Markets await GDP; Greece uncertainty continues
Wall Street closed slightly lower Thursday as Greek debt weighed heavily on investors in North America and Europe with an uncertain outcome to current talks. US GDP figures are sharply in view Friday with expectation that the first quarter will show decline; a Reuters’ survey of economists predicts 0.8 per cent drop not the 0.2 per cent growth that the government forecast last month. Asian markets have ended the week mixed with Tokyo managing a new 15-year high while Shanghai closed lower as concern continues over the economy and tightening rules on margin financing. Greece’s debt is the big one for Europe currently and talks continue Friday to try to avoid a default. Mixed GDP data from individual countries and concern over Asia are also damaging sentiment in Europe and all indexes are lower so far.
US stock futures are trending lower. Oil is trending higher (Brent $63.10, WTI $58.30 at 6am ET). Gold is trending higher.
GDP at 8.30am ET
Corporate profits at 8.30am ET
Chicago PMI at 9.45am ET
Consumer sentiment at 10am ET
Books-a-Million, Horizon Minerals and Warp 9 are among the companies reporting earnings today.
Intel eyes Altera for $15 billion
Intel Corporation could be about to buy smaller chip making rival Altera for a reported $15 billion according to the New York Post. The deal is said to value the firm at a 15 per cent premium over its closing price Thursday. Altera rejected a previous offer from Intel but a “standstill” agreement between the two expires on June 1 after which Intel can make a hostile bid.
Google ties up with GoPro for virtual reality venture
Google and GoPro are teaming up to launch a new product for Google’s new virtual reality platform Jump. The two firms have partnered on a camera that captures 360 degree video footage. The videos created using the camera can be uploaded to YouTube, marking a first for the video site. Some of YouTube’s top creators will be the first to get access to the new product in July.
Italy could be the next European problem
If talks with Greece reach an appropriate settlement in the next few days and the country avoids defaulting on loans there could be a new focus for European and world markets. CNBC reports that Italy which has been dogged by slow growth now has growing political issues with an election this weekend. There is potential for a weakened government and regional administrations which will add to the pressure on Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and his Democratic Party.