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29.04.2017

Novartis: FDA Approves Rydapt To Treat FLT3-mutated Acute Myeloid Leukemia

BASEL (dpa-AFX) - Novartis (NVS) announced the US FDA has approved Rydapt (midostaurin) for two indications. The first indication is for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia in newly diagnosed patients who are FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 mutation-positive, as detected by an FDA-approved test, in combination with chemotherapy. Rydapt is also approved to treat adults with advanced systemic mastocytosis, which includes aggressive systemic mastocytosis, systemic mastocytosis with associated hematological neoplasm and mast cell leukemia.The FDA approval is based on the Phase III RATIFY clinical trial, which was conducted in collaboration with the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology and its 13 contributing international cooperative groups. Worldwide filings for Rydapt are currently underway.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
29.04.2017

Anthem Committed To Complete Cigna Deal

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Anthem, Inc. (ANTM) said it is disappointed by the U.S. Court of Appeals decision to block the company's acquisition of Cigna. Anthem said it is committed to completing the transaction and are currently reviewing the opinion and will carefully evaluate options.Anthem said, combining the company and Cigna would positively impact the health and well-being of millions of Americans and deliver significant cost savings to consumers. Anthem noted that Judge Kavanaugh has stated in his dissent, 'the record decisively demonstrates that this merger would be beneficial to the employer-customers who obtain insurance services from Anthem and Cigna.'Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

TFS FINANCIAL CORP. Q2 Earnings Advance 153%

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - TFS FINANCIAL CORP. (TFSL) released a profit for its second quarter that gained ground compared to the same period last year.The company said its bottom line rose to $23.46 million, or $0.08 per share. This was higher than $9.28 million, or $0.07 per share, in last year's second quarter.Analysts had expected the company to earn $0.07 per share, according figures compiled by Thomson Reuters. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.TFS FINANCIAL CORP. earnings at a glance:-Earnings (Q2): $23.46 Mln. vs. $9.28 Mln. last year.-Earnings Growth (Y-o-Y): 152.8%-EPS (Q2): $0.08 vs. $0.07 last year.-EPS Growth (Y-o-Y): 14.3%-Analysts Estimate: $0.07Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Western Digital Pulls Back Off Best Levels But Remains Firmly Positive

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Data storage company Western Digital (WDC) has pulled back off its best levels of the day but remains firmly positive in afternoon trading on Friday. Shares of Western Digital are currently up by 3.2 percent after reaching their best intraday level in well over a year.The initial jump by Western Digital came after the company reported better than expected third quarter earnings and provided upbeat guidance for the current quarter.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Alphabet Holding On To Strong Gain In Afternoon Trading

MOUNTAIN VIEW (dpa-AFX) - Shares of Alphabet (GOOGL) continue to see significant strength in afternoon trading on Friday after an initial upward move. After reaching a record intraday high, Alphabet is currently up by 4.3 percent.The advance by Alphabet comes after the parent of Google reported better than expected first quarter earnings and revenues.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Southwest Ending Practice Of Overbooking

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Southwest Airlines Co. (LUV) has decided to end the practice of overbooking flights, the airline's CEO Gary Kelly said Thursday.'The company has made the decision that we'll cease to overbook going forward. We've been taking steps over the last several years to prepare ourselves for this anyway,' Kelly said on CNBC.The airline's plan to end overbooking could be implemented from May 8, according to a Southwest spokeswoman. The airline will thus join JetBlue, which does not overbook flights.Earlier in April, a video showing a passenger being violently dragged off a United Airlines flight sparked outrage on social media and highlighted the airline industry's controversial practice of overbooking flights. The airline has now reportedly reached a settlement with the passenger for an undisclosed amount. On Thursday, United said it will offer up to $10,000 to passengers who voluntarily give up their seats on oversold flights, one of the ten changes the airline is adopting after a customer was dragged off a plane by security officers.Overbooking of flights is a standard practice adopted by the airline industry in which they sell more tickets than the actual seats or capacity on a flight, in anticipation of cancellations.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Deutsche Bank Appoints Citigroup's James Von Moltke As CFO

FRANKFURT (dpa-AFX) - Deutsche Bank (DB) said Friday that it has appointed James von Moltke as Chief Financial Officer and Member of the Management Board. He joins from Citigroup (C), where he served as Treasurer, and is expected to assume his new responsibilities at Deutsche Bank in July.Von Moltke, 48, succeeds Marcus Schenck, who was appointed Deutsche Bank's Co-President in early March and who, as previously announced, will oversee the bank's newly created Corporate & Investment Bank together with Garth Ritchie from July.Von Moltke started his career at Credit Suisse First Boston in London 25 years ago. In 1995, he joined J.P. Morgan, working at the bank for 10 years in New York and Hong Kong and becoming a recognised specialist in advisory for financial services companies.After next working at Morgan Stanley for four years, where he led the Financial Technology advisory team globally, von Moltke joined Citigroup as Head of Corporate M&A in 2009. Three years later he became Global Head of Financial Planning and Analysis. In 2015, he was appointed Treasurer of Citigroup, managing its capital and funding as well as liquidity and interest rate risk.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Uber's Self-Driving Head Out Amid Waymo Lawsuit

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Anthony Levandowski, the head of Uber's self-driving division, is stepping away from his role as Uber continues a legal battle with Waymo, Levandowski's former employer.Levandowski, who founded startup Otto, became head of Uber's Advanced Technologies Group or ATG after Otto was acquired by Uber in August 2016.Waymo, owned by Google's parent company Alphabet, has accused Levandowski of stealing more than 14,000 confidential documents related to its lidar systems during his tenure at Waymo, and for using the technology in Otto's and later Uber's own autonomous vehicle programs.Waymo filed a lawsuit against Uber and Levandowski in February.In an internal email to Uber staff, Levandowski said that Eric Meyhofer will now be head of ATG, reporting to CEO Travis Kalanick. Levandowski will report to Meyhofer, who joined Uber from Carnegie Robotics prior to Uber's acquisition of Otto.Levandowski added that he and Kalanick decided he will be recused from all LiDAR-related work and management at Uber, through the remainder of the Waymo litigation. 'But making this organizational change means I will have absolutely no oversight over or input into our LiDAR work. Going forward, please make sure not to include me in meetings or email threads related to LiDAR, or ask me for advice on the topic,' Levandowski said in the email.The move comes just as the court is set to decide whether to issue a preliminary injunction that could prevent Levandowski from working on Uber's self-driving unit during the lawsuit or even make Uber cease its LiDAR development efforts.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Electrolux Stock Up On Higher Q1 Results

STOCKHOLM (dpa-AFX) - Shares of Electrolux AB (0MDT.L, 0GQ1.L, ELUXY.PK) were gaining around 5 percent in the trading in Sweden after the home appliances giant reported higher profit and sales in its first quarter.President and CEO Jonas Samuelson said, 'We will continue to drive profitable growth by creating best-in-class consumer experiences which are supported by innovation and operational excellence. The work to increase net cost efficiency throughout the Group is making good progress and will, together with improved product mix, support our target of reaching a sustainable profitability with margins of at least 6 percent.'For the first quarter, income climbed 24 percent to 1.08 billion Swedish kronor from 875 million kronor in the last year. Earnings per share were 3.75 kronor compared to 3.03 kronor. Operating income increased 21 percent to 1.54 billion kronor from 1.27 billion kronor, corresponding to a margin of 5.3 percent compared to 4.5 percent, in the prior year, with improved results across all business areas. The company noted that operating income for Major Appliances EMEA was stable, while margin improved. Operating income for Major Appliances North America continued to develop favorably due to cost efficiencies. Professional Products also reported a good earnings trend. Operating income for Major Appliances Latin America and Home Care & SDA recovered, the company said.First-quarter net sales were up 2.7 percent to 28.88 billion kronor from 28.11 billion kronor a year ago. Organic sales, meanwhile, declined by 3 percent, while currency translation had a positive impact of 6 percent on net sales.The company noted that market demand for appliances in Europe was stable, although the UK declined. Demand in Middle East and Africa also declined. Looking ahead, for fiscal 2017, the company said it confirms outlook for the European market and expect a market growth of approximately 1 percent, while it expects marketdemand for appliances in North America to grow by 2-3 percent.Further, the company said that due to rising prices for raw materials, it now expects the negative impact from higher costs for raw materials to be 1.4 billion kronor in 2017. Further, the company has accelerated cost efficiency efforts and now expects to deliver net cost efficiency of 2.2 billion kronor in 2017.In Sweden, Electrolux were trading at 275 kronor, up 5.28 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Chevron Posts Q1 Profit; Says On Track To Meet 4%-9% Growth Goal For 2017

