Good morning! Here are the 10 things you need to know in markets on Thursday.
Oil is tanking to 13-year lows. The commodity smashed through an 11-year low on Wednesday but still shows no signs of finding the floor. Brent is down 4.09% at $32.92 (£22.51) at 6.30 a.m. GMT (1.30 a.m. ET), while US crude oil is down 3.66% at $32.73 (£22.38).
Chinese stock markets shut prematurely again on Thursday after falling more than 7%. China’s stock market regulator, the CSRC, has announced further restrictive measures in an attempt to prevent a further market rout following the close of trade on Thursday, something that came less than 30 minutes after the markets opened. It’s the second time China’s market “circuit breaker” has been triggered in four days.
China weakened the value of its yuan currency by 0.51% to 6.5646 against the US dollar on Thursday, figures from the China Foreign Exchange Trade System showed. It is the biggest drop since August when Beijing guided the unit down by nearly 5% in a week in a surprise devaluation.
Asian markets are tumbling to three-month lows on the yuan devaluation and rocky Chinese markets. Japan’s Nikkei is down 2.3% at time of writing (6.30 a.m. GMT/1.30 a.m. ET) and the Hong Kong Hang Seng is down 2.8%. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dipped 0.1%, brushing its lowest level since late September.
A handful of London traders may have rigged the UK government bond market, according to reports from Global Capital and The Wall Street Journal. Global Capital reports that regulators have contacted Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Credit Agricole, Credit Suisse, and Nomura in relation to a possible investigation into manipulation in the British-government bond market.
The World Bank has cut its forecast for global growth this year given weakness in the developing world. The aid agency said Wednesday that it expects the world economy to expand 2.9% in 2016, down from the forecast of 3.3% it made in June. The global economy grew 2.4% in 2015.
European unemployment figures are coming. The ECB will announce the eurozone unemployment rate for November at 10.00 a.m. GMT (5.00 a.m. ET). Economists are expecting the rate to remain unchanged at 10.7%.
George Osborne will say a “dangerous cocktail” of global threats faces the British economy this year as he warns that complacency is starting to take hold. Bloomberg reports that in a speech in Wales on Thursday, the Chancellor will identify the slowing economies of China, Brazil and Russia, the slide in commodity prices, and escalating political tensions in the Middle East as potential hazards.
Greg Fleming, president of Morgan Stanley’s wealth-management business, is leaving the firm, according to a memo from CEO James Gorman seen by Business Insider. Colm Kelleher, currently president of the firm’s Institutional Securities Group, will become the sole president of the bank, including the wealth-management division.
Apple fell below $100 (£68.30) per share for the first time since August on Wednesday. Shares of Apple were down about 2.5% and trading near $100 for most of the day but just dipped below that level briefly near 2:50 p.m. ET (8.50 p.m. GMT).