Positive end to the week for global markets
It’s been a turbulent week for the world’s stock markets with oil still very much leading the pace and Russia creating a few concerns too, but the week looks like ending on a high. Asian markets have closed higher after yesterday’s Wall Street gains and news that the Bank of Japan is continuing its massive stimulus package. Europe’s markets have also been spurred on by gains yesterday together with gains for the region’s tech firms and easing concern on Russia’s economy. Some analysts have noted that risk aversion is being replaced by some bargain-hunting among investors and also the benefits that many sectors are already enjoying from lower fuel costs. US stock futures are trending higher along with oil and gold.
Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Index at 11am ET
Carnival Corp and Paychex are among those reporting today.
Recession for Texas in 2015?
The low oil price may trigger a regional recession in Texas according to JP Morgan Chase’s chief economist. Michael Feroli says that as a dominant shale oil producer the state is set for a tough time in 2015 and could slip into negative growth. In 1986 a drop in oil prices together with natural gas saw the Lone Star State shining less brightly than the rest of the US. While the current situation is not the same, Feroli says there should not be complacency about the risk.
Google lags behind its peers
Google stocks have seen a 10 per cent drop this year and are close to a 52-week low. While other tech giants have seen their value soar, including a 40 per cent increase for Facebook and 25 per cent for Microsoft, Google has softened. It’s still number one for digital ad revenue but perhaps its weakness in the social media space is concerning investors. The Google Plus platform has failed to ignite to the level of Facebook or Twitter, partly due to the company’s own mixed messages on its future. Consumers tend to like a connected offer and it’s much easier for competitors to add functionality such as video to their popular social networks than it is for Google to persuade users to switch networks.
Amazon launches one-hour delivery service
A new service was launched in ‘select areas’ of Manhattan yesterday as Amazon launched its Prime Now service. The new venture allows New Yorkers with an Amazon Prime account to have items such as toiletries, batteries and books delivered within an hour, for a charge of $7.99. Those who can wait two hours can have free delivery. The company is currently investigating the use of unmanned aircraft (drones) as a delivery method.
Global IPO market has a boom year
It’s been a good year for IPO’s according to new figures. CNBC reports that preliminary figures from Dealogic show a 49 per cent increase in IPO value this year to $257.7 billion. Alibaba was by far the largest at $25 billion with National Commercial Bank of Saudi Arabia the second largest on $6 billion and Australia’s MediBank Private at $4.9 billion. Technology and finance were the top sectors for IPO’s.