SAN RAMON (dpa-AFX) - Chevron Corp.(CVX) reported that its net income attributable to the company for first quarter 2017 were $2.68 billion or $1.41 per share, compared to a loss of $725 million or $0.39 per share in the 2016 first quarter. The latest-quarter result included a gain of approximately $600 million from the sale of an upstream asset. Foreign currency effects decreased earnings in first quarter 2017 by $241 million, compared with a decrease of $319 million a year earlier.'First quarter earnings and cash flow improved significantly from a year ago. we benefitted from increasing crude oil prices and ongoing efficiencies being implemented across the company,' said Chairman and CEO John Watson.'Overall net oil-equivalent production in the first quarter increased 3 percent compared to the 2016 full year and we are on track to meet the 4-9 percent growth goal for 2017 before the effect of asset sales,' Watson added.The company noted that its operating expenses were reduced by about 14 percent from first quarter 2016 and its capital spending declined over 30 percent from a year ago.Sales and other operating revenues for the quarter grew to $31.52 billion, from $23.07 billion in the year-ago period.Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report earnings of $0.92 per share and revenues of $34.87 billion for the quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Semiconductor Stocks Under Pressure After Recent Strength

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Semiconductor stocks are seeing considerable weakness in afternoon trading on Friday after trending higher in recent sessions.After ending Thursday's trading at its best closing level in over sixteen years, the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index is down by 1.9 percent.The weakness among semiconductor stocks comes after industry giant Intel (INTC) reported first quarter earnings that exceeded analyst estimates but on weaker than expected revenues.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Gold Stocks Showing Strong Move Back To The Upside

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - After falling sharply in the previous session, gold stocks have shown a strong move back to the upside during trading on Friday.The NYSE Arca Gold Bugs Index is jumping by 1.9 percent after ending Thursday's trading at its lowest closing level in well over a month.The rebound by gold stocks comes amid an increase by the price of the precious metal, as gold for June delivery rose $2.40 to $1,268.30 an ounce.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

The Swiss Stock Market Pulled Back On Profit Taking

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - The Swiss stock market ended Friday's session with a modest loss. Following four straight days of gains, the pullback was attributed to profit taking. Investors were also in a cautious mood ahead of the long holiday weekend.Weak GDP data from the United States added to the weakness at the end of the trading week. Gross domestic product increased by 0.7 percent in the first quarter after jumping by 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter. Economists had expected GDP to climb by 1.2 percent.The Swiss Market Index decreased by 0.36 percent Friday and finished at 8,812.67. The SMI ended the trading week with an overall gain of 3.0 percent. The Swiss Leader Index dropped 0.22 percent and the Swiss Performance Index lost 0.23 percent.Shares of UBS were in focus after the bank posted better than expected first quarter results. The stock climbed 2.1 percent. Julius Baer also gained 2.2 percent, but Credit Suisse fell by 0.8 percent. Actelion was among the weakest performing stocks Friday, dropping 3.0 percent. The stock will be exiting the SMI next week and will be replaced in the index by Lonza. Shares of Lonza also fell 1.5 percent. Richemont weakened by 1.3 percent and Givaudan surrendered 1.2 percent. Adecco also decreased by 1.2 percent after it began trading on an ex-dividend basis. The weak performance of the index heavyweights also pressured the overall market. Nestlé dropped 1.0 percent and Novartis fell 0.5 percent. Roche ended the session unchanged.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

European Markets Finished Mixed Ahead Of Long Holiday Weekend

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - The European markets endured a choppy day of trade Friday, fluctuating between small gains and losses throughout the session. The markets ended with mixed results after snapping a 6-session winning streak on Thursday. Investors seemed reluctant to make any major moves ahead of Monday's holiday.Investors were confronted with a high volume of corporate earnings results and economic reports at the end of the trading week. Eurozone inflation accelerated more-than-expected in April, returning within the European Central Bank's target of 'below, but close to 2 percent.' The U.K. economy also expanded at the slowest pace in a year at the start of 2017.The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index weakened by 0.09 percent. The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks decreased 0.10 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, lost 0.22 percent.The DAX of Germany dropped 0.05 percent and the CAC 40 of France fell 0.08 percent. The FTSE 100 of the U.K. declined 0.46 percent and the SMI of Switzerland finished lower by 0.36 percent.In Frankfurt, Bayer rose 0.53 percent as the pharmaceuticals and chemicals giant confirmed its outlook for 2017, citing significant sales and earnings growth achieved by Covestro in the first quarter.Linde climbed 2.36 percent. The industrial gases company warned once again that its revenue growth could decline in the year ahead due to challenging market conditions. Deutsche Post DHL Group advanced 1.93 percent after the mail and logistics group confirmed its ambitious targets for fiscal 2017 and beyond.In Paris, Renault surged 3.69 percent after the carmaker reported a 25 percent rise in first-quarter revenue.Sanofi rose 0.74 percent. The drug-maker confirmed its earnings outlook for the year after reporting significantly higher profit in its first quarter.In London, Old Mutual fell 0.77 percent after the insurer said it had agreed to sell its 26 percent stake in Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual Life Insurance Limited to its joint venture partner Kotak Mahindra Bank.Royal Bank of Scotland Group climbed 4.74 percent after the bank reported its first quarterly profit since 2015.Barclays sank 5.22 percent after posting a surprise drop in trading revenue.UBS AG advanced 2.10 percent in Zurich after a turnaround in its wealth management business helped the Swiss bank to post a 79 percent jump in Q1 net profit. Electrolux jumped 0.73 percent in Stockholm. The household-appliance maker reported a bigger than expected rise in first-quarter earnings amid an improving trend across all of its business.Eurozone inflation accelerated more than expected in April, flash data from Eurostat showed Friday. Inflation rose to 1.9 percent in April from 1.5 percent in March. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent. Germany's retail sales recovered in March, provisional data of the Federal Statistical Office showed Friday. Retail sales grew 2.3 percent year-on-year in March, offsetting February's revised 2.3 percent fall. Sales were expected to grow 2.2 percent.Germany's import prices increased at a slower pace in March, data published by Destatis showed Friday.Import price inflation eased to 6.1 percent in March from a near six-year high of 7.4 percent in February. Month-on-month, import prices fell 0.5 percent, in contrast to February's 0.7 percent increase. This was the first fall in seven months. At the same time, export prices advanced 2.3 percent versus 2.5 percent increase in February. On a monthly basis, export prices remained flat in March, following a 0.2 percent rise.French inflation accelerated slightly, as expected, in April, the provisional estimate from the statistical office Insee showed Friday. Consumer price inflation rose marginally to 1.2 percent in April from 1.1 percent in March. The annual rate came in line with expectations.France's consumer spending decreased for the second straight month in March, defying economists' expectations for an increase, figures from the statistical office INSEE showed Friday.Consumer spending dropped 0.4 percent month-over-month in March, following a 0.7 percent drop in February, revised from a 0.8 percent fall reported earlier. Meanwhile, it was forecast to rise by 0.1 percent.The U.K. economy expanded at the slowest pace in a year at the start of 2017, preliminary estimate from the Office for National Statistics showed Friday. Gross domestic product grew only 0.3 percent in the first quarter from prior three months. This was the slowest rate of growth since the first quarter of 2016.UK home loan approvals declined more-than-expected to its lowest level in four months in March, figures from the British Bankers' Association showed Friday. The number of mortgages approved for house purchases fell to 41,061 from 42,247 in March. Economists had forecast 40,000.UK house prices unexpectedly fell for a second straight month in April, driving the annual pace of growth to its lowest level in nearly four years, signaling that Britons may be tightening the purse strings due to a squeeze on real incomes.The house price index fell 0.4 percent month-on-month after a 0.3 percent slump in March, results of the monthly survey by the Nationwide Building Society showed Friday. Economists had expected a 0.1 percent gain.Consumer confidence in the United Kingdom ebbed in April, the latest survey from GfK revealed on Friday with an index score of -7. That was in line with expectations, and down from -6 in March.Economic growth in the U.S. slowed by more than anticipated in the first three months of 2017, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Friday. The Commerce Department said gross domestic product increased by 0.7 percent in the first quarter after jumping by 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter. Economists had expected GDP to climb by 1.2 percent.A report released by MNI Indicators on Friday showed an unexpected acceleration in the pace of growth in Chicago-area business activity in the month of April. MNI Indicators said its Chicago business barometer rose to 58.3 in April from 57.7 in March, with a reading above 50 indicating growth. The continued increase by the business barometer came as a surprise to economists, who had expected the index to drop to 56.5.After initially reporting an improvement in U.S. consumer sentiment in the month of April, the University of Michigan released revised data on Friday showing that sentiment was nearly flat. The report said the consumer sentiment index for April was downwardly revised to 97.0 from the preliminary reading of 98.0. Economists had expected the index to be unrevised.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Street Might Open Moderately Higher

