Morning Briefing: US politics in focus as world markets slump

Morning Briefing: US politics in focus as world markets slump

Morning Briefing: US politics in focus as world markets slump US politics in focus as world markets slump

The TSX and Wall Street dropped sharply Wednesday as political uncertainty surrounding the Trump administration took centre stage; those conditions dominate world markets so far Thursday on news that a special counsel has been appointed to investigate allegations of Russian interference in the presidential election.

Asian markets closed lower with Tokyo’s Nikkei off by 1.3 per cent despite GDP data revealing forecast-beating growth of 2.2 per cent in the first quarter of 2017. Sydney’s ASX also closed lower even though employment data was positive.

European indexes are trending lower with US politics adding to a drop for auto manufacturers’ shares as the EU announced an investigation into Fiat Chrysler over emissions data. London’s FTSE is down sharply, bucking strong retail data.

ECB president Mario Draghi speaks later.

Wall Street and Toronto are expected to open lower.

Mexico’s central bank announces its interest rate decision later.
 

 

Latest

1 month ago

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North America (previous session)

US Dow Jones

20,606.93 (-1.78 per cent)

+0.41 per cent

+17.58 per cent

TSX Composite

15,273.68 (-1.73 per cent)

-2.23 per cent

+10.47 per cent

 

Europe (at 5.00am ET)

UK FTSE

7,415.63 (-1.17 per cent)

+3.75 per cent

+20.27 per cent

German DAX

12,541.05 (-0.72 per cent)

+4.50 per cent

+26.13 per cent

 

Asia (at close)

China CSI 300

3,398.11 (-0.35 per cent)

-1.87 per cent

+10.76 per cent

Japan Nikkei

19,553.86 (-1.32 per cent)

+6.16 per cent

+17.48 per cent

 

Other Data (at 5.00am ET)

Oil (Brent)

Oil (WTI)

Gold

Can. Dollar

52.10

(-0.21 per cent)

48.94

(-0.26 per cent)

1259.90

(+0.10 per cent)

U$0.7332

 

Aus. Dollar

U$0.7438



Productivity slowdown weighs on living standards

A new report by the OECD warns that living standards are being weakened by slowing productivity.
It says that productivity was already slowing before the financial crisis but that sluggish investment has exacerbated the situation along with a greater reliance on part-time working.

The report highlights that productivity will be boosted by working smarter rather than working harder and that includes innovations in technology and processes.

The weakening of labour productivity growth in recent years has been spread broadly across sectors but declines have been sharpest in manufacturing, information and communication services, and in finance and insurance.

Canada ranks 6th for productivity among the G7 nations, the OECD says. Its contribution to GDP per hour worked is 50.8, outpacing Japan on 45.5 but well behind the top-ranking US at 68.3.