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It's GDP day, Trump issues a warning to North Korea, and EU unites over Brexit. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about today.
First-quarter growth data released today showed the U.K. economy slowing more than forecast, with expansion of 0.3 percent over the period. The slowdown was driven by weakness in consumption, as inflation continued to eat into wages. The gross domestic product print in Spain showed renewed momentum, with the economy growing 0.8 percent in the first quarter. France and Austria registered expansions of 0.3 percent and 0.5 percent respectively. Also this morning in Europe, the flash inflation estimate for April showed core inflation in the euro area expand at the fastest rate in almost four years. At 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time U.S. growth figures will be released, with an annualized first-quarter rate of 1 percent expected.
In an interview with Reuters, President Donald Trump warned that a "major conflict" with North Korea is possible if diplomatic solutions fail. The president, who said in the interview that he is finding the job more difficult than he'd expected, is struggling to achieve as much as he wanted ahead of his administration's 100-day anniversary tomorrow. A full breakdown of what he has achieved so far shows he hasn’t yet signed into law any of his major policy priorities.
British Prime Minister Theresa May finds herself facing an unusually united European Union in Brexit negotiations, with the leaders of the 27 other member states holding a summit in Brussels tomorrow to agree a joint position. One positive sign for the U.K. is the possibility that the EU may allow talks to cover a trade deal before both sides agree on a specific exit fee for Britain.
Overnight the MSCI Asia Pacific Index slipped 0.3 percent, with Japan's Topix index dropping by the same amount while still managing to post its strongest weekly performance since December. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.2 percent lower at 5:50 a.m. as the euro rose to $1.0937 after inflation data. S&P 500 futures were broadly unchanged.
Barclays Plc continued the recent European-bank trend by posting results that failed to live up to expectations, with a surprise drop in fixed-income trading revenue seeing shares trade 5.5 percent lower by 5:57 a.m. In the U.S. today it's the turn of oil majors to report, with results from Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp., and Phillips 66 Co. all due.
What we've been reading
This is what's caught our eye over the last 24 hours.
- How Trump and Brexit could change global bank rules.
- Draghi's right to keep his foot on the gas.
- SNB has room for rate cuts and more interventions, Jordan says.
- ETFs are "weapons of mass destruction" according to FPA Capital managers.
- Some investors are betting the high-yield party is over.
- Goldman Sachs sees bullion heading to $1,200 within months.
- How money is created.
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