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - Amid political uncertainties around North Korea, the market is eagerly waiting for the latest developments. First quarter GDP details to be published this morning is a key focus for the day, with consensus for a growth. Insights from early trading in U.S. future index point to a higher opening on Wall Street. Asian shares closed mixed, while European shares are trading without a proper direction. As of 6.45 am ET, the Dow futures were climbing 1 point, the S&P 500 futures were adding 1.75 points and the Nasdaq 100 futures were progressing 3.25 points.U.S. stocks closed mostly higher on Thursday and Nasdaq set a new record. The Dow inched up 6.24 points or less than a tenth of a percent to 20,981.33, the Nasdaq rose 23.71 points or 0.4 percent to 6,048.94 and the S&P 500 edged up 1.32 points or 0.1 percent to 2,388.77.On the economic front, the Commerce Department's quarterly GDP for the first quarter will be published at 8.30 am ET. The economists are looking for consensus of growth of 1.1 percent, while in the prior quarter, GDP was up 2.1 percent. The Labor Department's Employment Cost Index for the first quarter will be released at 8.30 am ET. The consensus is for growth of 0.6 percent, compared to 0.5 percent a year ago. The Institute For Supply Management - Chicago's PMI for April will be revealed at 9.45 am ET. The forecasters are looking for consensus of 56.5, down from 57.7 a year ago.University of Michigan's Consumer Sentiment index for April will be issued at 10.00 am ET. The consensus is for 98 in line with last year. Baker-Hughes Rig Count for the fourth week will be published at 1.00 pm ET. The North American rig count in the previous week was 956 and U.S. rig count was 857. Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard will discuss 'Fintech and the Future of Finance' at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University conference in Evanston, Illinois with audience Q&A at 1.15 pm ET.Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Patrick Harker will speak on 'How STEM Can Get You Anywhere' at the X-STEM Symposium in Washington, D.C., with audience Q&A at 2.30 am ET.In the corporate sector, Deutsche Post DHL Group confirmed its targets for fiscal 2017 and beyond. The company continues to expect operating profit to rise to around 3.75 billion euros in 2017 from 3.5 billion euros last year. CEO Frank Appel also confirmed the Group's medium-term goal of increasing EBIT by an annual average of more than 8 percent between 2013 and 2020.Electrolux AB reported an increase in first-quarter income to 1.08 billion Swedish kronor from 875 million Swedish kronor, last year, and earnings per share was 3.75 kronor compared to 3.03 kronor. First-quarter net sales were up 2.7 percent to 28.88 billion kronor from 28.11 billion kronor. Organic sales declined by 3 percent, while currency translation had a positive impact of 6 percent on net sales. Sony Corp. reported a swing to fourth-quarter profit of 27.7 billion yen or $247 million from loss of 88.3 billion yen in the previous year. Semiconductors segment had an impact on its results. Sales for the fourth quarter increased 4.4 percent year-on-year to 1.90 trillion yen or $17 billion. On a constant currency basis, consolidated sales increased 6 percent year-on-year. Asian stocks ended mixed on Friday, amid worries on North Korean developments. China's Shanghai Composite index rose 2.47 points or 0.08 percent to 3,154.66. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index finished down 83.35 points or 0.34 percent at 24,615.13. Japanese shares lost ground as investors digested a barrage of economic data. The Nikkei average dropped 55.13 points or 0.29 percent to 19,196.74. The broader Topix index closed 0.32 percent lower at 1,531.80.Australian shares ended. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index closed up 2.60 points or 0.04 percent at 5,924.10, while the broader All Ordinaries index inched up 3.20 points or 0.05 percent at 5,947.60.European shares are trading mostly lower. CAC 40 of France is climbing 5.48 points or 0.10 percent, DAX of Germany is up 6.93 points or 0.06 percent. FTSE 100 of England is declining 19.58 points or 0.27 percent. Swiss Market Index is down 21.06 points or 0.24 percent. Euro Stoxx 50, the index that covers 50 stocks from 11 Eurozone countries: Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain, is currently up 0.09 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

European Shares Mixed Amid Earnings Deluge

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - European stocks were mixed on Friday as U.S. President Donald Trump warned of a major conflict with North Korea and investors digested a raft of corporate earnings reports. Eurozone inflation accelerated more than expected in April, flash data from Eurostat showed, helping support underlying sentiment to some extent. Inflation rose to 1.9 percent in April from 1.5 percent in March. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent. The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index was down 0.2 percent at 387.14 in late opening deals after declining 0.2 percent on Thursday. GermanyThe benchmark DAX was up 13 points or 0.11 percent at 12,457 in choppy trade after declining 0.2 percent in the previous session.Bayer rose over 1 percent as the pharmaceuticals and chemicals giant confirmed its outlook for 2017, citing significant sales and earnings growth achieved by Covestro in the first quarter.Linde shares dropped 1.5 percent. The industrial gases company warned once again that its revenue growth could decline in the year ahead due to challenging market conditions. Deutsche Post DHL Group advanced 1.5 percent after the mail and logistics group confirmed its ambitious targets for fiscal 2017 and beyond.German retail sales recovered in March amid revisions to the historical data, provisional data showed. Retail sales grew an annual 2.3 percent, offsetting February's revised 2.3 percent fall.FranceThe benchmark CAC 40 was adding 10 points or 0.20 percent at 5,282 after losing 0.3 percent the previous day. European airline maker Airbus lost 1 percent, a day after posting a steeper than expected 52 percent drop in first-quarter profit.Renault shares soared almost 4 percent after the carmaker reported a 25 percent rise in first-quarter revenue.Sanofi rallied 2 percent. The drugmaker confirmed its earnings outlook for the year after reporting significantly higher profit in its first quarter.French consumer spending decreased for the second straight month in March, defying economists' expectations for an increase, official data showed. Consumer spending dropped 0.4 percent from the previous month.UKThe benchmark FTSE 100 was down 18 points or 0.24 percent at 7,219 after falling as much as 0.7 percent in the previous session. Old Mutual shares rose half a percent after the insurer said it had agreed to sell its 26 percent stake in Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual Life Insurance Limited to its joint venture partner Kotak Mahindra Bank.Royal Bank of Scotland Group rallied nearly 2 percent after the bank reported its first quarterly profit since 2015.Barclays fell more than 4 percent after posting a surprise drop in trading revenue. The U.K. economy expanded at the slowest pace in a year at the start of 2017, preliminary estimate from the Office for National Statistics showed today. GDP grew only 0.3 percent in the first quarter from prior three months, marking the slowest rate of growth since the first quarter of 2016. Another report showed that U.K. house prices unexpectedly fell for a second straight month in April, driving the annual pace of growth to its lowest level in nearly four years.The Rest of EuropeUBS AG advanced 3.5 percent after a turnaround in its wealth management business helped the Swiss bank to post a 79 percent jump in Q1 net profit. Electrolux shares rallied 4.5 percent. The Swedish household-appliance maker reported a bigger than expected rise in first-quarter earnings amid an improving trend across all of its business.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Asian Shares Mixed On North Korea Jitters

