Freeze it plunging millions of Texans into darkness rippling through energy markets in unpredictable ways, yielding financial gains for Australian banks and severe suffering for other companies caught in the disruption.
Extreme weather froze wind turbines and oil and gas wells, shut down oil refineries and pushed power plants out of operation, sending shocks through energy markets. Wholesale electricity prices skyrocketed, as did spot prices for natural gas in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Arkansas.
The turbulence brings profit to commodity traders at Macquarie Group Ltd. Australia, whose ability to deliver gas and electricity across the country allows it to take advantage of soaring demand and prices in states like Texas.
The bank raised its guidance on Monday for revenue this year through March to reflect windfall winds. It said that the net profit after tax would be 5% to 10% higher than for fiscal year 2020. That equates to an increase of up to 273.1 million Australian dollars or the equivalent of approximately $ 215 million. In an earlier guide, issued Feb.9, Macquarie said it expects profits to drop slightly in 2020.
“Extreme winter weather conditions in North America have significantly increased short-term client demand for Macquarie’s ability to maintain critical physical supplies across the commodity complex, and in particular in relation to gas and electricity,” the bank said.
Credit Suisse Group AG said a strong start to the first quarter boosted its growth ambitions this year large legal fees and impairment pushing it to a fourth quarter loss.
The Swiss bank reported a loss of 353 million Swiss francs Thursday, the equivalent of $ 393 million, for the fourth quarter. Analysts estimated the loss to be around 566 million Swiss francs.
Even in a difficult year, Credit Suisse fared better than many European rivals as its loans in Switzerland and the global wealthy were caught in the pandemic. Together with Wall Street competitors, his investment bank booked additional fees from clients trading in the volatile market last year and from companies that raised capital or needed deal advice.
On Thursday, it said the investment banking arm experienced a more than fivefold jump in pretax profit to $ 318 million in the fourth quarter, with the largest revenue contribution coming from helping companies increase their equity and bond financing.
Fourth quarter profit before tax also rose in Credit Suisse Asia-Pacific division, by 18% to 237 million Swiss francs, while revenue and profit before tax fell at Swiss banks and international wealth management units.
Here’s what you need to know to navigate the market today.
•Shares will open Tuesday morning, as US equity futures rose late Monday. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures have gained 183 points, or 0.6%, while the S&P 500 futures are up 0.5%. The Nasdaq Composite Futures was also up 0.5%. Investors have a week full of income come, as CVS Health,
Newmont, Roku, and Walmart report on Thursday, and Deere closes the week on Friday.
•US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi has announced that a September 11-style independent commission will investigate the January 6 attacks on the US Capitol. The Commission will examine all aspects of what happened during the deadly attack, “including facts and causes relating to the preparedness and response of the United States Capitol Police and other Federal, State and local law enforcement”, Pelosi said Monday. Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy, one of seven Republicans voted to convict the former President Donald Trump In one count of incitement, calling for a complete investigation, including “what is known, who knows and when they know, all of that, because it builds the foundation so that this never happens again.”Retired Lt. Gen. Russell Honoré has led a review of Capitol security protocols. The Senate released Trump on Saturday, but lawmakers have signaled that more action will be taken to investigate the incident.
•The World Health Organization has agreed AstraZeneca Covid-19 Vaccine for emergency use.The designation means that a vaccine is deemed safe and effective, and will allow poorer countries who cannot afford the more expensive vaccines that are permitted for use in the US to initiate mass vaccination once doses become available. Nearly 130 countries with a total population of 2.5 billion people have yet to start vaccinating their citizens. AstraZeneca‘s
• Dr. Anthony Fauci, President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser, warned Americans to become complacent about the pandemic as more dangerous variants begin to emerge. “You don’t want people to be complacent,” she says, adding, “we may still have stumbling blocks with the appearance of a variant that will dominate the image.” Fauci, 80, also said he considered the risk of infection himself during the Trump administration. “I’m not fixated on that, but it’s on my mind … especially when I go to the White House every day when the White House is kind of a very scattered location.”
•Jaguar Land Rover announced on Monday it will launch six electric Land Rover models over the next five years and its luxury Jaguar brand will be fully electric by 2025. JLR, belonging to India Tata Motors,
said zero-emission e-models from its entire lineup will be available by 2030. JLR will spend about $ 3.5 billion per year on electrification technology and will keep all three factories open in the UK. Competitors, including Bentley Motors and General Motors, has also been announced plans for a zero-emission vehicle in recent months.
Other Asian markets, including Hong Kong, mainland China, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore, were closed for holidays. The Chinese market will reopen next Thursday, while the Hong Kong market will reopen Tuesday.
In the energy market, the US crude oil benchmark CLH21, -0.70%
it slid to $ 57.79 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude BRNJ21, -0.62%,
the global benchmark, fell to $ 60.72 a barrel in London.
CANBERRA, Australia – The Australian Prime Minister said on Monday that Microsoft believes it can fill the void if Google carries out its threat to remove search engines from Australia.
A Google executive said at a Senate hearing last month that it will likely make its search engine unavailable in Australia if the government goes ahead with plans to get the tech giant to pay for news content.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he had spoken with Microsoft MSFT
chief executive Satya Nadella about the Bing search engine filling the space.
“I can tell you, Microsoft is pretty sure” that the Australian people could not get any worse, Morrison told the National Press Club of Australia.
“This is a big technology company and what’s important for Australia, in my opinion, is that we set the right rules for our people,” said Morrison.
“Having a news environment in this country that is sustainable and commercially supported, then this is important for how democracy functions,” he added.
Although Bing is the second most popular search engine in Australia, it has only a 3.7% market share, reports The Australian newspaper. Alphabet GOOGL
Nadella started Zoom’s conversation with Morrison last week, the newspaper reported.
A Microsoft spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The mandatory code of conduct proposed by the government aims to create Google and Facebook FB
pays Australian media companies fairly for using news content that is sucked up by the technology giants from news sites.
Google has faced pressure from authorities elsewhere to pay for news. Last month, they signed a deal with a group of French publishers that paved the way for companies to make digital copyright payments. Under the agreement, Google will negotiate individual licensing deals with newspapers, with payments based on factors such as the amount of internet site traffic published daily and monthly.
But Google rejected the Australian plan because it would have little control over how much it pays. Under the Australian system, if the online platforms and news businesses cannot agree on a price for news, the arbitration panel will make a binding decision on payment.
Morrison said he wanted to see “more alignment between the world economies” on the issue of antitrust and competition policy.