Here is what you need to know.
The Bank of England says Brexit isn’t killing the economy. “As yet, there was no clear evidence of a sharp general slowing in activity,” said the BOE’s July “Agents’ summary of business conditions.” However, the central bank did suggest there was still a high degree of uncertainty as businesses are just now attempting to formulate their Brexit strategies. The BOE says while most businesses didn’t expect hiring to be impacted in the near-term, some suggested “there would be some negative impact on those plans over the next twelve months.”
UK unemployment dropped below 5%. According to the Office for National Statistics, UK unemployment fell to 4.9% for the three months to May, the lowest since 2005. Additionally, the number of employed people hit 31.70 million, the highest on record. It should be noted that the data was collected before the Brexit vote. The British pound is up 0.5% at 1.3176.
Microsoft beat on the top and bottom lines. The company announced adjusted earnings of $0.69 per share, easily beating the $0.58 that analysts were expecting. Revenue rose 1.9% to $22.6 billion, topping the $22.14 billion that Wall Street was anticipating. Microsoft says its it had a “run rate” of $12.1 billion for commercial cloud products during the quarter. Shares were up about 3% in after-hours trade.
Unilever is buying Dollar Shave Club. Unilever hopes the $1 billion deal will help it take away market share from Gillette. According to the Wall Street Journal, Dollar Shave Club has 3.2 million members paying a flat monthly fee for its disposable razors, but is not profitable. Unilever says Dollar Shave Club brought in $152 million in revenue in 2015 and is on track to top $200 million in revenue this year.
Monsanto has rejected Bayer — again. Monsanto has rejected a $64 billion takeover bid by Bayer. This marks the second time in two months Monsanto has turned down Bayer, saying the bid of $125 per share is “financially inadequate and insufficient to ensure deal certainty.” Monsanto says it is open to talks with Bayer and other parties, Reuters reports.
Volkswagen is being sued by a handful of states. Attorney Generals from Maryland, Massachusetts, and New York have filed a lawsuit against Volkswagen, Porsche, and Audi, alleging a “cover up” that was “orchestrated and approved at the highest levels of the company.” The lawsuit alleges Volkswagen has been skirting emissions standards by installing “defeat devices” since the mid-2000s. Additionally, the suit says the group “made a knowing decision to violate the law” and that Volkswagen “allegedly destroyed incriminating documents” upon hearing about the investigation. Business Insider reached out to Volkswagen, but a spokesperson wasn’t immediately available to comment.
Nintendo got destroyed. Shares of Nintendo ended lower by 12.6% in Tokyo, making for their biggest drop in 16 years. The plunge comes as the stock has more than double over the past two weeks following the launch of Pokémon Go. According to Deutsche Bank, “Nintendo’s share price jump only makes sense if the app is downloaded by every second person on planet Earth.”
Stock markets around the world are mostly higher. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng (+1.0%) led the gains in Asia and Germany’s DAX (+1.4%) paces the advance in Europe. S&P 500 futures are higher by 7.25 points at 2166.00.
Earnings reports come at a steady pace. Halliburton and Morgan Stanley are among the names reporting ahead of the opening bell while eBay and Intel highlight the names releasing their quarterly results after markets close.
US economic data is light. Data is limited to the Department of Energy’s release of crude oil inventories at 10:30 a.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is higehr by two basis points at 1.57%.