Good morning! Here are the 10 most important things you need to know in markets today.
Greece wants an extension of its loan agreement. Greece intends to ask for an extension of its loan agreement with the euro zone on Wednesday, a source in Brussels said, distinguishing this from the country’s full bailout program. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the source said that Athens would request up to a six month extension but the conditions were still under negotiation.
Sony is set to unveil a new strategy. Bolstered by investors’ faith in its restructuring, Sony Corp is set to announce a new strategy highlighting the potential of its image sensors, PlayStation and entertainment businesses to help it return to growth after years of losses.
UK unemployment is coming. UK labour market figures are released today, rolling out at 9:30 a.m. GMT (4:30 a.m. ET). Economists don’t expect a move from 5.8% unemployment, but wage data will be closely watched for any evidence of strengthening.
Snapchat is raising massive amounts of new funding. Snapchat is looking to raise as much as $US500 million (£325 million) in a new funding round that would value the mobile messaging company at up to $US19 billion (£12.4 billion), Bloomberg reported on Tuesday, citing a person with knowledge of the matter.
President Francois Hollande of France is facing a showdown with his own party. Hollande yesterday rammed through a series of economic reforms, overriding the country’s parliament. Many of Hollande’s own socialist party MPs were expected to vote against his legislation, according to the Financial Times.
Logistics giant Japan Post is hoovering up Australia’s Toll. Australia’s Toll Holdings on Wednesday recommended shareholders accept a $US5.07 billion (£3.30 billion) takeover offer from Japan Post to create one of the world’s largest logistics companies. The Japanese behemoth, a state-owned global postal and logistics player, unexpectedly offered a 49% premium to the company’s closing price on Tuesday.
The Bank of Japan stood firm on policy. Japan’s monetary policymakers held the country’s QE programme at 80 trillion yen (£440 billion) per year, according to Bloomberg. Inflation in Japan, as in much of the rest of the world, is being pushed down by tumbling oil prices.
Asian markets are up. Japan’s Nikkei closed 1.18% higher, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is up 0.19% just ahead of the close. Shanghai stocks are up 0.76% just before the end of trading too.
Rolls Royce will launch a 4×4. That’s according to the Financial Times. Rolls Royce intends to follow Jaguar and Bentley by producing its own SUV model, with no clear date for a launch.
Uber has filed a second complaint against France. Uber has filed a second complaint against a French law that the online taxi-booking service says favours regular taxis at its expense, French newspaper Les Echos said on Tuesday. Uber last November filed a first complaint with the European Commission, the first of a series of challenges to EU member states reluctant to open their markets to the US firm.