International stock markets mostly gain...British backfire...German trade surplus narrows
TOKYO (AP) — The pound slumped in today’s trading as soon as signs emerged that Britain’s ruling Conservatives will have a weaker-than-expected showing in the country’s election. Global stock markets were mostly higher as investors shrugged off uncertainties. Futures pointo to open gains on Wall Street. The dollar fell against the yen and gained against the euro. Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose to just under $46 a barrel.
LONDON (AP) — Britain’s negotiations to leave the European Union — due to start June 19 — are in disarray today after results of yesterday’s election. British Prime Minister Theresa May’s gamble in calling an early election backfired spectacularly as her Conservative Party lost its majority in Parliament. UK media, citing sources they did not identify, reported early Friday that May has no intention of resigning despite calls for her to step down.
BERLIN (AP) — Official statistics show German import growth outpaced that of exports in April, narrowing the trade surplus for Europe’s largest economy. The Federal Statistical Office reports that April exports rose 0.9 percent to 106.3 billion euros ($119 billion) over March, while imports rose 1.2 percent to 86.6 billion euros, according to figures adjusted for seasonal and calendar variations. Germany’s trade surplus has been widely criticized by other countries, which accuse Berlin of not doing enough to spur domestic demand for foreign goods.
TOKYO (AP) — Japanese internet, solar and technology company SoftBank Group Corp. is buying robotics pioneer Boston Dynamics from Alphabet Inc., Google’s parent. Terms of the deal, announced today were not disclosed. SoftBank, which offers the Pepper companion robot, said the purchase underlines how robotics is a key part of its business. Boston Dynamics makes various robots, including Big Dog and Spot, complex machines that walk and trot on four legs, as well as Atlas, which walks on two legs like a human. Atlas has arms and can open doors and lift items.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Commerce Department will release its report on wholesale trade inventories for April. It’s the only major government economic report scheduled for release today.