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - Asian stocks ended on a cautious note on Friday, with a mixed bag of U.S. earnings and U.S. President Donald Trump's warning of a 'major, major conflict' between the U.S. and North Korea weighing on markets. In an interview ahead of his 100th day in office, Trump said a major conflict with North Korea was possible over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, but he would prefer a diplomatic outcome to the dispute. A slew of U.S. earnings released after the closing bell on Thursday have been less inspiring. While Google parent Alphabet and Amazon reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings and revenue, Intel and Microsoft reported lower-than-expected quarterly revenue. Starbucks' same-store sales also failed to meet Wall Street expectations.China's Shanghai Composite index rose 2.47 points or 0.08 percent to 3,154.66, but ended the week down about 0.6 percent on concerns over tightening regulation and cooling economic growth. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index was down 88 points or 0.36 percent at 24,610 in late trade. Japanese shares lost ground as investors digested a barrage of economic data. The Nikkei average dropped 55.13 points or 0.29 percent to 19,196.74, but ended the week with a 3 percent gain. The broader Topix index closed 0.32 percent lower at 1,531.80.Nintendo shares rallied 2.1 percent after the company said strong sales of its new Switch console will help it to double annual profits. Sony Corp edged down marginally and Honda Motor shed 0.4 percent before releasing their earnings results after the market close. On the economic front, Japan's industrial output fell 2.1 percent in March from the previous month after a 3.2 percent gain in February, government data showed.The jobless rate held steady at 2.8 percent in the month, household spending fell more than expected and consumer price inflation remained stagnant at 0.2 percent, while retail sales rose more than expected, separate reports showed. Australian shares ended flat but posted their third straight month of gains. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index closed up 2.60 points or 0.04 percent at 5,924.10, while the broader All Ordinaries index inched up 3.20 points or 0.05 percent at 5,947.60.Mining giant BHP Billiton shed 0.6 percent, while Rio Tinto rose 1.1 percent and smaller rival Fortescue Metals Group climbed 1.9 percent. Energy majors Oil Search and Origin Energy fell over 1 percent, but Santos rose 1.2 percent. Banks ended narrowly mixed. Gold miners Newcrest and Northern Star tumbled around 4 percent each as gold remained on track to post its biggest weekly fall in seven.Tatts Group declined 3.8 percent after the company rejected a sweetened all-cash A$6 billion bid from private equity group Pacific Consortium.South Korea's Kospi average slid 4.02 points or 0.18 percent to 2,205.44 and the local currency hit a one-week low as industrial output data for March missed estimates and Trump called the five-year-old trade pact with South Korea 'unacceptable'.South Korea said it would adopt a 'wait and see' stance, after Trump told Reuters he would either renegotiate or terminate a 'horrible' trade deal with the country. New Zealand's NZX-50 index rose 24.14 points or 0.33 percent to 7,378.75 after data showed building consents in the country grew strongly on an annual basis in March. Another report showed that the country's merchandise trade surplus widened in the month from a year earlier. The Taiwan Weighted closed 0.1 percent higher after preliminary figures showed Taiwan's economic growth moderated at a slower-than-expected pace in the three months ended March.Singapore's Straits Times index was moving up 0.2 percent, extending gains for a sixth straight session, even as data showed the country's employment rate hit its highest level since 2009 in the first quarter of the year. India's Sensex was declining 0.3 percent amid profit taking after recent sharp gains. Indonesia's Jakarta Composite index was down 0.3 percent while Malaysian shares were marginally higher.Overnight, U.S. stocks eked out modest gains as investors digested a flood of earnings reports and sluggish economic reports on jobless claims, durable goods orders and pending home sales. The Dow inched up marginally and the S&P 500 gained 0.1 percent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose 0.4 percent to reach a fresh record closing high.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

European Shares Seen Lower After Trump Comments

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - European stocks are poised to open lower on Friday after U.S. President Donald Trump warned about a 'major, major conflict' between the U.S. and North Korea.In an interview ahead of his 100th day in office, Trump said a major conflict with North Korea was possible over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, but he would prefer a diplomatic outcome to the dispute. Meanwhile, South Korea said it would adopt a 'wait and see' stance, after Trump told Reuters he would either renegotiate or terminate a 'horrible' trade deal with the country. U.S. earnings released after the closing bell on Thursday have been less inspiring. While Google parent Alphabet and Amazon reported better -than-expected quarterly earnings and revenue, Intel and Microsoft reported lower-than-expected quarterly revenue.Starbucks' same-store sales also failed to meet Wall Street expectations. Energy giants Chevron and Exxon Mobil will unveil their financial results before the opening bell later today. In economic releases, U.K. consumer confidence ebbed in April, the latest survey from GfK revealed with an index score of -7, in line with expectations and down from -6 in March.First-quarter GDP data out of the U.K. and France as well as euro-zone inflation figures for April are slated for release later in the day. Across the Atlantic, investors look forward to data on first quarter GDP, consumer sentiment and Chicago-area business activity.Asian shares are mostly lower this morning and the euro was little changed while oil prices rose in Asian deals after ending lower on Thursday as two key Libyan oilfields restarted production.The yen inched up against the dollar as a raft of data indicated that the modest recovery in the world's third-largest economy is continuing for a fifth quarter.Overnight, U.S. stocks eked out modest gains as investors digested a flood of earnings reports and sluggish economic reports on jobless claims, durable goods orders and pending home sales. The Dow inched up marginally and the S&P 500 gained 0.1 percent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose 0.4 percent to reach a fresh record closing high. European markets snapped a six-session winning streak on Thursday as Trump's tax plan offered few details and ECB President Mario Draghi offered a mixed picture on inflation and policy outlook.The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index eased 0.2 percent. The German DAX slid 0.2 percent, France's CAC 40 index shed 0.3 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 declined 0.7 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Asian Markets Mixed Amid Cautious Trades

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - Asian stock markets are mixed on Friday, tracking the modest gains overnight on Wall Street and lower crude oil prices. Geopolitical concerns also weighed on investor sentiment after U.S. President Donald Trump warned that conflict with North Korea was possible, but would prefer a diplomatic solution. Trump also said in an interview with Reuters that he wants South Korea to pay for deployment of the THAAD missile defense system. He also threatened to 'renegotiate or terminate' the U.S. free trade agreement with the Asian nation. The Australian market is modestly lower, tracking the modest gains overnight on Wall Street, the fall in crude oil prices and the European Central Bank's decision to hold interest rates.In late-morning trades, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is losing 7.8 points or 0.13 percent to 5,913.70, off a low of 5,898.20 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is down 6.90 points or 0.12 percent to 5,937.50.In the mining space, BHP Billiton is losing more than 2 percent, Rio Tinto is down almost 1 percent and Fortescue Metals is declining more than 1 percent.Oil stocks are also weak after crude oil prices fell overnight. Santos is declining 0.5 percent, Oil Search is down more than 1 percent and Woodside Petroleum is lower by almost 1 percent each.Gold miners are lower despite a slight increase in gold prices overnight. Newcrest Mining is losing almost 5 percent and Evolution Mining is down almost 3 percent.Meanwhile, the big four banks are mostly higher. ANZ Banking is rising 0.4 percent, Westpac is adding 0.2 percent and National Australia Bank is edging up less than 0.1 percent, while Commonwealth Bank is down 0.2 percent.Tatts Group has rejected a sweetened all-cash A$6 billion bid from private equity group Pacific Consortium, saying the bid is not superior to its proposed merger with Tabcorp. Shares of Tatts Group are losing almost 2 percent.On the economic front, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said that final demand producer prices in Australia were up 0.5 percent on quarter in the first three months of 2017, unchanged from the previous quarter.The Reserve Bank of Australia said that private sector credit in Australia was up 0.3 percent on month in March. That was unchanged from the previous month, although it missed expectations for a gain of 0.5 percent.In the currency market, the Australian dollar is again lower against the U.S. dollar on Friday. In early trades, the local unit was trading at US$0.7466, down from US$0.7484 on Thursday.The Japanese market is declining for a second straight day, following the modest gains overnight on Wall Street and a stronger yen. Investors also digested a raft of local economic data, including weak industrial output data.In late-morning trades, the benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is down 31.51 points or 0.16 percent to 19,220.36, off a low of 19212.01 earlier. The major exporters are mostly lower. Panasonic is losing more than 2 percent, Canon is declining 1 percent and Sony is down 0.4 percent, while Toshiba is rising almost 1 percent.Automakers Toyota and Honda are losing almost 1 percent each. In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is lower by 1 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is declining more than 1 percent.In the oil space, Inpex is down 0.3 percent, while JXTG Holdings is adding 0.5 percent.Among the other major gainers, Alps Electric is rising almost 5 percent, Hino Motors is advancing more than 4 percent and NTT Docomo is up almost 4 percent. On the flip side, Advantest is losing 8 percent, Pioneer Corp. is down more than 5 percent and Fuji Electric is lower by 4 percent.In economic news, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said in a preliminary reading that industrial output in Japan skidded 2.1 percent on month in March. That missed forecasts for a fall of 0.8 percent following the 3.2 percent gain in February.Overall nationwide consumer prices in Japan were up 0.2 percent on year in March, missing forecasts for 0.3 percent, which would have been unchanged.The unemployment rate in Japan came in at a seasonally adjusted 2.8 percent in March. That was unchanged from the February reading, although it was beneath expectations for 2.9 percent.The average of household spending in Japan was down 1.3 percent on year in March, coming in at 297,942 yen. That missed forecasts for a fall of 0.5 percent following the 3.8 percent decline in February.In the currency market, the U.S. dollar traded in the lower 111 yen-range on Friday.Elsewhere in Asia, Shanghai, South Korea and Hong Kong are marginally lower. Singapore, New Zealand, Taiwan, Indonesia and Malaysia are all modestly higher.On Wall Street, stocks closed higher in lackluster trading on Thursday as traders digested the latest batch of corporate earnings news. In U.S. economic news, the Labor Department released a report showing an unexpected increase in initial jobless claims in the week ended April 22nd.The Dow inched up 6.24 points or less than a tenth of a percent to 20,981.33, the Nasdaq rose 23.71 points or 0.4 percent to 6,048.94 and the S&P 500 edged up 1.32 points or 0.1 percent to 2,388.77.The major European markets moved to the downside on Thursday. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index slid by 0.7 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index dropped by 0.3 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively.Crude oil prices fell Thursday, but finished off their lows of the session, ahead of tomorrow's rig count data from Baker Hughes. WTI crude for June delivery slid $0.65 or 1.3 percent to close at $48.97 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Japanese Market Declines

