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RIO - Rio Tinto News Story

6124p -11.0  -0.2%

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Basic Materials
Large Cap
Market Cap £99.32bn
Enterprise Value £103.19bn
Revenue £31.65bn
Position in Universe 13th / 1826

LIVE MARKETS-Hopefully not the cruelest month

Thu 1st April, 2021 8:24am
April 1 - Welcome to the home for real-time coverage of markets brought to you by Reuters reporters. You can share your thoughts with us at HOPEFULLY NOT THE CRUELEST MONTH (0721 GMT) April is said to be the cruelest month so investors in global equities, emerging from the worst quarter in a year, will be hoping the adage doesn't hold true for them. Indeed, last April, world stocks gained over 10% after March mayhem. In any case, they are starting off on a firmer footing, bolstered by a strong close on Wall Street (U.S. stocks actually enjoyed a robust Q1 too), President Joe Biden's $2 trillion infrastructure spending proposal and upbeat factory surveys from Asia on Thursday. European shares are higher. Signs are the U.S. and Chinese recovery will bolster the world economy -- Wednesday data showed U.S. private employers boosted hiring in March as more Americans were vaccinated against COVID-19. Data due on Friday (when many markets are closed) are expected to show 647,000 jobs added in March, adding to February's 379,000 rise. So will Treasury yields spoil the party? Ten-year yields US10YT=RR rose 80 basis points in Q1,their largest quarterly rise since end-2016. The Fed has pledged to keep rates near zero for some time; markets price a 25 basis-point rate hike in December 2022. Things are going less well in Europe with France entering another month-long lockdown. The euro is near five-month lows, German yields rose 30 bps in Q1 but have since eased. The much-needed EU recovery fund has meanwhile hit roadblocks, with a German constitutional court looking into new legal challenges against the plan. Elsewhere, oil prices are up almost $1 on expectations the OPEC+ producers group would keep production curbs in place. And for all the companies hit by chip shortages, there was good news as Taiwan's TSMC announced plans for a $100 billion investment to increase capacity. It comes days after Intel Corp announced a $20 billion expansion plan. Key developments that should provide more direction to markets on Thursday: - UK retailer Next reported a halving in annual pretax profit but forecast a bounceback*:nFWN2LT1DJ. French food services group Sodexo beat first-half profit margin and expects second-half revenue to expand*:nL1N2LU0A9 - German retail sales up 1.2% m/m in February*:nAPN06XM00 - Final PMIs everywhere due out. - Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia President Patrick Harker speaks 1700; Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan 2205 - Weekly U.S. jobless claims, ISM manufacturing data due out - On FRIDAY, U.S. non-farm payrolls is due out. (Sujata Rao) ***** MORNING CALL: U.S. SPENDING PLAN, FRANCE lockdown (0540 GMT) After the STOXX 600 index .STOXX ended the first quarter of 2021 with a 7.8% rise, European shares are seen on the black as the first session of the new quarter kicks off. U.S. President Joe Biden on Wednesday outlined a plan to restart the economy, including spending on roads, railways, broadband, clean energy and semiconductor manufacture.*:nL1N2LT01L But capping the optimism, Macron ordered France into its third national lockdown as he sought to push back a third wave of COVID-19 infections.*:nL8N2LT7DE Eyes will also be on EZ manufacturing PMI numbers, which are expected to be holding up well. "Manufacturing PMI has been one of the main bright spots amidst the gloom of the economic rebound in Europe, as businesses adapt to the restrictions around them, and show resilience in the face of a changed environment," writes Michael Hewson, Chief Market Analyst at CMC Markets UK. Financial spreadbetters at IG expect London's FTSE to open 11 points higher at 6,725, Frankfurt's DAX to open 16 points higher at 15,024 and Paris' CAC to open 2 points lower at 6,065. (Joice Alves) ***** <^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ U.S. nonfarm payrolls ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^>
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