LONDON

FILE PHOTO: Uber's logo is displayed on a mobile phone in London, Britain
FILE PHOTO: Uber’s logo is displayed on a mobile phone in London, Britain, September 14, 2018. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay

April 25, 2019

(Reuters) – Uber Technologies Inc will announce a price range on Friday for its initial public offering (IPO) of between $44 and $50 per share, raising between $8 billion and $9 billion, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

Some Uber insiders will also sell their own shares in the IPO, the sources added. Reuters reported earlier this month that all the Uber shares sold in the IPO could be worth around $10 billion.

Uber also plans to unveil on Friday its last sale of stock as a private company, the sources said. The identity of the investor involved in the private placement could not immediately be learned.

The sources asked not to be identified because the matter is confidential. Uber declined to comment.

(Reporting by Joshua Franklin in New York; Editing by Bill Rigby)

Source: OANN

A Crossrail worker walks in the new Farringdon underground station of the Elizabeth line which opens in December 2018, in London
FILE PHOTO – A Crossrail worker walks in the new Farringdon underground station of the Elizabeth line, in London, Britain June 15, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

April 25, 2019

LONDON (Reuters) – London’s new flagship rail line connecting Heathrow Airport to the Canary Wharf financial district may not now open before 2021, more than two years behind schedule, the Crossrail project said on Thursday.

Billed as Europe’s most ambitious infrastructure project, the line, which runs under the capital, was supposed to open in December 2018, but was delayed shortly before the launch by problems with testing and the completion of signaling work.

When open, the Elizabeth Line, as the link has been named, will connect destinations such as Heathrow west of the city with the rail hub of Paddington, shopping districts such as Bond Street, Canary Wharf in the east, and beyond.

It is expected to carry about 500,000 passengers a day and alleviate pressure on the Victorian-era metro (subway) network, the Underground or Tube. An initial budget of around 15 billion pounds ($19 billion) has risen to 17.6 billion pounds.

“Crossrail is an immensely complex project and there will be challenges ahead,” new chief executive Mark Wild said. “This new plan will … allow this fantastic new railway to open around the end of next year.”

Among the remaining tasks are building and testing the software to integrate the train operating systems with signaling systems; testing station and tunnel systems; and running train trials.

Crossrail said it had identified a six-month window, with a midpoint at the end of 2020, for it to open the central section of the line between Paddington and Abbey Wood to the east of London. All stations on the route will open apart from Bond Street, which has further problems.

Once the section has opened, trains will run on the whole line as soon as possible. Crossrail will also provide more specific estimates as the line gets nearer to completion.

Crossrail’s chairman said he knew it needed to rebuild trust with its stakeholders after the lengthy delays.

(Reporting by Kate Holton; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

Source: OANN

The German share price index DAX graph at the stock exchange in Frankfurt
The German share price index DAX graph is pictured at the stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, April 24, 2019. REUTERS/Staff

April 25, 2019

By Susan Mathew

(Reuters) – European shares slipped on Thursday as weak earnings from Nokia and news of failed attempts at mergers added to a downbeat mood on renewed fears of a slowdown in global growth.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index finished 0.2 percent lower after an eight-session rally in the benchmark index stalled on Wednesday.

“The sizes of losses seem to be driven primarily by domestic news,” said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA in London, pointing also to some profit-taking and softer earnings.

Most major country indexes in the region ended significantly lower, with London’s FTSE 100 down 0.5 percent while Frankfurt’s DAX broke a nine-session winning streak with a 0.25 percent decline.

But not all earnings were bad. Stocks in Madrid and Zurich got a headwind from strong earnings at wind energy producer Iberdrola and lender UBS, respectively.

Reigniting growth fears, data showed the South Korean economy unexpectedly contracted in the first quarter, while Chinese officials warned of protracted pressure on growth, a day after disappointing German Ifo sentiment survey exacerbated concerns about the euro zone’s economic outlook.

Finnish telecom network equipment Nokia was the biggest drag on STOXX 600, sliding 9 percent and logging its sharpest decline in 18 months, after reporting a surprise quarterly loss.

