Chinese stocks lower on weak growth; Europe data optimistic
Factory growth and investment in China is nearing a 13 year low and Shanghai closed lower today. Other major Asian indexes ended in positive territory amid strong US economic data, lower oil prices and continued optimism in Japan. Tokyo’s Nikkei has led the gains in Asia with a tax hike postponed and an election coming, but analysts are cautious that there will be a big sell-off when investors believe it’s reached its peak. In Europe the markets are largely trending higher as data from Germany and France; the two largest Eurozone economies; shows better-than-expected growth. Both narrowly avoided recession but markets are awaiting inflation data at 10am GMT. US stock futures are higher; gold and oil are trending lower.
Retail Sales at 8.30am ET
Import and Export Prices at 8.30am ET
Consumer Sentiment at 9.55am ET
Business Inventories at 10am ET
Aegea and Xcel Brands are among those reporting today.
IEA predicts further decline in oil prices
The steep drop in oil prices is set to continue according to the International Energy Agency. With prices down 30 per cent since the summer, weaker demand, high US production and a strong dollar, the market is likely to see even lower prices to come. OPEC is not prepared to reduce production currently, preferring to drop prices in order to maintain its market share. Prices are still below $80 so far this morning and have been edging lower.
Virgin America IPO launches on the Nasdaq
Virgin America is trading on the Nasdaq from today. The airline is aiming to raise $300 million from the IPO, with shares priced at $23. Airline stocks are doing well currently and Virgin has pared losses in recent years with a $10 million profit in 2013. In a crowded market it is building a reputation for being quirky and cool; similar to that of both its founder Sir Richard Branson and his international airline Virgin Atlantic. Virgin America is majority owned by Cyrus Capital Partners.
Starbucks deal in the EU may be illegal
European antitrust regulators have said this morning that a deal between Starbucks and Dutch authorities may be illegal. The European Commission has been investigating a tax deal involving the coffee giant’s European operations for the last five months and believes that the deal in the Netherlands may amount to ‘state aid’ which would give the Seattle firm an unfair advantage.
Walmart fights back against .coms by price-matching
Walmart is fighting back against the onslaught of Black Friday and Cyber Monday by telling its managers to price-match against Amazon.com and other online retailers. It’s not a new policy though as many of its stores already price-match, but as retail becomes increasingly competitive Walmart wants to make sure consumers know. Walmart is also investing heavily in its own online platform including new fulfillment centers.