TOKYO (dpa-AFX) - The Japanese stock market is declining for a second straight day on Friday, following the modest gains overnight on Wall Street and a stronger yen. Investors also digested a raft of local economic data, including weak industrial output data.In late-morning trades, the benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is down 31.51 points or 0.16 percent to 19,220.36, off a low of 19212.01 earlier.The major exporters are mostly lower. Panasonic is losing more than 2 percent, Canon is declining 1 percent and Sony is down 0.4 percent, while Toshiba is rising almost 1 percent.Automakers Toyota and Honda are losing almost 1 percent each. In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is lower by 1 percent and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is declining more than 1 percent. In the oil space, Inpex is down 0.3 percent, while JXTG Holdings is adding 0.5 percent.Among the other major gainers, Alps Electric is rising almost 5 percent, Hino Motors is advancing more than 4 percent and NTT Docomo is up almost 4 percent. On the flip side, Advantest is losing 8 percent, Pioneer Corp. is down more than 5 percent and Fuji Electric is lower by 4 percent.In economic news, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said in a preliminary reading that industrial output in Japan skidded 2.1 percent on month in March. That missed forecasts for a fall of 0.8 percent following the 3.2 percent gain in February.Overall nationwide consumer prices in Japan were up 0.2 percent on year in March, missing forecasts for 0.3 percent, which would have been unchanged.The unemployment rate in Japan came in at a seasonally adjusted 2.8 percent in March. That was unchanged from the February reading, although it was beneath expectations for 2.9 percent.The average of household spending in Japan was down 1.3 percent on year in March, coming in at 297,942 yen. That missed forecasts for a fall of 0.5 percent following the 3.8 percent decline in February.In the currency market, the U.S. dollar traded in the lower 111 yen-range on Friday.On Wall Street, stocks closed higher in lackluster trading on Thursday as traders digested the latest batch of corporate earnings news. In U.S. economic news, the Labor Department released a report showing an unexpected increase in initial jobless claims in the week ended April 22nd.The Dow inched up 6.24 points or less than a tenth of a percent to 20,981.33, the Nasdaq rose 23.71 points or 0.4 percent to 6,048.94 and the S&P 500 edged up 1.32 points or 0.1 percent to 2,388.77.The major European markets moved to the downside on Thursday. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index slid by 0.7 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index dropped by 0.3 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively.Crude oil prices fell Thursday, but finished off their lows of the session, ahead of tomorrow's rig count data from Baker Hughes. WTI crude for June delivery slid $0.65 or 1.3 percent to close at $48.97 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

U.S. Consumer Sentiment Nearly Unchanged In April

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - After initially reporting an improvement in U.S. consumer sentiment in the month of April, the University of Michigan released revised data on Friday showing that sentiment was nearly flat.The report said the consumer sentiment index for April was downwardly revised to 97.0 from the preliminary reading of 98.0. Economists had expected the index to be unrevised.With the unexpected downward revision, the consumer sentiment index is nearly unchanged compared to 96.9 in March. 'Consumer sentiment continued to travel along the high plateau established following Trump's election, with only minor deviations from its five month average of 97.4,' said Richard Curtin, the survey's chief economist.The current economic conditions index for April was downwardly revised to 112.7 from 115.2 and is now below the 113.2 seen in March. Meanwhile, the index of consumer expectations for April was upwardly revised to 87.0 from 86.9 and is up modestly compared to 86.5 in the previous month.The report said one-year and five-year inflation expectations in April were both unchanged from March at 2.5 percent and 2.4 percent, respectively.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Chicago Business Barometer Unexpectedly Indicates Faster Growth In April

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - A report released by MNI Indicators on Friday showed an unexpected acceleration in the pace of growth in Chicago-area business activity in the month of April.MNI Indicators said its Chicago business barometer rose to 58.3 in April from 57.7 in March, with a reading above 50 indicating growth. The continued increase by the business barometer came as a surprise to economists, who had expected the index to drop to 56.5.With the unexpected increase, the Chicago business barometer climbed to its highest level since January of 2015.MNI Indicators said demand continued to gain ground in April, with the new orders index rising for the third straight month to reach its highest level since May of 2014.To meet rising orders, demand for labor also picked up during the month, lifting the employment index out of contraction territory after a brief dip below 50 last month.'The April Chicago report showcased another impressive month, with firms reporting solid growth,' said Shaily Mittal, senior economist at MNI Indicators.She added, 'Although the employment indicator has been bumpy, in and out of contraction, if the current month's rise is sustained, it could provide a boost to the labor market.'On the other hand, the report said the production index fell after two consecutive increases, dipping to 59.5 in April from 61.7 in March.MNI Indicators said factory gate prices also eased for the second consecutive month but noted they remain elevated.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Eurozone Inflation Climbs To ECB Target

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - Eurozone inflation accelerated more-than-expected in April, returning within the European Central Bank's target of 'below, but close to 2 percent', preliminary estimate from Eurostat showed on Friday.Elsewhere on Friday, results of an ECB survey showed that professional forecasters expect euro area consumer prices to rise faster than earlier expected, though core inflation was seen to pick up only slowly.Headline inflation climbed to 1.9 percent from 1.5 percent in March, the Eurostat said. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent.Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcohol & tobacco accelerated to 1.2 percent from 0.7 percent in March. The latest level was the highest since September 2013.'A large part of this rebound can be attributed to the late Easter we had this year,' ING Bank economist Bert Colijn said. 'Expect next month's release to show weaker price growth though as underlying inflation remains weak.'Among components of consumer prices, energy showed the biggest annual growth of 7.5 percent. Services cost advanced 1.8 percent and that of food, alcohol and tobacco by 1.5 percent. Non-energy industrial goods prices rose only 0.3 percent.The ECB maintained its monetary policy unchanged on Thursday, with President Mario Draghi saying that while growth was gaining momentum and broadening, underlying inflationary measures remained subdued. The bank thus signaled that it has not intention of winding down its massive stimulus any time soon.Average headline inflation expectations for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were raised to 1.6 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively, the ECB Survey of Professional Forecasters said. The earlier projections were 1.4 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.6 percent. The longer-term inflation expectation was left unchanged at 1.8 percent.Expectations for inflation excluding food and energy were 1.1 percent, 1.3 percent and 1.5 percent in 2017, 2018 and 2019, respectively. The figure is seen rising to 1.7 percent by 2021. Compared with the previous survey, the core inflation profile is broadly unchanged, with a small downward revision for 2017 and a small upward revision for 2019, the survey said.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Eurozone Inflation Climbs To ECB Target

