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Investment market update

Early Trading

UK stocks are expected to open marginally lower this morning, mirroring similar struggles overnight in the US and Asia.
World Markets
Most Asian stocks fell as creeping concerns over the global economy affected commodities, with crude oil trading near an almost three-week low. Health-care shares tracked the selloff in US drugmakers.

After a volatile session, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index ended Wednesday at a one-week low. Valeant set the tone, with its shares falling as much as 40% on a report from Citron Research, only to cut the rout in half after billionaire William Ackman added to his stake in the company. The saga overshadowed a largely positive slate of blue-chip earnings.

After fluctuating between gains and losses, UK stocks ended little changed. ARM Holdings Plc jumped 6.5% as the chip designer posted quarterly sales that beat analysts’ estimates. Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc added 2.5% after reporting the steepest quarterly revenue increase in more than five years and raising its full-year outlook. Sky Plc climbed 2.5% after saying sales increased.

 

World Markets

Most Asian stocks fell as creeping concerns over the global economy affected commodities, with crude oil trading near an almost three-week low. Health-care shares tracked the selloff in US drugmakers.

After a volatile session, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index ended Wednesday at a one-week low. Valeant set the tone, with its shares falling as much as 40% on a report from Citron Research, only to cut the rout in half after billionaire William Ackman added to his stake in the company. The saga overshadowed a largely positive slate of blue-chip earnings.

After fluctuating between gains and losses, UK stocks ended little changed. ARM Holdings Plc jumped 6.5% as the chip designer posted quarterly sales that beat analysts’ estimates. Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc added 2.5% after reporting the steepest quarterly revenue increase in more than five years and raising its full-year outlook. Sky Plc climbed 2.5% after saying sales increased.

Headlines

Mark Carney skirted the tense political battle over Britain’s membership of the European Union with a speech that addressed the UK’s relationship with the bloc, but offered no final conclusion on its merits. While the Bank of England governor was at pains to stress he didn’t want to enter the debate, his speech in Oxford on Wednesday was hailed by Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne as being in line with the government’s approach. The central bank published a report alongside Carney’s remarks which didn’t consider the impact of a British exit from the union.

The UK can cut three quarters of the carbon emissions it’s producing from making electricity without driving up bills too much by deploying more clean-energy technologies, the government’s climate change adviser said. Investments that are planned in the power industry in the next five years already are sufficient to reduce the so-called carbon intensity of electricity to 200-250 grams of carbon dioxide per kilowatt-hour, from 450 grams today, the Committee on Climate Change said Thursday in an e-mailed report. Emissions below 100 grams are “an appropriate aim for 2030,” the committee said.

Daimler AG’s third-quarter operating profit rose 31% as new sport utility vehicles pushed Mercedes-Benz sales higher than ever before. Earnings before interest and taxes from ongoing business surged to 3.66 billion euros, the German company said today in a statement. That beat the 3.51 billion-euro average of eight analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales rose 13%.

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