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Stocks recover, the yen stabilizes, and Yahoo has possible buyers. Here are some of things people in markets are talking about today.
Stocks are staging a small recovery on the last day of trading in a week that has seen selloffs across the world. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.1 percent overnight, with Japan's Topix Index climbing 1.2 percent. China's Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.8 percent, for the index's longest losing streak since January. In Europe the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.6 percent higher at 10:21 a.m. London time with banks leading the recovery. S&P 500 futures are 0.5 percent higher.
Yen rally stalls
Japan’s Finance Minister Taro Aso said that strong yen movements are undesirable, especially if they’re abrupt. After yesterday's very sudden strengthening of the Japanese currency - which saw it move below 108 to the U.S. dollar - the yen was trading at 108.75 at 10:45 a.m. London time. The big move in the yen helped push currency market volatility to its highest level since 2011 this week.
Verizon Communications Inc. plans to make a first-round bid for Yahoo Inc.’s Web business next week, according to people familiar with the matter. Shares in Yahoo Japan Corp. surged on the news that Verizon is also willing to buy Yahoo's stake in the Japanese web company. Google, the main division of Alphabet Inc. is also reported to be interested in Yahoo's core business, while Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. has not joined the bidding as the company concentrates on its Chinese media holdings.
U.K. industrial production clouds growth outlook
U.K. industrial production unexpectedly declined 0.3 percent in February, with manufacturing production dropping 1.1 percent. With economic concerns already rising ahead of the 'Brexit' referendum in June, this morning's data will not be welcome by U.K. investors. The pound unwound much of its earlier session gains following the data release to trade 0.1 percent higher against the dollar at 11:05 a.m. London time.
Four Federal Reserve leaders of the past and present joined each other at an event yesterday in what was a relatively lighthearted discussion on the challenges the position of head of the U.S. central bank holds. Current Fed Chair Janet Yellen said that the U.S. economy is approaching full employment, while some slack remains. Former Chair Ben Bernanke suggested that there is too much reliance on central banks to solve the world's problems. Alan Greenspan and Paul Volcker were entertaining.
What we've been reading
This is what's caught our eye over the last 24 hours.
- Maybe money really does make the world go round.
- Why the oil market is better off looking at U.S. production than OPEC.
- Blackstone to shut mutual fund after Fidelity pulls out.
- Bank of Russia spreads the blame for inflation.
- David Cameron accused of hypocrisy for stake in father's offshore fund.
- Yale made 93 percent a year on venture capital in past two years.
- India's thirst for oil is overtaking China's.