Wall St. watches the dollar; World stocks end the week on a high
As analysts continue to second-guess the Fed on interest rates it’s the strength of the greenback that is in focus currently. Thursday saw the dollar index surge 1 per cent and some economists are concerned that if the currency stays strong it could damage growth. Asian markets have closed mostly higher as economic data from China showed positivity and Japan is also enjoying strong sentiment. Shanghai and Tokyo ended the week on multi-year highs. In Europe some good corporate results have helped push major indexes higher together with news that Greece has repaid its $480 million loan and will now be able to negotiate new funds.
US stock futures are trending lower. Oil is trending lower (Brent $56.52, WTI $50.40 at 5.55am ET). Gold is trending lower.
Import/export prices at 8.30am ET
Treasury budget at 2.00pm ET
Aegea, Inogen and Your Event are among the companies reporting earnings today.
Watch this: Apple attracts ‘early-adopters’ for new product
The highly-anticipated Apple Watch has finally gone on pre-sale and fans in Asia and Europe were the first to be able to go in-store to wear one and part with their cash. There were not the long lines of eager customers that Apple launches have previously prompted as you can’t actually take one away today, however a pop-up shop in the iconic Selfridges store in London has seen a steady stream of customers already. Those pre-ordering today will start showing everyone their wrists from April 24.
Brits discover oil … lots of it
A British company says it has discovered up to 100 billion barrels of oil in land in the south east of England. UK Oil & Gas Investments wants to extract the massive find which is in the area around London Gatwick airport. To put the find in context, it is more than double the amount of oil pumped from the UK’s North Sea oil fields over the last 40 years. The firm says it can extract the reserves using traditional methods rather than fracking.
New contest to make sea water drinkable launched
Thursday saw the launch of a new contest, funded by USAID, to create a new technology that can make sea water drinkable and usable for farming. As California struggles with its severe drought and climate change concerns increase, this timely contest could provide an important part of our future. The prize is $200,000 in funding.