Good morning! Here are the 10 biggest stories you need to hear in markets today.
The euro broke to a another new 12-year low. The euro sank even further against the dollar, breaking below $US1.07 for the first time in more than a decade. Less than a week ago the euro was at $US1.10, and about 12 months ago it was at $US1.40.
And Deutsche Bank thinks the euro will fall to $US0.85. “We now foresee a move down to 1.00 by the end of the year and a new cycle low of 85 cents by 2017,” said Deutsche analysts in a research note.
China is considering a colossal re-organisation of its state-owned firms. According to the Wall Street Journal, China’s vast array of state-owned enterprises will be forced to act more like regular corporation in a massive structural reform, with private investors invited into their organisation, but the state retaining overall control during the huge consolidation.
UK industrial production is coming. At 9:30 a.m. GMT (5:30 a.m. ET) UK industrial production numbers for January are out. Economists are expecting a 0.2% rise month-on-month to translate into a 1.3% rise year-on-year, up from a slugging 0.5% in December.
Chinese economic data all fell short and more stimulus is now expected. Growth in China’s investment, retail sales and factory output all missed forecasts in January and February, leaving investors with little doubt that the economy is still losing steam and in need of further support measures.
Hyundai may open a second US plant. South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency reported on Wednesday that Hyundai Motor had decided to build its second US factory to meet demand for sport utility vehicles, citing an industry source familiar with the matter.
US airlines are expecting a buoyant Spring. US airlines are expected to carry more passengers this spring than they have in seven years, Washington-based trade group Airlines for America said on Wednesday, expecting a 2% bump on last year’s traffic.
Greece got a half-billion euro lifeline. In a rare piece of good news for Greek leaders, the European Stability Mechanism confirmed Tuesday that it has been forced to throw the cash-strapped country a €555 million ($US593 million) lifeline, re-appropriating cash from a financial stability fund.
And Greece’s Prime Minister said Germany avoided paying WWII reparations. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras accused Germany on Tuesday of using legal tricks to avoid paying reparations for the Nazi occupation of Greece and said he would support parliamentary efforts to review the matter.
Asian markets are mixed. The Nikkei closed up 0.31% in Japan, but Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is down 0.64% just ahead of the close. The Shanghai Composite Index is effectively flat, up just 0.01%.
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