China's central bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan warned on Sunday that the country needs to be vigilant for signs of deflation and said policymakers were closely watching slowing global economic growth and declining commodity prices. Zhou's comments are likely to add to concerns that China is in danger of slipping into deflation and underline increasing nervousness among policymakers as the economy continues to lose momentum despite a raft of stimulus measures. "Inflation in China is also declining. Zhou added that the speed with which inflation was slowing was a "little too quick", though this was part of China's ongoing market readjustment and reforms.
The chairman of China National Chemical Corp (ChemChina) said on Sunday he hopes to re-list Italy's Pirelli (PECI.MI) on the Italian stock exchange after his firm agreed earlier this month to acquire the world's fifth-largest tire maker. Ren Jianxin also warned that a counterbid for Pirelli would hurt the Italian firm's investors and long-term strategy. ChemChina has agreed to become majority owner of Pirelli as part of a multi-layered 7.3 billion euro ($8 billion) deal, putting one of Italy's oldest household names in Chinese hands. On Thursday, Pirelli CEO Marco Tronchetti Provera told Reuters his firm is not talking to others about a possible counterbid.
Wall Street investors may find little reason to make big moves next week as they await monthly U.S. jobs data and any news that could change expectations for the first interest rate hike in almost a decade. The Labor Department report is due on Friday, when the stock market will be closed for Good Friday, leaving investors unable to trade on the data until the following week. In the meantime, investors will continue adjusting to lowered earnings forecasts for the first quarter and the uncertain direction of the dollar. Stocks have trended downward since rallying on the Federal Reserve's March 18 statement, in which it suggested a less-aggressive approach to raising interest rates than investors had expected.