UK Prime Minister David Cameron won the last debate of the election. A snap Guardian/ICM poll showed on Thursday that Cameron had done well in the contest, with 44% of viewers saying he had performed best on the night.
The UK’s manufacturing PMI is coming. At 9:30 a.m. London time (4:30 a.m. New York) we’ll get the latest business surveys from the UK’s manufacturing sector, after a weak GDP number. Economists are expecting a slight improvement in April from March’s 54.4 figure, with anything over 50 signalling growth.
China’s official manufacturing PMI is hovering around stagnation. Activity in China’s manufacturing sector barely grew in April, an official survey showed on Friday, holding slightly above the level separating expansion from contraction. The official Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) stood at 50.1 in April, barely above the neutral 50 mark.
Elon Musk just announced Tesla Energy. Late Thursday night in Los Angeles, Tesla announced “Tesla Energy,” described by the company in a statement as “a suite of batteries for homes, businesses, and utilities fostering a clean energy ecosystem and helping wean the world off fossil fuels.”
Japanese core consumer inflation rose for the first time in 10 months. Japan’s core inflation picked up for the first time in 10 months in March, data showed Friday, giving relief to the central bank, which has been struggling to beat years of deflation. Core inflation, excluding volatile fresh food prices, rose 2.2% year-on-year in March, logging the first increase since May 2014.
Eurogroup chair Jeroen Dijsselbloem wants more time as Eurogroup chair. Dijsselbloem, who is also Dutch finance minister, will visit the capitals of the three largest euro zone economies, meeting all three finance ministers as well as the French prime minister and the German deputy chancellor. According to a Reuters source he is canvassing support for continuing in his Eurogroup role.
GM’s billions of investment in its US factors was confirmed. General Motors announced Thursday that it is investing $US5.4 billion (£3.52 billion) over the next three years to expand and upgrade its US production facilities.
The Nikkei dropped. Japan’s main index of stocks is down 0.32% currently. Chinese markets, as well as most in Europe, will be closed for May Day.
The Atlanta Fed is forecasting very weak US GDP growth in the second quarter. The regional Federal Reserve branch’s forecast model nailed the very weak 0.2% annualised rise in US GDP, and is currently predicting a rise of just 0.9% in the second quarter.
Despite solid revenue, LinkedIn shares plunged after results on Thursday. Revenue for LinkedIn’s first quarter was $US638 million (£415.74 million), which beat expectations and was an increase of 35% year-over-year. But after hours, shares fell by as much as 27%, settling down 21% lower after weak guidance for the second quarter.
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