Research Market strategy
By Swissquote Analysts
Published on 17.03.2021
Morning news

Nokia Is Cutting Up to 10,000 Jobs to Boost 5G Investment.

Topic of the day

Nokia has unveiled plans to ax up to 10,000 jobs as part of a EUR600 million cost-cutting program aimed at boosting investment in 5G. The telecom-equipment maker said resetting its cost base would allow it to invest in research and development and long-term growth areas, including 5G, cloud technologies and digital infrastructure. The stock, which has been a favorite among retail investors and Reddit users in recent months, edged 0.5% higher in premarket trading, while the Finnish-listed shares rose 0.6% on Tuesday. The company said it expects to lower its cost base by around EUR600 million by the end of 2023. As part of the restructuring, Nokia said its global workforce would be reduced from 90,000 to between 80,000 and 85,000 employees over the next two years. The company maintained its 2021 outlook.

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Swiss stocks

The SMI closed up 0.7 percent on 10,944 points Tuesday as traders noted Friday’s triple witching day, when stock options, stock index futures, and stock index option contracts all expire on the same day. Credit Suisse (CS) slid 0.3 percent after reporting a strong start to 2021 in a trading update, with year-to-date investment bank revenue over 50 percent higher than the same year-earlier period, but warning it may incur costs related to the Greensill Capital collapse. Greensill’s administrator has repaid CS with USD 50 million of the Greensill’s USD 140 million bridging loan. UBS fared better, rising 0.9 percent. Investment manager Partners Group gained 2.8 percent on releasing solid 2020 financials above analyst expectations and increasing its dividend. Second-tier Tecan surged 4 percent on reporting strong turnover and profit growth in 2020. Sensirion rose 5.2 percent on 2020 figures that benefited from new product ranges and coronavirus-related demand for sensors for ventilators.

International markets

Europe

European stocks mostly rise as continued optimism about the economic outlook following the US stimulus package offsets concerns about AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine. The Stoxx Europe 600 gains 0.9%, the FTSE 100 is up 0.8%, the CAC-40 increases 0.3% and the DAX advances 0.7%. The price of a barrel of Brent crude falls 0.9% to $68.26. AstraZeneca shares rise 3.6% after the European Medicines Agency said there was no indication the drug company's Covid shot causes blood clots. The European Commission said it's agreed to accelerate the delivery of 10 million doses from BioNTech (BNTX) and Pfizer (PFE), bringing the total doses from the drugmakers to over 200 million for the second quarter. The European Commission said the move would "possibly fill gaps in deliveries," a reference to the struggles of AstraZeneca (AZN.LN) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) to meet targets. The 10 million dose acceleration would be drawn forward from the 100 million option foreseen for the third and fourth quarter of 2021. Iliad's results were mixed with 4Q revenue in line with expectations and 2H Ebitda 4% ahead, but the key targets that the French telecommunications company provided for 2021 are reassuring, JPMorgan Cazenove says. "2021 outlook commentary is somewhat limited by the absence of any group guidance or clarity on French B2B or Italian capex needs," the brokerage notes. Especially reassuring among the key targets is the expected positive contribution from earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization after leases in the second half of 2021, it says. Iliad trades 4.7% higher at closing.

United States

Most major U.S. stock indexes dropped, as an early rally in tech shares lost steam ahead of the closing bell. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite was up 0.1% as of the 4 p.m. close of trading in New York, after having been up as much as 1.2% earlier in the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.4%, while the broad-based S&P 500 retreated 0.2%, a day after both indexes closed at records. The tech-heavy Nasdaq gave up early gains as government bond yields jumped. Seven of the S&P 500's 11 sectors were in negative territory, with energy stocks performing the worst, weighed down by a decline in oil prices. Moderna Inc. has begun studying its Covid-19 vaccine in children aged six months to 11 years in the U.S. and Canada, the latest effort to widen the mass-vaccination campaign beyond adults. The Cambridge, Mass., company said Tuesday that the first children have received doses in the study, which Moderna is conducting in collaboration with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a division of the Department of Health and Human Services. “This pediatric study will help us assess the potential safety and immunogenicity of our COVID-19 vaccine candidate in this important younger age population,” Moderna Chief Executive Stéphane Bancel said. News Corp said Monday it has reached a deal to let Facebook Inc. feature news in Australia from some of the media company's key properties, including The Australian national newspaper. The three-year deal follows an agreement reached in October 2019 involving News Corp publications in the U.S., including The Wall Street Journal and other Dow Jones media properties. "The agreement with Facebook is a landmark in transforming the terms of trade for journalism, and will have a material and meaningful impact on our Australian news businesses," News Corp Chief Executive Robert Thomson said in a statement.

Asia

Asian stocks weakened on Wednesday after a mixed finish on Wall Street, with the Dow and S&P 500 pulling back from record levels.

Bonds

US-Treasury yields continued to hover around the 1.619% level in Asia. Yields and the dollar should rise if the Fed signals interest rates could rise sooner than previously expected in Wednesday's policy decision, said Saxo Bank.

Analysis

Dt. Bank lowers the Grand City Properties target to 23 (24) EUR – Buy
BoA rises the VW Vz. Target to 218 (192) EUR – Neutral
H&A rises the Bet-at-home target to 57 (47) EUR – Buy

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