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Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
- Markets in Asia gained in overnight trade, with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng up 1.1 per cent. Shares in Europe are up moderately in afternoon trade and U.S. futures point to a positive open.
- Euro area GDP declined by 0.2 per cent in the second quarter, flash estimates from the EU’s statistics office shows. The euro area core continued to outperform the periphery according to the new data. The world’s largest companies reveal what’s happening in the global economy >
- German GDP rose 0.3 per cent from the first quarter, ahead of expectations for a 0.2 per cent advance. French GDP was unchanged in the second quarter, better than the 0.1 per cent decline forecast.
- Nonetheless, German investor confidence unexpectedly declined in August. The monthly ZEW poll fell to -25.5 from -19.6 in July, compared to a forecast for no change.
- Greece completed its largest debt sale in two years this morning, raising €4.063 billion through a 13-week treasury bill auction. The short term sale is expected to fund the repayment of bonds held by the ECB next week. The bonds yielded 4.43 per cent.
- Indian inflation cooled in July, falling to an annual pace of 6.87 per cent. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast a 7.37 per cent jump.
- Home Depot beat bottom line expectations this morning, earning $1.53 billion, or $1.01 per share. Core product sales boosted the company’s sales two per cent to $20.57 billion. Analysts were expecting quarterly results of $0.97 on revenues of $20.74 billion.
- Groupon also posted better-than-expected net income during the period, even as sales came up light. The company reported earnings per share of $0.08 on sales of $568.3 million. Here’s the chart that sent Groupon’s stock crashing >
- Walmart received approval to buy a majority stake in Chinese e-commerce company Yihaodin, helping the world’s largest retailer establish its online presence in China. Walmart did not disclose the cost of the deal.
- Retail sales surged in July, as total sales of goods excluding automobiles and gas advanced 0.9 per cent during the month. Meanwhile, NFIB Small Business Optimism fell 20 basis points to 91.2 in July, against expectations for a gain.