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Five Things to Know in World Business Today


Aug 15, 2018, by Lorcan Roche Kelly
(Bloomberg)
Lira rally

Turkey’s currency added to yesterday’s gains with a rally of as much as 7 percent this morning after authorities made it more difficult for banks to short the lira through the swap market. The move came after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s administration followed up on his call to boycott U.S. electronics with the announcement of an additional tax on a broad range of American goods. While there is still no sign of a rate rise from Turkey’s central bank, this morning Indonesia announced a surprise hike as emerging market currencies come under pressure across the globe.

Metal fatigueBase metals tumbled, with most contracts quoted in London dropping more than 2 percent. Copper sank below $6,000 a ton as the metal nears a bear market. Blame dollar strength and growing fears over raw-material demand from China and other developing nations. In the oil market, a barrel of West Texas Intermediate was trading at $66.12 at 5:45 a.m. Eastern Time after a report showed increasing U.S. stockpiles, while Libya’s output has boomed. Gold dropped further below $1,200 to trade at $1186.55 an ounce.

Retail sales At 8:30 a.m., U.S. retail sales data for July is released, with economists surveyed by Bloomberg expecting a 0.1 percent increase in the month, well below June’s 0.5 percent growth. While there will be a drag from weak auto sales numbers, analysts expect that the stronger-than-expected Amazon Prime Day event will help prop up the sector. Earlier today, U.K. data showed consumer prices increased by 2.5 percent in July, the most in eight months.

Markets slipOvernight, the MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped 0.9 percent while Japan’s Topix index closed 0.8 percent lower with banks among the biggest losers for the day. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.2 percent lower at 5:45 a.m. with miners hit hardest as commodity prices fell amid low trading volumes. S&P 500 Index futures pointed to a drop at the open and the 10-year Treasury yield was at 2.884 percent.

Primary womenFemale candidates dominated primary voting in the battleground states of Minnesota and Wisconsin, with women selected as five of the six U.S. Senate nominees. In Vermont, Christine Hallquist became the first transgender candidate from a major party to be nominated for governor when she won the Democratic vote. In Kansas, President Donald Trump ally Kris Kobach claimed the state’s Republican nomination after his opponent conceded a week after the tight vote was held.



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