Morning News

Nike to Reduce Its Workforce

Published on Sun, 02/18/2024 ‑ 23:00

Topic of the day

Nike said that it will reduce its workforce by about 2%, or more than 1,600 people, in a bid to cut costs. Nike Chief Executive John Donahoe said the company is using its resources to increase investment in categories like running, women's apparel and the Jordan brand, according to an employee memo. The cuts aren't expected to affect employees in stores and distribution centers or those in its innovation team. The Beaverton, Ore.‑based sneaker company had about 83,700 employees as of May 31. "This is a painful reality and not one that I take lightly. We are not currently performing at our best, and I ultimately hold myself and my leadership team accountable," Donahoe said in the memo. The job cuts are expected to start immediately, and a second phase will be complete by the end of the quarter, the memo said. Nike in December lowered its revenue outlook for the year amid concerns that consumers are becoming more cautious with their spending. At the time, it said it would look to shave up to $2 billion in costs over the next three years through actions including job cuts and organizational streamlining.

Swiss stocks

The Swiss market ended on a positive note on Friday, extending gains to a third straight session, as optimism about interest rate cut by the Federal Reserve helped underpin sentiment. The benchmark SMI started off on a slightly weak note, but ended the day's session modestly higher despite paring some intraday gains. The index ended up 26.43 points or 0.23% at 11,310.61, nearly 50 points off the day's high of 11,358.00. Sika, the top gainer in the SMI index, climbed 2.83%. Holcim and ABB gained 1.68% and 1.65%, respectively. Geberit advanced 1.3% and Swiss Life Holdings ended 1.11% up. Partners Group, Novartis, Roche Holding and Richemont ended higher by 0.4 to 0.6%. Swiss Re ended down 2.56% despite reporting higher earnings. The company posted a significant rise in profit in 2023, mainly due to improved performance in its property‑and‑casualty reinsurance segment. Logitech International, Nestle and Kuehne & Nagel lost 0.9 to 1%. Sonova drifted down 0.5%, while Lonza Group settled lower by 0.28%. Among the stocks in the Mid Price Index, Swatch Group climbed 2.25%. Straumann Holding, SGS, Sandoz, Georg Fischer, Schindler Holding and Schindler Ps gained 1 to 1.4%. Meyer Burger Tech ended down 5.2%. Temenos Group dropped 4.6%, while ams OSRAM AG ended lower by 1.47%.

International markets

European stocks closed higher on Friday, extending recent gains, with investors cheering UK retail sales data and some encouraging corporate earnings updates. Optimism about interest rate cuts by several central banks sometime in the second half of the current year contributed as well to the positive mood in the region. The pan European Stoxx 600 climbed 0.62%. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 surged 1.5%, Germany's DAX and France's CAC 40 gained 0.42% and 0.32%, respectively. Switzerland's SMI gained 0.23%. Among other markets in Europe, Austria, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal and Sweden closed higher. Belgium, Greece and Turkiye edged up marginally. Iceland, Russia and Spain closed weak. In the UK market, Natwest Group shares zoomed nearly 7.5% as the bank announced its biggest annual profit last year since the 2007 financial crisis. Antofagasta surged 6%. Lloyds Banking, Weir, Rio Tinto, Prudential and Centrica climbed 3.2 to 4%. Glencore, ICP, RS Group, Halma, Rentokil Initial, IMI, AstraZeneca, Anglo American Plc, Relx, Diploma, St. James's Place, Standard Chartered, Barclays, Fresnillo, Ashtead and 3i advanced 2 to 3%. Airtel Africa ended down 3.3%. Ocado Group and Vodafone Group ended lower by 1.3% and 1%, respectively. In the German market, HeidelbergCement climbed 3%. MTU Aero Engines, Bayer, Porsche, Sartorius, Siemens Healthineers, BMW, Adidas, Siemens, Mercedes‑Benz and BASF gained 1 to 2%. Commerzbank ended down 2.2%. Munich RE, Zalando, Hannover Rueck, RWE and E.ON lost 0.8 to 1.25%. In Paris, Eurofins Scientific rallied 4.3%.

United States
U.S. stocks settled lower on Friday as robust producer price inflation data raised concerns that Federal Reserve may not consider lowering interest rate anytime soon. The major averages all ended weak, with the downside of the tech‑laden Nasdaq more pronounced. The Dow, which briefly emerged into positive territory around mid afternoon, ended with a loss of 145.13 points or 0.37 percent at 38,627.99. The S&P 500 ended down 21.16 points or 0.48 percent at 5,005.57, while the Nasdaq settled at 15,775.65, losing 130.52 points or 0.82 percent. Digital Realty tumbled more than 8 percent. Adobe Systems dropped about 7.4 percent, while Airbnb, Moderna, Micron Technology, Nike and Equinix lost 2 to 4 percent. Amgen, Advanced Micro Devices, Invesco, Netflix, Alphabet, Whirlpool, Oracle, Cisco Systems, Intel, Microchip Technology and Visa ended down 1 to 2 percent. Data from the Labor Department showed a bigger than expected increase in U.S. producer prices in the month of January. The report said the producer price index for final demand rose by 0.3 percent in January after edging down by 0.1 percent in December. Economists had expected producer prices to inch up by 0.1 percent. The report said the consumer sentiment index inched up to 79.6 in February after spiking to 79.0 in January. With the increase, the consumer sentiment index reached its highest level since hitting 81.2 in July 2021.

Except for the Chinese and South Korean stock exchanges, little changed on the Asian trading centres on Monday. While the Shanghai Composite rose by 1.6 per cent, the HSI in Hong Kong fell by 0.9 per cent in late trading. Consumer data during the Chinese New Year holiday showed some strength and supported the Shanghai stock exchange in particular, which is more dependent on domestic consumption.

In the U.S. bond market, treasuries pulled back sharply after moving higher over the two previous sessions. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten‑year note, which moves opposite of its price, climbed up 10.8 basis points at 4.299 percent this morning.

JP Morgan raises Schindler target to CHF 230 (210) – Neutral
Deutsche Bank raises Bawag target to EUR 77 (75) – Buy
Citi raises Siemens target to EUR 215 (200) – Buy

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