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - Eurozone inflation accelerated more-than-expected in April, returning within the European Central Bank's target of 'below, but close to 2 percent', preliminary estimate from Eurostat showed on Friday.Elsewhere on Friday, results of an ECB survey showed that professional forecasters expect euro area consumer prices to rise faster than earlier expected, though core inflation was seen to pick up only slowly.Headline inflation climbed to 1.9 percent from 1.5 percent in March, the Eurostat said. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent.Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcohol & tobacco accelerated to 1.2 percent from 0.7 percent in March. The latest level was the highest since September 2013.'A large part of this rebound can be attributed to the late Easter we had this year,' ING Bank economist Bert Colijn said. 'Expect next month's release to show weaker price growth though as underlying inflation remains weak.'Among components of consumer prices, energy showed the biggest annual growth of 7.5 percent. Services cost advanced 1.8 percent and that of food, alcohol and tobacco by 1.5 percent. Non-energy industrial goods prices rose only 0.3 percent.The ECB maintained its monetary policy unchanged on Thursday, with President Mario Draghi saying that while growth was gaining momentum and broadening, underlying inflationary measures remained subdued. The bank thus signaled that it has not intention of winding down its massive stimulus any time soon.Average headline inflation expectations for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were raised to 1.6 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively, the ECB Survey of Professional Forecasters said. The earlier projections were 1.4 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.6 percent. The longer-term inflation expectation was left unchanged at 1.8 percent.Expectations for inflation excluding food and energy were 1.1 percent, 1.3 percent and 1.5 percent in 2017, 2018 and 2019, respectively. The figure is seen rising to 1.7 percent by 2021. Compared with the previous survey, the core inflation profile is broadly unchanged, with a small downward revision for 2017 and a small upward revision for 2019, the survey said.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

U.S. Economic Growth Slows More Than Expected In Q1

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Economic growth in the U.S. slowed by more than anticipated in the first three months of 2017, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Friday.The Commerce Department said gross domestic product increased by 0.7 percent in the first quarter after jumping by 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter. Economists had expected GDP to climb by 1.2 percent.The weaker than expected increase in GDP in the first quarter represents the worst performance since a 1.2 percent decline in the first quarter of 2014.However, Paul Ashworth, Chief U.S. Economist at Capital Economics, said the weak GDP growth won't necessarily stop the Federal Reserve from hiking interest rates again in June.'In recent years there is a well-established pattern of GDP growth disappointing in the first quarter and then rallying over the remaining three quarters,' Ashworth said. 'Indeed, since 2010, the average for first-quarter growth is only 0.9%, compared with 2.4% in each of the other three quarters,' he added. 'Fed officials are well aware of this potential residual seasonality.The slowdown in the pace of GDP growth came as consumer spending rose by just 0.3 percent in the first quarter after surging up by 3.5 percent in the fourth quarter.Ashworth said consumer spending was held down by a pullback in motor vehicle sales from a near-record high and unseasonably warm winter weather, which depressed utilities spending.The Commerce Department said the deceleration in GDP growth also reflected downturns in private inventory investment and state and local government spending.An upturn in exports and accelerations in both non-residential and residential fixed investment helped to limit the downside. Meanwhile, a reading on core consumer prices, which exclude food and energy prices, showed that the pace of price growth accelerated to 2.0 percent in the first quarter from 1.3 percent in the fourth quarter.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

ECB Forecasters Revise Up Growth & Inflation Expectations

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - Professional forecasters expect euro area consumer prices to rise faster than earlier expected, though core inflation was seen to pick up only slowly, results of a survey by the European Central Bank showed Friday.Average headline inflation expectations for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were raised to 1.6 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively, the ECB Survey of Professional Forecasters said. The earlier projections were 1.4 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.6 percent. The longer-term inflation expectation was left unchanged at 1.8 percent.Expectations for inflation excluding food and energy were 1.1 percent, 1.3 percent and 1.5 percent in 2017, 2018 and 2019, respectively. The figure is seen rising to 1.7 percent by 2021. Compared with the previous survey, this profile is broadly unchanged, witha small downward revision for 2017 and a small upward revision for 2019, the survey said. Real GDP growth expectations for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were raised to 1.7 percent, 1.6 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively. The earlier forecasts were 1.5 percent for each of the three years. The longer term projection was unchanged at 1.6 percent.Unemployment expectations continued to depict a declining trend. The projections for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were 9.4 percent, 9.1 percent and 8.7 percent. The earlier figures were 9.5 percent, 9.2 percent and 8.9 percent. The longer term expectation was also reduced to 8.4 percent from 8.5 percent. The European Central Bank maintained its monetary policy unchanged on Thursday, saying that while growth was gaining momentum and broadening, underlying inflationary measures remained subdued. The bank thus signaled that it has not intention of winding down its massive stimulus any time soon.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

ECB Forecasters Revise Up Growth & Inflation Expectations

BRUSSELS/FRANKFURT/PARIS (dpa-AFX) - Professional forecasters expect euro area consumer prices to rise faster than earlier expected, though core inflation was seen to pick up only slowly, results of a survey by the European Central Bank showed Friday.Average headline inflation expectations for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were raised to 1.6 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively, the ECB Survey of Professional Forecasters said. The earlier projections were 1.4 percent, 1.5 percent and 1.6 percent. The longer-term inflation expectation was left unchanged at 1.8 percent.Expectations for inflation excluding food and energy were 1.1 percent, 1.3 percent and 1.5 percent in 2017, 2018 and 2019, respectively. The figure is seen rising to 1.7 percent by 2021. Compared with the previous survey, this profile is broadly unchanged, witha small downward revision for 2017 and a small upward revision for 2019, the survey said. Real GDP growth expectations for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were raised to 1.7 percent, 1.6 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively. The earlier forecasts were 1.5 percent for each of the three years. The longer term projection was unchanged at 1.6 percent.Unemployment expectations continued to depict a declining trend. The projections for 2017, 2018 and 2019 were 9.4 percent, 9.1 percent and 8.7 percent. The earlier figures were 9.5 percent, 9.2 percent and 8.9 percent. The longer term expectation was also reduced to 8.4 percent from 8.5 percent. The European Central Bank maintained its monetary policy unchanged on Thursday, saying that while growth was gaining momentum and broadening, underlying inflationary measures remained subdued. The bank thus signaled that it has not intention of winding down its massive stimulus any time soon.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

UK Growth At 1-Year Low As 'Brexit' Weighs On Spending

LONDON (dpa-AFX) - The U.K. economy expanded the least in a year at the start of 2017, reflecting a notable slowdown in the service sector as consumers curbed their spending amid the Brexit uncertainty and rising inflation.Gross domestic product grew only 0.3 percent in the first quarter from the previous three months, preliminary estimates from the Office for National Statistics showed Friday. This was the weakest expansion since the first quarter of 2016. Quarterly growth was forecast to moderate to 0.4 percent from 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter. The slowdown in GDP growth will no doubt prompt some suggestions that 'Brexit' is now hitting the economy hard, Ruth Gregory, an economist at Capital Economics, said. Prime Minister Theresa May has called for an early general election on June 8, hoping to strengthen her mandate in 'Brexit' talks. It was evident that the growth slowdown was largely the consequence of increasingly squeezed consumers markedly reining in their spending, IHS Markit economist Howard Archer said. This showed up in the marked slowdown in services output, where the consumer-facing sectors saw a clear loss of momentum, Archer added.Following the marked first quarter slowdown, Archer said 2017 will remain highly challenging for the UK economy. Despite high inflation, the Bank of England is widely expected to keep its interest rate at a record low 0.25 percent throughout this year. The central bank has projected 2 percent growth for 2017. The production-side breakdown of GDP showed that the growth in the dominant service sector eased to a 2-year low of 0.3 percent from 0.8 percent in the previous quarter. Total production climbed 0.3 percent after rising 0.4 percent. Driven by auto industry, manufacturing output gained 0.5 percent.Farm output rose 0.3 percent in the first quarter. At the same time, construction output advanced only 0.2 percent after expanding 1 percent in the fourth quarter. On a yearly basis, GDP growth accelerated to 2.1 percent in the first quarter from 1.9 percent in the fourth quarter. However, this was slightly slower than the expected 2.2 percent. Another report from the ONS showed that services output increased 0.2 percent in February from January. In the three months to February, services output increased by 2.5 percent compared with the same period a year ago.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

