What to watch for today
Are Japanese stocks setting the tone for a slump? The benchmark Nikkei 225 has dropped by 3.9% and counting, following its worst day since 2013 yesterday, on concerns about banking stocks. Another bad day in Japan could create more pessimism in European markets.
Janet Yellen in the spotlight. The Federal Reserve chair will take two days of questions from US lawmakers; investors hope she can help calm the volatile global economy.
Twitter’s moment of truth. The company’s quarterly results may be the most important in its history, following a period of turmoil and stock declines. Growth numbers have been anemic and users have complained about impending changes to the Twitter timeline.
While you were sleeping
Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders won New Hampshire. The billionaire real estate mogul has so far raked in the votes from the US’s first presidential primary, putting Ohio governor John Kasich second. Sanders trounced Hillary Clinton with 60% of the votes to her 40%. Around 80% of districts have reported results (paywall).
China reported its first case of the Zika virus. A 34-year-old man contracted the disease in South America and returned home via Hong Kong and Shenzhen after displaying symptoms. Authorities are playing down concerns of contagion because of the cold weather there.
Deutsche Bank is planning an emergency buyback. Germany’s biggest lender is considering buying back billions of euros worth of senior bonds, according to the Financial Times (paywall). The aim is to prop up the value of the bank’s securities and share price, which have plummeted since the beginning of the year.
The US said North Korea is preparing more nukes. US intelligence chief James Clapper said Pyongyang has expanded plutonium production and is committed to building a long-range missile that could pose a “direct threat” to the United States.
Record Disney earnings couldn’t stop its share price falling. The entertainment company reported a net income of $2.9 billion in the three months ending January, from $2.2 billion a year earlier. But concerns of its cable TV relevance, in an age of online viewing, sent shares down 3.5%.
Asahi issued a disappointing outlook. The Japanese beer giant said sales will remain largely flat in 2016, but that net income will be around 10% lower than analysts expected, at 80 billion yen ($697.4 million). The company will continue to seek growth through mergers and acquisitions.
Quartz obsession interlude
Mike Murphy on Google’s plans for self-driving delivery trucks.“Google’s patent outlines what it calls an ‘autonomous delivery platform’… The trucks would be fitted with a series of lockers that could potentially be unlocked with a PIN code sent to the person waiting for the delivery before the truck arrives at their location.” Read more here.
Please Janet Yellen
Utter those sweet, soothing words
“Rate hike hiatus”
Matters of debate
History is the most important lesson in economics. Without it, economists are unable to take a wider perspective.
Nairobi’s cultural openness is making it a global cuisine hub. The Kenyan city is on track to be the best in Africa for foodies.
Clinton and Sanders are tearing the Democratic party apart. Their in-fighting threatens to undo eight years of progress.
Actually, an Indian man wasn’t killed by a meteorite. NASA believes the evidence points to a land-based explosion instead (paywall).
A Florida man tossed an alligator through a drive-thru window. He was charged with “assault with a deadly weapon.”
Beyoncé is a boon to Red Lobster. Sales jumped 30% after her risqué reference to the seafood restaurant.
US kids are developing a surprising aptitude for math. After years of ridicule, they are excelling in international competitions.
Sighing is not just a sign of despair. The crucial reflex actually preserves lung function and keeps you alive.