10 Things You Need To Know This Morning

LeAnn Rimes

Photo: AP

Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.

  • Asian indices were mixed in overnight trading with the Shanghai Composite down 0.25%. Major European indices are in the green and U.S. markets have opened positive.
  • Moody’s’ EMEA chief credit officer, Alastair Wilson, has warned that if Greece defaults, both Portugal and Ireland could face multi-notch credit downgrades and end up in junk territory. Don’t miss: Who gets slammed if Greece defaults >
  • Greece’s conservative opposition party New Democracy has rejected the government’s new round of austerity measures. New Democracy party leader Antonis Samaras slammed government policies that he said have failed in the past and won’t boost economic growth. Here are the 21 countries most likely to default >
  • The UK’s budget deficit came in higher than expected at £8.4 billion. That’s £2.8 billion higher than April 2010. Check out the 15 countries most buried in debt >
  • Moody’s has put 14 UK banks on review for a downgrade over concerns that the withdrawal of government support could increase their credit risk. Lloyds Banking Group Plc. and Royal Bank of Scotland are included on the list that may see their credit ratings cut.
  • Nestle SA’s health science unit has agreed to buy Prometheus Laboratories, an American gastrointestinal diagnostics firm, for about $1.1 billion. This is part of Nestle’s effort to develop its personalised nutrition business.
  • Credit Agricole, France’s third-biggest listed bank, will spend $51 million to wholly acquire its loss-making Greek unit Emporiki. Credit Agricole plans to buy an additional 4% of the total stock and eventually aims to delist Emporiki.
  • Goldman Sachs has raised its forecast for Brent crude oil to $130 in 12 months. The increase is based on the belief that unrest in the Middle East and North Africa will have a persistent impact. Now here are 12 economies that will get wrecked in an oil spike >
  • New home sales beat expectations in April. Read about it here >
  • As many as 500 flights could be cancelled in Northern Ireland, Scotland and parts of Scandanavia as the volcanic ash cloud from Iceland’s Grimsvotn volcano that erupted late Saturday continues to drift. Check out 10 dormant volcanoes that could blow and cost the economy millions >
  • BONUS: Newlywed couple LeAnn Rimes and Eddie Cibrian were spotted holidaying at the upscale Esperanza Resort in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

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