China GDP; U.S. shutdown threat; IBM earnings

1. China flexes: The world's second-largest economy grew 6.9% last year, beating analyst expectation...

Posted: Jan 18, 2018 11:57 AM
Updated: Jan 18, 2018 11:57 AM

1. China flexes: The world's second-largest economy grew 6.9% last year, beating analyst expectations.

China's performance was helped by government stimulus and an improving environment for global trade.

It's the first time since 2010 that China's official growth rate has bested the prior year. The economy grew 6.7% in 2016.

Chinese stocks gained Thursday, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng hitting a record high. The Shanghai Composite rose to its highest level in over two years.

2. U.S. government shutdown risk: House Republican leaders are moving toward a vote Thursday to avoid a government shutdown.

But it's unclear if GOP leaders have enough support to keep the government open.

If Congress doesn't send a bill to the president approving more money by midnight on Friday, most federal agencies will be forced to stop operations.

A shutdown could derail a major market rally.

U.S. stock futures were soft ahead of the open. The Dow Jones industrial average, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all hit record highs on Wednesday.

The Dow soared by 323 points yesterday to close above 26,000 for the first time.

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3. Earnings: Morgan Stanley will release earnings before the open, with American Express and IBM following after markets close.

Investors will be watching earning to see how companies assess new U.S. tax rules.

IBM, which has made a lot of money abroad, could report a big one-time hit because of a new tax on overseas earnings.

American companies with global operations are expected to pay hundreds of billions of dollars on the overseas profits they've amassed in recent decades.

But most companies say the tax changes are a good thing in the long run.

Apple said Wednesday it would make a $38 billion tax payment in relation to new tax rules.

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4. Coming this week:

Thursday -- Morgan Stanley, IBM earnings
Friday --
January consumer sentiment report released by the University of Michigan

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

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Lee1536
Smith15211
Kemper14411
Clarke14418
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Clay1124
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Lawrence1021
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Stone300
Franklin292
Tallahatchie271
George251
Alcorn171
Benton150
Greene131
Sharkey70
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 18018

Reported Deaths: 644
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2239116
Jefferson1837102
Montgomery171040
Tuscaloosa78315
Marshall6939
Franklin5567
Lee54833
Shelby51720
Tallapoosa42765
Butler41118
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Madison3394
Baldwin2909
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Wilcox1487
Clarke1442
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