10 things you need to know before European markets open

Amazon Jeff BezosDavid Ryder/Getty ImagesJeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.

Good morning! Here’s everything you need to know for today:

1. Talks have begun again in the trans-Pacific trade agreement. Negotiators are gathering at the Westin Maui Resort & Spa in Hawaii for the last four days in July and expect to be able to wrap the whole thing up.

2. Amazon Q2 earnings blew expectations out of the water. The stock popped 18% last night on the result: Revenues up 20% to $US23.18 billion (versus estimates of $US22.39 billion). EPS was positive $US0.19 (versus estimates of -$US0.14). Amazon is now the largest retailer on the planet by market cap.

3. Stocks were down again yesterday, except in China. FTSE 100 was down 0.18 per cent, or 12 points. Dow: 17,731.92, -119.12, (-0.67%). S&P 500: 2,102.15, -12.00, (-0.57%). Nasdaq: 5,146.41, -25.36, (-0.49%). But Chinese stocks were looking to post a 7th straight day of gains. Shanghai Composite was at 4,178.262, up 1.32%, at the time of writing.

4. China manufacturing PMI declined. The Caixin-Markit China flash manufacturing PMI report, a gauge on activity across small to medium-sized firms, slumped in July. The index fell to 48.2, down from 49.4 in June. Markets had been expecting a rise to 49.7. The figure was the lowest level seen since April 2014.

5. Everyone else is getting the hell out of China. Foreign investors pulled $US2.9 billion out of Chinese stocks last week.

6. Beijing says it will intervene in the Chinese stock market if it becomes too volatile. What could possibly go wrong?

7. Japanese financial newspaper Nikkei is buying the Financial Times for £844 million ($US1.3 billion). Pearson, the FT’s owners, said the move is “the
best way to ensure the FT’s journalistic and commercial success” amid the “explosive growth of mobile and social.”

8. You’re not going mad, the Financial Times really is getting pinker as the years go by. Great story from Quartz: “The FT has certainly grown pinker over the years as its brand became more closely associated with the colouring. Some, including the newspaper itself, prefer to call the current version ‘salmon pink.’ Asked to weigh in on the matter a few years ago, the Pantone Colour Institute suggested ‘bisque’ was a more appropriate descriptor.”

9. The Ferrari IPO is coming! The maker of the iconic Italian sports car Ferrari officially filed with US regulators on Thursday its plans to launch an initial public offering on Wall Street, parent company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles said Thursday.

10. Palantir raised another $US450 million in investment funding. This confirms a report last month that the company was raising up to $US500 million at a valuation of $US20 billion — making it the third most valuable “unicorn” tech startup on the Silicon Valley scene.

Bonus …

The insane life of former fugitive and eccentric cybersecurity legend John McAfee. This biography, as told in pictures, is genuinely mind-blowing.

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