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North American Morning Briefing: Stock Futures -2-

07/02/2021 | 06:07am EDT

U.S. Wins International Backing for Global Minimum Tax

The U.S. has won international backing for a global minimum rate of tax as part of a wider overhaul of the rules for taxing international companies, a major step toward securing a final agreement on a key element of the Biden administration's domestic plans for revenue raising and spending.

Officials from 130 countries that met virtually agreed Thursday to the broad outlines of what would be the most sweeping change in international taxation in a century. Among them were all of the Group of 20 major economies, including China and India, which previously had reservations about the proposed overhaul.


Fed's Harker Supports Start of Bond Buying Pullback Later This Year

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia President Patrick Harker said Thursday that while an interest rate rise lies some ways in the distance, he is ready for the U.S. central bank to begin slowing the pace of its asset buying stimulus this year.

"I am in the camp of starting the tapering process," Mr. Harker said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal, referring to slowing the pace of the Fed's $120 billion a month in bond purchases, which aim to augment the central bank's near zero short-term interest rate target range.


ECB Signals Green Light on Bank Dividends

The European Central Bank said it expects to lift restrictions on dividend payments and share buybacks for the continent's lenders later this year, signaling it believes banks are resilient enough, despite a challenging environment under the pandemic.

With Thursday's decision, the ECB is following the footsteps of the Federal Reserve, which recently ended temporary limits on payouts. Since then big banks such as Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Bank of America Corp. have all increased their dividends.


CBO Sees Stronger Growth in 2021, After Covid-19 Relief Package

WASHINGTON-The Congressional Budget Office on Thursday lifted its forecasts for economic growth, inflation and federal budget deficits this year, following the $1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief package enacted in March.

Beyond 2021, however, the agency sees smaller deficits as a recovering economy boosts federal revenues. Forecasts for the federal debt are also slightly lower than in the February report. The federal debt will grow to 103% of the economy at the end of 2021 before dipping slightly between 2023 and 2025, CBO said.


FTC Vote to Broaden Agency's Mandate Seen as Targeting Tech Industry

WASHINGTON-The Federal Trade Commission voted Thursday to broaden its discretion to challenge what it finds to be unfair methods of competition, potentially opening the door to a wider array of antitrust enforcement cases against big technology companies.

The commission voted 3-2 along party lines to approve the move, with Democrats in the majority. The vote repeals a 2015 agency policy that had effectively blocked the FTC from using its authority to challenge unfair practices unless the behavior was already a violation of other antitrust laws, proponents said. Those laws focus on whether practices cause harm to consumers.


Senator Seeks More Details From Regional Fed Banks

A squabble between a Republican senator and some regional Federal Reserve banks over their embrace of climate and social justice issues highlights the limits of congressional oversight over the quasi-private institutions.

On Wednesday, Sen. Patrick Toomey (R., Pa.) accused the Atlanta, Boston, Minneapolis and San Francisco Fed banks of ignoring his requests for information about their work on racial economic justice and climate issues.


Israel's Coalition Government Agrees to Temporarily Evacuate Divisive West Bank Settlement

EVYATAR OUTPOST, West Bank-Israel's new government reached a deal with leaders of an unauthorized settlement in the occupied West Bank that would see them evacuate the site, a temporary solution for an issue that has sharply divided the country's ruling coalition.

Around 50 Jewish families built trailer-sized homes of concrete blocks and metal-sheet roofs on the hilltop outpost in Evyatar starting in May, sparking daily protests by local Palestinians who claim the land.


California Recall Election for Gov. Gavin Newsom Set for September

California Gov. Gavin Newsom will face a recall election Sept. 14, when voters will determine whether or not the first-term Democrat should be removed and, if so, who should replace him.

The date was set by Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis. Under the state's constitution she can call the special election between 60 and 80 days from the day the secretary of state certifies enough signatures to proceed, which happened Thursday afternoon.


