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February 5, 2021
Financial News



Global shares higher…January jobs report


TOKYO (AP) – Global shares rose today, echoing a rally on Wall Street, as hopes grow for a gradual global economic recovery from the damage of the coronavirus pandemic. In early trading, France’s CAC 40 rose 0.6%, while Germany’s DAX inched down less than 0.1%. Britain’s FTSE 100 was up nearly 0.1%. In Asia, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 closed 1.5% higher. South Korea’s Kospi climbed 1.1% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng jumped 0.6%, while the Shanghai Composite fell 0.2%. U.S. shares are set to open higher, with S&P 500 futures up 0.2% and Dow futures up almost 0.2%.


WASHINGTON (AP) – The January U.S. jobs report to be released this morning is expected to show a slight rebound after six straight months of weaker hiring. But any job growth might have resulted mainly from a technical adjustment and would make little dent in the vast unemployment caused by the pandemic recession. Economists have forecast that employers added 100,000 jobs in January, according to data provider FactSet. That would mark a welcome reversal from a loss in December – the first since April. Still, a gain of that modest size is practically negligible when the economy is nearly 10 million jobs short of its pre-pandemic level.


NEW YORK (AP) – An Australian man has pleaded guilty to securities fraud for cheating investors of nearly $90 million by squandering money they spent on his cryptocurrency fund. Stefan He Qin entered the plea Thursday in Manhattan federal court. Prosecutors say the 24-year-old spent money from investors on indulgences and speculative personal investments. Authorities say the fraud occurred from 2017 to 2020. Prosecutors say Qin cheated dozens of investors, including many in the United States. The fraud was revealed last summer when Qin was having difficulty meeting redemption requests from investors. Qin faces up to 20 years in prison at a May 20 sentencing.


BERLIN (AP) – The United Nations says American billionaire Michael Bloomberg has been reappointed as a special envoy to engage governments and businesses in tackling the threat of global warming. Bloomberg was first tapped for the position in 2018. The U.N. says that Secretary-General Antonio Guterres wants the former New York City mayor to “mobilize stronger and more ambitious climate action” in the lead-up to a global climate summit in November. The summit was delayed by a year due to the coronavirus pandemic. The event is seen as a key moment in the international effort to curb man-made climate change.


JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) – Malaysia and Indonesia have agreed to coordinate and strengthen their campaign against what they say is international discrimination against palm oil, the countries’ main commodity. Indonesia and Malaysia are the world’s largest exporters of palm oil, which plays an important role in their economic recovery. Together they account for 85% of global palm oil production. But the countries say the European Union favors producers of other vegetable oils. After meeting Malaysia’s prime minister, Indonesia’s president told reporters that it’s better for the countries to fight palm oil discrimination together. They object to the EU policy on palm oil that categorizes it as unsustainable and lays out plans to phase out its use in biofuels by 2030.