Good morning! Here’s what you need to know in markets on Thursday.
The German government is pursuing discreet talks with US authorities to help Deutsche Bank secure a swift settlement over the sale of toxic mortgage bonds, according to sources in Berlin. Until now, German officials have played down their role in the standoff, saying it is up to Deutsche to work out a deal with the US Department of Justice, which is demanding up to $14 billion (£11 billion) to settle claims the lender mis-sold mortgage-backed securities before the financial crisis.
Twitter stock plunged 10% in after-hours trading on a report that Google would not pursue a formal bid for the social network. Sources cited by Recode’s Kara Swisher and Kurt Wagner say Google does not currently plan to make a bid and was not moving forward with any effort to do so. Apple making an acquisition offer is also “unlikely,” according to Recode.
UK Chancellor Philip Hammond plans to assure top US top banks on Thursday that Britain is still the world’s leading global finance hub despite its Brexit vote on his first trip to Wall Street since being appointed in July. Paris, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and Dublin have made pitches to lure finance companies from Britain, and a survey last week suggested London’s dominance could be under threat as the implications of leaving the European Union sink in.
The pound is falling again after ending Wednesday higher. Sterling is down 0.20% against the dollar to $1.12719 at the time of writing (6.25 a.m. BST/1.25 a.m. ET) and down 0.15% against the euro to €1.1356.
We’re going to get an insight into the European Central Bank (ECB)’s thinking. The latest ECB Monetary Policy Accounts will be released at 12.30 p.m. BST (7.30 a.m. ET), which will contain a discussion of the central bank’s current economic outlook. The report follows rumours earlier this week that the ECB is planning to scale back its programme of quantitative easing.
Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes announced via an open letter that the embattled blood testing startup will be closing all of its clinical labs and Wellness Centres, in a move she estimates will impact 340 employees. The move is intended to refocus Theranos away from doing clinical tests on blood samples and towards developing its miniLab medical data processing product, Holmes writes, which it first debuted at a scientific conference in August.
Stock markets are rallying. Japan’s Nikkei is up 0.56% at the time of writing (6.40 a.m. BST/1.40 a.m. ET) and the Hong Kong Hang Seng is up 0.64%. China’s Shanghai Composite is still closed. US stock markets closed higher overnight.
OpenGamma, a fintech startup that helps finance firms manage risk and capital in the derivatives market, has raised $13.3 million (£10.4 million). The London-based company has raised the sum from well-known technology venture capital fund Accel, dealer broker ICAP, which recently pivoted to focus on fintech investment, and Cristóbal Conde, the former CEO of financial software company SunGard. Conde already sits on the company’s board.
Tech giant Samsung said on Thursday it is acquiring US artificial intelligence (AI) platform developer Viv Labs, a firm run by a co-creator of Apple’s Siri voice assistant program. Samsung said in a statement it plans to integrate the San Jose-based company’s AI platform, called Viv, into the Galaxy smartphones and expand voice-assistant services to home appliances and wearable technology devices.
Payoneer, a US fintech company that helps businesses send and receive money across borders online, has raised $180 million (£141 million) in a Series E funding round.The cash comes from Technology Crossover Ventures (TCV), a Silicon Valley-headquartered VC fund that focuses on growth funding for established tech businesses. TCV has backed giants such as Facebook, Netflix, and Spotify.