World shares wobble … Oil production cuts may be necessary … EU pressures Britain amid signs of progress in Brexit talks
SINGAPORE (AP) – Global markets were mixed today ahead of the release of economic data by the U.S. and China which could show the effects of a trade dispute between the world’s two biggest economies. In early trading, Germany’s DAX lost 0.6 percent while Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 0.4 percent. France’s CAC 40 lost 0.2 percent. Japan’s Nikkei closed up 0.1 percent and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.1 percent. The Shanghai Composite index rebounded 1.2 percent. Wall Street is set for a flat opening with S&P futures less than 0.1 percent higher and Dow futures down almost 0.1 percent.
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) – Saudi Arabia’s energy minister says OPEC and allied oil-producing countries will likely need to cut crude supplies, perhaps as much as 1 million barrels of oil a day, to rebalance the market after proposed U.S. sanctions on Iran failed to cut Tehran’s output. The comments from the minister show the balancing act the U.S. allies face in dealing with President Donald Trump’s actions related to the oil industry. Trump in recent weeks demanded the oil cartel increase production to drive down U.S. gasoline prices.
HANOI, Vietnam (AP) – Vietnam’s National Assembly has ratified a Pacific Rim trade deal abandoned by U.S. President Donald Trump, but still being pushed forward by 11 other members. The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership or CPTPP will take effect at the year’s end after Australia became the sixth nation to ratify it last month. Trump pulled out of the pact just days after taking office last year, saying multilateral trade agreements cost American jobs and that he would prefer bilateral trade agreements.
NEW YORK (AP) – Two communities have reportedly emerged as the favorites to become home to a pair of big, new East Coast bases for Amazon. Crystal City, Virginia, is a thicket of 1980s-era office towers seeking new economic energy after thousands of federal jobs moved elsewhere. Long Island City is New York City’s fastest-developing neighborhood, an old manufacturing area cultivating a new image as a hub for technology and arts.
BRUSSELS (AP) – Britain’s EU partners are ratcheting up pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May amid signs of progress in Brexit negotiations. Britain leaves the EU on March 29 but a deal must be sealed in coming weeks to leave enough time for parliaments to sign off. “The ball is in the British court,” says France’s EU affairs minister, Nathalie Loiseau. Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders agrees and says the EU is “waiting for new news from London.” No breakthrough came in the latest talks today.