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16.01.2018

CSX Profit Tops Wall Street Driven By Lower Costs, Revenue Misses

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Railroad operator CSX Corp. (CSX), Tuesday reported a profit for the fourth quarter that trumped analysts estimates, as lower expenses and better prices offset decline in shipments volumes. Earnings for the quarter trumped Wall Street estimates, however, revenues fell short of expectations.Jacksonville, Florida-based CSX's fourth-quarter profit rose to $4.14 billion or $4.62 per share from $458 million or $0.49 per share last year. Fourth-quarter earnings included a $3.6 billion tax reform benefit resulting from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 and a $10 million restructuring charge.Excluding one-time items, fourth-quarter adjusted earnings were $573 million or $0.64 per share. On average, 24 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters estimated earnings of $0.56 per share for the quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.Revenues for the quarter dropped 6 percent to $2.86 billion from $3.04 billion last year. Analysts had a consensus revenue estimate of $2.89 billion for the quarter.Total volumes declined 8 percent to 1.60 million units, while revenue per unit rose 2 percent to $1,788 from $1,754 last year.'CSX's performance continued to strengthen in the fourth quarter, building upon the scheduled railroading model that was instituted by Hunter Harrison' said James Foote, president and chief executive officer. 'I'm excited about the progress we are making and am confident we have the right team in place to achieve our goal of becoming the best railroad in North America.'Total expenses declined 14 percent to $1.74 billion.CSX closed Tuesday's trading at $58.13, down $1.12 or 1.89% on the Nasdaq. The stock further dropped $0.63 or 1.08% in the after-hours trading.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

CSX Corp Q4 Income Climbs 800%

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - CSX Corp (CSX) released earnings for its fourth quarter that gained ground compared to the same period last year.The company said its bottom line advanced to $4.14 billion, or $4.62 per share. This was higher than $0.46 billion, or $0.49 per share, in last year's fourth quarter.Analysts had expected the company to earn $0.56 per share, according figures compiled by Thomson Reuters. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.The company said revenue for the quarter fell 5.9% to $2.86 billion. This was down from $3.04 billion last year.CSX Corp earnings at a glance:-Earnings (Q4): $4.14 Bln. vs. $0.46 Bln. last year.-Earnings Growth (Y-o-Y): 800%-EPS (Q4): $4.62 vs. $0.49 last year.-EPS Growth (Y-o-Y): 842.9%-Analysts Estimate: $0.56-Revenue (Q4): $2.86 Bln vs. $3.04 Bln last year.-Revenue Change (Y-o-Y): -5.9%Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Did Carillion Bigwigs Kill The Company?

LONDON (dpa-AFX) - The UK government on Tuesday ordered a fast-track investigation into directors at the failed construction company Carillion.Carillion on Monday collapsed into liquidation after struggling with huge debt and heavy losses on contracts. The company's liquidation, which managed hundreds of public sector projects worth 1.7 billion pounds, has put 20,000 UK jobs at risk.Business Secretary Greg Clark has asked Insolvency Service to fast-track investigation into Carillion's directors and broaden scope to include those directors previously employed.'It is important we quickly get the full picture of the events which caused Carillion to enter liquidation, which is why I have asked the Insolvency Service to fast- rack and broaden the scope of the Official Receiver's investigation,' Greg Clark said.'In particular, I have asked that the investigation looks not only at the conduct of the directors at the point of its insolvency, but also of any individuals who were previously directors. Any evidence of misconduct will be taken very seriously,' he added.The probe has been ordered because Carillion's former director Richard Howson is still receiving a hefty 600,000 pound payout despite the firm's weak financial health.According to reports, Howson received 1.5 million in salary, bonuses and pension payments during 2016 and, as part of his departure deal, Carillion kept paying him a 660,000 pound salary and 28,000 pound in benefits until October.Several other executives, including former finance chief Zafar Khan and interim CEO Keith Cochrane, also received similar benefits.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Citigroup Q4 Adj. Profit Beats Estimates

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Citigroup Inc. (C) on Tuesday reported a loss for the fourth quarter, reflecting the impact of a non-cash charge of $22 billion due to the recent U.S. tax reform that more than offset an increase in revenues. However, adjusted earnings per share for the quarter beat analysts' estimates, while revenues were in line with expectations. The company's shares are gaining almost 3 percent in pre-market activity.Citigroup's fourth-quarter net loss was $18.3 billion or $7.15 per share compared to net income of $3.57 billion or $1.14 per share in the year-ago period.The latest quarter's results include an estimated one-time, non-cash charge of $22 billion, or $8.43 per share, related to the enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, or the U.S. tax reform.Excluding the impact of the tax reform, adjusted earnings for the quarter were $1.28, compared to $1.14 per share in the year-ago period. On average, 22 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to earn $1.19 per share. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.Revenues for the quarter grew 1 percent to $17.26 billion from $17.01 billion in the prior year. Analysts expected revenue of $17.22 billion.The increase in revenues was driven by 6 percent revenue growth in the Global Consumer Banking segment, partially offset by lower revenues in both the Institutional Clients Group and Corporate/Other segments.Global Consumer Banking revenues increased 6 percent from last year to $8.41 billion, while Corporate/Other revenue declined 13 percent to $746 million.Revenues from Institutional Clients Group decreased 1 percent to $8.10 billion, as continued momentum in Banking and Securities Services was offset by a decline in Markets revenues.However, fixed income markets revenue decreased 18 percent due to continued lower volatility in the quarter as well as the comparison to a more robust trading environment in the prior year period as a result of the U.S. elections. Equity markets revenue declined 23 percent, reflecting an episodic loss in derivatives of about $130 million related to a single client event.The company's total operating expenses of $10.08 billion were almost flat with the year-ago period. Citigroup's cost of credit rose 16 percent from last year to $2.08 billion, driven by an increase in net credit losses of $184 million as well as a higher loan loss reserve build.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

GM Projects FY Adj. EPS At High End Of Guidance; Expects Strong Earnings In 2018

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - General Motors Co. (GM) announced the company estimates 2017 EPS-adjusted at the high end of the previously stated range of $6.00 to $6.50. For 2018, the company forecasts results to be largely in line with expected 2017 results. The company said, in 2018, it will continue product momentum with the introduction of next-generation full-size trucks later in the year.GM CEO Mary Barra said. 'We are positioned for another strong year in 2018 and an even better one in 2019.'General Motors said the Tax Reform will be a significant benefit for the company. A non-cash non-economic deferred tax asset re-measurement of approximately $7 billion will be recorded as a special item for EPS adjusted in fourth quarter of 2017 resulting in estimated calendar year 2017 EPS from continuing operations of approximately $0.20.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Avis Budget Sees FY17 Revenues Above View

