Jobs report; US-China talks; Buffett's big weekend

1. Jobs report: The US unemployment rate has fallen below 4% for the first time since 2000, dropping...

Posted: May 4, 2018 3:30 PM
Updated: May 4, 2018 3:30 PM

1. Jobs report: The US unemployment rate has fallen below 4% for the first time since 2000, dropping to 3.9% in April, according to the US Labor Department.

The economy added 164,000 jobs in April. That's fewer jobs than the 190,000 expected by the economists polled by FactSet, but a rebound from the previous month. Only 103,000 jobs were added in March.

Wages grew 2.6% from a year earlier. That was also slightly below expectations.

2. US-China talks: China says it made progress in trade talks with the United States but acknowledged that the two sides remain far apart on some issues.

After two days of talks in Beijing between top officials, the two sides have agreed to continue "close communication," according to a report by China's official news agency, Xinhua.

The two governments reached agreements in some areas, including increasing exports from the United States to China, Xinhua said, but it didn't give any details.

3. Xerox U-turn: A couple of days ago, Xerox said its CEO was resigning. Now, it says he's staying put.

In a statement late Thursday night, Xerox said that a deal with activist investors Carl Icahn and Darwin Deason for its CEO and most of its board of directors to leave had expired.

The US printer and copier company accused Deason of failing to fulfill part of the bargain, which required him to end litigation against Xerox directors. Icahn and Deason quickly fired back at the Xerox board.

4. Volkswagen woes: The US government unveiled charges on Thursday against Martin Winterkorn, the former CEO of Volkswagen, that stem from company's diesel scandal.

Volkswagen admitted in late 2015 that it fitted as many as 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide with software that could cheat emissions tests. Winterkorn has denied wrongdoing.

News of the charges coincided with Volkswagen's annual shareholder meeting. Investor reaction was muted on Friday, with Volkswagen shares gaining 1% in Frankfurt.

5. Warren Buffett's big weekend: Berkshire Hathaway is hosting its annual shareholder meeting this weekend.

The meeting is an opportunity for Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger to comment on the company's many investments. They'll praise - or criticize - the companies they care about.

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6. Global market overview: US stock futures were lower.

Alibaba and Newell Brands are set to release earnings before the open in New York.

European markets were mixed, while stocks in Asia finished the session mostly lower.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed flat on Thursday. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq shed 0.2%.

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7. Coming this week:

Friday - Alibaba, Newell Brands earnings; Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder weekend kicks off; Jobs report

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