Good morning! Here’s what you need to know in markets on Wednesday.
Eurozone finance ministers have reached a deal with Greece after marathon talks to unlock €10.3 billion (£8.2 billion, $12 billion) in vital bailout cash, a European source said early Wednesday. French Finance Minister Michel Sapin also said that a “deal had been reached” at the meeting in Brussels, but did not give a figure or specify whether it also included debt relief demanded by the International Monetary Fund.
Oil is at a 7-month high. US West Texas Intermediate is up 1.36% at $49.28 (£33.72) at the time of writing (6.35 a.m. BST/1.35 a.m. ET), the highest it’s been since October 2015. UK Brent is up 1.19% at $49.19 (£33.66).
US and Asian stocks rallied overnight. The Dow Jones closed up 1.2%, the S&P 500 up 1.4%, and the Nasdaq up 2%, after a rebound in new US home sales, which jumped by 16.6% in April, and the oil rally. Japan’s Nikkei is up 1.67% at the time of writing (6.35 a.m. BST/1.35 a.m. ET), the Hong Kong Hang Seng is up 2.61%, and China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite is up 0.04%.
Agrochemical company Monsanto has rejected a $62 billion (£42.4 billion) takeover offer from the German pharmaceutical giant Bayer. Bayer announced the unsolicited offer on Monday. The $122-a-share offer was a 37% premium to Monsanto’s share price before news broke of Bayer’s interest.
Volkswagen is making a $300 million (£205.3 million) strategic investment in the ride-hailing app Gett, the startup announced on Tuesday.The auto giant’s minority investment comes as it attempts to move beyond a huge corporate crisis over emissions and launches a new mobility unit focused on new technology.
Toyota is partnering with on-demand ride company Uber to explore ridesharing and will make a strategic investment in the company. As part of the deal, Toyota will create new leasing options in which car purchasers can lease their vehicles from Toyota Financial Services and cover their payments through earnings generated as Uber drivers.
The EU is today set to unveil proposals to make firms lift international barriers for Internet shoppers, and to force Netflix and Amazon to accept quotas for European movies and TV shows. The plan is the latest step towards what Brussels calls a digital single market, in which the European Union’s 500 million people will no longer be blocked from buying goods and services more cheaply abroad online.
US antitrust officials are investigating beer giant Anheuser-Busch InBev over new incentives that encourage independent distributors to sell more of its own beer brands at the expense of competing craft brews, two people with knowledge of the matter said. Reuters reports that the beer giant introduced the new incentive program at a distributors’ meeting in late 2015. The US authorities are looking into it as part of its antitrust review of the Budweiser-maker’s planned more than $100 billion (£68.4 billion) takeover of global rival SABMiller, the two people said.
Financial technology is set to dominate one of the most important events in the British financial calendar. Bank of England Governor Mark Carney’s biggest speech of the year — his Mansion House address in June to top City of London bankers — will be about fintech and blockchain technology, he revealed on Tuesday.
China’s premier is encouraging the tech sector. China will focus on protecting intellectual property and commercial secrets, while offering a fair playing field for both domestic and foreign companies, premier Li Keqiang said on Tuesday at a technology summit. Li also said that new innovations should be given room to grow, free from over-regulation, even if new and traditional industries sometimes run into conflict.
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