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Avis Budget Group Inc. (CAR) said that it estimates that for the full-year ended December 31, 2017, revenues increased to approximately $8.85 billion, and it expects pretax income to be between $205 million and $215 million and Adjusted pretax income to be between $340 million and $350 million.Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect the company to report revenues of $8.8 billion for fiscal year 2017. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.The company also expects Adjusted EBITDA to be within a range of $730 million to $740 million.Based on preliminary data, the Company estimates that its cash balance as of December 31, 2017 was more than $600 million and that its corporate debt balance was approximately $3.5 billion.The company expects to continue to face certain ongoing headwinds in 2018, including the incremental impact of rising interest rates and other items, partially offset by the full-year benefit of the steps taken to reduce costs.The company also announced plans to report its fourth quarter and full-year 2017 results after the market close on Wednesday, February 21, 2018.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Blackhawk Network To Be Acquired By Silver Lake And P2 Capital For $3.5 Bln

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Blackhawk Network Holdings Inc. (HAWK) said that Silver Lake and P2 Capital Partners have agreed to acquire Blackhawk in an all-cash transaction for a total consideration of about $3.5 billion, which includes Blackhawk's debt.As per the terms of the agreement, Blackhawk stockholders will receive $45.25 per share in cash upon closing of the transaction, representing a premium of 24.0% over Blackhawk's closing share price of $36.50 on January 12, 2018 and a premium of 29.3% over the average closing share price during the 90 calendar days ended January 12, 2018.Upon completion of the transaction Blackhawk will operate as a private company under the leadership of the current management team. Blackhawk's Board of Directors has unanimously approved the definitive merger agreement and recommends that stockholders vote in favor of the transaction. The definitive agreement has fully committed debt and equity financing, including an approximately $1.7 billion equity commitment from Silver Lake. P2 Capital Partners, which beneficially owns approximately 5.4% of Blackhawk's outstanding common stock, has committed to vote in favor of the proposed transaction.The transaction, which is expected to close mid-2018, is subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of stockholder and regulatory approvals. The definitive merger agreement permits Blackhawk's Board of Directors and its advisors to solicit, receive, evaluate and enter into negotiations with respect to alternative proposals through February 9, 2018.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Citigroup Inc. Reports 4% Advance In Q4 Bottom Line

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Citigroup Inc. (C) reported earnings for its fourth quarter that gained ground from last year.The company said its bottom line rose to $3.38 billion, or $1.28 per share. This was higher than $3.25 billion, or $1.14 per share, in last year's fourth quarter.Analysts had expected the company to earn $1.19 per share, according figures compiled by Thomson Reuters. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.The company said revenue for the quarter rose 1.5% to $17.26 billion. This was up from $17.01 billion last year.Citigroup Inc. earnings at a glance:-Earnings (Q4): $3.38 Bln. vs. $3.25 Bln. last year.-Earnings Growth (Y-o-Y): 4.0%-EPS (Q4): $1.28 vs. $1.14 last year.-EPS Growth (Y-o-Y): 12.3%-Analysts Estimate: $1.19-Revenue (Q4): $17.26 Bln vs. $17.01 Bln last year.-Revenue Change (Y-o-Y): 1.5%Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Ericsson To Take SEK 14.2 Bln Write-down In Q4

STOCKHOLM (dpa-AFX) - Swedish telecom equipment maker Ericsson (ERIC) said Tuesday that it will take a write-down of 14.2 billion Swedish kronor, or $1.8 billion, following the impairment testing of its businesses. The company also expects a non-cash charge of about 1.0 billion kronor due to the recent U.S. tax reform.Ericsson noted that the impairments and the tax asset revaluation will impact its reported net income in the fourth quarter of 2017, but will have no impact on its cash flow and cash position in the quarter. The company will publish the final numbers in its financial results for the fourth quarter of 2017.Ericsson said it has completed the impairment testing that was announced in conjunction with its restated financials according to its new segment structure announced on December 8, 2017. The impairment testing resulted in a write-down of 14.2 billion kronor. The company noted that the impairments will have a negative impact on its fourth-quarter reported operating income, mainly in its Digital Services and Other segments. Ericsson said that of the 14.2 billion kronor write down, 7.1 billion kronor will be towards impairment of goodwill and intangible assets in the Digital Services segment, while 6.7 billion kronor will be towards impairment of goodwill, intangible assets and fixed assets in 'Segment Other'. The company will distribute a write-down of 0.3 billion kronor towards deferred costs related to the termination of certain transformation activities in the Managed Services segment, while impairment of 0.2 billion kronor will be for capitalized development expenses related to technologies that are no longer planned to be used in the Networks segment.According to Ericsson, the majority of goodwill originates from the investments made by it ten years ago or more, and has limited relevance for the company's business going forward. In addition, Ericsson noted that the lowering of the U.S. corporate income tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, with effect from 1 January 2018, will require a revaluation of U.S. deferred tax assets. The company currently estimates a non-cash charge to the Group income statement of about 1.0 billion kronor that will impact its income tax expenses.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

USA Compression Partners To Buy Compression Business From ETP

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - USA Compression Partners, LP (USAC), Energy Transfer Partners, L.P. (ETP) and Energy Transfer Equity, L.P. (ETE) announced a transaction valued at approximately $1.8 billion, providing for the contribution of ETP's subsidiaries, CDM Resource Management LLC and CDM Environmental & Technical Services LLC, to USAC. ETP will contribute the CDM business in exchange for $1.225 billion in cash, approximately 19.2 million USAC common units and approximately 6.4 million USAC Class B units. The deal also includes the cancellation of the incentive distribution rights in USAC and conversion of the general partner interest in USAC into a non-economic general partner interest. Energy Transfer Equity will acquire the ownership interests in the general partner of USAC and approximately 12.5 million USAC common units from USA Compression Holdings. ETE will acquire all of the equity interests in USAC's general partner, USA Compression Partners GP, LLC and approximately 12.5 million USAC common units from USA Compression Holdings in exchange for $250 million in cash. The transaction is expected to be accretive to USAC's distributable cash flow in 2018. The deal is expected to strengthen ETP's balance sheet by allowing ETP to use the approximately $1.225 billion in cash proceeds that it will receive in connection with the transactions to reduce leverage.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

The Swiss Stock Market Fell Again As Roche Weighs

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - The Swiss stock market dropped again on Tuesday, adding to the losses of the previous day. The weak performance by index heavyweight Roche pressured the overall market. The Swiss Market Index decreased by 0.77 percent Tuesday and finished at 9,464.48. The Swiss Leader Index dropped 0.55 percent and the Swiss Performance Index lost 0.64 percent.Roche tumbled 3.4 percent. The stock was under pressure due to an interview of Severin Schwan by the Financial Times. In it, he warns against pressure on margins and demands 'realistic expectations' of investors. Vifor finished lower by 0.8 percent. Newron, Cosmo and Kuros suffered losses between 2.1 percent and 1.5 percent in the broad market. Geberit, Swatch and Logitech lost between 1.0 and 0.8 percent. Geberit is expected to report sales figures for 2017 this Thursday.Credit Suisse weakened by 0.8 percent, Julius Baer fell 0.7 percent and UBS lost 0.6 percent. Novartis rose 0.02 percent. Sandoz, a Novartis division, announced that it has received approval from the U.S. health regulator for proposed biosimilar adalimumab to the reference medicine, Humira.Lonza climbed 1.1 percent, ABB gained 0.6 percent and SGS added 0.5 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

