10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Bill Pugliano/Getty

Here’s what you need to know before the markets open.

1. Warren Buffett could bail out airlines, hotels, and casinos as coronavirus ravages their revenues. The billionaire investor is “circling the hardest-hit companies in the travel, lodging and entertainment sectors,” The Wall Street Journal reported.

2. ‘Soggy start to April’: Stocks plunge as coronavirus ravages the US and hammers Asian manufacturing. President Donald Trump warned of a “very painful” two weeks to come, while Japanese and South Korean factory activity slowed sharply.

3. Billionaire bond king Jeffrey Gundlach says coronavirus-fuelled market sell-off will worsen in April. “I think we are going to get something that resembles that panicky feeling again.”

4. Oil majors slash 2020 spending by 20% after prices slump. Eight major oil companies, including Saudi Aramco and Royal Dutch Shell, will cut spending by a combined $US28 billion.

5. EU proposes short-time work scheme to avoid lay-offs amid epidemic. Officials laid out a state-supported program to help people keep their jobs.

6. China may ease electric car quotas, delay emission rules to help automakers. Authorities could temporarily ease quotas and delay new emission restrictions by six months, Reuters reported.

7. China’s ports brace for second hit as virus spread wipes out exports. Experts predict global demand will plunge as other countries battle the pandemic.

8. Stocks are down. In Europe, Germany’s DAX fell 4%, Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 3.7%, and the Euro Stoxx 50 fell 3.9%. In Asia, China’s Shanghai Composite fell 0.6%, Japan’s Nikkei fell 4.5%, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 2.2%. In the US, futures underlying the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq slid between 2.8% and 3.4%.

9. Earnings continue to trickle out. Dollarama is a highlight.

10. Interesting data is out. Manufacturing PMI will be closely watched.

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