Stocks lower…Survey: Pace of growth to slow…Brexit talks limp on
BEIJING (AP) – Global stock markets were mostly lower Monday as investors looked ahead to U.S.-Chinese trade talks and the Federal Reserve’s update on its U.S. interest rate outlook. Futures were nearly unchanged on Wall Street. Benchmarks in London, Frankfurt and Shanghai declined while Hong Kong advanced. Japanese markets were closed for a holiday and India was closed for elections. Benchmark U.S. crude oil fell below $63 per barrel. The dollar gained against the yen and fell against the euro.
UNDATED (AP) – A survey of corporate economists predicts the economy will expand over the next year but more slowly. Just 53% of the economists polled for the National Association for Business Economics’ April survey, released Monday, expect the economy to grow by more than 2% this year, down from 67% who felt that way in January. The results from the survey released Monday suggest a sharp slowdown with employers facing pressure to raise wages, spend more on worker training and automate tasks because of the low unemployment rate.
LONDON (AP) – Britain’s government and opposition are holding more talks about striking a compromise Brexit deal, although neither side sounds optimistic about progress. Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservatives and the left-wing Labour Party plan to resume negotiations Monday. But they remain divided over how close a relationship to seek with the European Union after Britain leaves. The EU has agreed to delay Brexit until Oct. 31.
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) – Political uncertainty and volatile oil prices are weighing heavily on economic growth in the Middle East this year, according to a new report released Monday by the International Monetary Fund. The report, which looks at the economies of 23 countries spanning North Africa, the Levant, the Persian Gulf, but also Djibouti, Somalia, Afghanistan and Pakistan, predicts that overall growth across these nations is expected to slowdown from close to 2% last year to about 1.5% in 2019.
NEW YORK (AP) – Marvel has conquered the universe. “Avengers: Endgame” shattered the record for biggest opening weekend with an estimated $350 million in ticket sales domestically and $1.2 billion globally, reaching a new pinnacle in the blockbuster era that the comic-book studio has come to dominate. To accommodate demand, the Walt Disney Co. released “Endgame” in more theaters – 4,662 in the U.S. and Canada – than any opening before.