European Markets Finished Mixed Despite Dip In Euro

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - The European markets were stuck in a sideways trend for the majority of Tuesday's session and finished with mixed results. After rallying for several days, the Euro pulled back during today's session, which provided some relief to exporters. Investors continue to keep an eye on Germany after a report showed that Berlin's SPD section has voted against the proposal for formal coalition talks to form a grand coalition with Angela Merkel's conservative party.German news website Spiegel reported that skepticism towards another grand coalition is high within the SPD and the state of Saxony-Anhalt and Berlin's SPD section have voted against the proposal of coalition negotiations with the CDU and CSU.A special SPD convention is scheduled in Bonn on Sunday, when the delegates should approve for formal talks.The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index advanced 0.03 percent. The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks increased 0.28 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, lost 0.14 percent.The DAX of Germany climbed 0.35 percent and the CAC 40 of France rose 0.08 percent. The FTSE 100 of the U.K. declined 0.17 percent and the SMI of Switzerland finished lower by 0.77 percent.In Frankfurt, Hugo Boss rallied 3.73 percent after reporting 5 percent growth in its fourth-quarter Group sales.Automotive manufacturing firm Continental AG added 1.12 percent on reports of business restructuring.In Paris, Engie gained 1.21 percent after its chief executive said 2018 would see an acceleration of growth.Media group Mediawan jumped 3.72 percent on news that it is acquiring three major French TV production companies.Peugeot advanced 1.76 percent after it announced that it expects a 15 percent increase in worldwide sales in 2017.In London, JD Sports surged 6.16 percent as the retailer raised its profit forecast for the second time since September.Premier Foods climbed 3.04 percent after reporting an increase in third-quarter sales.GKN rose 1.05 percent to extend Monday's gains after Melrose Industries outlined its plans for the automotive and aerospace components company.Associated British Foods increased 2.23 percent after Barclays upgraded its rating on the stock to 'Overweight' from 'Equal weight.'BP weakened by 2.70 percent after it announced that it now expects to take a post-tax non-operating charge of around $1.7 billion in its fourth quarter for Deepwater Horizon settlement program.Networking and telecommunications firm Ericsson slid 0.64 percent in Stockholm. The company announced that it would take write downs of SKr14.2bn ($1.8bn) after impairment testing of its businesses.Novartis rose 0.02 percent in Zurich. Sandoz, a Novartis division, announced that it has received approval from the U.S. health regulator for proposed biosimilar adalimumab to the reference medicine, Humira.Germany's consumer price inflation accelerated to a five-year high in 2017, final data published by Destatis showed Tuesday. Consumer price inflation climbed to 1.8 percent in 2017 from 0.5 percent a year ago. This was the highest rate since 2012. Between 2014 and 2016, the inflation rates were even below one percent each.UK inflation slowed for the first time in six months in December, on air fares and recreational goods costs, official data showed Tuesday. Inflation eased to 3 percent in December from 3.1 percent in November, the Office for National Statistics reported. The rate came in line with expectations and was the first decrease in six months.British house price inflation eased in November after accelerating in the previous month, figures from the Office for National Statistics showed Tuesday. The house price index climbed 5.1 percent year-over-year in November, slower than the 5.4 percent rise in October, which was revised up from a 4.5 percent increase reported earlier.Growth in activity in the New York manufacturing sector slowed in the month of January, according to a report released by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York on Tuesday.The New York Fed said its general business conditions index dropped to 17.7 in January from an upwardly revised 19.6 in December. A positive reading still indicates growth in regional manufacturing activity.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Wall Street Heads For A Strong Opening

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - As major corporates such as Citigroup, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and IBM are scheduled to report this week, the markets are into a new vigor. The U.S. dollar is showing a slight down trend on Tuesday. Earlier signals from the U.S. futures suggest that Wall Street might open potently higher. Empire State Manufacturing Survey is the major economic announcement today. Asian shares closed broadly higher, while European shares are trading in the green. As of 6.30 am ET, the Dow futures were adding 228 points, the S&P 500 futures were climbing 13 points and the Nasdaq 100 futures were progressing 39.25 points.U.S. stocks closed higher on Friday. The Dow advanced 228.46 points or 0.9 percent to 25,803.19, the Nasdaq climbed 49.28 points or 0.7 percent to 7,261.06 and the S&P 500 rose 18.68 points or 0.7 percent to 2,786.24.On the economic front, Empire State Manufacturing Survey for January will be published at 8.30 am ET. The consensus is for 18.6, slightly up from 18.0 in December. Treasury's six-month bill auction will be held at 11.30 am ET. In the corporate sector, BP Plc said it expects to take a post-tax non-operating charge of around $1.7 billion in its fourth quarter for Deepwater Horizon settlement program. Earlier, the company was expecting around $1.5 billion one-off non-cash charge in its fourth quarter due to the recently-enacted changes to US corporate taxes.UnitedHealth Group (UNH) revised its 2018 financial outlook to reflect the effects of the U.S. corporate tax law changes and now expects net earnings of $11.65 to $11.95 per share and adjusted net earnings of $12.30 to $12.60 per share. Cash flows from operations are expected to range from $15 billion to $15.5 billion.Spectrum Brands Holdings, Inc. said it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell its Global Battery and Lighting Business to Energizer Holdings, Inc. for $2 billion in cash. The Company expects to use the net cash proceeds to reinvest in its core businesses both organically and through bolt-on acquisitions, and repurchase shares.Asian stocks closed mostly higher on Tuesday. China's Shanghai Composite index advanced 26.11 points or 0.77 percent to 3,436.59. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index climbed 72.46 points or 0.21 percent at 34,771.05.Japanese stocks rallied. The Nikkei average jumped 236.93 points or 1.00 percent to 23,951.81, marking its highest closing level in more than 26 years. The broader Topix index closed 0.55 percent higher at 1,894.25.Australian shares fell amid broad-based selling, although markets ended well off their day's lows. The benchmark ASX 200 hit a two-week low before ending down 28.50 points or 0.47 percent at 6,048.60. The broader All Ordinaries index dropped 21.80 points or 0.35 percent to 6,165.90.In economic releases, Australia's consumer confidence continued its uptrend during the week ended January 14, a weekly survey compiled by the ANZ bank and Roy Morgan Research showed. The corresponding index climbed to 123.5 from 112.0 in the preceding week.European shares are trading higher. CAC 40 of France is climbing 24.84 points or 0.45 percent. DAX of Germany is up 143.44 points or 1.08 percent. FTSE 100 of England is up 10.41 points or 0.14 percent. Swiss Market Index is advancing 19.50 points or 0.21 percent. Euro Stoxx 50, that provides a Blue-chip representation of supersector leaders in the Eurozone, is currently up 0.70 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