U.S. GDP Increases Less Than Expected In Q1

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - Economic growth in the U.S. slowed by more than anticipated in the first three months of 2017, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Friday.The Commerce Department said gross domestic product increased by 0.7 percent in the first quarter after jumping by 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter. Economists had expected GDP to climb by 1.2 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Sweden Retail Sales Growth Eases Unexpectedly

STOCKHOLM (dpa-AFX) - Sweden's retail sales growth eased unexpectedly in March, after accelerating in the previous two months, data from Statistics Sweden showed Friday.Retail sales rose a working-day-adjusted 1.9 percent year-over-year in March, slower than the 2.6 percent climb in February. Meanwhile, economists had expected the growth to accelerate to 3.1 percent. Retail sales of durables grew 2.4 percent annually in March and those of consumables edged up by 0.2 percent. On a monthly basis, retail sales fell a seasonally adjusted 0.4 percent from February, when it rose by 0.3 percent. In contrast, it was expected to increase by 0.2 percent.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Dollar Mixed After GDP Data Disappoints

WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - The dollar is turning in a mixed performance against its major rivals Friday afternoon. The buck is down against its major European rivals, but is holding onto modest gains against the Japanese Yen after GDP data came in weaker than anticipated this morning. Economic growth in the U.S. slowed by more than anticipated in the first three months of 2017, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Friday. The Commerce Department said gross domestic product increased by 0.7 percent in the first quarter after jumping by 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter. Economists had expected GDP to climb by 1.2 percent.A report released by MNI Indicators on Friday showed an unexpected acceleration in the pace of growth in Chicago-area business activity in the month of April. MNI Indicators said its Chicago business barometer rose to 58.3 in April from 57.7 in March, with a reading above 50 indicating growth. The continued increase by the business barometer came as a surprise to economists, who had expected the index to drop to 56.5.After initially reporting an improvement in U.S. consumer sentiment in the month of April, the University of Michigan released revised data on Friday showing that sentiment was nearly flat. The report said the consumer sentiment index for April was downwardly revised to 97.0 from the preliminary reading of 98.0. Economists had expected the index to be unrevised.The dollar dropped to an early low of $1.0946 against the Euro Friday, but has since rebounded to around $1.0895.Eurozone inflation accelerated more than expected in April, flash data from Eurostat showed Friday. Inflation rose to 1.9 percent in April from 1.5 percent in March. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent. Germany's retail sales recovered in March, provisional data of the Federal Statistical Office showed Friday. Retail sales grew 2.3 percent year-on-year in March, offsetting February's revised 2.3 percent fall. Sales were expected to grow 2.2 percent.Germany's import prices increased at a slower pace in March, data published by Destatis showed Friday.Import price inflation eased to 6.1 percent in March from a near six-year high of 7.4 percent in February. Month-on-month, import prices fell 0.5 percent, in contrast to February's 0.7 percent increase. This was the first fall in seven months. At the same time, export prices advanced 2.3 percent versus 2.5 percent increase in February. On a monthly basis, export prices remained flat in March, following a 0.2 percent rise.French inflation accelerated slightly, as expected, in April, the provisional estimate from the statistical office Insee showed Friday. Consumer price inflation rose marginally to 1.2 percent in April from 1.1 percent in March. The annual rate came in line with expectations.France's consumer spending decreased for the second straight month in March, defying economists' expectations for an increase, figures from the statistical office INSEE showed Friday.Consumer spending dropped 0.4 percent month-over-month in March, following a 0.7 percent drop in February, revised from a 0.8 percent fall reported earlier. Meanwhile, it was forecast to rise by 0.1 percent.The buck has fallen to a 7-month low of $1.2960 against the pound sterling Friday afternoon, from an early high of $1.2888.The U.K. economy expanded at the slowest pace in a year at the start of 2017, preliminary estimate from the Office for National Statistics showed Friday. Gross domestic product grew only 0.3 percent in the first quarter from prior three months. This was the slowest rate of growth since the first quarter of 2016.UK home loan approvals declined more-than-expected to its lowest level in four months in March, figures from the British Bankers' Association showed Friday. The number of mortgages approved for house purchases fell to 41,061 from 42,247 in March. Economists had forecast 40,000.UK house prices unexpectedly fell for a second straight month in April, driving the annual pace of growth to its lowest level in nearly four years, signaling that Britons may be tightening the purse strings due to a squeeze on real incomes.The house price index fell 0.4 percent month-on-month after a 0.3 percent slump in March, results of the monthly survey by the Nationwide Building Society showed Friday. Economists had expected a 0.1 percent gain.Consumer confidence in the United Kingdom ebbed in April, the latest survey from GfK revealed on Friday with an index score of -7. That was in line with expectations, and down from -6 in March.The greenback rose to a high of Y111.711 against the Japanese Yen Friday, but has since eased back to around Y111.415.The average of household spending in Japan was down 1.3 percent on year in March, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday, coming in at 297,942 yen. That missed forecasts for a fall of 0.5 percent following the 3.8 percent decline in February.The unemployment rate in Japan came in at a seasonally adjusted 2.8 percent in March, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday. That was unchanged from the February reading, although it was beneath expectations for 2.9 percent.Overall nationwide consumer prices in Japan were up 0.2 percent on year in March, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday, missing forecasts for 0.3 percent, which would have been unchanged.Core CPI, which excludes fresh food prices, also added an annual 0.2 percent, unchanged and matching forecasts.Retail sales in Japan were up a seasonally adjusted 0.2 percent on month in March, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said on Friday. That beat expectations for a decline of 0.3 percent, although it was unchanged from the February reading.Industrial output in Japan skidded 2.1 percent on month in March, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said in Friday's preliminary reading. That missed forecasts for a fall of 0.8 percent following the 3.2 percent gain in February.Japan's housing starts grew marginally in March, data from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism showed Friday. Housing starts grew only 0.2 percent year-on-year in March, but reversed a 2.6 percent fall in February. Economists had forecast housing starts to drop again by 2.6 percent in March.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Dollar Little Changed Following U.S. Consumer Sentiment Index

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - Following the release of the University of Michigan's final report on consumer sentiment in April at 10:00 am ET Friday, the greenback changed little against its major counterparts.The greenback was trading at 1.0920 against the euro, 111.45 against the yen, 0.9922 against the franc and 1.2927 against the pound around 10:01 am ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Dollar Rises Ahead Of U.S. Consumer Sentiment Index

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - The University of Michigan releases final report on consumer sentiment in April at 10:00 am ET Friday. The consumer sentiment index is expected to be unrevised at the preliminary reading of 98.0.Ahead of the data, the greenback rose against its major counterparts.The greenback was worth 1.0917 against the euro, 111.45 against the yen, 0.9925 against the franc and 1.2928 against the pound as of 9:55 am ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Dollar Rises Despite Weak U.S. GDP Data

