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Oil hits $61; Twitter’s record revenue; Toyota raises targets

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4.30pm: London lower

The FTSE 100 closed off its low for the day at 6,524.36, down 7.20 (0.11%).

9.30am: Brexit and support weighs on sentiment

Scottish business confidence has weakened in how the Brexit transition has been handled and in government support for companies suffering through the pandemic lockdown, according to a Fraser of Allander survey.

Full story here

8.15am: New Scotsman editor

JPI Media today announces the appointment of Neil McIntosh as Editor of The Scotsman.

Full story here

8am: London edges higher

The FTSE 100 was trading at 6,558.09, up 26.53 points (0.41%).

7am: Heineken cuts

Heineken drinks

Heineken, whose UK headquarters is in Edinburgh, is to axe 8,000 jobs as part of a €2 billion three-year restructuring plan.

Full story here

Twitter record

Twitter has posted record revenues for the last quarter of 2020, capping off what its chief executive said was “an extraordinary year” for the platform.

The social messaging platform said revenue grew 28% to $1.29bn (£930m) compared to the last quarter of 2019.

The social network last month banned former US President Donald Trump from the platform amid concern among analysts that it could have impacted on the latest figures.

But Twitter founder Jack Dorsey said: “We’re a platform that is obviously much larger than any one topic or any one account.”

6am: Toyota raises targets

Toyota Auris

Toyota Motor Corp raised its full-year earnings forecast by a bigger-than-expected 54% to a record $19 billion, raising its vehicle sales target as global demand led by China rebounds from a coronavirus pandemic-induced slump.

Its decision to raise output contrasts with decisions by other car manufacturers, such as Nissan and Honda, which have cut production because of semiconductor shortages.

Shares in Toyota, the world’s biggest car maker by vehicle sales, rose 2.3% after the new forecasts were released – Reuters.

Markets – oil, equities at fresh highs

Maersk oil field

Brent oil held prices held firm at $61.03 per barrel, near 13-month highs, as a seven-day winning streak is fuelled by investors expecting fuel demand to rise while producers restrain supply.

Asian stocks were buoyed by upbeat earnings, the US fiscal stimulus and progress in vaccinations.

The Shanghai Composite hit a five-year high on the last trading day before the week-long Lunar New Year holidays. Japan’s Nikkei squeezed out a gain of 0.1% .

On Wall Street, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite eked out a record high on a gain of 0.14%.

The S&P 500 lost 0.11% but is up 5.3% for the month, underpinned by the prospects of the large US relief package.

Bitcoin, which soared 19.5% on Monday on the back of Tesla’s purchase, was little changed at $46,292, not far off its record high of $48,216 set on Tuesday.



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