European Shares Inch Higher As Euro Rally Pauses

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - European stocks were flat to slightly higher on Tuesday as the euro paused after recent rally and investors awaited more earnings news from the U.S. as trading resumes following a long weekend. The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index was up 0.3 percent at 398.81 in opening deals after declining 0.2 percent the previous day. The German DAX was rising half a percent, France's CAC 40 index was moving up 0.3 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 was up 0.2 percent. Novartis rose about 1 percent. Sandoz, a Novartis division, announced that it has received approval from the U.S. health regulator for proposed biosimilar adalimumab to the reference medicine, Humira.German luxury fashion house Hugo Boss rallied 2.5 percent on reporting 5 percent growth in its fourth-quarter Group sales.Automotive manufacturing firm Continental AG added 1.5 percent on reports of business restructuring.French utility Engie gained 1.4 percent after its chief executive said 2018 would see an acceleration of growth.Media group Mediawan jumped over 4 percent on news that it is acquiring three major French TV production companies.JD Sports jumped 6.7 percent as the British retailer raised its profit forecast for the second time since September.Premier Foods climbed 3.2 percent after reporting an increase in third-quarter sales.Swedish networking and telecommunications firm Ericsson slid half a percent. The company announced that it would take writedowns of SKr14.2bn ($1.8bn) after impairment testing of its businesses.On the economic front, Germany's consumer price inflation accelerated to a five-year high of 1.8 percent in 2017, final data published by Destatis showed today, while wholesale prices logged an annual growth of 3.5 percent in the year.U.K.'s consumer price inflation dropped to 3 percent in December from November's six-year high of 3.1 percent, official data showed.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

FTSE 100 Holds Steady Ahead Of Inflation Data

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - U.K. shares were little changed on Tuesday as investors awaited U.K. inflation data due later in the day for direction. The benchmark FTSE 100 was marginally higher at 7,771 in opening deals after closing 0.1 percent lower in the previous session.JD Sports jumped 6.7 percent as the retailer raised its profit forecast for the second time since September. Mining giant Rio Tinto fell over 1 percent despite reporting growth in iron ore production in the fourth quarter.GKN rose more than 1 percent to extend Monday's gains after Melrose Industries outlined its plans for the automotive and aerospace components company.Premier Foods climbed 3.2 percent after reporting an increase in third-quarter sales.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

CAC 40 Holds Steady As Dollar Edges Up

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - French stocks held steady on Tuesday as the euro paused after recent rally and investors eyed fresh corporate earnings for direction.The benchmark CAC 40 was marginally higher at 5,512 in opening deals after closing 0.1 percent lower on Monday.Airbus rose 0.2 percent. The Brexit developments as well as U.S. President Donald Trump's pro-America policies amount to a 'double whammy' of protectionist hazards, Chief Executive Officer Tom Enders said in London at the annual dinner of the ADS trade association.Utility Engie gained over 1 percent after its chief executive said 2018 would see an acceleration of growth.Media group Mediawan jumped nearly 3 percent on news that it is acquiring three major French TV production companies.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

DAX Edges Higher As Euro Eases From Three-year High

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - German stocks were modestly higher on Tuesday as the euro paused after recent rally and investors eyed fresh corporate earnings for direction. The German DAX was up 34 points or 0.26 percent at 13,232 in opening deals after declining 0.2 percent in the previous session.Luxury fashion house Hugo Boss rallied more than 2 percent on reporting 5 percent growth in its fourth-quarter Group sales.Automotive manufacturing firm Continental AG added 1 percent on reports of business restructuring.On the economic front, Germany's consumer price inflation accelerated to a five-year high of 1.8 percent in 2017, final data published by Destatis showed today, while wholesale prices logged an annual growth of 3.5 percent in the year.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Asian Shares Rise On Earnings Optimism

BEIJING (dpa-AFX) - Asian stocks closed mostly higher on Tuesday despite a lack of fresh catalysts as investors looked ahead to more earnings news from the U.S. China's Shanghai Composite index advanced 0.77 percent to 3,436.59 ahead of fourth-quarter GDP, December industrial production and retail sales figures due Thursday. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index was up 1.8 percent at 31,904 in late trade.Japanese stocks rallied, with a weaker yen and hopes for robust corporate earnings results helping underpin investor sentiment. The Nikkei average jumped 236.93 points or 1.00 percent to 23,951.81, marking its highest closing level in more than 26 years as the yen's appreciation against the dollar stopped. The broader Topix index closed 0.55 percent higher at 1,894.25. Dentsu, Softbank, Fuji Electric, Fast Retailing, Sumco and Fanuc rose 2-5 percent.Australian shares fell amid broad-based selling, although markets ended well off their day's lows. The benchmark ASX 200 hit a two-week low before ending down 28.50 points or 0.47 percent at 6,048.60. The broader All Ordinaries index dropped 21.80 points or 0.35 percent to 6,165.90.Weak iron ore and coking coal prices weighed on material stocks, with BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto losing 0.8 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively. Gold miners Northern Star and Evolution fell around 1 percent each. The big four banks fell between 0.4 percent and 0.8 percent while energy majors Woodside Petroleum, Oil Search, Origin Energy and Santos shed 2-3 percent. Shares of Bellamy's Australia soared 25 percent after the infant formula maker raised its full-year profit and revenue growth outlook.In economic releases, Australia's consumer confidence continued its uptrend during the week ended January 14, a weekly survey compiled by the ANZ bank and Roy Morgan Research showed. The corresponding index climbed to 123.5 from 112.0 in the preceding week. Seoul stocks rose sharply as investors lapped up large-cap tech shares ahead of earnings announcements by major firms. The benchmark Kospi jumped 18.01 points or 0.72 percent to 2,521.74. Market heavyweight Samsung Electronics rallied 3 percent while chipmaker SK Hynix climbed 2.3 percent.New Zealand shares rose in light trading, with A2 Milk shares surging nearly 4 percent after rival infant formula maker Bellamy's Australia lifted its full-year profit guidance. The benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index climbed 39.17 points or 0.48 percent to 8,250.54. New Zealand business confidence deteriorated in the fourth quarter, the quarterly survey from the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research showed today. A net 11 percent of businesses expect economic conditions to deteriorate over the first half of 2018.India's Sensex was down 0.1 percent and Malaysia's KLSE Composite index was declining 0.2 percent while benchmark indexes in Indonesia, Singapore and Taiwan were up between 0.3 percent and half a percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

