China economic data, coronavirus, currencies in focus

Stocks in Asia Pacific were set to kick off the trading week in mixed territory as a Chinese data release over the weekend showed the country’s factory activity expanding in May.

Futures pointed to a mixed open for Japanese stocks. The Nikkei futures contract in Chicago was at 21,825 while its counterpart in Osaka was at 22,000. That compared against the Nikkei 225’s last close at 21,877.89.

Meanwhile, shares in Australia were set to dip at the open, with the SPI futures contract at 5,725, as compared to the S&P/ASX 200’s last close at 5,755.70.

Investor focus on Monday will likely be on Chinese economic data for a better gauge of the state of the country’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

Data released over the weekend by China’s National Bureau of Statistics showed factory activity in the country expanding in May, with the official manufacturing Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI)

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UK business leaders call for green coronavirus recovery plan

Almost 200 companies have called on Boris Johnson to launch a green economic recovery plan, insisting that future corporate bailouts should take account of the UK’s net zero climate target.

Business leaders — including the head of Lloyds Banking Group, the chief executive of Heathrow Airport and the UK country boss of BP — have sent a letter to the prime minister outlining their demands stemming from the coronavirus crisis.

“We must use the recovery to accelerate the transition to net zero,” the corporate leaders told Mr Johnson in the letter seen by the Financial Times, which was signed by companies and business associations.

“Efforts to rescue and repair the economy in response to the current crisis can and should be aligned with the UK’s legislated target of net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest.”

The letter was organised by the Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group, which wants

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Russia has no objection to earlier OPEC+ meeting: sources

FILE PHOTO: A 3D printed oil pump jack is seen in front of the OPEC logo in this illustration picture, April 14, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

MOSCOW/LONDON (Reuters) – Russia has no objection to the next meeting of OPEC and its allies, known as OPEC+, being brought forward to June 4 from the following week, three OPEC+ sources familiar with the meeting’s preparations told Reuters on Sunday.

Algeria, which currently holds the presidency of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), has proposed the meeting planned for June 9-10 be brought forward to facilitate oil sales for countries such as Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Kuwait.

The lack of Russian opposition to an earlier date could indicate that it is moving closer to an agreement with OPEC’s de facto leader, Saudi Arabia, on how to extend oil production cuts for the rest of the year.

OPEC+ decided in April to

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German ministry proposes 5 billion euro car bonus scheme – sources

The skyline with its financial district is photographed during sunset in Frankfurt, Germany, April 22, 2020, as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Germany’s Ministry of Economics has proposed a 5 billion euro (4.5 billion pounds) buyer bonus scheme as part of an impending stimulus package in an effort to boost car sales, two people close to the matter said on Sunday.

Global car sales have slumped as production lines and showrooms shut in response to the coronavirus pandemic and a business sentiment survey by the Ifo institute this month showed the German auto sector at its lowest ebb since 1991.

The heads of the co-governing Social Democrats (SPD) and Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) are expected to present the overall stimulus package on Tuesday, which could total up to 80 billion euros, according to one media report.

The economy ministry’s proposal is

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