Fast Europe Open: Spain industrial production, Portugal unemployment

Elon Musk took to Twitter on Tuesday to declare that he wanted to take Tesla private in a deal that would value the company at $70bn, potentially bringing an end to his fractious relationship with Wall Street.

Mr Musk’s plans were tweeted out shortly after a Financial Times report that Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund had taken a $2bn stake in the electric carmaker. 

Mr Musk’s unorthodox use of social media to divulge the plans left investors guessing about how serious to take the claims by the mercurial entrepreneur. 

The Tesla boss dropped his bombshell on Wall Street at lunchtime in New York. “Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured,” Mr Musk tweeted. The company’s shares jumped on the news and, after a short trading halt, ended the day up 11 per cent at $379.57.

In markets, Asia-Pacific equities lacked a clear direction on Wednesday with Japan’s Topix down 0.1 per cent while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.4 per cent and the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.2 per cent in Sydney. The moves followed a rally in US stocks which saw the S&P 500 close within a whisker of the record high set in January.

Futures tip both the FTSE 100 and S&P 500 to open flat.

The corporate calendar for Wednesday includes Paddy Power Betfair, Bellway, G4S, Prudential, Glencore and PageGroup. The economic calendar has no particular affiliation (all times London):

  • 08.00: Spain industrial production
  • 11.00: Portugal unemployment rate

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