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - The U.S. dollar rose against its key counterparts in the European session on Friday, even as a data showed that the U.S. economic growth slowed more than anticipated in the first three months of 2017. Data from the Commerce Department showed that the gross domestic product increased by 0.7 percent in the first quarter after jumping by 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter. Economists had expected GDP to climb by 1.2 percent.Traders digested comments from President Donald Trump, who warned of a major conflict with North Korea over its nuclear and missile programs.'There is a chance that we could end up having a major, major conflict with North Korea. Absolutely,' Trump said in an interview with Reuters on Thursday.Market participants await the University of Michigan's revised report on consumer sentiment in April, due at 10:00 am ET. The consumer sentiment index is expected to be unrevised at the preliminary reading of 98.0.The greenback held steady against its most major rivals in the Asian session, as U.S. President Donald Trump's threat of a major rift between the U.S. and North Korea kept sentiment subdued.Following a 2-day decline to 1.0947 against the euro at 5:15 am ET, the greenback bounced off to 1.0908 after the data. At Thursday's close, the pair was worth 1.0870. The greenback is likely to locate resistance around the 1.075 region.Flash data from Eurostat showed that inflation rose to 1.9 percent in April from 1.5 percent in March. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent. The headline inflation rate remained within the European Central Bank's target of 'below, but close to 2 percent'. The greenback recovered to 0.9926 against the Swiss franc, from more than a 4-week low of 0.9894 hit at 5:15 am ET. The pair was valued at 0.9923 when it finished Thursday's deals. On the upside, 1.01 is possibly seen as the next resistance for the greenback.Survey results from the KOF Swiss Economic Institute showed that a measure signaling future turning points in the Swiss economy declined unexpectedly in April to a three-month low, yet the reading remained above average, suggesting sustained momentum in the economy. The KOF leading indicator dropped to 106 from 107.2 in March, which was revised from 107.6. Economists had forecast a score of 107.5. The greenback firmed to a 2-day high of 111.72 against the Japanese yen, coming off from an early low of 111.07. Continuation of the greenback's uptrend may see it challenging resistance around the 115.00 area.Data from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism showed that Japan's housing starts grew marginally in March. Housing starts grew only 0.2 percent year-on-year in March, but reversed a 2.6 percent fall in February. Economists had forecast housing starts to drop again by 2.6 percent in March. The greenback rose back to 1.2903 against the pound, after having fallen to a 7-month low of 1.2957 early in the European session. The next possible resistance for the greenback is seen around the 1.26 mark.Preliminary estimate from the Office for National Statistics showed that the U.K. economy expanded at the slowest pace in a year at the start of 2017. Gross domestic product grew only 0.3 percent in the first quarter from prior three months. This was the slowest rate of growth since the first quarter of 2016. The greenback bounced off to 0.6855 against the kiwi and 0.7457 against the aussie, from its early lows of 0.6890 and 0.7485, respectively. If the greenback extends rise, it may find resistance around 0.67 against the kiwi and 0.72 against the aussie.On the flip side, the greenback reversed from an early high of 1.3666 against the loonie and showed choppy trading in the rest of trading session.The University of Michigan's final consumer sentiment for April is set for release shortly. At 1:15 pm ET, the Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard speaks about Fintech at Northwestern University's Fintech conference, in Illinois. The Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker delivers a speech titled 'How STEM Can Get You Anywhere,' in Washington DC at 2:30 pm ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Loonie Rises After Canada GDP Data

OTTAWA (dpa-AFX) - After the release of Canada gross domestic product data for February and industrial product price index for March at 8:30 am ET Friday, the loonie rose against its major counterparts. The loonie was trading at 1.3636 against the greenback, 81.70 against the yen, 1.4906 against the euro and 1.0189 against the aussie around 8:34 am ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Dollar Slightly Up After U.S. GDP Data

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - Following the release of U.S. advanced GDP data for the first quarter at 8:30 am ET Friday, the greenback rose slightly against its major counterparts.The greenback was worth 111.47 against the yen, 0.9913 against the franc, 1.2933 against the pound and 1.0923 against the euro around 8:31 am ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Russian Ruble Advances To 2-day High Vs U.S. Dollar Despite Russia Rate Cut

MOSCOW (dpa-AFX) - The Russian Ruble climbed against the U.S. dollar in European deals on Friday amid higher oil prices, shrugging off the Russia's central bank decision to cut its key rate by 50 basis points.The Board of Directors decided to reduce the key rate to 9.25 percent per annum, the Bank of Russia said in a statement. Economists had expected a modest reduction to 9.5 percent. Policymakers noted that inflation is moving towards the target, inflation expectations are still declining and economic activity is recovering. Meanwhile, inflation risks remain in place, the bank said.The Russian Ruble advanced to a 2-day high of 56.56 against the greenback, from a low of 57.12 hit at 6:30 pm ET. The next possible resistance for the Russian currency is seen around the 54.00 region.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Euro Climbs As Eurozone Inflation Moves Back To ECB Target

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - The euro advanced against its major counterparts in the European session on Friday, after data showed that Eurozone inflation accelerated more than expected to the bank's inflation goal in April, in a sign of improving economic prospects in the currency bloc.Flash data from Eurostat showed that inflation rose to 1.9 percent in April from 1.5 percent in March. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent. The headline inflation rate remained within the European Central Bank's target of 'below, but close to 2 percent'. Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcohol & tobacco accelerated to 1.2 percent from 0.7 percent in March. Further underpinning the currency was an uptick in Spanish economic growth in the first quarter.The statistical office INE said that gross domestic product climbed 0.8 percent sequentially, slightly faster than the 0.7 percent rise in the fourth quarter. Economists had forecast the rate to remain unchanged at 0.7 percent. European stocks are trading mixed as U.S. President Donald Trump warned of a major conflict with North Korea and investors digested a raft of corporate earnings reports. The currency showed mixed performance in the Asian session. While the euro held steady against the yen and the greenback, it dropped against the pound and the franc.The euro appreciated to a 2-day high of 1.0947 against the greenback, from a low of 1.0857 hit at 9:00 pm ET. The euro is seen finding resistance around the 1.11 region.The euro firmed to 122.00 against the Japanese yen, its strongest since March 17. Continuation of the euro's uptrend may see it challenging resistance around the 123.00 area.Data from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism showed that Japan's housing starts grew marginally in March.Housing starts grew only 0.2 percent year-on-year in March, but reversed a 2.6 percent fall in February. Economists had forecast housing starts to drop again by 2.6 percent in March. The euro having fallen to a 10-day low of 0.8410 against the pound at 4:00 am ET, reversed direction and rose to 0.8462. The euro is poised to target resistance around the 0.86 level.Preliminary estimate from the Office for National Statistics showed that the U.K. economy expanded at the slowest pace in a year at the start of 2017.Gross domestic product grew only 0.3 percent in the first quarter from prior three months. This was the slowest rate of growth since the first quarter of 2016.Reversing from an early 4-day low of 1.0798 against the Swiss franc, the euro edged up to 1.0843. The next possible resistance for the euro-franc pair is seen around the 1.10 area.Survey results from the KOF Swiss Economic Institute showed that a measure signaling future turning points in the Swiss economy declined unexpectedly in April to a three-month low, yet the reading remained above average, suggesting sustained momentum in the economy.The KOF leading indicator dropped to 106 from 107.2 in March, which was revised from 107.6. Economists had forecast a score of 107.5. The euro rose to 1.4634 versus the aussie, from a low of 1.4528 hit at 8:45 pm ET. The next possible resistance for the euro-aussie is seen around the 1.48 mark.The euro strengthened to near a 6-month high of 1.4932 against the loonie and near a 1-year high of 1.5939 against the kiwi, off its early lows of 1.4801 and 1.5762, respectively. Further uptrend may take the euro to resistance levels of around 1.51 against the loonie and 1.61 against the kiwi.Looking ahead, U.S. advanced GDP data for the first quarter, Chicago PMI and University of Michigan's final consumer sentiment for April, as well as Canada GDP data for February and industrial product price index for March are set for release in the New York session. At 1:15 pm ET, the Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard speaks about Fintech at Northwestern University's Fintech conference, in Illinois. The Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker delivers a speech titled 'How STEM Can Get You Anywhere,' in Washington DC at 2:30 pm ET.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Euro Climbs After Strong Eurozone Inflation Data

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - The euro advanced against its major counterparts in the European session on Friday, after data showed that Eurozone inflation accelerated more than expected in April. Flash data from Eurostat showed that inflation rose to 1.9 percent in April from 1.5 percent in March. Economists had forecast the annual rate to rise to 1.8 percent. Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcohol & tobacco accelerated to 1.2 percent from 0.7 percent in March. The euro strengthened to near a 6-month high of 1.4923 against the loonie and near a 1-year high of 1.5927 against the kiwi, off its early lows of 1.4801 and 1.5762, respectively.The euro climbed to 2-day highs of 1.0945 against the greenback and 121.95 against the yen, from its previous lows of 1.0857 and 120.69, respectively.Reversing from an early 4-day low of 1.0798 against the Swiss franc, the euro edged up to 1.0843.The euro rose to 1.4634 versus the aussie, from a low of 1.4528 hit at 8:45 pm ET.Following a 10-day low of 0.8410 hit versus the pound in early deals, the euro advanced to 0.8457.The euro is likely to find resistance around 0.86 against the pound, 1.10 against the franc, 1.11 against the greenback, 123.00 against the yen, 1.48 against the aussie, 1.51 against the loonie and 1.61 against the kiwi.Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX
28.04.2017

Euro Climbs Further After Eurozone Inflation Data

BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - Eurostat has released euro area flash inflation figures for April at 5.00 am ET Friday. The euro advanced further against its major counterparts after the data.The euro was trading at 1.0917 against the greenback, 121.46 against the yen, 1.0838 against the franc and 0.8436 against the pound around 5:01 am ET.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