10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Here is what you need to know.

The EU publishes its plan for Brexit talks. The EU says discussions will take place in three phases: 1) The settlement of key questions regarding Britain’s exit 2) Talks about future trade deals 3) Negotiations for a possible transitional agreement.

South Africa’s finance minister is out.President Jacob Zuma fired his respected finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, on Friday, sending the South African rand down by more than 6% from Thursday’s high before paring its losses.

China’s economy is picking up. Data released by the National Bureau of Statistics on Friday showed the Chinese government’s official manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose to 51.8 in March, its highest level since April 2012.

Japan’s core inflation rose at its fastest pace since April 2015. Core inflation — which excludes fresh food prices — rose by 0.2% in February, matching expectations.

Eurozone inflation slows down. Consumer prices in the eurozone rose 1.5% in March, down from 2.0% in February, data released on Friday by Eurostat showed. The reading marked the first time consumer price growth in the eurozone has slowed since April 2016.

The world’s No. 3 smartphone maker’s revenue growth is slowing. Huawei says revenue jumped 32% to 521.6 billion yuan, but that was slower than the 35% growth from a year ago. Profit was flat at 37.1 billion yuan ($US5.3 billion).

Volkswagen is looking to move past its emissions scandal. The German automaker has agreed to pay $US157.45 million to settle environmental claims from 10 states, Reuters says.

3 of Credit Suisse’s offices were raided. Offices in London, Paris, and Amsterdam were raided because of client tax matters, Bloomberg says.

Stock markets around the world are lower. Japan’s Nikkei (-0.8%) lagged overnight and Britain’s FTSE (-0.6%) trails in Europe. The S&P 500 is set to open lower by 0.2% near 2,362.

US economic data is heavy. Personal income and spending, and core PCE prices will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET before Chicago PMI and University of Michigan consumer confidence cross the wires at 9:45 a.m. ET and 10 a.m. ET, respectively. The US 10-year yield is down 1 basis point at 2.41%.

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