European Shares Seen Flat To Higher

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - European stocks look set to open largely unchanged on Tuesday amid a lack of direction from Wall Street as U.S. markets were closed overnight for the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.Treasuries steadied and gold held flat while the euro stood near a 3-year high on speculation the ECB may cut back on its asset purchases.Asian stocks are broadly higher, with Hong Kong and Japanese markets leading regional gains. The dollar edged up versus the yen after Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso warned about excessively rapid moves in the currency market.China's central bank has set its official yuan midpoint at the highest level in more than two years, a day after Germany's Bundesbank added the yuan to its foreign exchange reserves.Brent crude prices dipped from their highest level in three years to hover around $70 per barrel amid signs that production cuts by OPEC and Russia are tightening supplies.On the economic front, consumer and producer price figures from Germany and the U.K. are due later in the day, headlining a light day for the European economic news.The Bank of Canada will make its first interest rate announcement of the year on Wednesday while China releases Q4 GDP, December industrial output and retail sales figures on Thursday.Across the Atlantic, reports on industrial production, housing starts, consumer sentiment and regional manufacturing may sway sentiment this week as trading resumes after the long holiday weekend.Also, the Federal Reserve is due to release its Beige Book, a compilation of anecdotal evidence on economic conditions in the twelve Fed districts.Earnings news is also likely to be in focus, with Citigroup (C), UnitedHealth (UNH), Bank of America (BAC), Goldman Sachs (GS), Morgan Stanley (MS), and IBM (IBM) among the companies due to report their quarterly results this week.European stocks finished Monday's session slightly lower as the euro surged and U.K. construction firm Carillion entered into liquidation.The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index eased 0.2 percent. The German DAX dropped 0.3 percent, while France's CAC 40 and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 slid around 0.1 percent each.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Asian Markets Mostly Higher

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - Asian stock markets are mostly higher on Tuesday, though gains are modest in most markets, as investors paused for breath after recent gains amid the absence of fresh catalysts. The U.S. markets were closed overnight for a public holiday.The Australian market is declining in the absence of a clear lead from Wall Street.In late-morning trades, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is losing 31.50 points or 0.52 percent to 6,045.60, off a low of 6,042.00 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is down 28.50 points or 0.46 percent to 6,159.20.The major miners are weak after iron ore prices dipped overnight. BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto are declining more than 1 percent each, while Fortescue Metals is down 0.2 percent.Rio Tinto affirmed its outlook for 2018 iron ore shipments after its fourth-quarter production as well as shipments rose 3 percent from last year.Gold miners are also lower despite gold prices rising to a four-month high. Newcrest Mining is down 0.6 percent and Evolution Mining is lower by almost 1 percent.In the banking space, ANZ Banking, National Australia Bank, Commonwealth Bank and Westpac are down in a range of 0.2 percent to 0.8 percent.In the oil sector, Santos is declining more than 2 percent, while Oil Search and Woodside Petroleum are losing almost 1 percent each.Shares of Bellamy's Australia are gaining almost 22 percent after the infant formula maker raised its full-year profit and revenue growth outlook.On the economic front, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said that the total number of new motor vehicle sales in Australia climbed a seasonally adjusted 4.5 percent on month in December, coming in at 103,743. That follows the 0.1 percent increase in November.In the currency market, the Australian dollar is higher against the U.S. dollar. In early trades, the local unit was quoted at US$0.7967, up from US$0.7954 on Monday.The Japanese market is rising and the yen eased slightly against the U.S. dollar in the absence of fresh cues overnight from Wall Street.In late-morning trades, the benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is adding 88.65 points or 0.37 percent to 23,803.53, off a high of 23,813.98 earlier.The major exporters are mostly higher. Sony is adding 0.4 percent, Mitsubishi Electric is rising 0.3 percent and Canon is edging up less than 0.1 percent, while Panasonic is declining 0.6 percent. SoftBank Group's shares are rising almost 1 percent.In the banking sector, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial are edging up less than 0.1 percent each. Among automakers, Honda is down 0.1 percent and Toyota is adding 0.5 percent. In the oil space, Inpex is declining 0.6 percent and Japan Petroleum Exploration is lower by 0.5 percent.Among the market's best performers, Shiseido Co. is rising almost 3 percent, while Nichirei Corp. and Subaru Corp. are advancing more than 2 percent each. On the flip side, IHI Corp. is losing almost 4 percent, JFE Holdings is lower by more than 3 percent and Kobe Steel is down almost 3 percent.On the economic front, the Bank of Japan said that producer prices in Japan were up 0.2 percent on month in December. That missed forecasts for an increase of 0.4 percent following the upwardly revised 0.5 percent gain in November.In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the upper 110 yen-range on Tuesday.Elsewhere in Asia, South Korea, Shanghai, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Indonesia are also higher, while Singapore, Malaysia and Taiwan are edging lower. U.S. markets were closed on Monday for the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.The major European markets closed lower on Monday. The DAX of Germany dropped 0.34 percent, the CAC 40 of France fell 0.13 percent and the FTSE 100 of the U.K. declined 0.12 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Japan Machine Orders Data Due On Wednesday

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - Japan will on Wednesday release November numbers for core machine orders, highlighting a modest day for Asia-Pacific economic activity.Machine orders are expected to sink 1.2 percent on month and 0.5 percent on year. That follows the 5.0 percent monthly increase and the 2.3 percent yearly gain in October.Australia will see January results for the consumer confidence index from Westpac; in December, the index jumped 3.6 percent to a score of 103.3.Australia also will see numbers for home loans for November, with forecasts calling for a flat reading following the 0.6 percent decline in October.New Zealand will see December numbers for the commodity price index from ANZ; in November, the index slid 0.9 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

BRAZIL: Government Defends China And Russia In Steel Dispute

BRASILIA (dpa-AFX) - The technical report from the Brazilian Finance Ministry against the adoption of antidumping measures to steel imports from China and Russia is 'awkward,' said the Brazilian Steel Institute (IABr), which represents the country's steelmakers. The IABR says that it is 'strange' that the government disclosed the report only three days before a meeting of the government committee to debate the matter.The organization also claims that the report considers 'almost exclusively the information and sources provided by a single steel consumer,' without consulting the other parties involved.The IABr also criticized the assessment that Chinese and Russian companies could prevent the importation of hot-rolled flat products since there are several alternative sources of supply (India, Japan, Korea, the United States, the European Union, among others).On Monday, the Brazilian Finance Minister said that applying definitive anti-dumping measures to imports of Russian and Chinese hot-rolled steel would be detrimental to local consumers, which would face short-term difficulties to relocate their supply-chain.'The definitive anti-dumping measures would also bring harmful effects to the national economy since hot-rolled steel consumers - like automakers and auto parts and electronics manufacturers - represent a more emblematic GDP share than the steelmaking subsector,' said the Finance Ministry.The report also says that lower demand had an impact on hot-rolled steel supply conditions than imports from China and Russia measures could increase inflation and that the Chinese and Russian steel dumping is not aimed at enhancing their market power.The practice of dumping in Chinese and Russian steel industries has been investigated by the Department of Trade Defense (Decom) of the Ministry of Development, Industry, and Commerce (MDIC) since 2016, at the request of the IABr and members such as Companhia Siderúrgica Nacional (CSN) and Gerdau. Decom had already released an assessment confirming dumping practices.According to the IABr, there is global overcapacity of 735 million tons of steel, of which over 60% come from China and Russia.'Almost all steel-producing countries have already taken a trade defense measure against steel products from China and Russia,' IABr said in a statement, adding that it expects the Brazilian government to pass the anti-dumping tariffs.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

