Finance News Update 29 July, what you need to know

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(Australian Associated Press)

WORLD FINANCE UPDATE:

The Australian dollar has risen, shrugging off turbulence in China’s stock markets.

At 0630 AEST on Wednesday, the currency was trading at 73.25 US cents, up from 73.15 cents on Tuesday.

And the Australian share market looks set to open higher after Wall Street snapped a five-day losing streak and European stocks were boosted by bargain-hunting after recent China-inspired losses.

At 0645 AEST on Wednesday, the September share price index futures contract was up 31 points at 5,573.

ELSEWHERE:

ATHENS – The Athens stock exchange, which has been closed for nearly a month due to Greece’s debt crisis, is set to reopen.

WASHINGTON – US consumer confidence fell in July to its lowest level in 10 months on dimmer expectations for jobs in the coming six months.

LONDON – Britain’s economy picked up speed in the second quarter of 2015, when it expanded by 0.7 per cent compared with the previous three-month period.

SINGAPORE – Prime Minister David Cameron says Britain will seek more transparency from foreign property investors in a bid to stop money laundering.

SANTIAGO – Chilean mining company Codelco, the world’s largest copper producer, says work has halted at one its main mines because of a week-old strike by contract workers.

NEW YORK – Pfizer has reported second-quarter net income of $US2.63 billion ($A3.62 billion).

NEW YORK – Merck & Co’s second-quarter profit plunged by two-thirds, hammered by the sale of its consumer business, unfavourable currency exchange rates, lower sales of some key drugs and hefty one-time charges.

PARIS – The world’s top luxury group LVMH on Tuesday reported its net profit rose by 5.0 per cent in the first half of the year, as sales jumped 19 per cent boosted by strong growth in Europe and the United States.

DEARBORN, Michigan – Ford Motor Co’s net income has jumped 44 per cent to $US1.9 billion ($A2.59 billion) in the second quarter on rising global sales and customers paying more for new trucks and SUVs with premium features.

WILMINGTON, Delaware – DuPont’s second-quarter profit has fallen 12 per cent, and the chemical company has lowered its forecast for the year after a stronger US dollar and a sales drop in its agriculture segment affected results.

MEXICO CITY – State-owned Mexican oil company Pemex is reporting second quarter losses of $US5.2 billion ($A7.16 billion) due mainly to lower petroleum prices.

LONDON – London-listed pharmaceuticals firm Hikma has bought US generic drugs company Roxane from German peer Boehringer Ingelheim for $US2.65 billion ($A3.65 billion) in the sector’s latest rapid round of consolidation.

ZURICH – Zurich Insurance is interested in buying British rival Royal & Sun Alliance, the pair revealed on Tuesday, causing RSA shares to surge.

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