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  • Stocks likely to drift as investors await Fed, earnings
    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.
  • Best Buy warns of profit hit as it consolidates Canadian stores
    Best Buy Co Inc (BBY.N) plans to close some stores and consolidate its operations in Canada, the U.S. electronics retailer's second-largest market, in a move that will hurt earnings this year, the company said on Saturday. The retailer said it will close 66 of its Future Shop brand stores in Canada and convert 65 of them to Best Buy brand stores. The move to a single brand will cut 500 full-time and 1,000 part-time jobs, and cost the company about US$200 million to US$280 million in restructuring charges, Best Buy said. Best Buy also said it plans to spend C$200 million (US$160 million) to improve its online operations in Canada, increase staffing at remaining stores, and launch a range of home appliances, among other initiatives.
  • President Xi says China should not focus on growth rate only
    Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Saturday that the country should not focus on its economic growth rate only, reiterating China's push for a more sustainable, higher-quality expansion. Chinese leaders have announced an economic growth target of around 7 percent for this year, below the 7.5 percent goal in 2014 and the slowest rate in a quarter-century. Analysts anticipate further interest rate cuts in China this year.

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