Nokia’s fall knocked the tech index 0.7 percent lower following the previous day’s 4 percent surge.

Sainsbury’s slump after Britain’s competition regulator blocked its proposed 7.3 billion pound ($9.4 billion) takeover of Walmart-owned Asda, and homebuilder Taylor Wimpey’s warning on lower full-year margins, weighed on London’s FTSE.

The banking index shed 0.6 percent, weighed down by Barclays and Swedbank shares.

Britain’s Barclays slipped after reporting a 10 percent drop in quarterly profit, as its under-pressure investment bank struggled with tough markets.

Swedbank fell after posting an estimate-beating first-quarter profit as the Swedish lender admitted to previous shortcomings in combating money laundering.

However losses were tempered by Switzerland’s biggest bank UBS advancing after its first-quarter results surpassed analyst expectations, a day after smaller rival Credit Suisse also posted strong results.

The gains helped Swiss shares buck the gloom and close 0.4 percent higher. Meanwhile, wind energy producer Iberdrola’s 4.3 percent jump after it raised its 2019 guidance for net profit and dividend growth, helped Spanish stocks outperform.

“Equity markets are very much driven by the earnings season and as there are mixed numbers are coming in, investors are taking a little bit of cautious approach,” Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at TF Global Markets (UK) Ltd in London.

Shares of Swiss drugmaker Novartis was the biggest boost to the pan-region index, after Guggenheim upgraded the stock, while many other brokerages raise price target after the drugmaker posted higher first-quarter profit and raised 2019 profit target.

German heavyweight Bayer rose after the drug and farming supplies company posted a 45 percent gain in quarterly core earnings on the back of seed maker Monsanto’s acquisition.

Semiconductor maker ASM soared about 10 percent after beating first-quarter targets, while Germany’s Dialog Semiconductor rose more than 2.5 percent after forecasting higher than anticipated profits in the first quarter.

In the wake of the failed merger talks between Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank, a deal that had faced fierce opposition from the workforce, Deutsche shares dipped 1.5 percent while Commerzbank slipped 2.3 percent.

(Reporting by Medha Singh, Agamoni Ghosh and Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; Editing by Catherine Evans)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Minister for the Cabinet Office David Lidington speaks at the the British Chamber of Commerce annual conference in London
FILE PHOTO: Britain’s Minister for the Cabinet Office David Lidington speaks at the the British Chamber of Commerce annual conference in London, Britain, March 28, 2019. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/File Photo

April 25, 2019

GLASGOW, Scotland (Reuters) – Britain will not consider high risk equipment vendors in security critical parts of its next-generation 5G networks, Cabinet Office minister David Lidington said on Thursday.

Sources told Reuters on Wednesday Britain’s National Security Council had decided this week to bar China’s Huawei Technologies from all core parts of the 5G network and restrict its access to non-core parts.

Speaking at a cyber security conference in Glasgow, Scotland, Lidington said Britain had rigorous procedures to manage risk in its telecoms infrastructure and the government’s decision was based on “evidence and expertise not supposition or speculation.”

“We will not countenance high risk vendors in those parts of the UK’s 5G network that perform critical security functions,” he said.

“The government approach is not about one company or even one country, it is about ensuring stronger cyber security across telecoms, greater resilience in telecoms networks and more diversity in the supply chain.”

(Reporting by Jack Stubbs and Michael Holden; Editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

Source: OANN

London-based Barclays bank says it may cut costs if “challenging” economic conditions persists throughout the year.

The warning came as the bank said Thursday that revenue dropped 2% to 5.25 billion pounds ($6.77 billion) in the first quarter of 2019. Pre-tax profit from Barclays’ corporate and investment banking business fell 30%.

Barclays says the “income environment in the quarter was challenging” and it will reduce spending “if this were to persist for the remainder of the year.”

The bank says it has already cut bonus and compensation payouts across the corporate and investment bank to reflect the division’s poor performance.

Barclays reported quarterly net income of 1.04 billion pounds, compared with a year-earlier loss of 764 million pounds, when the bank set aside 2 billion pounds to cover misconduct.

