Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
- Asian markets were mostly lower in overnight trading with the Nikkei down 2.35 per cent, posting its biggest weekly loss since November. Europe is lower and U.S. futures are modestly higher.
- Cyprus failed to secure aid from Russia and as now been left to arrive at a deal with the EU by March 25. Meanwhile, Luke Baker at Reuters reports that Angela Merkel has said Cyprus “must realise its current business model is dead.” A spokesman for the government said that the next few hours will be crucial. Citi: The real impact of Cyprus will be felt next time there’s a crisis >
- German business confidence fell to 106.7 in March, from 107.4 the previous month. This missed expectations of a rise to 107.8.
- Nike reported adjusted earnings of $0.73 per share, on revenue of $6.19 billion. Analysts were looking for earnings of $0.67 per share, on revenue of $6.23 billion. This sent the stock up over 8 per cent in after-hours.
- BP is repurchasing $8 billion of shares. The company plans to return the amount that was invested in TNK-BP to shareholders, and comes after its October agreement to sell its 50 per cent stake in the venture to Rosneft. Morgan Stanley: These 20 stocks will be awesome for the next decade >
- Blackberry’s latest smartphone the Z10 goes on sale in the U.S. today. The phone is now said to have 100,000 apps, up from 70,000 when the phone was announced. They are also planning their biggest ever marketing campaign for the all-touch Z10 device.
- Today marks the deadline for bids that challenge CEO Michael Dell’s offer to take computer maker Dell, private. Dell and a group led by Silver Lake Partners were looking to buy the company for $24.4 billion, and Blackstone Group has reportedly been considering a higher offer.
- A marine opened fire at a base in Quantico, Virginia killing two people. The second victim was a female marine, but no other details about the victims were disclosed. The alleged shooter is reported to have killed himself.
- Credit Suisse CEO Brady Dougan got a 34 per cent pay hike last year, even though the company reported a decline in net profit. This comes at a time when EU members have drafted legislation that limits bankers’ bonuses.
- At his first press conference as Bank of Japan governor, Haruhiko Kuroda said he expects to meet the 2 per cent inflation target. He said the central bank could act sooner on its open-ended asset purchases that are currently set to begin in 2014.
- Bonus – In the latest issue of Latina magazine, Jessica Alba said her eco-friendly business, Honest Company, “has weirdly allowed me to be more creative in my roles,” and added, “this is where my work is now.”
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