Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.

Summary

  1. US Federal Reserve keeps rates on hold at 0.25%-0.5%
  2. Facebook revenues jump 60% year on year
  3. Deutsche Bank profits fall 98% to €20m
  4. Oil prices down sharply after US stockpiles increase
  5. Tesla opens battery "gigafactory" in Nevada

Live Reporting

By Willem Marx

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Goodnight from London

That's it from the Business Live page today. Tune in again tomorrow morning at 6am London time.

Massive jump in Facebook revenue

The BBC's Michelle Fleury in NYC tweets:

No wonder Facebook's shares have taken off like a rocket. The social media giant just reported a 60% jump in revenue

'Inadequate' pensions

Our personal finance reporter tweets

View more on twitter

Oil prices hit a three-month low

Increased US stockpiles push US crude below $42

Meanwhile, since the Fed's latest statement did little to ruffle markets, a lot of investors are watching the oil price. And consequently so, dear reader, are we.

US crude has fallen as much as a dollar to $41.92 a barrel in today's trading, though it has bounced back slightly in the last half hour or so. 

But Brent Crude is still down more than 3%, standing at $43.50.

Apple stocks also flying high

Another tech giant, up 6.5%

US tech stocks being really helped by Apple, one of the elephants in the room...er, Nasdaq.

The company's shares jumped at the start of trading today, and are now above $103.

Apple store sign
Getty Images

Facebook stock up 8.3%

Mobile daily average users - one of the key metrics for judging the company's success - also beat expectations. 

Zuckerberg is "really pleased with the progress in video." But there is no breakdown or any hard numbers for video in these earnings. 

Facebook Q2 revenues hit $6.44b

Facebook's earnings per share of 97 cents dramatically exceeded analyst's expectations. 

Facebook shares soaring before earnings release

Social media giant's shares up 1.8%

A few minutes away from the company's Q2 earnings statement, investors seem to be fairly bullish - the stock is up more than $2 to a new record high of $123.40.

Graph showing Facebook share price
BBC

Turkey's post-coup reaction against bank researcher

AK Investment's Mert Ulker loses licence

Turkey's recriminatory crackdown after the failed coup earlier in July has so far targeted policemen, soldiers, judges, university professors.

And now at least one research director in the financial sector has found himself in the cross-hairs, according to the AFP news agency. 

Mert Ulker is the head of research at the brokerage department of one of the country's largest banks, AK Investment, and is based in Istanbul. 

He wrote about the coup in his latest strategy report.

A pro-government newspaper, Sabah, called the report "dark propaganda."

Turkey's financial regulator, the Capital Markets Board, revoked his licence for failing to "fulfil his responsibilities" in preparing and publishing the report. 

Right now, Ulker is unable to work in the capital markets in any capacity. 

Meanwhile authorities have kept 8,113 people remanded in custody, according to the Interior Minister.      

Men wave Turkish flags
Associated Press

Pay packets

The Resolution Foundation has a report on the national and living wages out today:

View more on twitter

Hotel corporate bookings holding up

A final tweet tonight from 5Live's Biz Presenter in Chesterfield:

Stewart from @Casahotels says corporate bookings have been great this year. They already have 2000 booked for xmas!

Stewart from @Casahotels says corporate bookings have been great this year. They already have 2000 booked for xmas!

Oil price continues to drop

BBC's Scotland biz and economy editor tweets:

Brent crude oil, today, down 3% to $43.54:

Brent crude oil, today, down 3% to $43.54:

Getting ready to move...

"They're (the FOMC) hinting that they're going to go. The curve flattening is a bit of an indication that the market's beginning to price in the next rate hike maybe as early as September. It sounded a reasonably upbeat tone, not a big difference from last time, but a reasonably upbeat tone."

Kathy JonesCharles Schwab

One Fed dissenter

Policy-makers at the US Fed voted 9-1 to keep rates on hold.

The lone dissenter was the Kansas City Fed President Esther George. She voted to increase the target interest rate range to 0.5% to 0.75%.

She has said previously: "The economy is at or near full employment...and yet short-term interest rates remain at historic lows. Keeping rates too low can also create risks.”

Rate rise expected for later this year

The Fed may have kept its key interest rate constant at 0.25-0.5% in this latest statement. 

And that was surprising to almost nobody. Except perhaps the one board member who voted differently.

But the chances of a rate rise later in the year are looking increasingly likely, after policy makers talked up economic prospects and talked down concerns about stability - or "headwinds" as they like to call them. 

Before the Fed's two-day meeting, they put the chance of a rate rise by December at 52%. That's increased since the decision just minutes ago. 

Dow Jones and S&P 500 down

The Fed's decision to keep rates unchanged has had little positive impact on US stocks. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down.