New York Manufacturing Index Indicates Slower Growth In January

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Growth in activity in the New York manufacturing sector slowed in the month of January, according to a report released by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York on Tuesday.The New York Fed said its general business conditions index dropped to 17.7 in January from an upwardly revised 19.6 in December. A positive reading still indicates growth in regional manufacturing activity.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Poland Core Inflation Steady In December

WARSAW (dpa-AFX) - Poland's core inflation was unchanged in December after accelerating in the previous month, figures from the National Bank of Poland showed on Tuesday.The consumer price index net of food and energy prices rose 0.9 percent on year, the same rate as seen last month. Economists were looking for a gain of 0.8 percent.On a month-on-month basis, the core CPI edged up 0.1 percent in December, unchanged from November.Overall CPI inflation grew 2.1 percent, compared to 2.5 percent in November.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Italy's Trade Surplus Narrows In November

ROME (dpa-AFX) - Italy's trade surplus decreased in November, figures from the statistical office Istat showed Tuesday.The trade surplus totaled EUR 4.83 billion versus EUR 4.98 billion in October. In the corresponding period of 2016, the surplus was EUR 4 billion. The annual growth in exports slowed to 9.7 percent from 11.5 percent in October. Likewise, imports grew at a slower pace of 8.4 percent after climbing 10.5 percent. The trade with EU countries resulted in a surplus of EUR 236 million and that with non-EU countries showed EUR 4.59 billion surplus.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

OECD Jobless Rate Steady At 5.6%

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - The unemployment rate in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development area remained stable in November, data showed Tuesday.The OECD said the jobless rate came in at 5.6 percent in November, the same rate as seen in October. The jobless rate among youth aged below 24 increased to 11.9 percent from 11.8 percent in October. In the euro area, the overall unemployment rate continued to decrease, to 8.7 percent in November. The jobless rate in Canada dropped to 5.9 percent and that in Japan slid to 2.7 percent. The rate remained stable at 4.1 percent in the United States.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

UK Inflation Eases In December

LONDON (dpa-AFX) - UK inflation slowed for the first time in six months in December, on air fares and recreational goods costs, official data showed Tuesday. Inflation eased to 3 percent in December from 3.1 percent in November, the Office for National Statistics reported. The rate came in line with expectations and was the first decrease in six months. The 3.1 percent inflation logged in November was the fastest since early 2012. The fall-back in inflation probably marks the beginning of a sustained downward trend over the course of 2018, Paul Hollingsworth, an economist at Capital Economics, said. Despite this, the Monetary Policy Committee is set to raise rates several more times this year, the economist noted.The central bank forecast inflation to slow this year, to 2.4 percent by the fourth quarter. The BoE is expected to keep its key rate unchanged at 0.50 percent at its next meeting on February 8. Data showed that consumer prices advanced 0.4 percent on month, as expected, in December.Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcoholic beverages and tobacco, slowed to 2.5 percent in December from 2.7 percent in November. Inflation was forecast to slow to 2.6 percent. Similarly, including owner occupiers' housing costs, inflation came in at 2.7 percent versus 2.8 percent in the previous month. Another report from ONS showed that output price inflation accelerated to 3.3 percent in December from 3.1 percent in November. This was the 18th consecutive month of positive inflation.Food products displayed the largest annual increase of 6.1 percent in December. Monthly output price inflation remained the same at 0.4 percent. Meanwhile, input price inflation eased sharply to 4.9 percent in December from 7.3 percent in November. This was the slowest since July 2016.On a monthly basis, input prices edged up 0.1 percent, much slower than November's 1.6 percent increase. Prices have been rising since August. At the Treasury Select Committee BoE Deputy Governor Sam Woods said financial exposure of banks and insurers to Carillion was 'entirely manageable.'Woods said he personally checked their exposure to Carillion, the construction giant that collapsed Monday.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Portugal PPI Inflation Eases In December

LISBON (dpa-AFX) - Portugal's producer price inflation eased in December after accelerating in the previous month, figures from Statistics Portugal revealed Tuesday.Producer prices climbed 2.4 percent year-on-year in December, slower than the 3.2 percent increase seen in the previous month.Excluding energy, producer price inflation moderated marginally to 1.9 percent from 2.0 percent.On a monthly basis, producer prices remained flat in December, following a 0.5 percent increase in November.For the whole of 2017, the average change in the total index was 3.4 percent versus -2.8% in 2016.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Ireland Unemployment Rate Falls Further

DUBLIN (dpa-AFX) - Ireland's unemployment rate decreased for the third straight month in December, data from the Central Statistics Office showed Tuesday.The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 6.2 percent in December from revised 6.4 percent in October. This was the lowest since May 2008, when the rate was 5.9 percent.The number of unemployed people fell to 146,700 in December from 149,900 in the preceding month. A year ago, the jobless figure totaled 173,600.The youth unemployment rate, which applies to the 15 to 24 age group, fell from 14.0 percent to 13.7 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Ireland Inflation Slows In December

DUBLIN (dpa-AFX) - Ireland's consumer price inflation eased for the second straight month in December, though marginally, data from the Central Statistics Office showed Tuesday.The consumer price index climbed 0.4 percent year-over-year in December, just below the 0.5 percent increase in November. The measure has been rising since August.Utility costs grew 3.6 percent annually in December, while prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages dropped by 1.2 percent.On a monthly basis, consumer prices edged down 0.1 percent from November, when it decreased by 0.2 percent.The annual average rate of inflation in 2017 was 0.4 percent compared with no change for 2016.Inflation, based on the harmonized index of consumer prices, held steady at 0.5 percent in December. Month-on-month, the HICP increased at a stable rate of 0.1 percent in December.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Dollar Little Changed After Paring Early Gains