Australia Curbs Inbound Arrivals on Concerns Over Covid-19 Delta Variant

Australia will temporarily halve international arrivals from commercial flights because of concerns over the highly transmissible Delta variant of Covid-19, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday.

Large parts of Australia, including its most populous city Sydney, are in lockdown following an outbreak of the variant that was first detected in India last year and has been quickly spreading in many countries, including the U.S.


Boy Scouts Strike Bankruptcy Deal With Major Abuse-Victims Groups

The Boy Scouts of America reached a settlement with major groups of sex-abuse victims seeking compensation through the youth group's bankruptcy proceedings, a milestone in its efforts to turn the page on its past failures to protect children.

The Boy Scouts are offering up to $850 million in cash and other assets to survivors, and signing over insurance rights to a trust that would administer claims and distribute payments, according to an agreement filed in bankruptcy court on Thursday.


Justice Department Orders Halt to Federal Executions

WASHINGTON-Attorney General Merrick Garland on Thursday ordered a halt to federal executions while the Justice Department reviews its policies on the death penalty, citing concerns about what he described as arbitrariness in its application, its disparate impact on Black people and minorities and a "troubling number of exonerations."

The stance marks a reversal from the Trump administration, which reactivated the federal death chamber after a 17-year hiatus, putting 13 inmates to death in its final months. The review will examine several policies and protocols put in place by Trump administration officials that led to the highest rate of federal executions in over a century.


House Speaker Pelosi Names Liz Cheney to Jan. 6 Capitol Riot Committee

WASHINGTON-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) selected GOP Rep. Liz Cheney as one of her picks for the select committee looking into the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, putting a leading Republican critic of former President Donald Trump on the panel.

Mrs. Pelosi said Rep. Bennie Thompson (D., Miss.) will head the committee. He will be joined by Ms. Cheney as well as Reps. Zoe Lofgren (D., Calif.), Adam Schiff (D., Calif.), Pete Aguilar (D., Calif.), Stephanie Murphy (D., Fla.), Jamie Raskin (D., Md.) and Elaine Luria (D., Va.).


Write to sarka.halas@wsj.com



Nothing major scheduled

Economic Indicators (ET):

Nothing major scheduled

Stocks to Watch:

Birks Group Re-Opens Ontario Stores, Shares Rise

Shares of jewelry retailer Birks Group Inc. are trading higher on the NYSE American Thursday, following news that it has re-opened all nine of its mall stores in Ontario.

The company said Wednesday that all 29 of its retail stores in Canada are now open for in-person shopping.

At 2:42 p.m. ET, the company's shares were trading 18.72% higher at $2.79. Volume at the time topped 25.8 million shares, above the stock's 65-day average volume of 804,125.

Cameco Evacuating Cigar Lake Mine Due to Wildfire in Vicinity

Cameco Corp. has suspended production at its Cigar Lake uranium mine in northern Saskatchewan and is transporting about 230 non-essential workers from the site as a precaution due to a nearby wildfire.

The company said Thursday that about 80 personnel would remain at the mine to maintain the facility, and it is working with provincial wildfire-management personnel who are on-site assessing the situation.

The fire burning near the operation is complicated by extremely warm, dry weather with a heat dome that has settled over western Canada in recent days, along with variable wind and smoke conditions, Cameco said.

Other News:

No items published

Market Talk:

No items published

Expected Major Events for Friday

12:30/CAN: May Building permits

12:30/CAN: May International merchandise trade

12:30/US: May U.S. International Trade in Goods & Services

12:30/US: Jun U.S. Employment Report

13:30/CAN: Jun Canada Manufacturing PMI

14:00/US: May Manufacturers' Shipments, Inventories & Orders (M3)

All times in GMT. Powered by Kantar Media and Dow Jones.

Expected Earnings for Friday

Abraxas Petroleum (AXAS) is expected to report for 4Q.

Camber Energy Inc (CEI) is expected to report for 4Q.

Camber Energy Inc (CEI) is expected to report for 1Q.