The S&P 500 is down.

US Treasury bonds are sliding too.

Only the Nasdaq is in the green.  

The Fed says inflation will rise to 2% as previous "headwinds" diminish, with a stronger economic growth and labour market.

Fed statement little changed

The third, fourth and fifth paragraphs of the Federal Reserve's statement were identical to the previous statement. 

Global uncertainty remains a big focus. 

Dollar is immediately gaining against the yen, euro and pound. 

Federal Reserve keeps rates unchanged

No change in rates, only minor changes in the US economic assessment. "Near-term risks to economic outlook have diminished," according to the latest Fed statement.

Fed Reserve sign
AFP

Inside Tesla's Gigafactory

Elon Musk
Getty Images

North America technology reporter Dave Lee has been to the Nevada desert to hear Tesla founder Elon Musk talk about his global manufacturing ambitions.

The electric car maker's new $5bn (£3.8bn) 3,200-acre battery-manufacturing plant - the "Gigafactory" - has already begun production, but will not be in full swing until about 2020. At that point, it will have the largest physical footprint of any building in the world.

Read more from Dave here.

Gigafactory
Getty Images

Strong Q2 for manufacturing

A BBC Radio 5Live biz presenter tweets:

James from @UnitedCastBar tells me they had a cracking April before the summer slowdown. Manufacturing had a mega q2

James from @UnitedCastBar tells me they had a cracking April before the summer slowdown. Manufacturing had a mega q2

Hillary's economic polices 'will bring change'

As Hillary Clinton becomes the first female US presidential candidate nominated by a major party, Business Daily speaks to one of her advisors, Dr Robert Shapiro, who says that many of her economic policies "will bring the change" which so many American people want.  

Hillary Clinton's advisor tells us that many of her policies mean "economic change"

Testing the economic temperature

Friend of the Business Live page, BBC Economics Editor Kamal Ahmed, just appeared on the BBC News channel. 

He said that despite some of the recent economic data floating around, we won't really get a strong feel for how the UK's economy has performed post-Brexit until the Q3 GDP figures come out in October. 

Then there will be even more detail, he concluded, in the government's Autumn Statement that's due out in late November. 

US market update

Traders are waiting to hear what the US Federal Reserve has to say about interest rates later. No change is expected this month but its accompanying statement will be scrutinised for clues as to when rates might move.

Ahead of that, markets are pretty flat.

The Dow Jones is down 13 points at 18,459.98

The Nasdaq has edged 0.3% higher to 5,125.53

The broader S&P 500 index has slipped by 0.25% to 2,163.77

Oil tumbles

The price of oil has fallen sharply after data showing a surprise build-up in inventories.

US-traded crude was down nearly 2% at $41.11 a barrel, while London's Brent crude was down 2.7% at $43.67 a barrel.

The US Energy Information Administration said stockpiles rose 1.7 million barrels last week. Analysts had expected a decrease of 2.3m barrels.

Warning over Unemployed Loans firm

The BBC's Simon Gompertz tweets:

Metro Bank nears profitability

Another set of results with some Brexit-related resonance came our way from the little bank that could, Metro. Revenues rose 63% to £46.3m in the second quarter. Losses meantime narrowed from £7.6m to just $4.1m. 

Chief executive Craig Donaldson said there had been "no impact from Brexit, and no change in customer behaviour." He said he expected the bank - which launched during the recession and now has 42 UK branches - would finally be profitable by the end of the year. 

Metro Bank sign
Press Association

India opens up its stock exchange

Interesting little tidbit from New Delhi, where the government says it is increasing the share of a listed company that can be owned by foreign investors. Until now the country's exchanges have limited such foreign investment to just 5%, but that will now triple to 15%.

Overseas portfolio investors will also be permitted to purchase shares during an IPO, rather than simply on the secondary market. 

A little more than a year ago Saudi Arabia opened up its own stock market - the Tadawul - to direct foreign investors for the first time. Authorities in both countries have said such moves are about driving global competitiveness. Experts say capital markets' transparency potentially improves too.

Comcast

Comcast logo
Getty Images

US cable TV firm, Comcast lost 4,000 cable-TV customers in the second quarter. That's not good, but analysts were expecting much worse. 

Sales rose 2.8% to $19.27bn and net income fell to $2.08bn.

Comcast made $120m from the London Olympics and expects Rio to surpass that figure, Reuters reported.

Shares rose 1%.

FTSE 100 close to one-year high

Some late-in-the-day selling knocked the FTSE 100 off its upward trajectory on Wednesday. It was on course to hit its highest level in a year, surpassing 6,758.75 hit in July 2015. 