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - The dollar is nearly flat Tuesday afternoon, after giving back most of its early gains against its major rivals. Economic data was on the light side this morning, as traders made their return from the long holiday weekend. Things will begin to pick up on the economic front tomorrow. Industrial production and homebuilder confidence data will be released Wednesday morning, while the Fed will release the Beige Book in the afternoon.Growth in activity in the New York manufacturing sector slowed in the month of January, according to a report released by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York on Tuesday.The New York Fed said its general business conditions index dropped to 17.7 in January from an upwardly revised 19.6 in December. A positive reading still indicates growth in regional manufacturing activity.The dollar climbed to a high of $1.2193 against the Euro Tuesday, but has since retreated to around $1.2265.Germany's consumer price inflation accelerated to a five-year high in 2017, final data published by Destatis showed Tuesday. Consumer price inflation climbed to 1.8 percent in 2017 from 0.5 percent a year ago. This was the highest rate since 2012. Between 2014 and 2016, the inflation rates were even below one percent each.The buck rose to an early high of $1.3741 against the pound sterling Tuesday, but has since eased back to around $1.3795.UK inflation slowed for the first time in six months in December, on air fares and recreational goods costs, official data showed Tuesday. Inflation eased to 3 percent in December from 3.1 percent in November, the Office for National Statistics reported. The rate came in line with expectations and was the first decrease in six months.British house price inflation eased in November after accelerating in the previous month, figures from the Office for National Statistics showed Tuesday. The house price index climbed 5.1 percent year-over-year in November, slower than the 5.4 percent rise in October, which was revised up from a 4.5 percent increase reported earlier.The greenback reached a high of Y110.980 against the Japanese Yen Tuesday morning, but has since dropped to around Y110.500.Producer prices in Japan were up 0.2 percent on month in December, the Bank of Japan said on Tuesday. That missed forecasts for an increase of 0.4 percent following the upwardly revised 0.5 percent gain in November.Japan's tertiary activity index increased for the second straight month in November, and at a faster-than-expected rate, data published by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry showed Tuesday. The tertiary activity index climbed 1.1 percent month-over-month in November, following a 0.2 percent rise in October. Economists had expected a 0.4 percent gain for the month.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Telegram To Establish Its Own Cryptocurrency Through $1.2 Bln ICO

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - Private messaging app Telegram is planning a $1.2-billion Initial Coin Offering or ICO. The messaging app, with more than one hundred and seventy million monthly users, aims to find a prime place in the thriving cyrptocurrency arena. The company is reportedly planning to develop a blockchain to combat bitcoin and ethereum.Telegram mulls a private token sale in February and a public sale in March. The token sale is expected to raise around $600 million, which could beat the largest ever token sale of $257 million by Filecoin in September. Reports said, those qualified investors, who participate in pre-sale might get a discount of 68 percent in the public sale. According to a businessinsider report, Telegram's ICO will be to support Telegram Open Network or TON blockchain platform which will host a new generation cryptocurrencies and decentralized applications. The investors participating in the ICO will receive TON tokens, known as Grams. The tokens might not be listed till 2019. Telegram is said to be planning to invest 80 percent of the funds to develop the TON ecosystem, bandwidth, co-location and user verification system, businessinsider said quoting a white paper. TON is projected to become an alternative for Visa or Mastercard and 'can be regarded as a decentralised supercomputer and value transfer system.'Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Telegram To Establish Its Own Cryptocurrency Through $1.2 Bln ICO

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - Private messaging app Telegram is planning a $1.2-billion Initial Coin Offering or ICO. The messaging app, with more than one hundred and seventy million monthly users, aims to find a prime place in the thriving cyrptocurrency arena. The company is reportedly planning to develop a blockchain to combat bitcoin and ethereum.Telegram mulls a private token sale in February and a public sale in March. The token sale is expected to raise around $600 million, which could beat the largest ever token sale of $257 million by Filecoin in September. Reports said, those qualified investors, who participate in pre-sale might get a discount of 68 percent in the public sale. According to a businessinsider report, Telegram's ICO will be to support Telegram Open Network or TON blockchain platform which will host a new generation cryptocurrencies and decentralized applications. The investors participating in the ICO will receive TON tokens, known as Grams. The tokens might not be listed till 2019. Telegram is said to be planning to invest 80 percent of the funds to develop the TON ecosystem, bandwidth, co-location and user verification system, businessinsider said quoting a white paper. TON is projected to become an alternative for Visa or Mastercard and 'can be regarded as a decentralised supercomputer and value transfer system.'Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Cryptocurrency Majors Plummet Over Crackdown Fears

BEIJING (dpa-AFX) - Bitcoin was on a free fall Tuesday, reaching below $12,000 for the first time since December 5, amid reports that China is stepping up crackdown on cryptocurrency 'Exchange-Like Services.'. Smaller rivals ethereum and ripple were also losing their value as investors around the world are getting more and more concerned over the future of digital currencies after a last week report that South Korea, one of the major markets for cryptocurrency, is preparing a bill to ban all crypto trading, over 'great concerns.'As of 4.13 am ET, bitcoin was trading at $11,951.61 a coin, but since gained back and was at $12,222.15 as of 7.00 am ET, down 10 percent. Ethereum, the second biggest digital currency, was down 12.1 percent at $1,134.67, while the third place holder ripple, which had once traded around $3.84, was trading at $1.44, down 14.3 percent.Chinese authorities reportedly plans to block online platforms and mobile apps that offer exchange-like services as part of stepping up the crackdown on cryptocurrency exchanges.The Chinese government now plans to block domestic access to homegrown and offshore platforms that enable centralized trading, Bloomberg reported, quoting people familiar with the matter.The Central Bank of China in September had banned betting on bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Last week, South Korea's justice minister Park Sang-ki had said the country was readying a bill to ban all crypto trading. South Korea has been emerging as a focus for the bitcoin world, influencing global demand for digital currencies.Regulators around the world are closely watching cryptocurrencies amid concerns over excessive speculation, money laundering and tax evasion, which led to increased volatility in global markets for bitcoin and other digital tokens since November.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Euro Falls On German Political Worries

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - The euro came under pressure against its major opponents in early European deals on Tuesday, after a report showed that Berlin's SPD section has voted against the proposal for formal coalition talks to form a grand coalition with Angela Merkel's conservative party.German news website Spiegel reported that skepticism towards another grand coalition is high within the SPD and the state of Saxony-Anhalt and Berlin's SPD section have voted against the proposal of coalition negotiations with the CDU and CSU.A special SPD convention is scheduled in Bonn on Sunday, when the delegates should approve for formal talks.Discarding formal talks would be a setback for Merkel, who had been unable to forge a coalition with the FDP and the Greens.Final data from Destatis showed that Germany's consumer price inflation accelerated to a five-year high in 2017. Consumer price inflation climbed to 1.8 percent in 2017 from 0.5 percent a year ago. This was the highest rate since 2012.The euro dropped to 1.2202 against the greenback, 1.1787 against the franc and 135.07 against the yen, from its early highs of 1.2283 and 1.1828 and an 8-day high of 136.10, respectively. The euro is seen finding support around 1.19 against the greenback, 1.16 against the franc and 134.00 against the yen.The euro slipped to a 4-day low of 0.8864 against the pound, after having advanced to 0.8901 at 1:30 am ET. On the downside, 0.87 is likely seen as the next support for the euro.The euro pared gains to 1.5180 against the loonie, 1.6776 against the kiwi and 1.5354 against the aussie, from its previous highs of 1.5257, 1.6855 and 1.5417, respectively. If the euro weakens further, it may find support around 1.52 against the aussie, 1.66 against the kiwi and 1.50 against the loonie.Looking ahead, at 8:30 am ET, the New York Fed's empire manufacturing survey for January will be out.The Swiss National Bank Governing Board Chairman Thomas Jordan delivers a speech titled 'How money is created by the central bank and the banking system' at the University of Zurich at 12:00 pm ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Pound Falls On Slowing U.K. Consumer Inflation

