asian markets are taking a bruising. Japan’s Nikkei closed down 2.43% with BI Australia’s editor-in-chief Paul Colgon telling me: “Fear’s back.” Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is up 0.73% at the time of writing (6.20 a.m. GMT/1.20 a.m. ET), but China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite is down 1.64%.
Oil continues to fall. After crashing past the $28 (£19.73) a barrel level yesterday for the first time since September 2003, it’s even lower today. Brent is down 0.25% to $27.75 (£19.56) at the time of writing and US crude is down 0.72% to $28.14 (£19.83).
Mario Draghi will announce his latest plans for Europe later today. The European Central Bank (ECB) delivers its latest interest rate decision at 12.45 p.m. GMT (7.45 a.m. ET), followed by a monetary policy statement from ECB head Draghi and a press conference at 1.30 p.m. (8.30 a.m. ET).
Deutsche Bank announced preliminary fourth-quarter earnings and they are not good. The firm said it expects to report a full-year net loss of €6.7 billion (£5.1 billion, $7.3 billion). Before income taxes, the loss will be about €6.1 billion (£4.6 billion, $6.6 billion). The firm cited “challenging market conditions” in the fourth quarter, leading to a drop in revenues in the Corporate Banking & Securities division.
Barclays is set to unveil a reorganization of its investment bank in the coming days, according to people familiar with the matter. The changes, which will likely include job and bonus cuts, will be the first since former JPMorgan executive Jes Staley took over as chief executive.
11 top investment banks have used blockchain technology — first invented to underpin bitcoin — to do mock trades with each other. R3, an industry-wide consortium of 42 investment banks looking at the technology, announced in an email that banks “simulated exchanging value, represented by tokenized assets on the distributed ledger without the need for a centralised third party.”
A measure of international trade often seen as a bellwether for the global economy has crashed to its lowest level ever, fuelling fears we could be heading for another 2008-style crash. Back in November, the Baltic Dry Index dropped below 500 for the first time in recorded history and has kept falling ever since. On Wednesday morning it fell to a low of 369.
Investment bank Goldman Sachs has reportedly given a “six figure” donation to the campaign to keep the UK in the European Union. The BBC reports that the US bank is said to have backed Britain Stronger In Europe, a cross-party group leading the In campaign.
Asda is considering cutting more than 1,000 store jobs under plans to close hundreds of staff canteens and shopfloor services such as photo processing units. The Guardian reports that managers are understood to have met with union representatives on Wednesday to discuss 4,000 other job moves or changes in stores. 200 job cuts at Asda’s Leeds headquarters were announced earlier in the week.