Mario Draghi’s difficult juggling act

The calendar is not kind to the European Central Bank. A week on Thursday, its governing council will deliberate, just days after Italy’s vote on constitutional reform, and a week before the bank’s US counterpart holds a meeting which could move the world’s bond and currency markets. Temporal pressure of another kind is also building, as the ECB buys €80bn…

US stocks rise as positive economic data offset oil slide

US stocks finished Tuesday just off of record highs as a string of strong economic data buoyed investor optimism, even though falling oil prices pared some of the gains. The S&P 500 ended 0.1 per cent higher at 2204.66, within reach of the record 2,213.35 it marked on November 25. Healthcare and real-estate stocks led the gains as investor sentiment…

UK inflation debt sale attracts robust demand

A sale of UK index-linked bonds attracted more than £10bn in orders on Tuesday, in a fresh sign of demand for securities that offer some protection against rising consumer prices after years of subdued inflation. It comes as investors assess competing forces affecting the UK economy following a vote to leave the EU in June. Expectations of economic growth fading…

Aberdeen slips on fears of a dividend cut

Fears of a dividend cut pulled Aberdeen Asset Management to a five-month low. The shares extended a loss that began on Monday when Martin Gilbert, Aberdeen’s chief executive, said asset managers were facing higher capital requirements so there were “no promises” that he would keep next year’s payout flat at 19.5p a share. “I think we’ll be able to maintain…

Trump Tower security fails to stop Tiffany’s share advance

Tiffany shares were poised for their best day in more than three months after the jeweller reported better than expected third-quarter results even as the company said that security at Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue had hurt traffic at its flagship store in New York City. The company known for its signature Tiffany blue boxes said profits climbed to $95.1m…

Italian 10-year bond yields slip below 2%

Italian government debt is rallying strongly today with 10-year yields falling below 2 per cent for the first time in a week, helped along by reports the European Central Bank could ramp up its purchases of the country’s bonds ahead of a crucial referendum on Sunday. Yields on Italy’s benchmark 10-year bonds are down 0.07 percentage points (7 basis points)…

Beijing battles to close capital flight loopholes

Getting money out of China has always been a challenge, so much so that some enterprising individuals have experimented with smuggling fossils to sell on the international black market for cash. Most people have discovered that financial transactions involve less heavy lifting, although they are not always simpler. The long list of roundabout ways to move money out of China keeps…

The buying spree behind Beijing’s crackdown

The days when a Chinese iron ore miner could buy a UK video game developer are drawing to a close as Beijing tightens up on cross-border investment by its companies. Investment banks in Asia have worked overtime this year on bringing an expansive range of acquisition targets to aggressive Chinese groups, many of which have strayed far beyond the acquirers’…

Renminbi holds ground against the dollar

The renminbi strengthened against the dollar on Tuesday after China’s central bank tightened its currency trading band for a second straight day. The People’s Bank of China set the midpoint of the onshore version of the renminbi’s 4 per cent trading band against the dollar at Rmb6.88890 on Tuesday, up 0.2 per cent from Monday. The renminbi remains near an…

US stocks hold steady, bonds fall after positive GDP data

The main US equity gauges stalled on Tuesday morning as energy stocks tumbled ahead of the Opec meeting on Wednesday, while signs of robust growth in the US economy lifted utility and real estate sectors. The S&P 500 fluctuated around the 2,200 mark, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite were little changed. The energy sector led declines…