Source: Fox News World

A man looks at an electronic board showing the Nikkei stock index outside a brokerage in Tokyo
FILE PHOTO: A man looks at an electronic board showing the Nikkei stock index outside a brokerage in Tokyo, Japan, January 7, 2019. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

April 25, 2019

By Tom Wilson

LONDON (Reuters) – World equity markets slipped on Thursday amid worries on global growth and as investors digested European earnings, while the Swedish crown slumped to its lowest in 17 years and the euro suffered after German data.

The Euro STOXX 600 lost 0.3 percent in early trading, with concern over prospects for global growth underscored by weak economic data from South Korea.

Energy stocks and a 10 percent drop in Finnish telecoms equipment maker Nokia dragged down European shares, with a varied bag of earnings for the region’s banks.

The MSCI world equity index, which tracks shares in 47 countries, also fell 0.3 percent.

Asian markets had fallen earlier in the day, losing 0.5 percent as South Korea’s economy unexpectedly contracted in the first quarter, giving a sharp reminder of the fragility of the world economy beyond the United States.

Shanghai’s bourse also fell sharply late in the day, losing more than 2 percent as other Chinese markets lost ground after attempts by the central bank to temper expectations for further easing of monetary policy.

Chinese officials also warned of protracted pressure on economic growth, casting a shadow over hopes for a sustained recovery in the world’s second biggest economy.

Those worries on growth also played out closer to home for European investors, with fears lingering over the state of the German economy after a survey on Wednesday showed German business morale falling.

Amid that weakness, central banks across the world have maintained ultra-loose monetary policy. The Bank of Japan on Thursday pledged to keep interest rates very low at least until early 2020, even as it retained main policy targets.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei gave a muted response, while the Japanese yen also reacted little. The yen was last up about a third of a percent, at 111.80 yen per dollar.

“You certainly have a common response (from central banks) to a global growth slowdown in terms of monetary policy,” said Peter Schaffrik, head of European rates strategy at RBC Capital Markets.

“We haven’t generally seen outright reduction, but it is easing relative to what was previously communicated to, and implied in, the markets.”

There were signs of growing strength in the U.S. dollar, which analysts said was partly a symptom of the world’s largest economy maintaining relative strength and others, such as China, faring worse.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback versus a basket of six major peers, stood at around at 98.001, near its highest since May 2017 hit on Wednesday.

“The Fed isn’t keen to hike rates, but they are the strongest of the bunch so money will gravitate toward the U.S. dollar,” said David Madden, an analyst at CMC Markets in London.

CROWN AND LIRA

The Swedish crown slumped to its lowest since August 2002, after the central bank said weak inflationary pressures meant a forecast rate hike would come slighter later than planned, holding benchmark borrowing costs unchanged.

The crown sank 1.2 percent against the euro to 10.65 – on course for its biggest daily drop in more than six months.

Monetary policy also loomed for emerging markets currencies.

Turkey’s lira weakened against the dollar, losing 0.2 percent hours before a central bank policy decision that could test its willingness to maintain tight monetary policy and support the currency in the face of recession. The rate decision is due at 1100 GMT.

The euro suffered its worst day in over six weeks, falling 0.6 percent to a 22-month following the further signs of flagging growth in Germany. It was last at $1.1141.

Also on the agenda for the single currency were Spanish elections on Sunday and economic concerns out of Italy.

Brent crude oil on Thursday rose above $75 per barrel for the first time in 2019 in the wake of tightening sanctions on Iran, while gains in U.S. prices were crimped by a surge in U.S. supply.

For Reuters Live Markets blog on European and UK stock markets, please click on: [LIVE/]

(Reporting by Tom Wilson in London; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

Source: OANN

The Extinction Rebellion protest in London
Demonstrators glue their hands to the London stock exchange during the Extinction Rebellion protest in London, Britain April 25, 2019. REUTERS/Simon Dawson

April 25, 2019

LONDON (Reuters) – Environmental activists plan protests outside banks including Goldman Sachs, the Bank of England, Rothschild and Nomura on the final day of protests aimed at forcing Britain to take action to avert what they cast as a global climate cataclysm.