Ford Motor Company (F) is expected to report for 2Q.

Hanwei Energy (HE.T,HNWEF) is expected to report for 4Q.

Medley Management Inc (MDLX,MDLY) is expected to report for 1Q.

Second Sight Medical Products Inc (EYES) is expected to report for 1Q.

Sequential Brands Group Inc (SQBG) is expected to report for 1Q.

Powered by Kantar Media and Dow Jones.


Agco Corp Raised to Outperform From Neutral by Credit Suisse

American Axle Raised to Overweight From Sector Weight by Keybanc

Aspen Aerogels Raised to Buy From Neutral by HC Wainwright & Co.

Bioventus Cut to Neutral From Buy by Goldman Sachs

bluebird bio Cut to Hold From Buy by Berenberg

Cabot Corp Raised to Buy From Hold by Loop Capital

(MORE TO FOLLOW) Dow Jones Newswires

07-02-21 0606ET

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
ABRAXAS PETROLEUM CORPORATION 19.38% 1.91 Delayed Quote.-16.59%
AGCO CORPORATION 2.96% 127.42 Delayed Quote.20.05%
ASPEN AEROGELS, INC. 1.75% 46.59 Delayed Quote.179.15%
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR / EURO (AUD/EUR) 0.06% 0.62276 Delayed Quote.-1.62%
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR / US DOLLAR (AUD/USD) -0.01% 0.72793 Delayed Quote.-5.58%
BANK OF AMERICA CORPORATION 2.66% 43.26 Delayed Quote.42.73%
BIOVENTUS INC. 4.30% 15.29 Delayed Quote.0.00%
BLUEBIRD BIO, INC. 4.83% 19.33 Delayed Quote.-55.33%
BRITISH POUND / EURO (GBP/EUR) 0.04% 1.17163 Delayed Quote.4.20%
BRITISH POUND / US DOLLAR (GBP/USD) -0.05% 1.36951 Delayed Quote.-0.05%
CABOT CORPORATION 2.60% 51.35 Delayed Quote.11.52%
CAMECO CORPORATION 4.09% 26.46 Delayed Quote.49.09%
CANADIAN DOLLAR / EURO (CAD/EUR) 0.11% 0.677773 Delayed Quote.4.78%
CANADIAN DOLLAR / US DOLLAR (CAD/USD) 0.02% 0.79205 Delayed Quote.0.62%
DJ INDUSTRIAL 0.21% 34869.37 Delayed Quote.13.69%
EURO / US DOLLAR (EUR/USD) -0.08% 1.16876 Delayed Quote.-4.02%
FORD MOTOR COMPANY 2.76% 14.16 Delayed Quote.61.09%
HILLTOP HOLDINGS INC. 2.44% 33.53 Delayed Quote.18.97%
INDIAN RUPEE / EURO (INR/EUR) 0.09% 0.011581 Delayed Quote.3.13%
INDIAN RUPEE / US DOLLAR (INR/USD) -0.07% 0.013539 Delayed Quote.-1.05%
JPMORGAN CHASE & CO. 2.42% 166.98 Delayed Quote.28.31%
MEDLEY MANAGEMENT INC. -15.25% 0.25 Delayed Quote.-96.87%
MEDLEY, INC. -0.12% 4230 End-of-day quote.-6.83%
MORGAN STANLEY 2.13% 105.1 Delayed Quote.53.36%
NEW ZEALAND DOLLAR / US DOLLAR (NZD/USD) 0.09% 0.70089 Delayed Quote.-2.30%
S&P 500 -0.28% 4443.11 Delayed Quote.18.62%
SECOND SIGHT MEDICAL PRODUCTS, INC. 1.48% 3.42 Delayed Quote.82.89%
SEQUENTIAL BRANDS GROUP, INC. -0.56% 3.58 End-of-day quote.0.00%
US DOLLAR / EURO (USD/EUR) 0.07% 0.855608 Delayed Quote.4.19%
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