International Market Overview 18 May 2022

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International Market Update

  • European stock markets closed higher Tuesday as global markets tried to build on the positive momentum at the start of the new trading week. The pan-European Stoxx 600 was up 1.2% by the close with commodity stocks leading the gains with a 3.5% gain, while almost all sectors and major stock markets closed in positive territory. Unemployment in the U.K. fell to its lowest level since 1974 in the first quarter, official figures showed Tuesday, but rising inflation put downward pressure on wages. Eurozone GDP grew 0.3% in the first quarter, Eurostat reported Tuesday.
  • U.S. stocks rose Tuesday as the market recovered from last year’s sharp declines. Shares of Citigroup and Paramount Global rose Tuesday after Berkshire Hathaway disclosed its holdings in the two companies. Citigroup jumped 7.6% after Warren Buffett’s conglomerate announced it had acquired a nearly $3 billion stake in the troubled bank in the first quarter. Travel industry stocks gained after United Airlines raised its second-quarter revenue forecast on improved consumer demand. On the economic front, retail sales figures came in about as expected. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, consumer retail spending rose 0.9% in April.
    Bureau. Retail sales excluding motor vehicles rose 0.6% in April.
  • Stocks in the Asia-Pacific region were mixed this morning after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell overnight
    Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell saying he is committed to raising interest rates until inflation declines. Japan’s economy contracted 1% on an annualized basis in January-March from the previous quarter, government data showed today.


In International News


Netflix is laying off about 150 employees, mostly in the U.S.

Netflix announced Tuesday that it has laid off about 150 employees, mostly in the U.S., as the streaming service faces slowing growth. The layoffs represent about 2% of the company’s workforce in the United States and Canada. The job cuts come at a time when Netflix is reporting its first subscriber loss in more than a decade and is forecasting even bigger losses in the coming quarter.
The company said the war in Ukraine and fierce competition contributed to the customer loss. As a result of the declining growth, Netflix announced it would introduce a cheaper, ad-supported offering and take a closer look at its spending.


Home Depot raises full-year outlook as customers shift to premium products

Home Depot raised its full-year outlook Tuesday, reporting strong quarterly results driven by the company’s best-ever first-quarter sales – an early signal that the retailer has weathered inflation well so far. For the fiscal year, the retailer now expects sales to rise about 3% and earnings per share to grow in the mid-single digits. Previously, the company had forecast “modestly positive” sales growth and low-single-digit earnings per share growth. Wall Street had expected revenue growth of 1.8% and earnings per share growth of 3.6%
for fiscal 2022. Earnings per share were expected at $4.09 versus $3.68, while revenue was $38.91 billion versus $36.72 billion.