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Good morning. Boris Johnson is running out of options, there's optimism on both the U.S.-China trade war and the situation in Hong Kong, and Mario Draghi faces pushback on his stimulus plans. Here's what's moving markets.
In dramatic voting on Wednesday, members of U.K. Parliament moved to stop Johnson forcing the country out of the European Union without a deal next month, effectively wrecking his plan to deliver Brexit by Oct. 31. When he responded with a desperate appeal for a snap general election, Parliament snubbed that, too. If Johnson can't now find a way to win its support for an election so he can get a shot at commanding a majority, he'll be trapped in office, compelled by law to request a further delay to Brexit.
Chinese Vice Premier Liu He agreed to visit Washington in early October during a telephone call on Thursday morning Beijing time with U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, while a cautious statement from the U.S. confirmed that ministerial-level discussions will take place in "the coming weeks," without specifying when. It was a relief for equities markets after the two sides' recent wrangling over meeting scheduling, with some key stock benchmarks in Asia rising 2% or more.
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said her decision to scrap extradition legislation that sparked three months of protests was only the "first step" to addressing the city's unrest, after protesters said the chief executive's concessions fell short of their demands. European luxury goods stocks and Asia-exposed banks rallied on Wednesday's announcement, and Hong Kong's government has taken out an advertisement overseas as it seeks to reassure investors the city is stable and the economy is strong.
Draghi Pushed Back
Mario Draghi's is facing the biggest pushback on policy ever seen during his eight-year reign as European Central Bank president, as a raft of colleagues voice skepticism over the need for an immediate resumption of quantitative easing. That said, ECB presidential nominee Christine Lagarde has pledged to act with "agility" against low inflation, signaling that she'll follow Draghi's example in finding ways to keep monetary policy exceptionally loose. The euro edged lower overnight after gaining Wednesday.
German factory orders and U.S. durable goods are on the date slate amid talk of a manufacturing contraction globally, while U.S. ADP employment change acts as a marker for Friday's nonfarm payrolls number. In corporate earnings, France's Safran raised its sales and profit guidance, following a beat Wednesday for defense peer Thales, and we'll also get an update from U.K. engineer Melrose Industries Plc.
What We've Been Reading
This is what's caught our eye over the past 24 hours.
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