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - The pound dropped against its major counterparts in early European deals on Tuesday, following a data showing a slowdown in UK inflation in December led primarily by air fares.Data from the Office for National Statistics showed that inflation eased to 3 percent in December from 3.1 percent in November. The rate came in line with expectations. The 3.1 percent logged in November was the fastest since early 2012. The central bank targets 2 percent inflation. Month-on-month, consumer prices advanced 0.4 percent, as expected, in December.Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcoholic beverages and tobacco, slowed to 2.5 percent in December from 2.7 percent in November. Inflation was forecast to slow to 2.6 percent. Another report from ONS showed that output price inflation accelerated to 3.3 percent in December from 3.1 percent in November. Month-on-month, output prices climbed 0.4 percent, the same rate as seen in November. Input price inflation eased sharply to 4.9 percent in December from 7.3 percent in November. On a monthly basis, consumer prices edged up 0.1 percent, much slower than November's 1.6 percent increase. The currency was trading mixed in the Asian session. While it rose against the franc and the yen, it dropped against the euro and the greenback.The pound dropped to 1.3761 against the greenback, from a high of 1.3806 hit at 9:30 pm ET. If the pound falls further, 1.35 is likely seen as its next support level.Having advanced to a weekly high of 153.10 against the yen at 9:15 pm ET, the pound reversed direction with the pair trading at 152.45. The pound is seen finding support around the 151.00 mark.The pound pared gains to 1.3277 against the Swiss franc, from a high of 1.3304 hit at 2:00 am ET. The next likely support for the pound is seen around the 1.29 region.The pound held steady at 0.8890 against the euro, following a 4-day high of 0.8864 hit at 2:00 am ET.Data from the Bank of Japan showed that Japan's producer prices rose 0.2 percent on month in December.That missed forecasts for an increase of 0.4 percent following the upwardly revised 0.5 percent gain in November. Looking ahead, at 8:30 am ET, the New York Fed's empire manufacturing survey for January will be out.The Swiss National Bank Governing Board Chairman Thomas Jordan delivers a speech titled 'How money is created by the central bank and the banking system' at the University of Zurich at 12:00 pm ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Suspicious Trades Likely Caused Significant Jump In Bitcoin Price: Study

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Suspicious trades on a Bitcoin currency exchange likely caused the significant jump in bitcoin price to $1000 from $150 in just two months, according to a study on Bitcoin price manipulation. The unregulated cryptocurrency markets remain vulnerable to manipulation, it said.The paper, entitled 'Price Manipulation in the Bitcoin Ecosystem', appearing in the recent issue of the Journal of Monetary Economics, notes that a single actor likely drove the USD/BTC exchange rate in late 2013, when the rate jumped from around $150 to more than $1,000 in two months.The price has now reached around $11,000 a coin, after touching nearly $20,000 in last December.The study, done by researchers Neil Gandal, JT Hamrick, Tyler Moore, and Tali Oberman, describes the influence and control of bad actors in the Bitcoin ecosystem.The paper identifies and analyzes the impact of suspicious trading activity on the Mt. Gox Bitcoin currency exchange, in which around 600,000 bitcoins valued at $188 million were fraudulently acquired.It shows that trading volume on all exchanges increased greatly on days with suspicious activity. As per the paper, the USD-BTC exchange rate rose by an average of four percent on days when suspicious trades took place, compared to a slight decline on days without suspicious activity.Bitcoin, whose demand has soared following the unimaginable price hike, offers the potential to disrupt payment systems and traditional currencies. It has also been subject to security breaches and wild price fluctuations, the paper said. 'As mainstream finance invests in cryptocurrency assets and as countries take steps toward legalizing bitcoin as a payment system (as Japan did in April 2017), it is important to understand how susceptible cryptocurrency markets are to manipulation. Our study provides a first examination,' the researchers wrote.A year ago, digital currency bitcoin, which works like virtual tokens, was worth less than $800, touching $1,000 at the start of last year. The currency has fluctuated wildly since it was launched in 2009.In November last year, bitcoin surged to break the $10,000 mark for the first time, while in December, it reached near $20,000 after CME Group, the world's largest futures exchange, launched its bitcoin futures.The hype around Bitcoin and blockchain has brought other cryptocurrencies, including Ethereum and Ripple, also into focus.Meanwhile, the price of various cryptocurrencies plunged in early January after reports cited South Korea's justice minister Park Sang-ki that the country is readying a bill to ban all crypto trading, over 'great concerns.'As of 4.13 am ET, bitcoin is down 12.03 percent at $11,951.61 at CoinDesk, and Ethereum is down 13.48 percent at $1,116.64. Ripple, which had once traded around $3.84, is currently trading at $1.37, down 18.26 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Pound Falls After U.K. CPI, PPI

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - Following the release of U.K. CPI and PPI for December and house price index for November at 4.30 am ET Tuesday, the pound dropped against its major opponents.The pound was trading at 1.3766 against the greenback, 152.37 against the yen, 1.3285 against the franc and 0.8879 against the euro around 4:32 am ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Pound Mixed Ahead Of U.K. CPI, PPI

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - At 4.30 am ET Tuesday, U.K. CPI and PPI for December and house price index for November are set for release. Inflation is forecast to slow to 3 percent from 3.1 percent in November. Ahead of these reports, the pound traded mixed against its major opponents. While the pound dropped against the greenback and the yen, it held steady against the franc and the euro.The pound was worth 1.3783 against the greenback, 152.52 against the yen, 1.3299 against the franc and 0.8871 against the euro as of 4:25 am ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
16.01.2018

Euro Drops Against Majors

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - Reversing direction, the euro weakened against its major counterparts in pre-European deals on Tuesday.The euro dropped to 1.2216 against the greenback, 1.1792 against the franc and 135.34 against the yen, from its early highs of 1.2283 and 1.1828 and an 8-day high of 136.10, respectively.The euro slipped to a 4-day low of 0.8864 against the pound, after having advanced to 0.8901 at 1:30 am ET.The euro pared gains to 1.5195 against the loonie, 1.6776 against the kiwi and 1.5356 against the aussie, from its previous highs of 1.5257, 1.6855 and 1.5417, respectively.If the euro weakens further, it may find support around 1.19 against the greenback, 1.16 against the franc, 134.00 against the yen, 0.87 against the pound, 1.52 against the aussie, 1.66 against the kiwi and 1.50 against the loonie.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX

dpa-AFX SENTIMENT INDICATOR


The dpa-AFX confidence index measures the ratio of high-to-other gradings of Dax-listed companies (based on a 30-day average). A value of 50 indicates that high and low gradings balance one another out. The graph shows the indicator in relation to the DAX chart.

dpa-AFX Analyser