Five Things to Know Now

 | Aug 14, 2014 | 5:30 AM EDT  | Comments
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European stocks fell after dismal economic data. Asian shares, however, closed the session mostly higher with investors betting on a continuation of monetary stimulus from central banks. Here are five things that matter for markets now:

  • Germany's economy posted a shocking second-quarter performance, contracting by 0.2% quarter-on-quarter, while France stagnated. The eurozone's economy stagnated, compared with expectations of a very small uptick in the second quarter. Yields on 10-year bonds issued by Germany and France fell to new record lows.
  • A senior official from the International Committee of the Red Cross will travel to the Ukrainian capital Kiev to hold talks about the delivery of Russian aid to separatist regions in eastern Ukraine. Meanwhile, a convoy of more than 200 Russian trucks heading for Ukraine changed direction, prompting speculation that it would try to enter the country via regions controlled by the separatists rather than using an official border crossing as promised initially.
  • Israel and militants in the Gaza strip agreed to extend a truce brokered by Egypt by another five days as they try to reach a wider agreement on their disputes.
  • With mortgage lenders chasing customers once more, stated income loans make a comeback, Reuters reports. With these, customers who cannot provide tax returns or salary proof can still get mortgages if they show they have enough income.
  • Good news in China for UPS (UPS) and FedEx (FDX), which have finally, after years of waiting, received licenses to extend services to Beijing and other major cities without needing local partners. 

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