But it closed at 6,750.43 up 0.4% for the day.

Jasper Lawler, a market analyst at CMC Markets, said the index jumped after second quarter GDP data came in ahead of expectations this morning. 

"Gains were led by shares of housebuilders and ITV after the firms maintained optimistic forecasts for the year despite the EU referendum vote," he added.

The FTSE 250 added more than 1%, with engineering and property shares leading the index.

Negative interest rates in the UK?

Pro-EU paper keeps printing

New European front cover
Archant

The New European, a pop-up newspaper pitched at those who voted to remain in the EU, will keep publishing after making a profit.

It was due to stop after four issues, but publishers Archant are carrying on after selling an estimated 40,000 copies.

The weekly paper's contributors have included New Labour grandees Alastair Campbell and Peter Mandelson. 

Copies are £2 and are mainly available in London, Liverpool, Manchester, the south of England, Scotland and other strongly Remain voting areas.

Retail sales 'fall after Brexit vote'

Shopping bags
Reuters

Retail sales volumes in July fell at the fastest pace in over four years, according to a survey by the CBI.

Weaker consumer confidence was "a likely factor in the immediate period following the EU referendum", the CBI said.  

Sales by grocers, and furniture and carpets stores were the main drivers of the drop in overall volumes.  

However, Rain Newton-Smith, CBI chief economist, warned: “While conditions in the retail sector have weakened, we should be careful about reading too much too soon, as consumers were likely to err on the side of caution in the immediate period following a vote to leave the EU."

Listen: The EU customs union explained

The World at One

BBC Radio 4

International Trade Minister Liam Fox is reportedly pressing for the UK to pull out of the EU's customs union as part of the Brexit negotiations. 

Prime Minister Theresa May says she is keeping an open mind about which model to pursue. But what is the customs union? Professor Patrick Low, former chief economist at the World Trade Organisation, explained to World At One presenter Martha Kearney.   

Fed announcement due at 19:00 BST

US Federal Reserve building
Reuters

Policy makers at the US Federal Reserve will announce the outcome of their two-day meeting at 19:00 BST/14:00 EST.

They are not expected to move rates, but their statement will be combed through for any hints about when the Fed might take its next move.

"Some acknowledgement of the improved economic backdrop is likely in the statement and the market will go on slowly raising the odds of a 2016 rate hike," Societe Generale strategist Kit Juckes said in a research note.

The Fed raised rates last December, its first increase since June 2006, and ever since then analysts have been wondering when the next move will be.

Apple shares boost US indexes

Shares in Apple have jumped 7% in early trading - investors soothed by its trading update, released on Tuesday evening, which showed stronger than expected iPhone sales.

Apple is one of the biggest winners on the Nasdaq which is up 0.6%.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 0.3%. 

The S&P 500 is up just a couple of points.

Kamal Ahmed: 'Take care' over growth figures

Kamal Ahmed

Economics editor

"Care does need to be taken with these figures.

Firstly, they are only an initial assessment, and the data towards the end of the quarter will only be firmed up once the "revisions" are published over the next few weeks.

What estimates we do have suggest that activity did fall off through May and June as the referendum approached.

Second, the figures do not contain much information on what has happened to the economy following the June 23 vote.

And certainly some of the data published since then have been pretty gloomy."

You can read more from Kamal here.

UK shares push higher

The FTSE 100 has continued to climb, a short while ago it was up 0.7%.

ITV is the biggest winner, up almost 9% after reporting a 9% increase in profits. Builders are also performing well, following an upbeat trading statement from Taylor Wimpey.

The FTSE 250 is having an even stronger session, up 1.6%.

Engineering firm Renishaw is leading that index with a near 10% jump, despite reporting falling sales and profits.

Updated statement from Hermes

"We are aware that Mr Field has written to the Prime Minister with a number of allegations regarding our UK operations.

"We are in the process of writing to Mr Field so we can investigate the specific cases raised in the letter to establish the facts of each case.

"We have operated in the UK for many years and have grown to a network of over 10,000 couriers.

"We pay all our UK taxes and our growth and that of the sector has been driven by the change in purchasing habits in the UK. "We are proud to have an extremely committed and loyal network of couriers who enjoy their work and deliver high standards of service in return for rates of pay that allow for average earnings per hour of £9.80. 

"We will work with the government and delivery industry to look at how we can best serve the needs of couriers, customers and consumers."

Fiat profits surge

Fiat logo
AP

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has reported a 25% increase in net profit to €321m euros for the quarter which ended 30 June 2016.

The company made significant savings by cutting and refinancing its debts.

Fiat's tax expenses were also significantly lower.

Shipments of vehicles rose 1% to 1,175,000 cars.