The Extinction Rebellion group is also planning protests outside Deutsche Bank, Royal Bank of Canada and Rabobank, according to a document seen by Reuters.

(Reporting By Guy Faulconbridge. Editing by Andrew MacAskill)

Source: OANN

The Extinction Rebellion protest in London
A protester glues her hand to a train during the Extinction Rebellion protest in London, Britain April 25, 2019. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

April 25, 2019

By Dylan Martinez and Emily G Roe

LONDON (Reuters) – Environmental activists glued themselves to the London Stock Exchange and climbed onto the roof of a train at Canary Wharf on the final day of protests aimed at forcing Britain to take action to avert what they cast as a global climate cataclysm.

The Extinction Rebellion group has caused mass disruption in recent weeks across London, blocking Marble Arch, Oxford Circus and Waterloo Bridge, smashing a door at the Shell building and shocking lawmakers with a semi-nude protest in parliament.

At London Stock Exchange’s headquarters on Thursday, six protesters dressed in black suits and red ties were blocking the revolving doors of the building.

At the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) station in Canary Wharf, five protesters from the group climbed aboard a train and unfurled a banner which read: “Business as usual = Death”. One glued herself to a train.

“Extinction Rebellion to focus on the financial industry today,” the group said in a statement. The “aim is to demand the finance industry tells the truth about the climate industry and the devastating impact the industry has on our planet.”

Police said 1088 arrests have been made since the main protests began last Monday.

The group advocates non-violent civil disobedience to force governments to reduce carbon emissions and avert what it says is a global climate crisis that will bring starvation, floods, wildfires and social collapse.

The group is demanding the government declare a climate and ecological emergency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025 and create a citizen’s assembly of members of the public to lead on decisions to address climate change.

(Writing by Andrew MacAskill; editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive Ross McEwan is seen outside Downing Street in London
FILE PHOTO: Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive Ross McEwan is seen outside Downing Street in London, Britain March 20, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah McKay/File Photo

April 25, 2019

LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Bank of Scotland plc said on Thursday that Chief Executive Ross McEwan has resigned from his role, signaling a refresh of leadership and direction at the state-backed lender as it continues its journey to full private ownership.

New Zealand-born McEwan, who has led RBS since October 2013, has a 12-month notice period and will remain in his position until a successor has been appointed and an orderly handover has taken place, the bank said.

It is the second key change in RBS’s senior executive team in less than six months following the appointment of Katie Murray as the bank’s chief financial officer in December last year.

The date of McEwan’s departure will be confirmed in due course and Alison Rose, the bank’s CEO of Commercial & Private Banking, is seen as one of the favourites to succeed him.

“After over five and a half very rewarding years, and with the bank in a much stronger financial position it is time for me to step down as CEO,” he said in a statement.

“It has been a privilege to lead this great bank and to have worked with some really outstanding people in process.”

RBS, which is currently more than 62 percent owned by the UK taxpayer, is hosting its annual general meeting on Thursday.

It was bailed out by the UK government to the tune of 45 billion pounds ($58.06 billion) during the 2008 financial crisis and has spent the last decade cutting costs, restructuring its balance sheet, and refocusing on core domestic UK business and consumer lending.

(Reporting By Sinead Cruise, editing by Huw Jones)

Source: OANN

Climate change protesters who have brought parts of central London to a standstill for days say they will lift their blockades.

The group Extinction Rebellion says it will end its remaining demonstrations at Marble Arch and Parliament Square on Thursday.

Last week, the protesters blocked Waterloo Bridge and major intersections including Marble Arch and Oxford Circus, snarling traffic and disrupting bus routes.

The civil disobedience movement saw tented protest sites sprouting around the capital. More than 1,000 people were arrested as police tried to clear the sites, though only about 70 have been charged.

Extinction Rebellion thanked Londoners in a statement Wednesday, saying: “We know we have disrupted your lives. We do not do this lightly. We only do this because this is an emergency.”

Source: Fox News World


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